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Discussion Starter #1
Hello, I’m a new member. I just purchased a 2003 CVT Insight with ~150k miles. The car runs but transmission doesn’t engage though seems to be functional. I’ve probed about a bit as the previous owner had a mechanic look at it and their conclusion was that there was an electrical problem. The car had stopped engaging suddenly while driving, PO reports there was no cataclysmic sound and no bits in the CVT fluid. Fluid is topped up. Shift cable and indicator work as they should.



The MIL light is on and the D Indicator blinks, I reset it a few times by battery disconnect, same result almost immediately. I crossed pins 9 and 4 and got the EPS DTC code: 22 and no other. My OBDC II scanner could not pull any codes, it is not very sophisticated.



Code 22 (P1259, P2646, P2647) indicates a problem with engine speed vs vehicle speed (NEP, VSS) but as I see it this would only post an error and not cause disconnect. I proved the solenoids are functional by energizing them manually with car switched off and terminals disconnected.



I’d like to get the TMC codes. Page 14-6 in my 2000-2004 Honda Insight manual states: ‘the D indicator indicates when the DLC is connected to the HDS and the tester in the SCS mode.’



Question 1: I don’t have an HDS, Is a readily available scanner able to do this? Which ones? I’ve searched the forums and haven’t been able to find a method to do it by shorting pins but that would be nice.



The same subtext on 14-6 also states: ‘The DTC in parentheses is the Honda code ,,,’ It doesn’t state what the digit AFTER the hyphen represents, I can’t find that anywhere in the manual. (e.g. IF the D light blinked 1 long, 1 short I’d have: P0725 (11-1). )



Question 2: Is the digit after the hyphen meaningful information that would warrant retrieving the codes with the Honda tool (HDS)?



Question 3: A method to retrieve DTC from D indicator by shorting terminals may well exist as it does in similar Hondas, does anyone know anything about how that might be done?

Thanks,
Bill
 

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Sorry I haven't answered your specific questions however...

Probably stripped the CVT input splines in the flywheel. A common problem.

Loads of info on here about it.
 

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Discussion Starter #3
Thanks for the prompt reply. I did previously read many of those discussions and though I have not entirely ruled splines out I'm looking elsewhere because:

1) Removing the CVT just assuming it is the cause is more effort than pursuing the other investigations.

2) At least one poster stated that the primary indicator of stripped splines is that there is no MIL or any other warning light displaying. Is that not correct?
 

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Do the SCS shorting pins at the OBDII socket to get the TCM blink codes?
That procedure is detailed on here. I think that works for the TCM module. Try it.
Video the blinks.

Simple and cheap OBDII devices cannot read the TCM module sub codes.

You could work through the CVT diagnostic steps in the workshop manual, but it can be misleading in some cases.

Visual inspection check.

You might be able to remove the 12v starter and see the cvt input shaft? I think a visual check is mentioned on here..
Start the car 'assuming the ima works' and if the input shaft isn't turning you know the splines are fubar.

Maybe the CVT magnetic plug for bits of metal band.
 

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Discussion Starter #5
Shorting pins 5-9 does nothing more than 4-9. All I found was broken links when anyone referred to this procedure, Can anyone tell me the SCS trick to read TMC codes?
 

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You should probably read this thread from a couple of months ago and then plan on pulling your transmission.


Scott
 

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Discussion Starter #7
Thanks! I did browse through and read quite a few posts on these CVT cases before getting my manual and reading the CVT section to understand the workings of the system. I agree that the manual has some oversights and mistakes, the OBDCII schema seems to lack some foresight too. I'm surprised at the conclusion of the InsightCentral community that the CVT must be removed to verify the stripped splines when the transmission has a chain of sensors along the drive path that could be probed/queried.

Has anyone tried troubleshooting this thing by testing that chain: {NEP, VEL,NDN, NDR, VSS}?

I'm hoping to delve into hands on troubleshooting on my next day off and would love some experienced guidance. My CVT only has 150k miles on it and the spline problem reportedly happens much later I'm thinking it's likely mine is in the 20 percentile that has a problem with the many electrical or hydraulic components (which can be repaired without removing the transmission). Thanks in advance for any insight.
 

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The speed sensor problems you are experiencing more that likely are the result of a communication problem caused by the stripped spline issue. When the engine runs and has RPM the computer sees that, the speed sensors in the transmission are not seeing the RPM because of the stripped splines. This is why you are seeing codes for speed sensors. When the service manual was written for these cars, there was never a section addressing stripped splines. The engineers never saw this as a problem in the years of development and testing. Also, in Japan most cars are scrapped early, not like the rest of the world that wants to drive cars for ever.

I believe over the years, CVT Insights have been not repaired and scraped when they have had spline failures. Many of the cars were taken to dealerships and mechanics and they were probably mis diagnosed. The mis diagnosis was the shop telling the owner the car needed a transmission, at the cost of $1000s. Most of those cars were then not repaired. This even seems to be what may have happened with your car. You got it from someone who’s description is that of a classic spline failure.

150,000 miles is definitely within the range of spline failure. It may be a little on the lower side of the curve but it is still highly possible and likely.

I work in a shop in the Los Angeles area and we have worked on several hundred Insights. When I get a call for a CVT insight that has a transmission failure, I ask, tell me what happened? Typically they describe the failure as you did. My answer, I’m 90% sure your car has suffered flywheel spline failure. The transmission has to come out to confirm. So far I’ve been 100% correct. I’ve also answered questions here on the forum and get phone calls from around the country and this has been the case 100% of the time. Most people have experienced this one time as they only have one car. I own many Insights, and have been involved in the repair of many, more than most people in the country.

Good luck with your diagnostic process.

Scott
 
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Has anyone tried troubleshooting this thing by testing that chain: {NEP, VEL,NDN, NDR, VSS}?
No, because that isn't particularly simple or easy and we are 90%+ sure of our diagnosis.
To monitor the CVT internal sensors via OBDII you will need a proper Honda Tool, clone or OBDIIC&C.

We have offered advice based on many years on here and working on these cars.
Take out the 12V starter and see what you can see with a mirror or boroscope as regards rotating parts.
Rotate the engine by hand and watch the cvt input shaft, that's a pretty simple diagnostic test.

As has been said CVT flywheel spline failure was not anticipated by Honda as a failure mode and therefore no official diagnostic steps exist.
 

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Discussion Starter #10
The EPS blink 22 signifies that there is a problem where Engine Speed (NEP) is less than a computed factor of the Vehicle Speed (VSS) which is sensed at the differential. So there is the WHOLE CVT in question. The splines are just upstream of the NEP, just downstream of the flywheel is NDR, the Drive Pulley Speed Sensor. Has anyone tried probing that with the engine running?
 

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A week or so ago the OP started a new thread on a related topic, however hasn’t updated here yet. Based on his other post it appears he’s flywheel stripped. If he reads this it would be great if he would follow up here and give some details.
Scott
 

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Discussion Starter #14
I probed the NDR sensor at the TMS box connector. It was readily accessible as I'd already taken it out to look for bad connections before writing IC. I bumped the wheel around, in Drive, while reaching in the passenger door to read the 5 volt pulses. Sure enough, the sensors all showed that everything was turning right through to the Input Shaft, but the flywheel was still. So you guys were right. Dang!

I dropped the CVT and found that the ISB was very sloppy, 30 thou end play and side play. Hence the other post. I suppose that much slop -> WOBBLE would cause spline issues. So a third cause besides: failed O-ring, cooked grease.

Now the kicker is: The ISB is loose around THE OUTSIDE, IN THE FLYWHEEL HOUSING COVER JOURNAL! In fact the other 2 bearings fit loosely in the cover so they look to have spun too. The fluid, while free of any large particles, is too viscus and smells like the wrong stuff, looks the wrong color too. I think someone filled the CVT with thick fluid to mask loudness and the resultant resistance caused the bearings to bind in windup under the low end torque inherent in an electric motor assist. They feel good though. Anyone see this in a CVT?

Anyway, looks like I have a cadaver CVT to practice on, doubt if much in there can be reliable donor material.

Does anyone have a transmission to sell? Rebuildable and/ or low mileage, no more junk please.

Also, does anyone rent the special tools? I saw the post on how to rig an every day puller to do the Start Clutch but I think there are some other tricks required in there. (Reverse Brake compressor...) Any cautions and/or advice welcome!
 
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