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2003 Odyssey - random intermittent stalling issue

3381 Views 14 Replies 8 Participants Last post by  MarkX Odyssey
2003 Odyssey stalling issue - On intermittent occasions — but sometimes not for days — my 2003 Ody stalls out of nowhere, but only briefly (like for 5-10 seconds) but just enough to need to pull over, put transmission in park and restart the engine. This seems to be happening more and more often, where now on a 6 mile trip in happens 2-3 times. So far, it has always restarted fine and then la-la-la I go again down the road. until next time. The problem seems electrical somehow. but may possibly be a temporary disruption of fuel supply (?). This is accompanied by no dashboard indicator lights going on nor anything else unusual.

I have taken it in twice to my top notch mechanic several times, but he is as puzzled as I am as to what is making this happen, much less how to fix it. I just replaced the battery, so I know it isn’t that.

I have perused this website for others having this problem, but have not seen this issue posted anywhere. Anyone?
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2011 Odyssey LX, 136k miles
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The two prime suspects for this common problem:
main relay
ignition switch

Search on here for those and you'll find ways to inspect and maybe replace them. If it's the main relay, they can usually be fixed by simply reflowing the solder.

Yes, intermittent electrical problems like you have are really hard to find unless you have good clues about where to look.

If the dash lights did some weird flashing following shutdown, that would point more towards the ignition switch.
 

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When it happens does the dash go black or do all the red lights come on? You said no lights but does the dashboard stay powered up? It's sounding electrical to me. What the dash does would dictate to me whether I check ignition switch first or main relay first. See if you can duplicate the problem by gently wiggling the key when it's running. Try pulling down on it, moving it slightly one direction or another, etc. If you can't duplicate it that when then I'd start suspecting main relay.
 

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My 2003 EX performed this stalling gig, intermittently and at the oddest times, and your story is almost a carbon copy of mine. I used the troubleshooting paragraphs (it reads almost like a flow chart) from the Honda shop manual, ultimately confirming that the wiring was good, and now it was time to test the two circuits in the EGR valve.

My dash lights are remained illuminated when this happened at night, so I was pretty sure it was not the ignition switch with its myriad of circuit contacts.

Despite all this stalling, not once did my van did not trigger a CEL (check engine light), so I used the paragraph covering "P1491 '99-00, '02-04 Models: EGR Valve Insufficient Lift", figuring this might be a step in the right direction (IIRC, our own John Clark helped steer me in this direction).

The resistance values I got on my DMM were just barely within the tolerances in the manual (on the high side), but they just seemed awfully high with nothing running nor powered up (IIRC, the resistance value of the EGR valve lift sensor circuit is supposed to increase with sensed increasing valve lift). Luckily, my wife's 2002 was close at hand, so I checked her van's EGR valve as well, and found that the two were far and away different (resistance values on hers, IIRC, with a closed valve, were as close to open circuit as you can get)...and her van ran well.

So, I swapped the EGR valve from her van into mine, and went for a fairly lengthy drive. No stalling. Bought a new EGR valve, and the problem has not happened again for many years.

OF
 
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Discussion Starter · #11 ·
When it happens does the dash go black or do all the red lights come on? You said no lights but does the dashboard stay powered up? It's sounding electrical to me. What the dash does would dictate to me whether I check ignition switch first or main relay first. See if you can duplicate the problem by gently wiggling the key when it's running. Try pulling down on it, moving it slightly one direction or another, etc. If you can't duplicate it that when then I'd start suspecting main relay.
About your first questions re dash lights: my recollection is that all the dash lights just all go dark initially, but I'm not 100% certain of that and will pay closer attention next time.

Secondly, I tried the duplication thing, and it didn't happen i.e. I couldn't make it stall by playing around with the key while engine is running. It was idling not moving, which is when the stalling generally happens; so that seems to indicate what again? the "main relay"?
 

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I just use symptoms decide where to start. If the dash goes dark that indicates a loss of power to the gauge cluster, and presumably everything else. If it was an egr caused (i.e. big vacuum leak) stall I would expect all the red lights on the cluster to illuminate, as if the key was on but engine not running. If you can't get anything to happen with the ignition switch I'd start looking at that main relay.
 

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Discussion Starter · #13 ·
I just use symptoms decide where to start. If the dash goes dark that indicates a loss of power to the gauge cluster, and presumably everything else. If it was an egr caused (i.e. big vacuum leak) stall I would expect all the red lights on the cluster to illuminate, as if the key was on but engine not running. If you can't get anything to happen with the ignition switch I'd start looking at that main relay.
Again thank you very much for taking the time to assist.
 

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2003 Odyssey stalling issue - On intermittent occasions — but sometimes not for days — my 2003 Ody stalls out of nowhere, but only briefly (like for 5-10 seconds) but just enough to need to pull over, put transmission in park and restart the engine. This seems to be happening more and more often, where now on a 6 mile trip in happens 2-3 times. So far, it has always restarted fine and then la-la-la I go again down the road. until next time. The problem seems electrical somehow. but may possibly be a temporary disruption of fuel supply (?). This is accompanied by no dashboard indicator lights going on nor anything else unusual.

I have taken it in twice to my top notch mechanic several times, but he is as puzzled as I am as to what is making this happen, much less how to fix it. I just replaced the battery, so I know it isn’t that.

I have perused this website for others having this problem, but have not seen this issue posted anywhere. Anyone?
HI, I have been recently experiencing a similar problem in my Oddy 2004 with random stalling for a few seconds here and there while driving. The problem seemed to be with my Upstream 02 sensor when it got wet. I noticed my van randomly stalling after a rain fall when driving over water puddles but the day after on a dry day it ran fine. I bought some electronic grease and sealed the 02 sensor connectors and threads. Since then problem went away. I also changed the MAP sensor just to make sure. runs perfect now.
You can get an OEM DENSO Map sensor for $8. https://www.ebay.com/itm/Genuine-OE...re-Sensor-for-Acura-Honda-Saturn/112352341348
 

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2003 Odyssey stalling issue - On intermittent occasions — but sometimes not for days — my 2003 Ody stalls out of nowhere, but only briefly (like for 5-10 seconds) but just enough to need to pull over, put transmission in park and restart the engine. This seems to be happening more and more often, where now on a 6 mile trip in happens 2-3 times. So far, it has always restarted fine and then la-la-la I go again down the road. until next time. The problem seems electrical somehow. but may possibly be a temporary disruption of fuel supply (?). This is accompanied by no dashboard indicator lights going on nor anything else unusual.

I have taken it in twice to my top notch mechanic several times, but he is as puzzled as I am as to what is making this happen, much less how to fix it. I just replaced the battery, so I know it isn’t that.

I have perused this website for others having this problem, but have not seen this issue posted anywhere. Anyone?
Yes, like others said before on this site. It's the ignition switch. When it happens again, try moving the key in all directions then all dash board lights will come back on and car will start automatically if car still in motion. This happened to me several times and finally figured out after searching internet (thanks guys!). I have 2002 Odyssey and have not replaced the ignition yet (please advise if some one know the p/n, thanks).
 
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