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Discussion Starter #1 (Edited)
In December, my 1998 CR-V wouldn't start easily. My mechanic replaced the spark plugs and almost immediately my gas mileage plummeted, the tachometer fluctuated wildly, it would misfire and stall and there was a strong smell of gasoline. Before I could return it to my mechanic, it "died" in my drive way. It wouldn't start, as though it was starved of gas. I had the car towed to my mechanic but two weeks later he still can't figure out what's wrong with it, however he did note that 1.) the fuel pressure regulator is fine and 2.) all the spark plugs are soaked with gasoline.
  • Replaced about 20,000 miles ago: fuel pump, fuel line, fuel relay, ignition switch
  • Replaced less than 3000 miles ago: catalytic converter, O2 sensors, TPS sensor, MAP sensor, fuel filter, spark plugs.
  • I also get a Code: P0420 (and others I don't have on me at the moment)
One other thing -- since April especially in warm weather my car would suddenly choke like it was starved of gas, lose power and stall. Two mechanics told me they didn't know what it could be because it is the symptom of so many things. Could this be related to the problem above?Help! The car has 149K on it. I bought it 5 years ago with the hope that it would last at least for 200K based on what I read about CRVs. Is that realistic or should I look for a new car?
 

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Ist..Pull the disrtibutor,and check for worn bushings on the shaft,and overall condition,
2nd....When was the timing belt changed last?Do a compression check,and post the results.
Concerning longevity....Ive seen older CR-V,s with 345,000 or so miles still on the road.
 

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Discussion Starter #3
Thanks, I had the car towed to a second mechanic today. First of all, he believe somehow biofuel got mixed in with the gasoline so he flushed out the gas tank (about $200). He also said that the catalytic converter (that I replaced in Sept 2011) is bad and that a new cat is $620. Also needs an after catalytic converter O2 sensor (also recently replaced) that will cost about $200. Labor of course is extra. Fasterscooter: you believe that it's the upstream sensor. Is that the same thing?

The original mechanic is going to see if he can replace the defective cat, otherwise, do the prices sound about correct? If I need to by a new one, what is the best brand of cat for a car that should last at least 50K more?

Will check also on the bushings, timing belt and compression check.
 

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Discussion Starter #4
Now I know why my previous projects didn't go so well... no adult beverages!

Based on your advice, I think I am going to see if the original mechanic can get a refund on the fault cat. I will buy a new one at Pep Boys (not that they are the best, but at least I'll know it's new and comes with a basic warranty) and have that one installed by my original mechanic. Will also wait on the O2 sensor for now.
 

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I would replace the fuel filter as well. The O2 sensor should be alright after you replace the cat and run it.

My 2001 CR-V has 276,000 miles on it and I still drive it 90miles round trip everyday.
 

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Odds are that it is the ignitor which is causing the hard starting and dying. Cats will also be destroyed by too much gasoline getting into them so just replacing the cat without finding out what is causing the super rich mixture is wasting your money.
Those earlier CRV's had problems with the ignition switch, ignitors,ignition coils and distributor bushings.
Buffalo
 
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