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Old 10-05-2010, 12:04 PM   #1
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93 Civic VX -only 38 MPG HWY- Do I needd steriods for 50+ MPG?

I think I posted this in the wrong location the first time.

I just got a little red VX. 320k miles. The 2nd owner said it was getting 45mpg. He lied- I'm only getting 38!

Tune up: I've changed the plugs (NGK,) wires, cap, rotor, manual tranny fluid (honda grade stuff), air and fuel filter. Seafoam in the intake manifold. Filled the tires with air to 32psi (they were at 12-15psi) Car went from 36mpg HWY to 38MPG-!!??

Cleaned the IACV and TB: http://www.honda-tech.com/showthread.php?t=1575913
Now I'm having idle problems.
-On start up it goes to 1500 rpms then after 2-5 minutes it goes to 1000rpms.
-Once warm 650.

Brakes:
If I'm at a dead stop with the brakes depressed hard and I release the pedal my rpms go up. I've done a break test and everything seems fine.


Compression test:
Cylinder 1- 189
Cylinder 2- 190
Cylinder 3- 191
Cylinder 4- 193
-That's good right?

I haven't checked the timing yet:
I want to get this done, and get the valves adjusted.


Transmission:
-2500ish rpms @ 73-75 MPH 5th gear
-2000ish rpms @ 60-62 MPH 5th gear.

QUESTIONS:
How do I know when the engine goes into lean burn mode and what does it feel like?

Lean Burn?:
-When I'm driving at about 65 miles per hour it feels like I'm getting a sudden boost of power, but it doesn't really go anywhere. Smooths out a little, but it's almost like a loss of power. I know that's contradictory sounding.

I might be imagining things but, on my drive home I disconnected the O2 sensor. (hoping that the rpms wouldn't go to 1500 when I started it, but they still did) However on the drive home it seemed to have lower slightly lower RPMs in high gear and I didn't get that strange surge thing that I mentioned just above. (lean burn mode?)
Check engine did come on, and shifter light went away.


Thanks for reading this and I appreciate your feed back!

By the way, 320k miles and it still has the original clutch I paid $1150 for it. Has a little rust. Did I get hosed on the price? It's all original a far as I can tell.
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Old 10-05-2010, 01:47 PM   #2
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Re: 93 Civic VX -only 38 MPG HWY- Do I needd steriods for 50+ MPG?

Quote:
Originally Posted by 1stHonda View Post
I think I posted this in the wrong location the first time.

I just got a little red VX. 320k miles. The 2nd owner said it was getting 45mpg. He lied- I'm only getting 38!

Tune up: I've changed the plugs (NGK,) wires, cap, rotor, manual tranny fluid (honda grade stuff), air and fuel filter. Seafoam in the intake manifold. Filled the tires with air to 32psi (they were at 12-15psi) Car went from 36mpg HWY to 38MPG-!!?? INFLATE TO 37 to 40 psi - What size tires are they and what was the brand

Cleaned the IACV and TB: http://www.honda-tech.com/showthread.php?t=1575913
Now I'm having idle problems.
-On start up it goes to 1500 rpms then after 2-5 minutes it goes to 1000rpms.
-Once warm 650. NORMAL

Brakes:
If I'm at a dead stop with the brakes depressed hard and I release the pedal my rpms go up. I've done a break test and everything seems fine. NORMAL and why does this trouble you?

Compression test:
Cylinder 1- 189
Cylinder 2- 190
Cylinder 3- 191
Cylinder 4- 193
-That's good right? AWESOME!

I haven't checked the timing yet:
I want to get this done, and get the valves adjusted.


Transmission:
-2500ish rpms @ 73-75 MPH 5th gear THAT'S TOO FAST FOR GOOD MPG
-2000ish rpms @ 60-62 MPH 5th gear. THIS IS INSIDE THE SWEET SPOT FOR LEAN BURN - 50-55 mph is the optimum velocity

QUESTIONS:
How do I know when the engine goes into lean burn mode and what does it feel like? YOU WILL PROBABLY FEEL A SLIGHT SHUDDER THAT'S IT


Lean Burn?:
-When I'm driving at about 65 miles per hour it feels like I'm getting a sudden boost of power, but it doesn't really go anywhere. Smooths out a little, but it's almost like a loss of power. I know that's contradictory sounding. YOU'RE ON THE RAGGED EDGE OF LEAN BURN AT 65 MPH, THAT BOOST OF POWER COULD BE VTEC ENGAGING ALL FOUR VALVES PER CYLINDER


I might be imagining things but, on my drive home I disconnected the O2 sensor. (hoping that the rpms wouldn't go to 1500 when I started it, but they still did) However on the drive home it seemed to have lower slightly lower RPMs in high gear and I didn't get that strange surge thing that I mentioned just above. (lean burn mode?)
Check engine did come on, and shifter light went away.


Thanks for reading this and I appreciate your feed back!

By the way, 320k miles and it still has the original clutch I paid $1150 for it. Has a little rust. Did I get hosed on the price? It's all original a far as I can tell.
THAT DEPENDS HOW LONG YOU OWN IT - IF THE ENGINE BLOWS UP NEXT WEEK - BAD DEAL. IF YOU DRIVE IT FOR FIVE YEARS - EXCELLENT DEAL
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Old 10-05-2010, 04:34 PM   #3
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Re: 93 Civic VX -only 38 MPG HWY- Do I needd steriods for 50+ MPG?

15% difference in MPG with a new driver and a new route? That is not unexpected. If he said it got 45mpg and you got 20mpg then I'd think something was weird.

Now, that said...a lot of people do way better than 38mpg with a VX.
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Old 10-05-2010, 08:25 PM   #4
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Re: 93 Civic VX -only 38 MPG HWY- Do I needd steriods for 50+ MPG?

I have had six manual-transmission Hondas, including two '95s, and my '95 VX took me the longest to get the best mileage out of it. Shift sooner than you want to, using the shift indicator light. Keep the tires inflated to 40+ (the stock springs and shocks are soft enough that the ride will still be OK). Don't make short trips; consolidate errands so that you don't waste fuel by warming up and cooling down time and time again. Whenever the engine and catalyst are cold, it will not go into lean burn. If your car is lacking, a valve lash adjustment, clean spark plugs, good plug wires, and a functional wide-band O2 sensor will make a world of difference.

My VX was getting 60+ mpg regularly, and I got as high as 77 mpg with no body mods. Some folks on the site have had good luck with grille blocks and lightening their cars (by pulling out the A/C, etc.). I never got around to it.

I wish you luck with your high-mileage VX. I sold mine to my uncle with 234,000 on it, and it's still going strong. If yours is half the car mine was, you'll love it.
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Old 10-05-2010, 09:55 PM   #5
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Re: 93 Civic VX -only 38 MPG HWY- Do I needd steriods for 50+ MPG?

Wait, so it's normal for the VX to have the RPMs at 1500 for the first few minutes? It takes about 10 minutes to reach 650rpms. I thought that the IACV was going bad. That's what a lot of other people told me.

If I pump the brakes the rpms surge. (Dead stop, push two or 3 times and the rpms will go up about 400-500 rpms. If that's normal that I'm not worried. However if its a safety issue then I'd want to get it fixed.

The rpms also go up and down if I'm in neutral coasting. Up and down from 700-1200. I've checked for vacuum leaks but I can't find any.

Last but not least the rear wheel is bent and causes a lot of wobble. I'd think this would hurt the mileage. Does anyone have a spare silver VX rim?

As for tires. I've got 4 different ones. Each wheel is a different make/model.
I want to get a new rim and 4 new tires.
Any suggestions for tires? It's going to snow here soon and the winters in MN are pretty bad.

Thanks!
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Old 10-06-2010, 12:56 PM   #6
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Re: 93 Civic VX -only 38 MPG HWY- Do I needd steriods for 50+ MPG?

Winter in Minnesota, eh? Got to be worse than lower Michigan. I just bought used winter tires on steel wheels. I hope my winter driving becomes easier with them because I HATE driving my VX in the snow with all season (really three season) tires. I have had several sets of all season tires and none were any better than the others. So you should consider two sets of wheels. You can get by without winter tires - 14 winters without them in my case. I'll let everyone know how much better my VX handles with them. I really don't care what the mpg will be from mid December to early March.
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Old 10-06-2010, 06:57 PM   #7
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Re: 93 Civic VX -only 38 MPG HWY- Do I needd steriods for 50+ MPG?

So did you get 4 tires? Or can you get away with just 2 in the front? If so, do I need to get 14in or 13in front tires? What did you get and how much was it?
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Old 10-07-2010, 09:25 AM   #8
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Re: 93 Civic VX -only 38 MPG HWY- Do I needd steriods for 50+ MPG?

I had Michelin Destiny tires (175/70R13) on the VX rims. My VX was unstoppable in the winter. Last winter, I was able to push snow with the front bumper, and never had any issues.

The Destiny tires have large tread blocks on the edges of the tread, and they are not connected by a thin strip of rubber, which a lot of tires have to reduce noise. By not having that strip, they are MUCH better in the snow than most all-season tires.

Granted, I do not have Michigan-quality winters here in Indy, but I've driven with 4"-5" on the major roads and up to 7" on side streets, with no traction problems.

After being on the car for 40,000 miles, the tires were less than 1/3 worn (and I am not easy on the tires). They technically are not Low Rolling Resistance, but I consistently got mileage in the high 50s and low 60s with those tires on the car.

I would recommend those tires to anyone with a VX.
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Old 10-07-2010, 01:41 PM   #9
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Re: 93 Civic VX -only 38 MPG HWY- Do I needd steriods for 50+ MPG?

Quote:
Originally Posted by 1stHonda View Post
So did you get 4 tires? Or can you get away with just 2 in the front? If so, do I need to get 14in or 13in front tires? What did you get and how much was it?
I have been told that you should use winter tires on all four wheels. In addition to handling snowy roads better, the tire compound is softer so will be more flexible than standard tires when it's really cold out - like Minnesota.

I bought four 14 inch wheels/tires. Two are Yokohama K2 720 and the other two are Firestone Winterforce. They are 185 65R14 so they are considerably wider than the two sets of 175 70R13 I currently own. I would say they have about 60% of tread life remaining. I paid $125 for all four.

I have three sets of wheels with tires and another set of alloy wheels without tires. I bought my current VX with the OEM Enkei's but have bought the other sets of wheels for $125 per set or less. In case I'm unclear, that's 12 tires and 16 wheels for one car LOL!
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Old 10-07-2010, 02:19 PM   #10
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Re: 93 Civic VX -only 38 MPG HWY- Do I needd steriods for 50+ MPG?

The problem with using winter tires on the front and non-winter tires on the back is that the combination of good traction in the front with poor traction on the back makes for squirrely handling and a loose rear end as the back comes unglued well before the front comes close to losing control. You want 4 tires that have about the same traction and handling characteristics unless you like doing uncontrolled 180's and 360's on snow or ice.

The easiest way to handle snow tires is to keep a set of 4 wheels with snow tires and another set of 4 wheels with summer tires and then just swap them out seasonally. Both sets of tires last longer than normal since you are only driving on each set for part of the year, so your main added cost is for the extra set of wheels. You can get steel "take-offs" wheels fairly cheaply from performance tire shops as these are the OEM wheels that people trade in when they get a set of fancy alloy wheels. The 13" and 14" OEM wheels for 5th and 6th gen Civics will fit the VX. I got a set of 14" wheels and mounted Insight-I Bridgestone Potenzas on them for my car and mounted some Hakkapelitta winter tires on my stock set of 13" wheels.
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