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88 prelude odd problem

 
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Old 11-23-2015, 11:42 PM
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88 prelude odd problem

had my prelude for about a year now but now i have to get it inspected and sure enough stuff needs to be fixed. just to let you all know i have checked the basics like fuses and they are all good.

1. hazard lights dont work. the turn signals work but the hazard lights wont come on
2. horn doesnt work. cruise control doesnt work although the light on the button does illuminate when pressed.
3. the speedo works sometimes but that doesnt bother me as much. the weirdest thing is that my tach, gas, and temp gauges all wont work if it is warm out or the car sits in the sun. id say somewhere around 70 degrees they dont work, but below 70 it works fine. and it never changes while driving when the car gets to operating temp.
4. no a/c or heat but the air still blows. i dont even get natural heat from the engine like on one of my other cars.
5. engine light comes on only when i am decelerating but not pushing the clutch in( basically just letting off the pedal while driving).
6. no rear defrost.
7. while in stop and go traffic the car overheats. it doesnt overheat any other time. water pump has already been replaced with timing belt service.
8. every once in a while it will not start immediately after shutting off. usually when its warmer but it has something to do with the relay not turning on when its too hot i guess :/

it has 395k miles (but accoring to carfax it had 300k by the time it was 10 years old so i dont think its that high) but as far as mechanically it drives great and have taken it on as much as a 9 hour road trip in one shot and never gave me a problem.

kinda want to sell it but i like it as a good get around car thats a little fun to throw around. thanks
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Old 11-28-2015, 08:59 AM
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Re: 88 prelude odd problem

You're going to need a wire diagram. Sometime the hazards are wired into the combination switch (not sure on our vehicles) also the horn can be wired through there too.

My speedo would go out when I bought mine because the clock and speedo share a common groun. I just wired a new ground from behind the clock to screw that hold the dash in ( I know not a perfect solution but it worked). As far as the rest of the cluster try looking for a loose connected behind the cluster and I also know it is wired to the fuse box inside so check the connectors there too.

The defroster has a ground under the rear deck carpet. See if the defroster grid is getting ground. They have some funky bracket back there that was giving me a problem. I spliced in a new ground to the ground side on the drivers side or the grid. You may have a scratch in the grid that has to be repaired though. It's pretty easy but can be time consuming if there is many parts of the grid scratched.

You may need a new radiator fan or the sensor isn't kicking on. Also are you loosing coolant? And where? A bad head gasket can over heat your car fast and if not fixed can cause a lot of wear on the engine.

Check your main relay. The solider joints will crack after age. This is common on Hondas. It's located under the dash resoilder or replace it, but if your fuel pump isn't kicking on you could need a new batter or alternator (I found out the hard way).

As far as your engine light make sure your wire harness in the engine bay is attached where it should be under the intake and all your connectors and wires are solid. If you need motor mounts the shifting of the engine could be causing those wires to move just enough.

With all that it's just a lot of troubleshooting. Good luck!
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Old 11-28-2015, 04:28 PM
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Re: 88 prelude odd problem

Go to prelude3g and download a manual.

Lots of diagrams and troubleshoot techniques.
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Old 11-30-2015, 05:14 PM
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Re: 88 prelude odd problem

I see some good advice above. Everybody goes about diagnosis different ways. I get payed for mine, so I try to do it as efficiently as I can and try not to be wrong, because I don't get payed to do it again. But that doesn't mean that my methods are best for you or anyone else.

So when faced with several failures I first try to duplicate them. As you are the customer and have witnessed them all, you have already done step one. For step two I don't even touch the vehicle, this sends too many people into a tail spin of confusion often chasing ghosts. Instead I try to find the common denominator between as many failures as I can, this often requires looking at wiring diagrams for electrical fault as you have, plus over 15 years(literally half my life) of experience dealing with this crap. Step three is testing suspected failed components. I see many people in my field try to prove the component is bad, again I do this different. I try to prove the component is good, and I try to do it twice or more in different ways, if I can't do this, the part is bad. Once I find and replace the failed component(s), I recheck everything to confirm stock or better operation, because as I said before, if the customer comes back with the same problem, I now get to fix it for free.

So lets walk through this together.

Step one: done in post one as far as I am concerned at this time. But I do have some questions.
1. Does the green cruise control light come on in the dash or only the light on the master switch?

2. When your gauges quit, excluding the speedometer, do all the gauges quit at the same time, or do they drop out at separate times?

3. Have you checked your coolant level, have you checked for air pockets in the coolant, and have you checked for A/C charge?

4. What is/are the code(s) stored in the ECU per the check engine light?


Step two and three: (this is going to be a long one because I am going to walk through the entire thought process mostly to help you better understand how to address such situations in the future and to invoke some thought) Starting at the top of your list with your hazards. There are a few common connections between your hazards and your turn signals, and since your turn signals are working per design, I would check the hazard switch as the rest of the circuit has been proven to work by your signals. If your switch is okay, then check for power in the white/yellow wire at the switch. If no power is found, the problem likely lies between the switch connection C714 and splice S418, I would check for power on the same wire on both sides of C417 found to the right of the steering column under the dash. It is the 22 pin white connector. If you have power on the white/yellow wire at the hazard switch, and the switch is good, the problem likely lies in both the blue/green and blue/yellow wires between C714 at the switch and C724 at the underdash fuse box. C724 is a 14 pin white connector that plugs directly into the front of the fuse box.

The horn not working, this potentially ties into the cruise control symptom, but we will get there. The horn is powered by fuse 31 in the underhood fuse box, but so are many other things, and since they all work, the fuse is good. I would locate the horn wire in C411. On one side of C411 the horn wire will be red/white, and on the other side the wire will be Blue/red. C411 is a 14 pin green connector mounted to the right side of the underdash fuse box. Use a jumper wire to supply a path to ground on this horn wire, if the horn sounds the cable ring(slip ring) is the problem for the horn and likely the cause of the cruise control fault as well. If the horn does not sound, locate the horns under the front bumper. Check the white/green wire for power, if power is not present, the fault is likely in this wire from C305 at the horn to splice S419. Locate C422. C422 is a 4 pin white connector found behind the left kick pannel. Check for power on the white/green wire on both sides of this connector. If no power is present, repair the wire between S419 and C422, if power is present at C422, but not at C305, repair the wire between C422 and C305. I power is present at C305 at the horn, use a jumper wire to supply ground to the blue/red wire at the horn, if the horn sounds, the problem likely lies from C306 as the horn to C411 where you previously jumped to ground. If the horn does not sound, you have two bad horns.

Next is the cruise control control, What really stands out to me and would be my first place of investigation would be your horn diagnosis. If you found a bad cable real then you likely fixed your CC. If you previously found the cable real to be okay, I would investigate the speedometer situation. This potentially ties three of your complaints together, your check engine light, your cruise control, and your speedometer. I would check your DTC's stored in the ECU, and if you have a code 17 for the VSS, I would start there. If no code 17, the the cruise control is likely unrelated to the speedometer. The control module is powered from fuse 10 in the underdash fuse box and is the only thing on this circuit, so I would check this fuse near the beginning of this process especially if the green cruise light doesn't come on in the gauge cluster. The cruise control actuator uses G302 which is shared with your left headlight retractor relay and left front marker light. To me, this is not a suspected problem because you mentioned no fault of the headlight motor or parking light. The cruise control control unit uses G401. G401 is a major ground location and is shared with G402, G471, both seatbelt switches, high mount brake light, heater re-circulation control motor, cigarette lighter and ash tray light, cooling fan, A/C compressor control unit, HVAC fan switch, HVAC mode switch, HVAC mode control motor, ICU(bcm), both dash relay blocks, stereo, both clutch switches, combination light switch, Ignition key reminder switch, retractable headlight control unit, fuel gauge sending unit, fuel pump, left door lock switch, both outer door handle switches, both seatbelt retractors, both door latch switches, left power window, left power window switch, right door key switch, interior chime, sunroof switch, power mirrors, rear defogger+switch, clock, glove box light, fuse box light, warning indicators, gauge assembly, and safety indicator. I have highlighted a few things that are on you list of concerns, but you can see that there are many more things on this circuit that are working, so this ground is low on the suspect list. If you wish to check these ground locations, you will find G401 and G402 on a bolt behind the dash, you can locate it with the clock removed. G471 is in the right rear corner of the passenger compartment under the plastic cover under the rear seat back. Fold down the seat back and remove the cover to access this ground. If you have no code 17, and the CC light doesn't come on, and fuse 10 is good, and you found the cable real (slip ring) to be okay, your problem is likely the switches in the steering wheel or the wiring between the switches an control unit. Check the switches, they often need cleaning.

Now your gauges not working, I am going to assume they all cut out at the same time until I hear otherwise. Fuse 13 in the underdash fuse box powers the gauges, but since this is temp related and fuse 13 powers other things that are working at all times, the fuse is likely good. The gauges are grounded by G471, but again so are many other working things, so this is low on the suspect list as with the CC, especially if you already found it to be good in the previous section. This testing may prove difficult because you need to test during the failure criteria. Test for power with the key on at the yellow wire of C709, and ground a the black wire if C709. C709 is the 12 pin white connector at the back of the gauge cluster. If these test good, this kind of connector has a high failure rate, clean the contacts with 600 grit sand paper if they appear suspect and see if this solved the problem, if not, the cluster is likely at fault.

No A/C and no heat, see the above question #3 and we will readdress.

Check engine light, check for codes and report back per question #4.

No rear defrost. Check fuse 23 in the underhood fuse box. If okay, check fuse 18 in the underdash fuse box, this also powers your HVAC system and may fix two problems at once. If both fuses are good, check for ground at the window connection on the left side of the car, if ground is absent, check G821 behind the plastic cover under the rear seat back. If ground is present, turn on the defroster and check for power at the connection on the right side of the rear window at about half way up the window( the one on top is the secondary antenna). If power is present, you need a rear window. If power is absent, check the relay in the under dash relay block(I will provide a picture if your diagnosis comes this far). If the relay is good, check for power on the black/green wire of C405.

Over heats in stop and go traffic, refer to question #3 and we will readdress.

Not always starting when hot, this is so common try this first, if it doesn't work, then we will readdress. Main Relay Fix

Step four: verify everything is working.

I hope this helps a little.
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Old 11-30-2015, 05:59 PM
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Re: 88 prelude odd problem

I'm watching this thread because my 89 4WS has a couple of the same problems. My guages also quit when it is warm outside. While driving, as the temp comes down, the guages will start working. The speedo works fine, since it is mechanical, but the other guages all come on and off at the same time.
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Old 11-30-2015, 09:07 PM
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Re: 88 prelude odd problem

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Originally Posted by JirehCustoms View Post
I'm watching this thread because my 89 4WS has a couple of the same problems. My guages also quit when it is warm outside. While driving, as the temp comes down, the guages will start working. The speedo works fine, since it is mechanical, but the other guages all come on and off at the same time.
despite your speedometer utilizing a cable to drive the speed sensor, it is still an electronic gauge. When gauges quit working when warm it is always the gauge itself, I just outlined a test procedure above for due diligence.
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Old 12-21-2015, 03:46 AM
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Re: 88 prelude odd problem

alot to take in! sorry for the late response but im usually on another forum for 3000gt/stealth which i own one of each as well. its alot of good advice and im definitely going to address everything and let you guys know. im thinking that i will do this during christmas week because its going to be 74 degrees on the 24-26 in NC lol. i miss minnesota christmases...

but thanks again for taking the time to write all the good advice. i have downloaded some diagrams and been taking some time to look at everything. its a fun car no doubt, its almost at 398k miles and after a trip im taking ill be at 399k on the way to 400k!

even with all its weird issues, i cant even make this car break if i tried!

as for luda8890s response to your questions:

1. on the cruise control button the light comes on, but it will not show up on the cluster, nor does the steering wheel button work
2.the speedo always works but is intermittent. it still works even when the tach, temp, and fuel gauges arent on. those are the 3 that all wont work when its too hot outside/sitting in the sun.
3. coolant levels are good. i remember filling up the coolant all the way last time i took an 8 hour trip in may and just checked it this week and still pretty full. havent checked AC for charge. the AC button light does illuminate on the dash
4.i havent checked the code yet. i always want to but once i turn off the car the engine light goes off until i make it throw code again (which is when I let off the accelerator while driving without pressing clutch in either)

there are a jumble of wires that are sorta exposed under the fuse box. sometimes my fuel relay wont kick on when i turn the key and if i just mess with the wires i hear the fuel relay kick on and the car starts up. i noticed one of the wires is broken so ill see if im able to fix that
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Old 12-21-2015, 12:19 PM
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Re: 88 prelude odd problem

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4.i havent checked the code yet. i always want to but once i turn off the car the engine light goes off until i make it throw code again (which is when I let off the accelerator while driving without pressing clutch in either)
The light doesn't have to be illuminated to check the codes. The ecu will store the trouble codes, so as long as you haven't disconnected the battery (or pulled the clock fuse) you can read the stored codes. In case you don't know, here is a link which describes an easy way to read the stored codes and what they mean...
ECU Error Codes
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