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Old 14 Mar 2014, 01:31 pm
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Default '98 Acura Integra Stalling Issue Help!?

I have a '98 Acura Integra with 190,000 miles.

It began having "hard starting" problems about 3 weeks ago. Progressed to cutting out while driving (tach goes to zero and then jumps back up after a second or two), then stalling in traffic and takes a few mintes to get it to re-start. Seems to be starved for something as when you let off the starter it sometimes then catches and starts. Made a "wheezing" sound twice after not starting.

I've replaced the ignition switch (electrical part), the coil, the rotor, and the PGM FI relay in addition to de-oxiting a bunch of the big fuse surfaces and a bunch of the wire connectors.

All this has helped and now it stalls a lot less and so far as always re-started (prior to these fixes it could just not re-start at all until the next (cooler/wetter?) morning when it would restart and once again run perfectly until the next "stall" (in my last trip from work of 10 miles it stalled once and took about a minute to re-start).

Also, the electronic ignition module was replaced about 1.5 years's driving me nuts and is pretty much un-driveable with this annoying condition.

There is no check engine light, and SEEMS to stall less when all accessories are turned off.

I am at a loss and my long-term mechanic has also given up on the car.

Anyone have any clue as to what I should do next and what may be the cause of the problem?

Thank you!
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Old 14 Mar 2014, 01:47 pm
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Join Date: Dec 2013
Posts: 191

The distributor was a high failure part and a common cause for the problem and symptom you've described

in the Acura/Honda in the same era. Lots of times it was a connection loose to the ICM or the distributor. The ignition switch is not that far behind in a high failure item,

Get genuine Honda ignition parts, trust me. The distributors come as a sub assembly without the coil or Igniter/ICM (Ignition Control Module). The Igniter or a coil may be all you need, but I've always toll customer which one failed, then offer coil, igniter, and resolder main relay as an option due to the high failure rate of all 3. The ignter gives dwell, if you loose dwell, you need an igniter. I have always checked the dwell on the blue tachometer wire, that's just the way I do it.

Do the following step by step to diagnosis the complaint:

See if the check engine light comes on for two seconds and goes off when the problem occur. If the light comes on and stays on, possibly a defective main relay.

Use a timing light and see if the engine is loosing spark when the problem occurs.

If loosing spark, check for B+ to the ignition coil on the Black/Yellow wire and check for a pulse to ground on the coil negative (-) on the Black/White wire.

Check for B+ to the Igniter inside of the distributor on the Black/Yellow wire. Check the igniter ground through its mounting and make sure the distributor has good ground.

Look for 9-11 volts on the ignition signal Yellow/Green wire in the 8 cavity distributor connector and look for a 0-10 vlts square wave signal while cranking at this Yellow/Green wire.

If no scope available, you can use a DVOM (Digital Volt Ohm Meter) in place and look for the number is switching between 9 then 11 volts.

If you loose ignition, do not buy a reman distributor. Go with OEM, trust me most of technicians had his/her share of the story about it.

If not loosing ignition then check the fuel pressure and verify that the vehicle is not loosing power to the fuel pump from the main relay.

Got to go to sleep as I've to wake early and open the repair shop. E mail if you'll need more help. HTH.
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