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Vtec not working

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Old 03-03-2010, 04:40 PM   #1
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Default Vtec not working

So I recently purchased a 96' civic ex. Now I know that it is vtec, except for the fact the vtec never works. Someone told me that I had to get the solenoid replaced. What is that exactly? And is this correct?

Also. Would anyone know where I could order the plastic cap to the outlet online? The hook on mine broke, and there is nothing from preventing it from dangling and being annoying.

Thanks for any help.
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Old 03-03-2010, 05:03 PM   #2
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i know ur asking but i say research your engine and buy a haynes manual. this will save you money in the long run. just behind the top left of valve cover is your soleniod. dont worry how it works for now, just locate and inspect the plug and wires to it. if all is well have a friend or someone u know who wont rip you off, look at the car.
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Old 03-03-2010, 05:17 PM   #3
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Verify that you have the stock D16Y8 engine. If so, any CEL codes? Is the engine oil low?
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Old 03-03-2010, 08:29 PM   #4
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what i was told is that vtec in an ex isnt that noticible.
to anyone who know's more... is this correct?
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Old 03-03-2010, 10:37 PM   #5
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It's noticable when you look at the engine. If your standing, facing the car the vtec solenoid is right behind the top left corner of the valve cover. Behind to the right of the distributor. Yes technically the ex has vtec. No in the D16 vtec is not very noticable, but you can hear it.
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Old 03-04-2010, 01:57 AM   #6
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i agree i have the same engine....you can hear the good old vtec whining which i love so much, and i think you can feel power shifts at certain points when you need it most such as up hills and at certain gear and rev changes...they say vtec kicks in at about 5000-5500 revs so with the d16 engine you probably won't get to experience the best of what vtec has to offer except in subtle daily drive kinda ways...still, it's what makes this 1.6 litre slightly more comparable to a regular 2 litre car ;-)
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Old 03-04-2010, 06:07 PM   #7
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It is possible that vtec is not mechanically engaging...and it wont show a CEL. If i were you, i would put +12 volts to the vtec solenoid to make sure it clicks. If it does, you know its good. Then i would test to make sure when the ecu changes over to the vtec map, you get the signal to the solenoid. You'll have to be creative on this because we usually do it on the dyno. If that checks out fine, then you'll want to make sure that the pins are actually locking in the head. There is a service port on the left side of the head (inside), remove the bolt, blow air in it and you should hear/see the pins engage.
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Old 03-05-2010, 12:47 PM   #8
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Thanks all for the help!
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Old 03-05-2010, 03:26 PM   #9
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Quote:
Originally Posted by red98civ View Post
what i was told is that vtec in an ex isnt that noticible.
to anyone who know's more... is this correct?
mines not noticeable that much, it has been once or twice though.
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Old 03-06-2010, 10:05 PM   #10
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i my self own a 1999 honda civic dohc vtec. and quite frankly i notice the vtev when it kicks in. i havent ran into anything, so far on the vtec issue
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Old 03-06-2010, 10:21 PM   #11
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Default vtech

add 12v to the solenoide see if clicks
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Old 03-06-2010, 10:52 PM   #12
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Vtec works a specific way. RPMs, oil temp, oil preasure, vehicle speed, and throttle positioning are what the ECU uses to determine the use of Vtec. i had a small oil preasure problem with my old d16 that i never knew about. i ended up changing the oil pan gasket cause it looked like it was leaking and all of a sudden i could feel vtec like the car was brand new.

look for any one of those things to be the problem. if your cars rpm gauge and speedometer works you can scratch that out. if your car is at operating temperature i.e. the needle is half way on the gauge that can be crossed out. next is to check for any oil leaks like what i mentioned was wrong with mine. the TPS sensor is another thing to check to see if its working.

if your car is throwing codes it goes into limp mode and vtec doesnt hit like it should. if all that is in complete working order and still its not working there is one of two possibilities.

1. you cant feel it as your expecting something mind blowing even though its very subtle and forgetable if your not looking for it.

OR

2. you dont have a vtec motor or the ECU isnt a vtec ECU.
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Old 03-06-2010, 10:58 PM   #13
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Z3R) View Post
Vtec works a specific way. RPMs, oil temp, oil preasure, vehicle speed, and throttle positioning are what the ECU uses to determine the use of Vtec. i had a small oil preasure problem with my old d16 that i never knew about. i ended up changing the oil pan gasket cause it looked like it was leaking and all of a sudden i could feel vtec like the car was brand new.

look for any one of those things to be the problem. if your cars rpm gauge and speedometer works you can scratch that out. if your car is at operating temperature i.e. the needle is half way on the gauge that can be crossed out. next is to check for any oil leaks like what i mentioned was wrong with mine. the TPS sensor is another thing to check to see if its working.

if your car is throwing codes it goes into limp mode and vtec doesnt hit like it should. if all that is in complete working order and still its not working there is one of two possibilities.

1. you cant feel it as your expecting something mind blowing even though its very subtle and forgetable if your not looking for it.

OR

2. you dont have a vtec motor or the ECU isnt a vtec ECU.


jesus christ i guess the real knowledge around here goes un-noticed

Quote:
Originally Posted by got traction View Post
It is possible that vtec is not mechanically engaging...and it wont show a CEL. If i were you, i would put +12 volts to the vtec solenoid to make sure it clicks. If it does, you know its good. Then i would test to make sure when the ecu changes over to the vtec map, you get the signal to the solenoid. You'll have to be creative on this because we usually do it on the dyno. If that checks out fine, then you'll want to make sure that the pins are actually locking in the head. There is a service port on the left side of the head (inside), remove the bolt, blow air in it and you should hear/see the pins engage.
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Old 03-07-2010, 12:03 AM   #14
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Quote:
Originally Posted by got traction View Post
jesus christ i guess the real knowledge around here goes un-noticed
right back at you.

hes asking for some information on what the problem is, not how to dismantle the motor and check for mechanical failure. a true mechanic would check the basics. if all the basics are functioning THEN they would check the mechanical.

to an unexperianced mechanic all your information would do is open a can of worms and make the user of said knowledge feel like an idiot if it was a simple fix like my oil pan gasket not allowing the motor to hold the proper oil preasure. looking for oil leaks around the oil pan doesnt require any mechanical knowledge btw.

that being said your "professional" advice is well advanced for someone who doesnt even know the basics of how vtec works. i dont claim to be a professional but ive done enough research (and manual labor) dealing with vtec to know what the ECU uses to determine when and how vtec is engaged and thats the FIRST thing anyone should investigate before any mechanical queries.

so... shove it up your *** for saying my sincere attempt to help a fellow enthusiast with my own knowledge isnt real knowledge.
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