By July 4, 2008 Read More →

Warning Lights Came on All at Once

Dear Mr. Austin Davis,

First of all, thank you very much for having trustmymechanic.com for the public.

Two days ago, while I was driving up to the hills, I had to stop and go in rush hours. I tried not to use the brake and stepped on gas and let go of it. Then, after a few times of stepping on and letting go of gas, I had to use my brake.

I am not sure if it was right after or a few seconds after, but after I stepped on my brake, I noticed that the indicators for battery, engine oil(?), and all doors and trunk in the dashboard were lighted on. I didn’t know what to do. I turned off my radio to figure out what’s going on. Then, I had to move forward.

So many cars were after me, and I had to move. When I let the brake go and hit the gas, it only moved backward. I hit the brake right away, but slight hit the car behind me. I heard people hunking at me so hard, but I couldn’t do anything. I put the emergency lights and stayed there for a few minutes. Then, I decided to turn off the engine and turn it on again. It worked and it’s fine for now.

I am afraid that it might happen again in the future. I am scared of climbing up to the hill now. I took it to Honda service this morning, but they couldn’t do anything about it. In the report, it says that they duplicated the situation but the problem didn’t occur. What an unhelpful test and comment it was, considering even after the event, I faced the same situation a few more times and the problem didn’t occur!

I got my engine oil changed last Wed. (a week ago, but four days ago before the incidence happened), and on that day, I smelled something burning very badly in the front part of my car. Would it be possible that Honda must have touched or damaged some code connecting the battery and starter when they checked my battery or other parts (they do this service along with engine oil change)?

Thank you very much for your answer. I know that it’s a time to get a new car, but at the moment, I can’t afford to anything new.
Sincerely,
Liz L.

 

Hi there Liz,

Thanks for the kind words. This is definitely a strange problem alright. My first thought would be there is an electrical problem, probably with the alternator or a lack of electrical grounding type of issue. I have seen a similar issue with all dash lights and gauges coming on, and it was a bad connection at the alternator that caused it.

Since the problem went away and has not returned…it will be very difficult to diagnose unless the problem happens when the mechanic has some test equipment hooked up to your car.

I would make sure that the Honda dealer checked your “battery load test” and the “alternator output”. At this point though, about all you can really do is continue to drive the vehicle until it happens again, and make note of anything else that you did or the vehicle did leading up to that failure point.

I don’t think going up the hill had anything to do with it, so don’t be afraid to do it again. Maybe there is another hill or incline with less traffic you can try out before heading back up there? Make sure you have a way to contact the tow truck driver DIRECTLY by cell phone just incase this does happen again leaving you stranded after hours.

EVERYONE should have at least one cell phone number to a tow truck driver that can take your car to a safe and secure place after hours. Also, make sure this tow truck company can bill your mechanic so you dont have to carry lots of cash in your car.

Blessings,

Austin Davis

About the Author:

Austin Davis, consumer car repair advocate. "Hi there! I love to help people solve their car repair problems and I hope my site was helpful to you today. Thank you for stopping by."

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