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Kyle N.
Kyle N., ASE Certified Tech
Category: Acura
Satisfied Customers: 5228
Experience:  Master ASE Tech, Ca. smog lic
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Acura EL: 2003 Acura EL 1.7l V-TEC. Car has lost power a couple

Customer Question

2003 Acura EL 1.7l V-TEC.
Car has lost power a couple of times in the past 16 months. Seems to happen shortly after starting the car, driving a short distance then coming to a stop. After you try to accelerate the car feels like it is about to stall. Depress the clutch and try to rev it up to go again and it might go a couple of feet then dies down, no power. This happened the other day and lasted about 3-4 minutes until I turned off the car then back on. Then it was ok again, no more problems and it probably won't happen again for a few months. No codes, and it does not seem to be temperature/weather related.
This has happened twice in an intersection which makes it a bit scary. Could this be a defective ECU or connection to it as no codes are being stored?
Submitted: 3 years ago.
Category: Acura
Expert:  Kyle N. replied 3 years ago.

Kyle N :

Hi, my name is Kyle and I'm an Acura expert here on JustAnswer.com. I'd be glad to help you with this problem.

Kyle N :

I would check for a restricted exhaust and see if this is causing the problem. On that engine a plugged or partially plugged catalytic converter can cause this type of symptom. You can disconnect the exhaust before the catalytic converter and see if the problem goes away OR use a vacuum gauge attached to an intake port and see if the vacuum drops when the problem occurs. That would be a dead giveaway that the exhaust is plugged up.

Kyle N :

Hope that helps.

JACUSTOMER-y6tlt8ar- :

But why would turning off the car and immediately restarting causing the plugged cat to disappear and return a month or 2 later. I can't connect a vacuum gauge and drive around for a couple of months until it pops up again.

JACUSTOMER-y6tlt8ar- :

I was hoping that there would be some TSB's or something out there about this condition as I have seen several reports of people talking about this issue on Acura's and Civic's but I could not find any reports of a solution.

Kyle N :

Hi again,

Kyle N :

If it's restarting right away it's probably not the catalytic converter. There is no bulletin for this symptom I doubled checked for you. The only thing I can think of that could be causing this is a bad ignition switch. We had a lot of issues with them. Basically the solder joints inside the switch crack over time from hot/cold cycling and then they will "open" the circuit at random while you're driving and the car shuts off. If it had no power that would make me believe this is the cause. It's like someone just turns the key off.

Kyle N :

Hope that helps!

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