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YACT '98 Honda Civic check engine light

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YACT '98 Honda Civic check engine light

Old 01-27-11, 10:19 AM
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YACT '98 Honda Civic check engine light

So I've got a '98 honda civic lx, 110k miles on it. Check engine light used to come on when it rained and car would have trouble accelerating but when the engine would warm up and drive for awhile the light went away after about a week.

Now it's been on solid for about a month, and my co-worker loaned me his diagnostic tool. Looks like it was a spark plug misfire. So last weekend with the help of youtube I replaced the spark plugs, wires, distributor cap and ignition rotor.

I then cleared the codes but the check engine light came on again, this time it's the P0420 code, which I look up and it's the catalytic converter efficiency error. So my question is this - should I try replacing the oxygen sensors or just get it diagnosed professionally? I figure the diagnostic would cost as much as replacing the sensors.

Over the past few years I've replaced the muffler and long pipe myself with little difficulty (everything is held together with bolts and no welding is involved), and am wondering how hard it is to replace the cat. I know very little about cars.
Old 01-27-11, 10:23 AM
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Re: YACT '98 Honda Civic check engine light

if it's the cat converter, take it to a muffler shop. they'll have to cut off the old and weld a new one in.
Old 01-27-11, 10:28 AM
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Re: YACT '98 Honda Civic check engine light

Did you check the blinker fluid?
Old 01-27-11, 11:02 AM
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Re: YACT '98 Honda Civic check engine light

The blinker fluid was topped off during my last battery oil change so I know it's not that.

I hate muffler shops with a passion and will avoid at all costs. I've got a mechanic that I trust and will go to him before I ever go back to a Midas or Car-X.
Old 01-27-11, 11:12 AM
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Re: YACT '98 Honda Civic check engine light

You may want to have it looked at before you invest in any replacements. Here is something I found online about your car which you may want to check out further (I cannot vouch for accuracy):

"Anyway, before you jump the gun and replace any parts, the 1998 Honda Civic has had a service bulletin on it since 1998. Even though you may get an 02 sensor code, or a low catalyst efficiency code, the TSB is to do nothing more than have the combustion chamber cleaned, which can run about $89.00 at most shops. There are ways to do it yourself, but you may end up fouling your spark plugs out if you aren't careful. Get the codes yanked first, and I will get you a copy of the TSB, and tell you how to fix it."
As for replacement, replacement of the O2 sensors can be done by the owner. It will be a tight fit, but if you can get your car up on some ramps it is doable. I recommend you buy online for parts, as it will be tons cheaper than at the dealer and a lot cheaper most times than any local auto parts store. You can go to autopartswarehouse to check out what your car needs (likely 2 O2 sensors for before and after the Cat).

As for Cat replacement, I again am not familar with the vehicle in question, but I doubt highly that the Cat needs to be cut off. Most are similar to the exhaust work you have already done. I have replaced the Cat on my Subaru and the hardest part is if the bolts are rusted. Use some spray solution to break the rust bond and away you go.
Old 01-27-11, 11:22 AM
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Re: YACT '98 Honda Civic check engine light

That quote looks familiar while doing my own searching for advice lol.

It's shocking to see the price difference between muffler shops and DIY with parts bought online which is why I started doing it myself along with oil changes etc.

I'll look into the combustion chamber cleaning for sure, thanks.
Old 01-28-11, 10:22 AM
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Re: YACT '98 Honda Civic check engine light

Originally Posted by rabbit77 View Post
'98 honda civic lx,

Wow, takes me back to the Top Bunk days.
Old 01-28-11, 04:53 PM
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Re: YACT '98 Honda Civic check engine light

Originally Posted by Mopower View Post
Wow, takes me back to the Top Bunk days.
Ugh, beat me to it.

Icy Hot Rabbit77z!

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