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2002 Civic EX lost it's mind

Darrell Cove

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Daughter driving home started runnung like crap, all sorts of dask lights on, transmission clunking and slipping.

Next moring I go out, try to start it, does but with lots of coaxing, when on engine sillouette light on, green key plashing, putting in reverse responds in a cluck as does drive with slipping. Borrowed my freinds computer scanner ( MAC TOOLS EC150 ), indicates communication error. On line says to disconnect battery cables and touch them for 15 minutes or so so clear it out ( NOte here, ground was a little loose on battery connection ). Fixed battery connections started the car again with some coaxing, same thing, can not communicate with the computer.

I am thinking that maybe this ground jumping around took out the ECU ? Would all these other oddities be a result of a bad ECU like the transmission acting strangely. I have run Mobil One in it since I got it and drained the tranny fluid every 3rd oil change, it's nice and clean.....


Any help/Guidance appreciated.


Also I am reading if I get another ECU I need Honda to reprogram it for me ? How much do they screw you for that ?

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An 02 is a little out of my experience range but nearly all Honda's do not require any intervention from the dealer to replace it.


A faulty ECU might be causing issues in regards to the automatic transmission. You are not far off from what I would think of as a first step as well. You would have a few paths to take: buy one from a parts store and if it isn't what you need you can return it but it's going to be pricey. Or buy one off of eBay or a salvage yard. Civics are everywhere and an 02 auto ECU won't have a high second hand value, but it's not something you can really return.


Before spending any extra money there are several grounds that your car will have. I think there are three. Certainly one from the battery, one from the top of the valve cover and maybe one from the starter. I can never remember. Make sure they are all solid before pulling out the credit card.

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