Check Car Light

    It would happen on Labor Day that the Check Car light came on on my 1996 Honda Civic CX.
    Ordinarily, I would just call a Honda place but that's not
likely today.
    Can you tell me specifically what I am looking for as a problem as a result of that light coming on?
    Regards,
                    Fred Atkinson
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Fred Atkinson wrote:

Without the trouble code, no!
The check engine light means simply that... Get it checked. Any of the auto parts places open? Many of them will check the code and decipher it for you.
Without the code it could be anything from a) you left the gas cap loose last time you filled up to z) you're about five minutes from a catastrophic mechanical failure or something in between.
Likely it's something leaning towards the "A" end of the list, but...
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wrote:

Thanks,
    How does one acquire the 'code'?
                Fred
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    I see. There's no way to retrieve the code yourself, then?
                    Fred Atkinson
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wrote:

There is. It involves using a paper clip to short the 2-pin Service Check connector behind the passenger kick panel, turning the ignition to "II", then reading the blinks of the MIL ("Check Engine" light).
The problem with this method is that the returned code will only be an approximation of the actual ODB-II error stored by the ECM. This means it's not actually of much use.
AutoZone, PartSource and many other chains will read the OBD-II code for you for free. (AZ in CA will not do the code read for some reason.)
Once you have the code, diagnosis is possible. Right now it is not.
--
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The Unofficial Honda/Acura FAQ
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    I road down to the corner to pick up some dinner. As I rode by our local AutoZone, I noticed that they were open.
    I stopped in. They ran the test. It's the O2 sensor. They said I could continue to drive the car for a bit.
    That's a relief. That's not cheap but not terribly expensive, either.
    Regards,
                    Fred Atkinson
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Did they reset the light? (turn it off?)
If not, go to the fuse panel under the hood and pull the 7.5Amp fuse labelled 'Backup' for about 10-20 seconds. Then put it back in.
See if the same code comes back.
t
Fred Atkinson wrote:

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What was the /actual/ error code number?
There are some two dozen ODB errors involving the oxygen sensors, some of them not actually having to do with the sensor at all. On your model, some errors can arise that appear to point to one thing, but are really due to other things that are wholly unrelated.
The code will be something like "P0135", where the zero might actually be a one, and the other numbers may be different.
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