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Old 12-04-2013, 09:16 PM   #1 (permalink)
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Join Date: Dec 2013
Location: Seattle
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Angry 1992 Civic VX 38 MPG Max...

Hey all!
Name is Seth and I am a newbie on this forum, but I have been reading it a ton lately. I need some help!

I just got a VX from Canada and have only be able to top out the MPG at 38 miles per gallon.

I drive it like a baby, but do have about 50/50 city/highway. Even with that I feel like I should still be in the 40's from what I have been reading, so here is where i currently am:

After getting the car I did the following:
  • New engine Oil, filled w/ Mobil 1 Synthetic 10w-40, I also used Amsoil Engine and Transmission Flush
    I think it should have been 5w-30? (oil recommendations appreciated!)
  • New Honda Genuine Manual Transmission Fluid
    (transmission fluid recommendations appreciated here too!)
  • New NGK ZFR4F-11 V-Power Spark Plugs
    (possibly not gapped correctly?)
  • New Air Filter
  • Car has a new Distributor, rotor and wires, all are only a few thousand miles old

After seeing poor MPG through a couple of tanks of gas I did the following checks:
  • Timing Check; and it looks to be dead nuts on, as in the belt has not skipped a tooth and the marks line up well, but I have NOT yet check it with timing light.
  • Plug Check; plugs look clean at the electrode, but the rest of the plug is black.
    Could this possibly be oil burn or running rich? I think it's related to the next issue...
  • Compression check shows my cylinders are all even, BUT they only show 120PSI!
    I know this is a bad sign. Shouldn't I be seeing upwards of 200 psi?
    I have yet to do the wet compression check by adding a bit of oil to the cylinder, but I did let the motor run and get warm before doing the test, had the throttle wide open, and had the plugs out of the other cylinders while compression testing.
  • Tire pressure check, New tires have 35 PSI and are 175 width.
  • O2 Sensor looks VERY new, but I may try another one...

I have a fealing the compression is the issue and I am very worried I'll need a full rebuild. I have never driven another VX to determine if I am down on power.

And while I am here, does anyone have Shop recommendations to do work on my VX? I am in the Seattle area and will go fairly far for someone worth while that knows these cars. I don't want to send it to just any mechanic...
I'd like to do a leak down test, but think that would be better left to a Shop!

Thanks for ANY and ALL help! I hope to be getting much better mileage and plan to keep this VX for as long as I can!




1992 Civic VX, 169,XXX Miles
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Old 12-05-2013, 12:56 AM   #2 (permalink)
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The owners manual and the sticker under the hood should both tell you to use 5W30 oil.

210psi compression is good, anything under I think 160 is when they say to rebuild the engine.

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low compression, low mileage, low mpg

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