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Discussion Starter · #1 ·
2007 Element EX Manual Transmission

Just posting this here to help anyone else that may be having the same problem.

Been dealing with a Misfire Code on cylinder #4. Engine light comes on, sometimes the TSA and the "!" come on too. Sometimes the engine light flashes. Sometimes it turns off by itself.

Began by swapping #3 and #4 coils to see if the problem moved to Cylinder 3. It did not.

Since I have 100,000 miles on it, I figure it's time for new spark plugs anyway, so for haha's I changed them out to new NGK's. Problem still existed.

Problem began to get worse. Engine light was coming on all the time and never clearing itself. Reading the codes revealed misfires on Cylinder 1 and "Multiple Cylinder Misfire".

Engine would not idle correctly. RPMs would flutter up and down and the Element would shake slightly as if about to stall. Exhaust smelled like rotten eggs.

On a side note: in cold weather (20 degrees F) the Element was slow to turn over and start. Typical bad battery scenario, so I replaced the battery. It is STILL turning over very slow, like a bad battery. Guess I didn't need to replace it after all.

I adjusted the valves about 40,000 miles ago and found all the exhaust valves were pretty tight. Brought them up to spec.

Was thinking that maybe I needed a valve adjustment again but I was crazy busy at the moment and didn't have time to do it myself. Off to the shop she goes!

Honda tech found no bad coils, spark plugs were good (duh). Next thing was to check the valves. All the exhaust valves were tight again.

Once the valves were adjusted correctly, all the misfires and all the symptoms went away. No more misfires, she idles perfectly and no more rotten egg smelly exhaust.

AND... she cranked over nice and fast in 9 degree weather!

So if anyone sees all those symptoms I had (or any of them), get thee a valve adjustment!

Hope this helps someone.


1,236 Posts
Yep, this seems to do the trick.

At 126,xxx miles, I got the Check Engine light. I had started the car to leave class one night, and as I was plugging in my phone, the car shook and idled roughly for about five seconds. The light came on, the idle smoothed out, then it seemed to run ok. As background, I had changed the plugs at about 99,000 miles (two years ago) and had the valves adjusted at about 106,000 (April 2012).

I got the codes pulled at Auto Zone: P0300: Random Misfire, P0301: Cylinder 1 Misfire, and P0302: Cylinder 2 Misfire. I put new plugs in it, and that seemed to smooth everything out. Mr. X and I decided to take the Doombox to Pennsylvania. Once we got into the mountains, the car started to shake like I was on a gravel road when we tried to accelerate. Oddly enough, no new Check Engine light came up, but the car was definitely not running right.

We found an Auto Zone with the coil packs in stock, so I swapped all four of them. That helped marginally but the car still shuddered and shook under load. Today I got the valves adjusted, and after about 50 miles of driving it's been running just fine. After 20,000, the intake valves were loose, and the exhaust valves were tight. Sadly, they didn't tell me by how much, but they were already out of spec after only 20,000 miles.

Anyways, $600 later and the car seems to be running ok again. Now to figure out the clunking and vague handling (probably struts and tires).
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