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Whilst working in the garage the other day and enjoying tunes from the backside of the Odyssey I discovered what many of you already know: the auto-off headlights don’t turn off when the key is turned to ACC (I think someone noted that they don’t turn off if light switch is set to running lights either). With the car pointed away from me on a bright sun shiny day, I didn’t notice the lights were still on. After about the fourth or fifth repeat of “Brothers In Arms” the CD player stopped working. When I got to a stopping point in my work I went over to see what was up.

The car was making a rapid clicking sound, not quite as fast a the tick you’ll get when you try and turn over a low battery, and it was a more, um, complex sort of a sound. When I tried to start the car I was unable to do so. The clock was still working and the radio hadn’t lost its presets, but I shut everything off, waited about an hour, and then tried again. Voila! The battery had come back enough to start it up, so I went for a drive to recharge the battery. Before I pulled out I noticed that the Check Engine Light (CEL) was on, so I stopped, then restarted the car. Still the CEL stayed on. I remembered reading about the CEL in the manual and it’s connection to the gas cap, so I removed and then replaced the gas cap, restarted the car, but still the CEL stayed on. The manual said something about the CEL clearing itself after three “trips” if the gas cap had triggered it, so I stopped and started the car three times. Still on.

A quick call to the dealership and I was told that the ONLY way to clear this was to bring it in, have them pull the codes from the computer, then reset it at their shop. They had never had one clear itself. Unfortunately, it was the weekend, their shop was closed till Monday, and I had to make a trip over the weekend. I gritted my teeth and made my trip. Lo and behold, when I started the car after the third extended period of driving the CEL went off. Yeah! I guess in all the conversations that the bits and pieces of the car carry on with the computer, something got lost or came across wrong when the power got so low. Once full power was restored and everything came across correctly three times, the CEL reset itself ... no trip to the noodle head dealer required.


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  • ’90 4Runner – lacking for a family of 5
  • ’02 GG Odyssey EX-L-RES – my new best friend
TNUCKELS
 
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