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  • Nov 23, 2006, 05:57 PM
    How do I set timing on '91 Honda Civic
    How do I set timing on '91 Honda Civic
  • Nov 23, 2006, 06:08 PM
    Honda Civic Timing Adjustment

    1. Warm engine up to normal operating temperature.
    2. Adjust idle speed to 700 rpm, using a tachometer connected to the BLU tachometer wire.
    3. Turn off engine and all electrical systems.
    3. Jump the Service Check Connector with a paper clip.
    4. Connect positive inductive timing light lead to the positive battery terminal.
    5. Connect negative inductive timing light lead to engine ground.
    6. Connect inductive timing light lead to the No. 1 spark plug wire.
    7. Start engine.
    8. Using timing light, loosen 3 mounting bolts (12 mm) and rotate distributor, until timing is set to 16 degrees BTDC* on the crankshaft pulley. 16 degrees BTDC should be the middle of the three clustered hash marks on the pulley. Line middle hash mark on pulley up with the pointer above. You may want to take chaulk or yellow paint and highlight the hash mark first.
    9. Button everything up.
    10. Remove the backup fuse or negative. Battery terminal for 15 seconds, in order to reset the computer.

    *D15B7/D15Z1/D16Z6 engines.
  • Apr 30, 2011, 01:56 AM
    On a 1991 Honda Civic, the Distributor is not the type you can rotate!
  • Apr 30, 2011, 03:36 AM
    Comment on genis2k's post
    As an addendum, I found that that the on-board computer will reset your timing when you unplug the battery (it resets the computer) and thus adjusts your timing. The above suggestion, assumes you have an old style of distributor. There is a way of forcing the computer to accept "NEW" timing, but it is not for the faint of heart. Google Ericthecarguy.
  • Apr 30, 2011, 03:44 AM
    I found it useful to unplug the Positive battery terminal, in order to reset the computer, in this instance.
  • Apr 30, 2011, 04:28 AM

    genis2k, I don't agree with anything you have said. I stand by my original posting! I checked your reference to ETCG's video--his method of timing Hondas, including jumping the Service Check Connector, is the same as mine! It's the way everyone, except you, has done it for years.

    Furthermore, do not follow genis2k's example and disconnect the positive battery cable, in order to reset the ECM. It's very dangerous and wrong; instead, do it the proper way I explained above. ALWAYS disconnect the negative battery cable first and replace it last. Removing the positive battery cable first dramatically increases the possibility of creating a large spark, which could ignite hydrogen gas venting from the battery or damage the ECM.
  • Apr 30, 2011, 05:53 AM
    Thank you for that, but you did not address the problem with the distributor being fixed and not being able to adjust it any other way. I know that the older models of distributors are adjusted by rotation, please address this point. The removal of the negative, does do that, but it is ineffective, without addressing the complete reset of the computer, which requires a complete disconnect. Et al, removal of the positive.
  • Apr 30, 2011, 05:56 AM

    Every 1991 Honda Civic distributor, shown at, can be advanced or retarded, by loosening the 3 mounting bolts and rotating the distributor:

    RockAuto Parts Catalog
  • Apr 30, 2011, 05:58 AM
    The fact that you suggest doing something that simply is not possible in this instance points to an inability to diagnose a simple mechanical problem. Please tell me how to adjust the timing, when it is impossible to "rotate the distributor) (btw; I've done this operation on older models, no problem)
  • Apr 30, 2011, 06:00 AM
    By saying that, it is an indication that you've never worked on a '91 civic, or any similar model
  • Apr 30, 2011, 06:08 AM
    For the most part, your instructions are correct... however... The only thing that bothers me is that you are talking about an engine that these things are not possible AND most backyard mechanics do not have all the equipment. Yet you still never address the single question of how to adjust the timing, appropriately, to this model and type of engine. You are talking like this is a '64 Chev, rather than a '91 Civic.
  • Apr 30, 2011, 06:14 AM

    The distributor is not fixed. You do it just the way ETCG recommends. View his video again. All you need is a paper clip, timing light, and ratchet wrench to loosen the mounting bolts. There's really not much to it. I fail to see your problem. It's not that much different from a "64 Chevy, except you need to install a shunt in the SCC.
  • Apr 30, 2011, 06:18 AM
    Sorry, but your response is illogical. How do you "rotate" a fixed distributor cap. You are displaying your ignorance.
  • Apr 30, 2011, 06:21 AM
    BTW... there is NO Republic of Texas, unless you are hick
  • Apr 30, 2011, 06:36 AM

    You need an entry level mechanic to show you how to loosen and rotate the distributor housing, not the distributor cap. End of discussion.

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