A news blog for Seattle's Phinney Ridge and Greenwood neighborhoods


Thief steals car engine parts

December 4th, 2012 · Comments

Charlie tells us someone stole a bunch of engine parts from his 1994 Honda Accord, sometime between Nov. 19-20.

(T)hey cut out the radiator and fan assembly, and stole the ignition wire set, and wiper blades. In the process of getting the parts they damaged many more components. The car was parked under a street lamp in the 9700 block of Phinney Ave.

We’ve heard of plenty of car prowls in the area, but usually for items inside the car, not car parts. Has anyone else had this happen to them?

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  1. Julia says:

    Yes, someone stole our catalytic converter a few months ago from 7300 block of 9th ave nw

  2. Sasha says:

    Someone stole my car manual from the 9700 block of palatine!

  3. Dae says:

    Someone stole the ECU from the 8800 block of 8th Ave NW.

  4. Kate Martin says:

    My son had the ECM (engine control module), a $700 part, and the battery stolen from his 1994 Honda in August. Within a day – before he could get to the alarm store to get one installed – they stole the ECM again, that time the new one. Since the alarm, the car has not been bothered. Apparently, this problem is widespread.

  5. Block Watcher says:

    This is a bad trend. The have nots are very active on these dark days.

  6. AnonPGWood says:

    I have a 1990s Honda, and have been prowled numerous times, stolen outright (then found in W. Seattle with a punched out ignition), and most recently had the car’s computer stolen (not my personal computer, but the car’s computer). I think this is an ECM or ECU, as mentioned above by others. This is indeed an expensive part to replace–even with a used one! They were very neat about it, careful to put the carpeting back in place to make it look like nothing had been disturbed. When I had my car towed to my mechanic, he told me that I was the second 1990s Honda to come in with the same problem that same day! And he had heard from a different garage that they had a 1990s Honda come in with a stolen computer. Clearly they had been on the prowl one evening in the neighborhood for all 1990s Hondas. My mechanic said that these cars are targeted because parts are in high demand for those who have modified Hondas. I seriously considered getting rid of my car, but my mechanic said that I should be OK as long as I get an alarm. After my car computer was installed, I immediately took it in to get an alarm. I haven’t had any prowls/thefts since then (knock on wood). Also, FYI, I was told by the police (while filing a report) that it’s not unusual to have so many thefts occur during stormy nights, because the noise of rain and wind can cover up any sound of criminal activity, and the likelihood that most people will have their windows closed is added protection for thieves. A couple of years ago, I did have my rear hatch cargo cover stolen, as well as the spare tire cover. Since then, I have been sure to leave absolutely NOTHING in my car (not even in the ashtray), to remove any temptation! After my car was stolen outright, I was using The Club steering wheel lock, but discontinued after getting the alarm, which has an ignition kill switch. I try to be aware of where I park in the neighborhood, and always try to park in well-lit areas, if not in the driveway. But even well-lit areas aren’t a deterrent. Parking in the driveway these days isn’t a guarantee either, as I’ve read too many stories on this website about how cars are prowled or stolen right out of people’s driveways! This is indeed a widespread problem and bad trend. Keep vigilant!

  7. Hombre says:

    “those who have modified Hondas”

    Who on earth could that be?

  8. AnonPGWood says:

    Forgot to mention that my mechanic also said that the common thread amongst all of the 1990s Hondas that came in with stolen car computers were that they did not have alarms. If you have a 1990s Honda and were lucky enough to escape having your car computer stolen thus far, you may want to think seriously about getting an alarm soon!

  9. Greg says:

    We also had the ECM stolen out of our 1990s Honda. It was at 64th and Phinney, in September. The guys at Matt’s said mine was the fourth they had replaced. At least the thieves were nice enough to unplug it, leave the bolts and bracket, replace the carpeting, and lock the door again.

    I slathered some epoxy putty all over the bolts on the new ECM to discourage or slow down the thieves if they try again. I’d also suggest to anyone with a low 90’s Honda to get comprehensive coverage on their insurance. Before we had our first car stolen a few years ago, I thought it was kinda silly to pay for it on a 15-20 year old car, but I got it afterward, and it was really nice to only have to pay the deductible when replacing the ECM.

  10. Alana says:

    I guess I had forgotten to put my alarm on my Jeep one night. Someone popped the hood and tried to take the battery (it looked like anyway) before something (I think my dogs) scared them off. It was parked right next to our house in an Alley.