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I just had my head gasket replaced on my 05 civic...

Driving city speeds felt fine, but I did notice a little bit of rattling, which I thought was just a new sound she would make due to the engine repair.

I hit the highway, and as soon as I start accellerating I get a Check Engine Light. I get home, and run the codes and it is a P2646 'A' Rocker Arm Actuator System Performance / Stuck Off Bank 1.

What the P2646 code means

P2646 is an OBD-II generic code for the engine control module (ECM) >detecting the 'A' rocker arm actuator control circuit for bank 1 has a >performance problem or is stuck in the off position.

So, this morning I check the Oil and there is NOTHING on the dipstick...I check underneath the car for leaks and find none.

I see on my oil cap it says 5W20...and the receipt from my mechanic says they used 10W30 oil...

Did they use the wrong oil causing this to happen??? Would my dipstick really be running clear after 30 minutes of driving with the wrong oil??? Or did they forget to fill it up at all...

EDIT:He overfilled it!...I guess I was too focused on the dots to realize that the shiny new oil was covering the entire dipstick...Just got it drained and refilled to correct level by my mechanic...all good for now. Thanks for the help guys

  • Sounds like they forgot something. You probably want to get in touch with your shop and tell them what's going on. They will tell you what to do from there. – Pᴀᴜʟsᴛᴇʀ2 May 5 '17 at 14:17
  • Using 10w30 should NOT be causing this. It definitely has something to do with the work they did. As Paulster said, either they forgot something or did something wrong. My very first though would be that the oil pressure switch isn't engaging for higher rpm's, which could be low (or no) oil, damaged sensor, the sensor was not connected or not connected properly, etc., etc. Bottom line is that the shop will need to correct this ASAP. If there was NO oil, it doesn't take long at all for the engine to seize so it seems unlikely but not impossible, depending on how long you drove it. – Mustangguy809 May 5 '17 at 17:11
  • I missed the driving for 30 min part. Your engine should be seized by then if there were no oil, in my opinion. You're sure you didn't see oil on the dipstick? Very clear oil? – Mustangguy809 May 5 '17 at 17:19
  • He overfilled it!...I guess I was too focused on the dots to realize that the shiny new oil was covering the entire dipstick...Just got it drained and refilled to correct level by my mechanic...all good for now. Thanks – Prodnegel May 5 '17 at 19:10
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    Awesome! Hope all is well from here on out. – Mustangguy809 May 5 '17 at 19:46
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A straight answer to

Did they use the wrong oil causing this to happen???

No. The wrong oil wouldn't, at leas not 10W30 instead of 5W20 would make no noticeable difference in 30 minutes. Maybe over weeks months or years you'd see a problem, but not 30 minutes. Refer to this FAQ from Vavoline and this of understanding oil.

Now for your problem. Does your receipt say how much oil they replaced? If they put too little oil (or none) that can cause a problem with the V-Tec solenoid. But this won't cause you to loose oil. So the question is: "If the shop replaced sufficient oil, where did it go?"

It is possible that the shop didn't put the right amount of oil or didn't put any and just fudged the job.

I'd say to add oil and see how much you need to get it back in range. Run it for a bit and see what happens. If your oil disappears again then you've got other problems. If not, then the shop probably messed up.

  • I just added a Quart, (Honda book says 3.7 Quart capacity), and am not noticing a change on the dipstick...am I blind and not notcing the new oil on the dip stick? I put it in once, wipe off, put it back in, and take it out and immediately turn sideways...still not seeing much – Prodnegel May 5 '17 at 16:45
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    @Prodnegel add another quart. Watch for leaks anywhere. The range on your dipstick will often be 1-1.75 quarts. So if the shop put no oil, then you need to add up to 3 quarts before you have cause for concern if it doesn't read. – kyle_engineer May 5 '17 at 16:51
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    @Prodnegel Perfect! Keeps us posted. – kyle_engineer May 5 '17 at 19:14
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    @kyle_engineer - Yes, my initial thought was that same oil pressure switch you're talking about. Too much oil pressure can cause this switch to act funny the same way that not enough pressure could, can't it? – Mustangguy809 May 5 '17 at 19:44
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    @Mustangguy809 It can, it's hit or miss, it's best to use the correct weight oil on any VVT system. Just to nitpick it's the VTC (Variable Timing Control) solenoid and not the V-Tec solenoid. – Ben May 5 '17 at 20:35

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