I have a '96 Civic with 160k mostly freeway miles. Recently it started to
stutter on take off. It feels like the clutch is catching, slipping,
catching, then slipping for the first 3 or 4 feet of the car's travel.
Is there a way to be sure it is the clutch before I start to disassemble the
transmission? Given the age of the car, I'm incline to think the clutch is
worn, but I want to be sure. It is a chore to replace the clutch.
Thanks in advance
It really doesn't sound like the clutch. It could be that oil has somehow
made its way inside the clutch, but that is rare. Other than that, worn
clutches behave just as though you were keeping the clutch pedal depressed
to the point the clutch was slipping a bit. Of course, if you hear the
engine race when the car is slowing it really does point to the clutch.
From your description I suspect the engine is getting balky when you try to
come off the line. On a manual transmission car that feels just like a
juddery clutch. A good place to start is with a bottle of fuel injector
cleaner in the tank; lots of people favor Techron but I've had good results
with the cheap brands, too. If there is no improvement in the next 100-200
miles (or if it's been a really long time since you last did a tune-up) move
on to replacing plugs, wires, cap and rotor. NGK plugs are okay, but for the
rest use genuine Honda parts. Several of us can tell you from personal
experience why :-( And, while we are at making the basics right, make sure
the coolant level is up to the cap in the radiator. Low coolant can make
Hondas squirrely... and I like doing cheap and easy things first.
What Michael said, plus you need to make sure there's enough coolant in
the reservoir as well. Injector cleaner should be employed seasonally
unless you're in California, use it four times a year (joke).
that's no joke. california gasoline is dreadful stuff. highest octane
is 91R+M. if you have an egr problem, as i used to, the car is /much/
more susceptible to fuel delivery and clean combustion and you'll need
to run cleaner through it pretty much monthly.
as an aside, shell are jumping on the chevron bandwagon for fuel
detergency - they say their branded regular gas has twice the detergency
of federal minimum and "v-power" has 5 times the detergency.
Is the Shell "V-Power" similar to Techron? A couple of Texaco stations
opened up near me now - and they have Techron in their fuel which is what
Chevron uses. Nearest Chevron is way out of the way, so it's not worth
no idea. and it's not like /any/ oilco is going out of their way to
publish /any/ meaningful information on their products either.
unless we change product information laws to require publication of
things like calorific values and chemical content, the consumer has
nothing with which to make informed decisions - we're simply sheep
waiting to be fleeced.
I had to replace a clutch on an 94 Accord for this. My '96 is starting to
experience this after 186k, but not so bad I can't drive it. Is it worse
when cold or damp?
I've never pulled a Honda clutch apart (do it on motorcycles all the time).
I was told on the '94 it was some kind of warpage in the plates after over
heating it (maybe slipping it when backing up a hill). The car was pretty
new when it started, and I complained.
After about 60k it got unbearable, and since I complained early on, they
actually replaced it and split the cost. Usually the clutch is considered a
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