86 accord failed smog... HELP/ADVICE

Discussion in 'Accord' started by Aaron, Sep 12, 2006.

  1. Aaron

    Aaron Guest

    took it to get smoged from my annual 2 year check and it failed....
    the emission control systems all passed but the idle emission test
    didn't oh by the way this is for a california smog
    At Idle HC: Max 120 Me 204
    CO: Max 1.00 Me 1.88
    At 2500rpm HC: Max 150 Me 77
    CO: Max 1.20 Me 1.73

    Yeah so i have no idea what could be the cause any ideas? i'v heard
    check air filter, fuel filter, spark plugs but i'm trying not to spend
    a lot of cash on this... Suggestion?
    Aaron, Sep 12, 2006
  2. Aaron

    Matt Ion Guest

    This a carb or FI model (the fuel-injected ones have an "i" tacked on the model
    name, like "EXi")?

    You should always put in a new air filter and plugs when going for an emissions
    test - if they're bad enough that they'll fail you the test, they're probably
    costing you fuel economy as well, especially on a carbed car. A clogged fuel
    filter will cause the car to run rich, failing the test and wasting fuel. Bad
    plugs can cause misfires, failing the test and also wasting fuel. It won't take
    long for that to cost you more than the price of the filter and plugs.

    An oil change is also highly recommended before a smog test.
    Matt Ion, Sep 12, 2006
  3. Aaron

    Elle Guest


    http://www.interro.com/techgas.html#anchoreleven ,
    especially "Causes of Excess Emissions." The section on high
    CO blames the engine control system. The section on high HCs
    points to fouled plugs and/or old ignition wires.


    Per the above sites and what they say about high CO and HCs,
    I would start by replacing the PCV valve, spark plugs, and

    You say you do not want to spend a lot of cash, but it sure
    sounds like your poor ol' Honda would benefit a lot from a
    tuneup. For one thing, your fuel mileage might increase a
    lot. For another, the life of other, more expensive ignition
    system parts can increase. Strongly consider performing all
    of what's listed at
    http://home.earthlink.net/~honda.lioness/id11.html .
    Elle, Sep 12, 2006
  4. If you are in California, Check out the CAP program
    You apply and get approved to use one of a list of authorized garages.
    You pay $100 and they will do up to $500 worth of work to get you to pass.
    Usually, bad O2 sensors are the cause. If they are over 50k miles, they are
    suspect. You can get them pretty cheap but the install can be a pain. It
    often requires a special wrench and skill at cracking siezed nuts.

    You could need a new CAT as well. My CAT and O2 sensors on my 89 accord went
    bad for the first time at about 200,000 miles.

    Good luck.
    los via CarKB.com, Sep 13, 2006
  5. Aaron

    Elle Guest

    Maybe put a time limit on them, too. :)
    Hey now, my impression (from removing my old 91 Civic's
    sensor a few times and reports here) is changing out the O2
    sensor is almost always very easy. One may borrow an O2
    sensor wrench from Autozone for a fully refundable deposit.
    A little PB Blaster (worst case), and that sensor comes off
    no problem.

    I do second that a new, OEM O2 sensor for older Hondas is
    cheap. It's under $40 total at
    https://www.automedicsupply.com/ . I used the latter a few
    years ago. Service was great. The new (OEM Denso) O2 sensor
    works great. 40+ mpg most of the year, suburban driving and
    45+mpg at 65 mph cruise control windows open summer driving.
    Elle, Sep 13, 2006
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