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American Honda Monitoring Rising Oil Levels in CR-V and Civic Models Following Recalls in China

Sep 7, 2018

In February 2018, Dongfeng Honda, a Chinese automaker half-owned by Honda, announced an auto recall of 350,000 Honda CR-V SUVs and Honda Civics in China, both equipped with 1.5-liter turbocharged Earth Dreams direct injection engines.

Now, officials of American Honda are monitoring the situation to see if a similar problem is occurring in the U.S.

Rising CR-V Fuel Levels in Low Temperatures

Prior to the Chinese recall, Honda CR-V and Civic owners had lodged numerous complaints about fuel mixing with engine oil, causing oil levels to continually rise and sending fuel odors into the passenger cabins. In addition, customers also complained about illuminated engine warning lights and engine damage. It is interesting to note that the problems were particularly pervasive in northern China, a region that commonly experiences low temperatures.

The automaker claims the problem is caused by a combination of a cold climate and short driving trips. This causes condensation and excess fuel vapors to build up because the engines don’t have time to reach temperatures that customarily burn off the contaminants. The excess fuel builds up and stays in the oil pans where it normally evaporates and recycles through the combustion chambers of the engines.

In any event, Dongfeng Honda proposed a number of fixes, including:

  • Adjusting the timing and speed of the engines
  • Updating the fuel injection timing and gasoline injection control
  • Extending warranties to 6 years

Chinese regulators have rejected the plan, however, and ordered Dongfeng Honda to stop selling new CR-Vs in the country until the automaker does more to address and repair the oil level and gas odor problem.

Honda CR-V Customer Concerns in North America

Meanwhile, CR-V owners in Canada and the U.S. have been reporting similar concerns—engine and oil lights activating, rising oil levels, and damaged engines. In fact, Honda Canada issued a technical service bulletin about the issue in February, informing technicians to report such symptoms and concerns so that the automaker can investigate. According to a spokesperson for American Honda, moreover, complaints from CR-V owners in cold regions correspond with the problems that were discovered in China. However, the company claims that it has not seen similar patterns of failure in the U.S. Nonetheless, CR-V owners in the U.S. have long complained about problems with heating, vibrations, gas odors in cabins, and increasing oil levels.

The Takeaway

While Honda works to determine the root cause of the rising oil level problem, Timothy Abeel & Associates is also monitoring the situation. If you’re Honda CR-V or Honda Civic is experiencing rising oil levels, gas odors, or worse, your engine has failed, you may be entitled to significant compensation. Call our office today for a free consultation.

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