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Where is the igniter and what does it look like?

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The igniter (also known as the Ignition Control Module, or ICM) is inside the distributor, towards the bottom of the distributor housing.

Grahame Wood
has his own page detailing his experience with igniter failure. It's here: http://www.gcw.org.uk/rover/igniter.htm.

Robb has submitted the pictures and descriptions shown below from his own '93 Civic Si igniter failure, which caused his car to inconveniently die outright on the road, then refuse all efforts at restarting.

One significant giveaway for Robb was the fact that the Check Engine light had come on as the car stalled. Behind that light was
a Code 15 error (igniter output signal), which, in this case was accurate. Note: Once you turn the ignition key away from "II", the Check Engine light will go off, and may or may not re-illuminate when you try cranking again. For this reason you should pay particular attention to the state of the Check Engine light before you touch the key. The code will still be recorded, but the light may not come on again.

 If the car had stalled as a result of a bad coil or running out of gas, the Check Engine light would not have illuminated as the car stalled. If the car had been equipped with a factory-installed  tach, there would have been an additional clue: When cranking the engine after the failure, the tach needle would have remained dead still instead of quivering slightly as it normally does.

In troubleshooting, Robb had applied the light-bulb test, shown here: http://www.tegger.com/hondafaq/igniter-operation/off-car-testing.html. This test determined that his igniter had failed "off", meaning it would not perform its central function, switching on and off. Robb then proceeded to perform a public service by tearing into his igniter to find out exactly what had gone wrong, then sending me the pics and information...


The igniter, complete
This is Robb's igniter. There are several brands you'll encounter. This one was made by OKI. TEC and NEC are two others.
 
The igniter, cover off
The cover appears to be glued on. Honda igniters are filled with this thick, greenish, very sticky, almost Jello-like substance. Robb removed the gel before taking this picture.

I think that gel is there for the dual purposes of heat dissipation and corrosion protection.


The igniter, close up, part 1
And this is what Robb found under the gel.

Unfortunately, having no idea what lay under that jellied gunk, Robb cleaned the goop off with a Q-Tip. See those tiny wires connecting the little silver pads to the circuit board? The Q-Tip broke most of them. With 20-20 hindsight, it would have probably been better to spray the assembly with non-chlorinated brake cleaner to get the goop off.

Notice how much different Robb's igniter is from Grahame's. Grahame's has no little wires and no pads.

However, Robb discovered that one of those wires, along with its pad, was actually separated from the circuit board (see the yellow arrows). His Q-Tip probing had simply pushed the wire and pad off to one side.

The igniter, close up, part 2 Here's another view.

In this photo, Robb has turned the pad over, so you can see the underside, where it had been connecting with its trace on the circuit board. There appears to be evidence of arcing or some sort of oxidation on the pad. It would appear that the pad was not physically connected to the circuit board, but was conducting through arcing only. Eventually either the pad moved sufficiently far away from its circuit board connection, or oxidation bult up to the point that current could not flow reliably, stalling Robb's car.

When Robb tested this igniter by using the circuit board contacts rather than the outer spade connectors, the igniter began switching properly again. It appears that in this case the problem was a simple mechanical failure, that being the separation and arcing of that one pad. This pad appears to be the battery voltage feed line.

Robb never did re-use this igniter. He purchased a new one from the Honda dealer, installed that, and all is well now.