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I just bought a Civic Si, have some questions.

darken

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Hello, I'm new here and I just got a Civic Si and I have it for about a week now. This is my first manual car, and I'm trying to learn. Since this is my first time driving a manual, I want to ask some questions for reassurance because I'm kinda paranoid. Ever since I took it out of the dealership, my driving isn't smooth (lugging, bucking, shalling, etc.) and I understand that because I'm new and there is a learning curve. Some examples is that I ride the clutch on the first day, tried to downshift several time without rev-matching, and up shifted the car when it's in a higher rpm, which all of these make the car jerk or buck every time (obviously, I find out first hand). After watching/reading more about manual cars and how to drive one, these are things I shouldn't do. It will cause wear on the clutch and the transmission and it's my fault (probably took couple miles out of the clutch). I'm an idiot I should have watch video before buying it but it was an impulse decision on my side when I went to the Honda dealership. I was looking for a new car, and I ended up with an Si after seeing how nice the Si coupe looks. Since there are people on this forum that has more experience, do you guys know how many miles it takes off of a brand new car clutch or trans. I also saw on YouTube and this forum about the break-in period of new Civic Si's. The car is at 180 miles right now and I'm paranoid that I didn't "break-in" the car and being an amateur I'm driving it recklessly without know about this. Will there be any problems with the engine or the power train if I don't break it in properly? After finding out about this and saw video of what you shouldn't do in a manual car, I regret getting the Civic Si now. I feel bad because I'm abusing the car. I should have just got a used or old manual car first before getting something new and learn on it. And there is like a chirping sound in the engine now. I google about it and it landed me on this forum. Apparently it's a problem related to the high pressure fuel pump.



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latole

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Breaking a car ; Drive like a old man / woman for first 1,000 miles
Don't accelerate too fast.
Don't break hard at stop sings.
Don't go over 3,000 rpm.

I drive MT car since long time.
Best is to have 1 hour drive on MT car with a teacher to learn how.
 

VarmintCong

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There's a school of thought that you should break in an engine hard, not going easy on it. So I wouldn't worry about the engine if you haven't overrevved it.

Clutch can take a lot of abuse, are you getting better at it? If so you'll be fine. If you're still driving like this at 10k miles you'll have a problem, otherwise relax and enjoy the car.
 

TANSTAAFL

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Congrats on the car! My first manual (that I owned) was a Mustang GT back in 1985. I had only driven a few hours in a manual, a friend's mother's Toyota wagon and my girlfriend at the time's Honda Accord. But I knew I hated the automatic in my Z28, and the 'Stang had a Hurst shifter that everyone said was great. I sort of faked it 'til I made it, from the test drive to the drive home when the specific car I wanted got to the dealership. It was a bit, um, bumpy for a week, but after that it was smooth sailing.

These Hondas have IMO very good manual transmissions, so you should be fine. As others note, just take it a bit easy, mostly to keep you sane as the engine is probably robust enough for most of what you can throw at it, accept you will make mistakes, and just try to make sure that your mistakes aren't in traffic where they can be dangerous. Take some time on a weekend and go to a big parking lot somewhere, and practice low speed driving, 1-2 shifts, parking, reverse, stuff like that. Get a feel for the spot where the clutch engages.

Oh, and adjust your seat and the wheel properly. Unlike with an automatic, with a manual how and where you sit, and how far from the pedals your feet are, and how easily your right arm falls to the shifter, make a big difference in how the car feels and your confidence level IMO.
 

Maxum

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When I bought my 2020 Si back in October, my son had no idea how to drive a manual transmission, none. I have driven them for 35 years, but I had no idea whether learning on a new car would do any damage to the clutch, so I asked at the dealer and the mechanics...they basically said there was nothing to worry about and said just go learn. My son started from absolutely zero knowledge to becoming a perfect shifter in a week or two and I dont think he will EVER go back to an automatic transmission again as long as he has the choice.

The Si is a little more finicky with the shifting than other manuals I've owened though, its not nearly as forgiving if you change at an incorrect rpm for example. You get used to it though and the clutch does smooth out quite a bit after 7 or 8k miles once broke in. There is a little rev hang when you let.off on the gas, which is causes this i think. Be sure to let off on the gas fully before you press the clutch and it helps this greatly....it just allows mkre time for the rpm to fully drop before you shift.

Don't give up and don't worry about hurting the car while learning.....every sinhle person who drives a manual, had to learn sometime. Besides, you have warranty.
 

Maxum

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Congrats on the car! My first manual (that I owned) was a Mustang GT back in 1985. I had only driven a few hours in a manual, a friend's mother's Toyota wagon and my girlfriend at the time's Honda Accord. But I knew I hated the automatic in my Z28, and the 'Stang had a Hurst shifter that everyone said was great. I sort of faked it 'til I made it, from the test drive to the drive home when the specific car I wanted got to the dealership. It was a bit, um, bumpy for a week, but after that it was smooth sailing.

These Hondas have IMO very good manual transmissions, so you should be fine. As others note, just take it a bit easy, mostly to keep you sane as the engine is probably robust enough for most of what you can throw at it, accept you will make mistakes, and just try to make sure that your mistakes aren't in traffic where they can be dangerous. Take some time on a weekend and go to a big parking lot somewhere, and practice low speed driving, 1-2 shifts, parking, reverse, stuff like that. Get a feel for the spot where the clutch engages.

Oh, and adjust your seat and the wheel properly. Unlike with an automatic, with a manual how and where you sit, and how far from the pedals your feet are, and how easily your right arm falls to the shifter, make a big difference in how the car feels and your confidence level IMO.
All excellent tips. The seat position is something a lot.of people overlook and makes a big difference. I find even if go from driving with a pair of sneakers on to a pair of workboots, just that small difference in shoe height makes a difference. Set your seat and keep it consistent.

Problem comes in if you habe 3 people dribmving the same car and you're always moving the seat! Frustrating.
 

Dyim

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Just try your best to learn to drive it. Don’t sweat it. Be patient, be gentle. Try not to ride the clutch either. Don’t dump the clutch while revving it, watch out for money shift.
We all learn from day one, no one is born an expert.

Not everyone becomes a heel-toe expert while tracking in the rain chasing down a GT3 making a downhill decreasing radius turn.

Worse case scenario, you need to pay for a clutch replacement some time in the future.

GL.
 

MaxPower

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Congrats on the car, OP. I think your clutch/trans will be fine. It's hard to do any serious long-term damage over the course of 180 miles. I mean, unless you're really trying.

It may take you some time to become truly MT-proficient, but until then, there are some simple steps you can take to avoid inflicting damage. Don't ride the clutch. Slip it as little as possible. When shifting, press it all the way to the floor, every time. Be gentle with the stick; don't ram it somewhere it doesn't want to go. These are the things that can cause real damage. While lack of smoothness, jerkiness, or stalling may be unpleasant, they aren't going to wreck your trans in the short term. In time, you'll learn to eliminate all of those issues.

Like you, I purchased my first MT car (2001 Audi A4 1.8tq) before learning how to actually drive it. There were some, uh, rough spots over the first few weeks of ownership, but I figured it out quickly enough. I had a bunch of problems with that car, but none that were transmission/clutch-related.

Lastly: you didn't exacerbate the fuel pump issue via jerky shifting. It just happens sometimes. Take the car in and get it fixed under warranty. Problem solved.
 

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Go to a big empty parking lot and practise taking off from a stop. Accelerate in first then shift into second gear, rev it out then then slow back down until you are at a stop with the clutch peddle depressed. Do this 250 times. This will give you the muscle memory needed to become more comfortable.
 
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Forget about rev matching right now, wait til you have mastered the stick. It is an advanced technique, not a basic driving technique. The key to smooth shifts lies in your feel of the clutch and when to release and how long you take to the release the clutch. This skill will also mitigate rev hang. “Working“the clutch will come naturally in time and all shifts will smooth out.
 

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Go to a big empty parking lot and practise taking off from a stop. Accelerate up into first then shift second gear, then slow back down, trying to rev match down into first gear until you are at a stop with the clutch peddle depressed. Do this 250 times. This will give you the muscle memory needed to become more comfortable.
After this, you may want to repeat the same on a hill (going up, going down...).
 

2020PWPV2

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I've tried launching mine like a dumby on bad concrete so I'm sure it'll be hard to hurt it on accident. Accidentally shifted into 4th instead of 6th for a second thankfully I wasn't reving it out. After a while it will feel natural and you'll stop goofing up.
 

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Just remember that you never get a perfect shift every time, so don't worry about that. I have been driving sticks since before cell phones and usually do OK, but once in awhile..... Hope your car lasts you a long time. My first Honda was a 1986 Civic Si 5 speed hatchback, first Si w/ fuel injection. Loved that little car, got around 193,000 miles out of it.
 
OP
darken

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Hello yall, sorry for the late feedback, but I've been busy lately so I don't have time to sit down and check my computer, but thank you for all the help and replies. I appreciated it. Like you guys all said it takes time and I'm getting better, taking my time, and not rushing anything. LOL after shalling at an intersection for like the 10th time I feel like idgaf anymore about the embarrassment. So I'm taking everything one step at a time and not trying difficult stuff like downshift. Imma take the advice you guys give me and learn to control the clutch smoothly and things will happen and I shouldn't stress too much. I feel less worry now and reading these comments make me excited to drive my car!! Thank you everyone!
 

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