Hard start/run when wet/cold

Discussion in 'General Motoring' started by notbob, Dec 27, 2005.

  1. notbob

    notbob Guest

    My '87 Si hatchback (220K miles) has an acute cold/wet weather
    problem. During cold wet rainy days, car will stutter and backfire
    until engine reaches full operating temperature. Car starts instantly
    when cold, but will stutter/backfire when given 1/8-1/4 throttle at
    low rpms. When revs come up, will take more throttle w/o
    stutt/backfire. If car is parked before reaching full temp, say, to go
    into the market for 10 mins, car will hardly restart. Needs multiple
    10-20 sec start attempts (no gas) until get a cough, then again, then
    will catch and be very stuttery and stall w/ too much throttle, but
    runs. If gas applied, before start, huge embarrasing backfire, so I
    know the injectors are getting fuel. Restart problem occurs when cold
    and dry, but not cold engine stutter problem. Problem does not exist
    during warm weather.

    To me, it sounds like either a electrical (condensation?) or choke
    problem, but I know nothing about either on a Honda. I do most of my
    own mechanical work, but am more familiar with old American iron.
    Never been into the "ignitor".

    notbob, Dec 27, 2005
  2. notbob

    Elle Guest

    How old are and who manufactured the distributor cap on your
    Honda? If they are either old or non-OEM, I would start by
    replacing the distributor cap and rotor with new, genuine
    Honda ones. Rainy day starting problems often trace to the
    cap, from my reading and one experience with another
    Japanese make. They're cheap parts to replace--under $50.

    Then I'd check the wires' resistance and inspect the wires
    while running with the hood up in the dark. Look for
    sparking. If any wire's resistance is over 15k ohms, then
    replace the wires. Or if the wires are non-OEM, replace

    What's the status of other maintenance on the car? E.g. how
    old are the plugs, and are they OEM? Fuel filter, air
    filter? PCV valve? Coolant thermostat fairly new and OEM?
    Coolant been changed and system purged of air?

    I don't suspect any of the above, but any could interfere
    with your troubleshootin.

    For now, I agree.
    I doubt it's the igniter. It tends to fail "all or nothing"
    and I have not heard of its operation being subject to
    weather variations.
    Elle, Dec 27, 2005
  3. notbob

    SoCalMike Guest

    replace distributor cap and rotor with new OEM.
    SoCalMike, Dec 28, 2005
  4. notbob

    jim beam Guest

    replace plugs, leads, cap, rotor, etc. use oem - only a couple of bucks
    more expensive, but 10 times better quality. use the honda spec ngk plugs.
    jim beam, Dec 28, 2005
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