Symptoms of a blown engine cylinder?

Discussion in 'Community Discussion' started by Frisco, Feb 21, 2008.

  1. Frisco macrumors 68020

    Joined:
    Sep 24, 2002
    Location:
    Utopia
    #1
    1992 Accord

    Started shaking pretty hard.

    Loss of Power

    Very Noisy engine

    Strong Gas odor

    Hesitation

    What do the Macrumors mechanics diagnose?
     
  2. Rodimus Prime macrumors G4

    Rodimus Prime

    Joined:
    Oct 9, 2006
    #2
    it could be an any number of things. Could easy be one of you cylinders are not firing or miss firing.

    Is the things you listed constant or come and go?

    Pull one of your spark plugs and see what it looks like. Look at you disbutur and the disbuter cap. Those could be bad.

    has the timing belt ever been change?

    The Items I listed are cheap fixes and cheap things to check. Try checking on the cheap stuff before you think you need to do an expensive repair.
     
  3. Frisco thread starter macrumors 68020

    Joined:
    Sep 24, 2002
    Location:
    Utopia
    #3
    Thanks for your reply.

    Spark Plugs, Wires, Distributor, Distributor Cap and Rotor are all less than 9 months old.

    Timing belt was changed about 70 thousand miles ago back in 2000. According to the Honda Manual it is recommended to replace it every 90K miles.

    The problem started this morning on my way to work, but it only happened for a few seconds a couple of times. Then on my drive home it was fine, until I got close to home and problem is now constant.
     
  4. Berlepsch macrumors 6502

    Berlepsch

    Joined:
    Oct 22, 2007
    #4
    Some things to check first: oil level, cooling water level. Is there oil in the water, or mysterious increase of the oil level? If yes, you might have problems with the cylinder head gasket. If oil level is low, add some oil. If motor runs smoothly again, just check oil consumption in the future.

    To check if the problem is limited to one cylinder, you can unplug one spark plug at a time when the motor is running. If you unplug the cable from the failing cylinder, motor speed should not change, if you remove the plug from a running cylinder, the speed should drop, or the motor stalls.

    If you can identify a faulty cylinder, remove the spark and check if works (I assume that you know how to do this. If not, find someone who knows. Discharge from an ignition coil can be dangerous if you run it through your body). If the spark is working, and you have a central carburetor/injection for the motor, next thing I would check is the engine compression. This is usually garage work.
     
  5. Berlepsch macrumors 6502

    Berlepsch

    Joined:
    Oct 22, 2007
    #5
    Just to stress this again: The ignition system uses high voltages that can be hazardous. When you touch or remove ignition cables, keep away from the metal parts and try not to make contact between your car and your other hand or other parts of the body. Have a second person in the car starting and stopping the motor for you. Only do it when you feel safe about it.
     
  6. carlgo macrumors 68000

    Joined:
    Dec 29, 2006
    #6
    If you don't have the skills or tools for the checks described in the previous posts, then you aren't going to be able to fix it yourself anyway, so I suggest going to the shop.

    And, I suggest going to an independent specialized Honda shop, or the dealer, because they have probably seen this exact problem a million times. A shop that works on everything likely will take more time with more chance of error because they have to figure everything out.

    There are exceptions, of course.

    To find such a place, call professional parts stores (not a box store!), high-end body shops, auto machine shops, etc. and ask them who is the best independent Honda place and thank them.

    Believe it or not, the places with the biggest Yellow Page ads are not always the best, and that goes for any trade:(
     
  7. faintember macrumors 65816

    faintember

    Joined:
    Jun 6, 2005
    Location:
    the ruins of the Cherokee nation
    #7
    From this, my money is on a loose spark plug wire or a spark plug that has backed itself out over time. This would account for pretty much all of your symptoms.

    And even though the plugs and wires are only 9 months old, inspecting them can tell you a lot about your motor. Here is a decent picture guide I found (very quickly) at NGK that will help you to read your plugs.
     
  8. Frisco thread starter macrumors 68020

    Joined:
    Sep 24, 2002
    Location:
    Utopia
    #8
    Thanks to everyone for their advice. My friend's friend is a mechanic and is coming over Sunday to help me out. From what I told him he thinks my engine is being flooded with fuel. But all of your suggestions are a strong possibility. Thanks!

    We will find out soon. I appreciate everyone's advice!
     
  9. ErikCLDR macrumors 68000

    Joined:
    Jan 14, 2007
    #9
    Do you have a check engine light on? Better question is does a 92 honda have on board diagnostics.

    You may be getting too much gas in the gas to oxygen ratio.

    Check your oil, if it looks milky you could have a blown head gasket.

    You may also be having a misfire. Check all your plugs and wires and the distributer like others have said.

    How many miles do you have on it?
     
  10. Frisco thread starter macrumors 68020

    Joined:
    Sep 24, 2002
    Location:
    Utopia
    #10
    Thanks, I'll check those things you suggested in a little while.

    The check engine light is not on. It has ODB1 diagnostics, not ODB2. Car has 165K miles.

    Two other symptoms I failed to mention are black smoke coming from tailpipe and the steering wheel is shaking pretty hard.
     
  11. ErikCLDR macrumors 68000

    Joined:
    Jan 14, 2007
    #11
    Does your check engine light work? It could be burnt out. When you start your car does the light turn on and go away?

    If its running so roughly I would think that it would throw out some codes.
     
  12. Frisco thread starter macrumors 68020

    Joined:
    Sep 24, 2002
    Location:
    Utopia
    #12
    Yeah the check engine light does work. My friend is coming over tomorrow and he can check the plugs--that's just not something I can do myself. Engine oil looks clean. Air filter is clean.

    But I just discovered something very interesting. In Park when I hold my foot on the gas up to 3K RPMs all the problems I described go away, no more spuddering, steering wheel stops shaking, no more black smoke. When I let go of the gas pedal it is still okay for a few seconds and then all of a sudden the problem happens again and rpms drop even below what is normal.

    Does this mean too much fuel is getting into the engine?
     
  13. Frisco thread starter macrumors 68020

    Joined:
    Sep 24, 2002
    Location:
    Utopia
    #13
    Problem fixed. My friend's mechanic friend just came over.

    8 Month old A/C Delco spark plug wires were all corroded, causing a misfire and making the 8 month old Bosch plugs to be covered with soot.

    Thanks for everyone's help!
     

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