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2012 - Power steering & TCS lights on after replacing wheel mounted radio controls

First off, thanks for having me! I just bought my first CR-V 3 weeks ago, a 2012 EX-L and love it! I had no idea such a strong community existed for it, this has been a great resource so far.

Tonight I replaced the steering wheel radio control, the one mounted on the left side of the wheel. To do so, I disconnected the battery, removed the airbag, and removed the steering wheel. I now have everything back together and all controls still work: radio and phone(left side), cruise control (right side), and horn. Unfortunately, the power steering light and TCS light are now on. TCS is on constantly, and the power steering light turns on about 30 seconds after starting the car.

I found a thread suggesting low voltage/poor battery connection could cause this so I have confirmed my battery cables are fastened tightly.

I clearly screwed something up, but what? It seems odd to me that either of these would be impacted by removing the steering wheel. Thank you in advance for any advice you can offer!
 

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I hate it when weird things like that happen to an otherwise straightforward repair! The '12 has electric power steering which uses an electric motor rather than conventional hydraulic steering assist. Obviously it isn't happy and I suspect the TCS is related likely because it works off some feedback to your steering command. Unfortunately I don't have any experience with EPS, but I would double check the steering reel wiring connections and ensure the reel wasn't damaged in any way if you used a wheel puller. I know that the service manual for my '09 cautions about tapping on the steering wheel or column shaft when removing the wheel to prevent damage, and also cautions against how far the wheel puller bolts extend down potentially damaging the cable reel. Other than double checking the wiring, you might check to see what error codes have been set (I'm looking into getting a code reader for these kind of things that go awry). Does the power steering still work and can you drive the car?
 

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I appreciate the insight. Didn't realize the steering was an electric rather than hydraulic system. Then it makes more sense that I may have Yes, power steering works flawlessly. At least it did for the 1/2 mile test drive I took it on last night.

Being a newbie, when I pulled the wheel I wasn't expecting a ribbon cable coil, and the half that connects to the wheel fell out an unwound. I properly rewound it, position it with it being half way between right and left, and reinstalled the wheel. I examined the ribbon cable when I reinstalled it and it appeared flawless.

I'll pull the wheel again tonight to double check all my connections. Again, just seems odd that if all the electronics on the wheel work that I would have damaged the ribbon cable, but anything is possible.
 

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One other thought: When I first turned on the car after reinstalling the wheel, my controls didn't work. I double checked my work and found I forgot to plug int the main center white plug. I then plugged it in and everything worked. Is it possible that because of that I caused a code to be generated that won't clear?
 

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If you have any necessary codes that may be needed (radio, etc) after disconnecting the battery, disconnect the battery and short the two battery cables together for around 30 sec (cables OFF the battery posts, of course) to do a 'hard' reset and see if that helps. If you do that, you may also want to do the 'idle learn procedure' (you can easily look that up).
Buffalo4
 

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Tonight I triple checked my work by taking it apart again. All connections are solid, everything still works.

That could well be - I would check for codes and go from there. I believe a lot of auto parts stores will often read your error codes at no cost. Good luck!
I had AutoZone try to get a code for me but no luck, they said they only get a code when the check engine light is on. Apparently I need a better ODB2 unit than what they have. Not that the AutoZone guy knows what he's talking about (they seldom do) but he suggested that the ECM may need to be reprogramed after having electronic parts changed out like I did. He thought if I put the original part back in my lights my go away. Interesting theory.

If you have any necessary codes that may be needed (radio, etc) after disconnecting the battery, disconnect the battery and short the two battery cables together for around 30 sec (cables OFF the battery posts, of course) to do a 'hard' reset and see if that helps. If you do that, you may also want to do the 'idle learn procedure' (you can easily look that up).
Buffalo4
I found the idle learn procedure. A 15 min task and easy to do. Worth a shot. I'll also give the hard reset method you suggest a shot.
 

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Discussion Starter #9
The symptoms you describe suggest checking for a steering sensor DTC.
That is what I was trying to do at AutoZone, their scanner didn't bring back anything. Might have been too basic? I should probably invest in a good ODBII/CAN reader.
 

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That is what I was trying to do at AutoZone, their scanner didn't bring back anything. Might have been too basic? I should probably invest in a good ODBII/CAN reader.
I can't comment on AutoZones scanner because I don't know enough about it. I also try not to let anyone but myself and Honda connect anything to my DLC - I have to many electronic mods from other Honda/Acura models installed and don't want them messed with.

I am curious in regards to how you rewound the cable reel ribbon though.

Did you remove the cable reel or leave it attached to the steering column when you rewound the ribbon?

After you rewound the ribbon, did you reset it by gently turning it clockwise until it stopped then turning it counter clockwise 3 times while making sure the arrow points up?

If you removed the cable reel did you unplug or mess in any way with the sensor below it? This is the steering sensor.

Where the front wheels pointing straight ahead when you originally removed the steering wheel? After you reinstalled the steering wheel does it point straight ahead while driving on a flat, straight surface?
 

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I can't comment on AutoZones scanner because I don't know enough about it. I also try not to let anyone but myself and Honda connect anything to my DLC - I have to many electronic mods from other Honda/Acura models installed and don't want them messed with.

I am curious in regards to how you rewound the cable reel ribbon though.

Did you remove the cable reel or leave it attached to the steering column when you rewound the ribbon?

After you rewound the ribbon, did you reset it by gently turning it clockwise until it stopped then turning it counter clockwise 3 times while making sure the arrow points up?

If you removed the cable reel did you unplug or mess in any way with the sensor below it? This is the steering sensor.

Where the front wheels pointing straight ahead when you originally removed the steering wheel? After you reinstalled the steering wheel does it point straight ahead while driving on a flat, straight surface?
When rewinding the ribbon, I left the cable reel attached to the steering column and slowly rewound it counter clockwise. This put the reel in the "turned all the way left" position when I placed the reel face back on. Then, as you mention, I turned it clockwise until it stopped (it stopped with the arrow at about the 4:00 position). Then turned it 2 & 1/4 spins counter clockwise until the arrow pointed straight up (which is exactly three full clockwise turns coming from the other direction). My wheels were straight when I removed it and the wheel is currently straight when driving on a level road and letting the wheel settle on its own.

I agree on the AutoZone comment, you can't be sure what equipment they are using. My electronics are stock so I wasn't too worried.

If I'm still having problems after the holiday weekend I'll bring it into a dealer. At this point I feel like I'm out of options. Tried the hard reset suggested previously, even let the car sit overnight with the battery disconnected but no change.
 

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To close the loop on this thread:
I brought the car into the dealer and they confirmed I broke the ribbon when I pulled the steering wheel. Apparently not enough to keep the controls from working, but enough to cause the warning lights to turn on.

This ended up being a much more expensive job than planned, but I learned more about the car in the process.
 
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