1994 Honda Civic won't start

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Even with the bolster out, in the 94 civic there are other parts that prevent me from using my normal wrench. The main relay (I assume this is it, looks like the pictures on the page above) is to the left of the fusebox, wedged up against the left above the hood latch in a tight spot.
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hutchtoo wrote:

There is a trick to it; Don't try to unbolt the relay. Rather, pull the guts out of it while the housing is still in place. Then you can resolder and re-install, or you can put the guts from a new replacement relay into the old housing.
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Can anyone send me a photo of a relay that's in that location? I'd like to add it to the relevant FAQ page to complement the pics that are there now.
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TeGGeR

The Unofficial Honda/Acura FAQ
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Tegger, I emailed you a photo from my 94 civic. Let me know if you need a re-send.
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That's the problem. Not too hard to find but really tough to extract. I'm going to have to go spend at least $20+ on wrench extensions to get this thing out...
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writes:

(I don't know how technical you are - please pardon anything here that's blatantly obvious to you.)
Have you checked for moisture in the distributor cap? That's the classic rainy-day ignition problem. (It's even been immortalized in song, by Ed's Redeeming Qualities: "And if your car won't start in the rain / New distributor cap".) Easy to check - label the plug wires (so you can be sure to put them back correctly!) and disconnect them from the distributor, remove the cap, and wipe the inside with a tissue or something similar to see if there's moisture inside. Cheap to fix, if it's just the cap - you can get a replacement cap and rotor for many cars from places like Carquest for under $20. (I don't know how much a '94 Civic's is, but it doesn't seem like something that'd be unusually expensive.)
My '93 Civic EX (manual) had that problem, and also occasional stalling. Initially thought it was the alternator because when the car would start, alternator output often would be fine initially but then drop.
Turned out that the ignition switch was bad, and some of the contacts were failing intermittently. Moisture seemed to aggravate the problem. Unfortunately, I didn't manage to diagnose this one myself - it was my shop that finally tracked it down, after I'd looked at the alternator and various other things - so I'm not sure what the best way to test for it would be. If removing the switch isn't difficult, I'd probably try checking it with an ohm meter for a reliable connection between the appropriate points at the various key positions.
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Michael Wojcik snipped-for-privacy@microfocus.com

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It could be the fuel pump. My '90 Accord did the same exact thing a couple years ago.
Josh http://www.pingeek.com pinball stuff

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The problem is fixed. After finding the ignition coil was bad, but after having subjected the rotor and assembly to lots of abuse removing the seized rotor screw, I decided to replace the entire distributor.
Against some people's advice, I've purchased a $185 non-OEM distributor (plus new cap and rotor) at the AutoZone down the street. I made this cost/convenience decision based on my short time horizon for this car and low mileage. The new distrbutor fixed the problem. If it fails in the future I will send an update.
Thanks again to everyone for all the feedback.

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Congratulations! Did the non-OEM distributor include a new coil and new ignitor?
Thanks for the update, and way to hang in there. :-)

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Yes, it included both a coil and ignitor, and has a lifetime guarantee. It did not include a rotor or cap.
I should also put a good word in for AutoZone. Those guys were a big help getting the seized rotor screw out.
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Wow. For $180, even if it dies in say, six months, that's worth it.

I toast AZ. :-)
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