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Bogging, low power Honda Civic 2001

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Okay, well, I have a 2001 Honda Civic Ex sedan with automatic transmission and 4 cylinder V-Tec engine. . I was having some problems with it and so was told it was a blown head gasket after supposedly confirmed tests. Well, I let the shop repair it. They didn’t have to put a new timing belt on nor a water pump, since that had been done not too long prior. So, the head gasket gets done. Well I got my car back and It starts bogging when I start to accelerate a little heavier to pass someone. It goes slowly, then it bogs, accelerates another few hundred rpms, bogs, and keeps doing this – you can see the tachometer going up real quick then suddenly drop, then up real quick then drop. If I slowly accelerate it doesn’t really do this. Sometimes I even barely made it up a hill, because it’s bogging down so much to where it hardly has any power. It’s like it wants to go, but then something starts to drown it’s power out, then give it back for a second, then drown it again, at times to where it’s almost gone. I had the check engine light flash a few times, but then went away, never to stay permanently on. So, I took my car back to the shop where they had it for two weeks or longer – they would never call me, but I’d have to call them to find out what’s going on.
Well, I was told they did all sorts of tests, tested the TPS sensor, catalytic converter, back pressure, compression tests, O2 sensors, etc., but said they couldn’t find anything, that everything was showing completely good, the compressions tests showing perfect or very good. Along with that, the shop has a theory it could be my valve seals or piston rings, telling me it’ll smoke some (blue smoke) sometimes when giving it fuel. I’ve never had that problem before with my car as far as blue smoke. Well, the shop tells me that something must not have triggered hard enough yet for the check engine light to come on. They tell me to just drive it till it does. Well, I get home from picking my car up at the shop and inspect my car’s engine while it’s running. I notice a vibration from it that wasn’t there before. I see that there is a loose screw to one of the parts on my car, about to shake out. Also, a metal piece on my header area is rattling now. Now I’m suspect to what else was not put back correctly on my car. Well, I check my oil while it’s running and notice there’s a lot of blow-by coming out the oil dip-stick and also out the oil cap when checked. I didn’t have that before. Also, another symptom of my car is it has stalled on me a couple times when just rolling slowly down my driveway. And when idling, it sounds hesitant-like, like it’s striggling some. Going very slow down my driveway it’ll seem like it wants to cut-out sometimes. And again, it doesn’t make any sense to me that the compression test were all good on my cylinders, yet I’m told it could be bad piston rings/valve seals or some type of solenoid – yet I have blow-by. Well, I really I hope you can help me on this. ?



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    You said the tachometer are jumping a lot up and down, the only case I can see for that to happen is if the car is losing the signal from the crankshaft sensor or the engine control unit are loosing a power or ground supply. It could also be a cause why there are no trouble codes if the engine control module is losing its power and gets erased. This is only speculations and a proper diagnostics have to be done before replacing any parts.
    It seems like that workshop wasn’t that good and you should maybe test another!

    The blowby doesn’t sound good and yes it could cause the blue smoke. But I would start to check the crankcase ventilation to make sure it is free first.
    Blowby does not always show up on a compression test. A better way to do this is a “Leak-down-test”. With a leak down test, you can see how much of the pressure that is going through the piston rings.

    Ask A Mechanic Admin - May 31, 2018 |Reply

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