This is the second day in a row that I have been working from home. Why? My car developed a terminal electrical problem on Sunday. This should surprise no one when I mention that it is a late 1980s Honda Civic.
Honda/Acura #4: Honda Accords, Preludes, Civics and Acura Integras built from 1986-1989 (Bosch reman alternators AL256X, AL382X, AL383X, AL386X, AL387X, AL388X, AL451X) are prone to a no-start condition due to a low battery charge. This condition can be traced to frequent short trip driving with the rear window defogger left in the “on” position, along with high underhood temperatures. The combination of the continual discharge due to the defogger being left on and the high underhood temperatures, tends to cause these models to dine out frequently on batteries.
To curb the battery appetite of these cars, Honda and Acura have introduced defogger switch/timers and a battery heat shield. The defogger switch/timer automatically shuts off after 25 minutes, and the heat shield helps deflect some of the engine’s heat away from the battery. Honda part numbers are 35500-SE0-A11 (defogger switch/timer) and 06377-SE3-A00 (battery cover kit). Acura only offers these parts as a complete kit: 1986-87 models are kit 06377-SD2-A01 and 1988-89 models are kit 06377-SD2-A11.
Understanding Your Import Car’s Electrical System
This means the alternator needs to be replaced (second one in 6 years).
Looks like cold beans and uncooked rice to eat for a while…