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Discussion Starter #1
I'm looking at a 1999 crv lx which is from Arizona no rust. Has a replacement engine with 130,000 miles and the body has 217,000 miles. Engine light is on for a distributor housing or something....runs and drives, good interior. He's asking 950.00. it is rust free....so I'm thinking the body by itself is worth that? Would you buy it? Thanks.
 

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Discussion Starter #3
The main thing I'd be concerned about is how do you know what the engine light is on for (and hence what the cost of the fix might run to)?
It's the distributor connector. I guess it's not quite right.


I ended up going to see this CRV and I did end up buying it for 750.00 which is a lot better deal than I expected, so I am happy with it.

He seemed completely honest about everything in saying he is selling it for either parts or a 'fixer upper' in which it is, it definitely needs both mechanical and body work. What I have here is a CR-V that needs work, but I am very mechanical and have fixed up 'basket cases' before and put many miles on them.

It is a silver LX model(1999) that is originally from Arizona but has about two winters on it here in northern NY. Rust is minimal with only minor 'starting rust' appearing on door edges and the typical areas, underneath is very solid, straight and not at all 'flaky' or 'yellowed' All the control arms are smooth and semi black with factory primer.

Body has around 217,000 miles and replacement engine about 165,000 miles. It does start up and no noticeable knocks, clicks, or taps what so ever. It sat and idled good, but being the distributor is messed up it does have a low idle skip....I believe one cylinder is completely dead in that the engine will shake slightly when at idle. Oil pan leaks a bit, he has a new gasket he threw in for it. Tires are bad, need new. Drive shaft is out, because of bad universals, but shaft looks good. Transmission works, goes into gear forwards and backwards with no clunks or noises, did not have a chance to drive it anyplace. Body is decent, some dents here and there, some on the hood, door and tailgate, but rust is again, very very minimal which is nice. All doors are straight, shut perfectly and good glass, windshield is new. Tailgate needs latch repaired, but opens and shuts good.

Interior has typical dirt on the floor, thrown about tissues, candy wrappers and such.... No rips, no huge stains, seats are still firm and the color is black which is nice. Interior is good enough to wear a little elbow grease and amor all....I know I can make it look new. Has a JVC stereo head in the dash which is specific to fit a crv, he gave me the original tape deck and CD rack that was in it originally. He also gave me all the new parts including the new distributor parts, new upper control arms with ball joints, both lower ball joints, universal joints, Also the original wheels(he put ex wheels on it)

it still has the factory picnic table in the trunk:) lol...I thought that would be long gone.

Anyways he is a nice kid and told me straight up what the car has been through and needs. He offered 750 for it without me having to negotiate from the ad price of 950.

I basically got a 1999 CRV with high mileage that does run and has very minimal rust, but has some dents and needs various mechanical things fixed, new tires, brakes...ect ect. I can do the work and I like doing it, so...repair won't be real bad....Probably about 1,000 for parts, but first I'll see if I can get that engine running better and clean it up. If not then I'll probably part the whole car out and make back twice of what I have into it. Tons of good parts on it that are not rusty.

I payed 750....so not bad....it is a cute and decent looking car with no rot on it....so I thought I'd try and give it a second chance.

His reason for selling is just went and got a new pilot rather than putting in the effort to fix the CRV....doesn't have time...with working two jobs, although he said he loved it and it has been very reliable.
 

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Discussion Starter #4
Sure I could of got one for 1,400 or even 3,500 that won't need much, but the body on this one is so solid and hardly any rust, that I thought I'd take a chance and bring it back to road life....plus I like working on basket cases anyways, so it'll be sort of a hobby project for me....Might create a cool little custom out of it.... new paint ect ect..

we'll see.
 

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Congratulations on the purchase. As what you mention, its worth putting it back on the road. Is the Check Engine Light is off when 1st starting the engine? Then it comes on when you rev the engine about 2300 & above? For the rough idle. I would suggest to do a basic compression test 1st, then check the valve clearances when the engine is stone cold. Check the distributor cap & rotor for corrosion on their respective terminals. Let me know.
 

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Discussion Starter #6
Congratulations on the purchase. As what you mention, its worth putting it back on the road. Is the Check Engine Light is off when 1st starting the engine? Then it comes on when you rev the engine about 2300 & above
I don't know about the engine light, ill have to check again when I go trailer it back home. He said I could license it and drive it back, but with the engine skipping I don't want to run it the 80 miles back home.

If I didn't have mechanical ability I would of ran away from this car, but I do have ability and can save a ton on repairs. The Cr-V has no rot or scale rust and THAT was huge being from the north! Has minor dents and I want to replace the front, right fender, interior should look new with a bit of elbow grease and detailing, it starts and goes into gear....needs several mechanical repairs....but it looks good and is again..solid and rot free.

I like how it feels behind the wheel, it sits up nice and great visibility and being 4WD is cool. The whole rig just seems beefy lie a jeep or something and that got me thinking of many ideas for a custom job....fog lams, knobby tires, roof rack, semi camo paint ect. I do have a good body shell that is for sure.

I want to test for compression and valve clearance when I get it home and if the engine is toast....then I'll either part it all out or find a fine, used engine and go with my custom build... However if I can get the engine to run the way it should and it goes down the road and shifts....I'll go ahead and fix all the stuff to make it safe and drive it nice for the remainder of our north country good weather till snow flies.

It just seems to be a cool and solid thing to repair and get going again....not disposable like an old ford contour or Civic front wheel drive car and the like... Kinda like finding an old jeep with a solid frame that is worth restoring into a cool machine.

I'll get pictures up some time this week....
 

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Discussion Starter #7
He said the distributor wire connector was the wrong one....it fit and started the engine, but wasn't quite right. He told me what I have to do....remove some black thing and switch over to the correct connector.... it's all in the housing that houses the coil and such....three bolts holding to the engine. He tried to fix it, but couldn't get the screws out that held that black thing is....he ended up giving up and aborting fixing the CRV and went out and got a Pilot. This is why I also am getting a ton of new repair parts with this thing, that he got for it as he planned to fix it back up.
 

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Discussion Starter #8
Also...he said the valves were adjusted and timing belt was replaced about 55,000 miles ago,
 

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Discussion Starter #11
If he means the rotor. To remove the rotor you will need to remove the set screw that holds the rotor to the shaft.
Thanks for the link, i'll need it.

Not used to Hondas(my first) as I am a Ford guy. Dude said they are easy to work on and it didn't look too bad under the hood.

It needs work, but it will be a fun project and I like the rig. Gonna give that interior a full on wax and buff.
 

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Discussion Starter #13 (Edited)
I got it home and drove it around the block and up to speed and it drove great. Skip at idle but seemed to kick in and run smooth at speed. I didn't think it would drive this well but it did. Gonna do a full compression check and clean this baby up...totally worth fixing right and with what I payed I'm very happy.

No rust at all....high miles, needs some stuff done, but no rust and decent interior. For a Northern NY guy, this is huge. Even the original picnic table was in it.... Gonna fix her up even if I need another motor.

Some pics of my CRV!

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Great find! You found gold in the rough. Very nice pics. Especially the bottom portion there is no rust. I did not see if you have posted, if the spark plugs have been replaced. Its definitely worth it to save this CRV.
 

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Discussion Starter #15
Currently checking to see if plug wires are on right and plug condition. Starting with the small stuff and working down to the other stuff. Compression check this week(have appointment)

Hopefully compression is good and I can fix whatever to get the motor to run as it should and do a valve adjustment...He said the timing belt and pulleys are only 4 months old. I'll get a new set of tires on it, check everything with a fine tooth comb for safety and replacement, clean the hell out of the inside, then register it and drive till the weather gets bad.
Eventually I'd like to strip the body down and fix all the flaws, put on a new coat of paint.... But right now it really isn't that bad....I've seen way worse driving around here...way worse. Fun to drive and can see all the way around with ease and very roomy with tons of spaces to put stuff.

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Discussion Starter #16
I did a complete compression test and found the number one cylinder is toast at only 32-PSI

My numbers from #1 to #4 are: 32-210-208-180

I know number one is very low, but the 210 and 208 is kinda high right? or is that the right ballpark for the compression on these things?

Next I am going to pop the valve cover, take a look and learn how to adjust the valves correctly. Also look for broken valve springs and what not.
 

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You are right the cylinders 2 & 3 are kinda high. Do you have a repair manual? You are on the right path, check the valve clearance 1st see what is the valve clearance for cylinder # 1. The body is in pristine condition no signs of rust. That is good. If you do not have a service manual I can send you a PM. It could be most likely the intake cam & exhaust cam is out of sync. Let me know.
 

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The cams on these will not hold their respective position with locking them in place. You will see that there is a slot at the back of cam belt gears that will hold them in place.
 

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Discussion Starter #19
You are right the cylinders 2 & 3 are kinda high. Do you have a repair manual? You are on the right path, check the valve clearance 1st see what is the valve clearance for cylinder # 1. The body is in pristine condition no signs of rust. That is good. If you do not have a service manual I can send you a PM. It could be most likely the intake cam & exhaust cam is out of sync. Let me know.
I'm pretty sure cylinders 2 and 3 are high, because the battery seems great yet it sounds as if it is kinda weak when turning over. This could be due to the increased compression.....yikes.... probably did some damage all the way around.

I'll adjust the valves and no, I don't have a manual at all for Hondas. Thanks.
 

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Verify valve lash and cam timing are correct. If you get it fixed, don't risk bending a valve on an old belt, replace it.
 
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