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Discussion Starter · #21 ·
Pipes are now out of the Evaporust and looking pretty good. Probably get everything back together on Sunday.
 

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Discussion Starter · #22 · (Edited)
91581

So, when you use bulk heater hose as opposed to the pre-bent Honda hose for your large diameter hose into the water outlet, measure carefully so your hose isn't too long. Too much length causes it to pinch down in internal diameter per the photo above. That pipe's got to come off for the heater hose to get shortened (at least I don't have to lengthen it ).

I had to invert my phone to get the photo above. For orientation, the water outlet is to the left in the photo and the white disc to the left foreground is the base of the engine block knock sensor with the green plastic broken off.
 

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Discussion Starter · #23 · (Edited)
I was unable to finish this today, so we are now into week, whatever of this job (granted I have been interrupted by a wedding and death in the family). It is an F'ing nightmare. Under no circumstances should you attempt this at home.

I am close to giving up and parting out. (Posted in a moment of true frustration. Like most jobs of this kind, a good night's sleep and fresh approach the following day told me what I already knew, but did not want to admit to myself -- I needed to remove the already assembled line and trim some length from the rubber heater hose).

Tip:. The original Honda hoses here are pre-bent. Scott recommended bulk heater hose -- certainly cheap -- but I do not know whether he recommended it because the Honda hoses are NLS, or because of potential cost savings. The bends made measuring accurate lengths of replacement hose challenging. I had to trim back both hoses three times despite what I thought was careful measuring (but I didn't have to lengthen them😉). If still available, this is a place where the non-mechanics in the crowd might favor the pre-bent Honda hoses.

I initially could not get the bolt holding the smaller diameter hard water line on the inlet -- due to too much length on the rubber line. Getting the larger diameter one on was an adventure as well, largely for the same reason. This is probably a 3.75 wrench out of five degree of difficulty job for the shade tree mechanic, not because any individual operation is impossible, or requires special tools, but mostly because working spaces are very tight and lots of stuff has to be loosened/removed to provide maneuvering room.

Leave this one to the trained professionals. There is a reason mechanics exist and get good money for the work they do. Use them.
 

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Discussion Starter · #24 ·
Smaller line is on. Now comes reassembly.

Overall, not a job for the faint of heart.
 

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Let me guess - you have large hands?

And yes, mechanics in general are worth the money that you pay to them, if you can afford it.
 

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Discussion Starter · #26 · (Edited)
Not especially large hands. I can get them into most spaces in the engine bay. For example, I had no trouble threading on the lower intake manifold nuts by hand and no problems getting to them with a 3/8 drive ratchet and the proper extension and swivel combo.

Unclipping (electrical) the engine coolant temperature sensor and reattaching it (barehanded both) was quite challenging. I can't see how anyone with hands larger than mine would be able to do that without a tool-based solution. If you try it barehanded, my advice would be to use the cable attached to the electrical connector, and not the body of the connector itself to align the clip before pressing it home for reattachment. I don't advocate pulling on the cable for detachment.

The two things that tend to frustrate me are electrical clips and any kind of rubber hose that: a) has been clamped to the same surface for twenty years, or b) needs replacing such that new hose needs to be installed. I have great difficulty getting the pinch clamps on over the flared end of the pipe after the hose has been installed.

I do have a dozen cuts/scrapes on both hands, though.
 

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Unclipping (electrical) the engine coolant temperature sensor and reattaching it (barehanded both) was quite challenging. I can't see how anyone with hands larger than mine would be able to do that without a tool-based solution. If you try it barehanded, my advice would be to use the cable attached to the electrical connector, and not the body of the connector itself to align the clip before pressing it home for reattachment. I don't advocate pulling on the cable for detachment.

The two things that tend to frustrate me are electrical clips and any kind of rubber hose that: a) has been clamped to the same surface for twenty years, or b) needs replacing such that new hose needs to be installed. I have great difficulty getting the pinch clamps on over the flared end of the pipe after the hose has been installed.

I do have a dozen cuts/scrapes on both hands, though.
For electrical connectors, Honda's especially, it helps to remember that the bracket that they are clipped onto often times serves as a lock - you can't separate the two halves of the connector until you remove it from the bracket that holds it in place. Once off the bracket, give them a good push in first, then try to pull them apart.

For undoing difficult to access connectors, having several varieties and lengths of needle nose pliers helps. Think straight, 45 and 90 degree bent noses, with 11-16" long handles. These also help with the hose spring clamps, as do needle nose Vise Grips.

For baked on rubber hoses, use small 90 degree picks to go around the inner edge, breaking it loose so that you can twist it off. Compressed air is also useful here, if you have access to it. I try to avoid using large pliers to break them free, especially if it is a hose that I intend to reuse. If I'm installing new hoses anyway, then I tend to just slice them off with a really sharp razor blade utility knife - being careful not to cut into the nipple that it attaches to, which might cause it to leak once the new hose is on.
 

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Discussion Starter · #28 · (Edited)
Thanks for the tips Working Honda. Everything is back together (and I don't have any "extra" parts).

I did change the oil cooler o-rings as well while I had my tools out. That is a trivially simple job.

I still need to do a proper cooling system burp and put Scott's belly pan back on. Then I'll know if I have been successful

Can you do this job at home as a DIY? You absolutely can, but it will take you far longer than you estimate. There is no complex fitting of parts involved, but the forward most lower bolt for the water outlet itself is blind unless you really stick your head deep down into the engine compartment. (I removed it by feel, but could only install it by looking the bolt into the hole -- Cirque de Soleil would have been proud of me -- in other words, some contortionist skills required) and the offending bolt is identified in a photo in a prior post. Even in the rust belt few bolts will be rusted beyond the capabilities of Aerokroil or PB Blaster, interestingly, with two notable exceptions: the 10mm bolts that hold the wiring harness to the metal coolant inlet pipes could not be budged. In fact, I bent the attachment tabs on the pipes they were so solidly welded in place by rust. I didn't try a torch because of the proximity to wiring. I ended up slitting the hole in the plastic harness cover with a razor knife and wiggling the harness free.

I am still wondering whether I can delete the oil cooler coolant lines with four pipe caps and spring clamps (or, as Scott suggested, simply looping the lines and connecting one line to each set of nipples). I know it was deleted on later model years. It would eliminate four potential sources of coolant leaks (well two really, since the upper endpoints could still leak).

It is not a fun job to do. Ramps help for the coolant drain and to save your lower back.

Good luck with it. It is not a job I'd want to do twice.

I have to give another shout out to Scott Kulbeck for holding my hand throughout this repair (and Bull Dog for encouragement at a critical juncture). We are truly fortunate to have Scott and Bull Dog as resources for this community and it is easy not to fully appreciate what they provide until you really see how willingly they offer assistance when you get jammed up on something.
 

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Discussion Starter · #29 ·
Still needs a coolant burp, but once Scott diagnosed my P0106 MAP sensor code as the small vacuum line to the throttle body being unattached, and that was remedied, the car started and ran fine. I always get a little nervous when a car's been apart for that long.
 

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Discussion Starter · #30 · (Edited)
The saga continues. . . One of the oil cooler lines was clearly leaking coolant. The bottom hose clamp literally rusted away and the opening in the hose had ovalized and swollen a bit so it was loose and weeping. The bottom end of the hose where it attaches to the oil cooler seemed soft and swollen. There appeared to be a bit of an oil leak around the filter housing - probably from perished oil cooler o-rings (the big ones). I am thinking prolonged exposure to engine oil was not good for that oil cooler hose. I replaced it today as part of the overall cooling system refresh. Not a fun job at all.

I would have liked to have done the other one as well, but just didn't see how I was going to get to it. The line I did replace is buried under the thermostat housing. Changed the T-stat since I had the housing off.

If I were to do this job again, I would remove the engine oil cooler from the car completely then fit both replacement engine oil cooler lines to the oil cooler, leaving free ends up top and then only worry about fitting the top ends in tight quarters. It is undoubtedly the preferred solution, but you have to know the lengths of the cooler hoses to do it that way, which you won't if they are still attached to the car and you opt to use bulk hose. RockAuto had replacement hoses by Gates a while back according to the forum, so that might be a way to get the oil cooler hose lengths right in advance of disassembly.

I also replaced both transmission cooler lines (remember this is a CVT). I had the lines and clamps laying around since last fall when I replaced my radiator, but hadn't installed them.

I did not see how to get the T-stat housing off without removing the intake manifold, so the manifold came off (which lead to me inadvertently destroying the knock sensor (man, those things are made of peanut butter)). Fragile does not begin to describe it.

I would not have gotten the oil cooler line off without some extra long, angled tip needle nose pliers per Working Honda's suggestion a couple posts back. My not-so-giant hands came in handy again - I was able to snake one between the a/c hardline and a/c compressor, but just barely (and I mean like call the EMTs to extract me barely) to be able to both pull off and push on the oil cooler line.

So, once I get a replacement knock sensor, refill and burp the coolant, I should finally be good to go.

Way longer than I wanted to spend on this repair. I haven't done the water pump but that's about the only cooling system component apart from heater hoses that hasn't gotten a refresh.

I only have to do a few jobs like this to even more deeply appreciate the value local independent mechanics provide. Those guys and gals are magicians.
 

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Discussion Starter · #32 ·
Speaking of local mechanics, mine made a house call today to unplug the destroyed knock sensor from it's electrical clip. I had not been able to free it despite repeated attempts. He got it in 10 seconds.

Embarrassing, but super helpful. Awaiting a replacement.
 

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Discussion Starter · #33 · (Edited)
Replacement knock sensor in. Thank you Scott K. for supplying a good used one.

As if to mock me one final time, I dropped one of the 12 mm intake manifold flange nuts when reassembling and could not recover it. Honda of Hackettstown was happy to supply one for the princely sum of $0.80. Normally $1.35, but discounted to $0.75 with $0.05 tax.

Installed this morning. Then I bled/burped the cooling system x3 (with assistance of my lovely bride) and am pretty sure there is no air in the system. I followed the video to which Willie frequently directed folks.

Once I reinstall Scott's belly pan, all that's left is a test drive.

I still need to get after the oil leak at the timing chain auto tensioner. Scott K. sent me the requisite gasket.

So, to recap the bidding -- what I accomplished here, with many interruptions was:

1) water outlet reseal -- no mean feat. If you live anywhere close to Jue Motors in Covina, Ca., let Scott Kulbeck and his crew handle this for you. You won't regret it;

2) replacement of steel coolant pipes and associated rubber hoses;

3) EGR plate cleaning (it needed it);

4) EGR valve replacement (w/Accord unit from Rock Auto);

5) transmission oil cooler lines replaced;

6) thermostat R&R;

7) Oil cooler line (only one of two) replaced;

7.5) Oil cooler o-rings (2) replaced, which I hope cures an oil leak at that spot;

8) engine oil and filter change;

9) coolant replaced and cooling system burped/bled.

Regrettably, I am down one engine cover acorn nut, but I am happy to report I have no "extra" parts.

The repair took way longer than I thought it should have. There is no way I could have accomplished this without Scott and Bull Dog's help/parts supply/encouragement, not to mention Jay from Valley Center's electrical clip wizardry (on a house call basis, no less).

The principal thing I learned from this (not learned, was reminded of) -- your local independent mechanic (the good ones anyway) earns every dime you pay him/her -- and then some. The second thing -- I have small enough hands to get a lot done in a G1 Insight engine bay, but not without some scrapes/bruises.
 

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Reading through some of the older frustration posts, I believe the attached photo applies to this thread as a whole.
92046
 
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Discussion Starter · #36 ·
Nah, worked on enough old cars in the rust belt to know there's no such thing as "smooth sailing." The rest is just figuring out the particular quirks of this model, but I won't be volunteering to help anybody with a water outlet reseal anytime soon. Pity really, since I accumulated a pretty decent knowledge base there. Happy to talk anyone through it though.
 

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Discussion Starter · #37 ·
So here's the assessment after a half hour test drive on 50 mph limited secondary roads:

Coolant temp as measured with ELM327 Bluetooth scanner and Torque Lite for Android -- mostly between 197.6 - 199.4 F, with very occasional (like three times for maybe 30 sec., peaks of 203 F).

Looks like mpg could be up by 1-2 (perhaps due to EGR plate cleaning). We'll see what develops over the longer term.

As the Brits would say -- absolutely chuffed that things seem to have worked out.
 

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So here's the assessment after a half hour test drive on 50 mph limited secondary roads:

Coolant temp as measured with ELM327 Bluetooth scanner and Torque Lite for Android -- mostly between 197.6 - 199.4 F, with very occasional (like three times for maybe 30 sec., peaks of 203 F).

Looks like mpg could be up by 1-2 (perhaps due to EGR plate cleaning). We'll see what develops over the longer term.

As the Brits would say -- absolutely chuffed that things seem to have worked out.
Those are absolutely normal coolant temps for a properly functioning Insight engine cooling system. Good deal.
 
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