98 Civic Engine vibrating, running rough, slow acceleration

I was coming home from a snowboarding trip when all of a sudden the engine light comes on and I felt a strange vibration whenever I stepped on the gas. I pulled off to the side and tried restarted the
car, and noticed it accelerates poorly and the engine vibration gradually got a little better as I sped up, but still very noticeable. It also seems to kind of chop as it is starting up.
I have changed the transmission fluid, oil, and spark plugs, and this still is occurring. Any idea what it could be? Something must have broken for it to occur so instantly, but I have no idea! ><
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If the engine light is on, get the code scanned. it will tell you the possible problem.
jitsu wrote:

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PS, post the code here, many of the experts can help.
loewent wrote:

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If the engine hasn't had the usual ignition tune-up parts (distributor rotor, cap, and spark plug wires) with OEM parts recently this is the time to do that. It may well fix the problem, which sounds like a rhythmic misfire. Be sure to use genuine Honda parts for everything, although aftermarket plugs are okay. While we are on the subject, the tranny fluid is genuine Honda, I hope. Others can cause rough operation.
This is also a good time to ask the dreaded question: was the timing belt changed on schedule (see the owner's manual)? A jumped timing belt can also cause your symptoms, but if it hasn't failed badly you want to catch it before it gets to that stage. Timing belt failure can be very costly.
Mike
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Yep, Go throw a bunch of money in it when a simple code read will point out what is wrong. This isn't the 50's. Cars since 96 are computer controlled and getting the code is imperative to fixing it right.

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Woody wrote:

yes you need to read codes, but i'm not sure something serious like a skipped belt will throw a code. i'm pretty sure that d16 is timed off the cam, not the crank. if the crank is out relative to the cam, the ecu will never know.

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