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Discussion Starter #1 (Edited)
So I have a 2006 Element awd automatic. The car was really sluggishwhen starting,it was barely turning over, seemed like battery was shot. I took it to a mechanic, he tells me the starter is bad. So I get estimates from Dealer $900 and a local reputable mechanic,$600. Im too cheap and I end up buying a starter at Autozone for a 130 bucks, hire mildly sketchy mechanic with shop down in the hood amd get it changed for $100 bucks against my own intuition. What do you know my cars is now screwed.
Driving it away smiling knowing I bucked the system and saved so much money the check engine light came on and soon after the battery symbol light followed. I took it back they said it was a knock sensor.After several attempts to make sure it was well connected they gave up and asked me to come back as it was getting late, and isn't a real problem. So I leave and half way home the engine light comes on again as well as the battery light. I get home and test the battery with multi meter. Battery is at 12.30v when off, 12v when on and at idle and then it drops below 12v when lights or ac are on.
I disconnected the battery and the check engine and battery turned off after I reconnected it. After running the car for a minute then turning on the headlights the battery light came back on. I assume if I drive around the check engine light will turn on as well.

ANY IDEAS? Is this just bad luck?Alternator goes out as a coincidence and moron mechanic never fully connected knock sensor?

IM planning on bringing it to a mechanic of higher stature tomorrow I guess I feel like maybe I should just bring to dealer for fear of any more damage.

Thanks for any help.
 

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Sorry to hear about the issues. First of all check the fuses to see any are blown. also look at any connections that are loose or broken wires.
 

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I am willing to bet that your alternator isnt hooked up. usually the wiring goes from the alt to the starter to the battery.
The battery to starter connectionis there but its not charging, hence the battery light.

The knock sensor code is a result of the low voltage, or the mechanic smashed a sensor or the wiring.
 

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Discussion Starter #4
So it turns out after taking it to another mechanic, one of the plugs was loose and once it was plugged in again all was well! Cost me another $30 bucks to find out but at least its fixed.
 

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Thank You! Thank You!

Senoir Bubbles,
I can not express my gratitude enough for your post! After changing the starter on my wife's E, it began displaying the EXACT same problems that you reported -- alternator not charging, battery light, knock sensor. I was banging my head for 2 full days trying to solve the problem. Even went to the extent of installing a new alternator.

Your post showed me that I probably forgot to rejoin a connector when I changed the starter. I went back through the starter job step by step and found, indeed, that one very stubborn connector did not click all the way closed when I did the job the first time.

For those of you who are interested, there are two plugs that are mounted on a support bracket that holds the intake manifold in place. I had removed the intake manifold as part of replacing the starter. You gain access this support bracket from underneath the vehicle (remove the splash guard to make this easier). Of the two plugs, it was the top one that was the most difficult for me to get plugged back in.

I joined the two ends together until I heard the definitive click, and then I knew I had it. Sure enough, once I had everything pieced back together, the alternator started delivering 13.8 volts consistently (13.5 under load) and the check engine light (knock sensor error code) went away! Problem solved!

Thank you so much for taking time to contribute to this community. If it weren't for you, I am certain I would still be out there banging my head in frustration.
 

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replaced knock sensor checked all connections

After reading posts about knock sensor issues , we followed instructions to go back from starter installation up. My battery light is still coming on and engine light is still on. We replaced the starter and knock sensor on my 2006 element. Any ideas? We have torn the car apart 3 times now. Diagnostic . Still says knock sensor
 

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Ok i just changed my starter also it was a long job as expected but went fairly well. During the removal process i pulled a little wire out of what i believe to be the knock sensor, i stripped wire a bit and pushed it back into housing seemed to go back in ok. all in all when finished the engine light stays on all the time. If by pulling the knock sensor wire out of harnes and if not put back properly will the light stay on/ And does it matter driving with it not working....
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Welcome, Rollande.

This thread seems directly relevant to your problem.

I don't know whether the engine will perform normally and safely in the long run without a working knock sensor. But the engine light will certainly stay on (and turn right back on after being reset), which means that when something really important goes wrong, you won't know it and could cause damage by driving in that condition.

Stuffing the wire back into the connector won't work. You'll need to replace the connector or cob together some other fix.
 

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Had this car for a year and had to rebuild the starter. Ran into the same issue as the OP. THANK YOU FOR POSTING THE SOLUTION!!!.

There are so many forums out there with dead end threads. I try to follow up on mine with the solution so folks aren't wasting their time reading with no resolve.

One thing I did notice that was kind of a Honda fail was lack of access to the lowest core support bolt without removing splash shield and that wonky connector for the alternator. I have worked on many cars in the past and do not remember ever running into a connector that had to be depressed to INSTALL the connector. I think this is the reason that the DIY'ers are having this issue. It's already tight down there. At least make it easy to snap in!
 
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