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Discussion Starter #1
My 2009 LX model has a strange issue with the daytime running lights. They "click" on and off, cycling from the running lights to the regular lights at a fairly rapid interval. This happens when I am driving or stopped. At first I thought the "clicking" was from the a/c compressor, but the problem and sound disappears when I just turn on the regular headlights (which stay on as normal).

I have verified that the dealer did not have any aftermarket add ons or security features which could have caused the problem. I couldn't find any threads on this topic in the forum and have talked to the service department at 2 different dealers who have never heard of this either. Just thought I'd check and see if anyone has had a similar issue before it goes to the dealer for an unknown length of time.

I have been thinking about buying an E for 2 years and just brought mine home last week, so I am sad to turn him over to the dealer already!

Cat403
 

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Please fill out your profile, given the age of your vehicle I would consider taking to the dealer and leaving it there untill the problem is resolved.
Chris
 

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I gotta agree w/Chris, time to drop by the dealer and see what's going on. This is covered under warranty, you shouldn't have to deal with it at all.

Sorry I can't be of much more help than that, I don't have a copy of the '09 electrical manual, so I don't have access to the schematics. :-(
 

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This sounds like an easy fix. Both dealers you talked to should have suggested replacing the DRL module under the dash.

Due to limited usage of DRL's in the US by Honda i can understarnd why the dealers would be puzzled.


DRL problems are usually easily solved.

It will normally be a blown bulb. A bad control unit or a relay that needs to be replaced.
 

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Discussion Starter #5
Thanks for the replies--- I will definitely be heading to the dealer and will see what they say about the DRL module/relay or control unit issues. I feel better having some ideas given the relatively recent introduction of the driving lights and not much info in the manual about them.

I did more exploring of the issue with the help of a darkened store window, the light changes do now seem somehow linked to the a/c -- when the a/c is off, the running lights are on, when the a/c is on, the headlights come on, when the a/c compressor cycles, the lights flash back and forth between running lights and headlights -definitely something funky beyond a fuse (and definitely annoying to the people in front of me, who thought I was flashing my lights at them!).

I added information to my profile, sorry about that in2steam

Will update once it is fixed and I am back on the road.
 

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Are the headlights the only items on the vehicle that go awry when the A/C cycles on an off? That is definitely a weird issue for sure.

So much is controlled by multi-plexes now on Hondas it's more and more of a challenge to diagnose issues than ever before. I have to go to Toronto in November for a week for upgrade training and multi-plexes are on my to-do list so it should be fun :rolleyes:.
 

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Discussion Starter #7
Yes, as far as I can tell, the running lights and headlights are the only things affected by the a/c being on, off, or cycling. Very odd. I have an appointment with the dealer tomorrow - I hope someone in the service department has had upgraded multi-plex training!
 

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Yes, as far as I can tell, the running lights and headlights are the only things affected by the a/c being on, off, or cycling. Very odd. I have an appointment with the dealer tomorrow - I hope someone in the service department has had upgraded multi-plex training!
I'm sure whoever looks at it will be familiar with multi-plexes.

It might not be related but there is a clamping diode on the A/C clutch magnet to keep countervoltage from working it's way back through the circuit. If it is not doing it's job properly it might be allowing a small bit of noise into the electrical system. But I'm just making a stab in the dark since I don't have the vehicle in front of me or the schematic for the A/C and headlights.

Be sure to let us know what the problem was in case us techs on the site run into something similar :D.
 

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2009 has separated dedicated headlights & dedicated day-time-running bulbs. 9003/H4 for high/low headlights, but separated 9005 specific only for the day-time-running bulbs.
 

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Discussion Starter #10
The Element is back and fixed! Here is what they found: "PIN #4 on common connector C502 (dash harness) was bent and grounded causing both the a/c curcuit and headlight circuit to operate as one".

Before they found the problem, they called Honda and found no common problems or complaints. They switched out the multiplex and inspected all common coneections for the a/c panel and gauge cluster and found all connections ok. Then they went to the dash harness and found the bent connector. They think that the PIN was probably bent during manufacturing.
So, it looks like this was just a fluke, but in case anyone else runs across this issue, I hope the above info is helpful!
 

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If it was one of my machines at work I would say you have a shorted wire somewhere or a bad snubber as gen x dad suggests. I would hate to have that problem I would get shot at in some the areas I drive in.

Chris
 

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Discussion Starter #12
If it was one of my machines at work I would say you have a shorted wire somewhere or a bad snubber as gen x dad suggests. I would hate to have that problem I would get shot at in some the areas I drive in.

Chris
I think my preivous post must have come up at the same time you posted your reply-- you were right, a bent PIN connector was arcing and creating the problem.
And yep, I wanted it fixed before someone got really upset with me.
 

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Yeah I just saw that, I started typing it at around 1:20 but had a phone call.
I am glad its fixed now enjoy your E!

chris
 

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Flickering

This problem just started for me... it doesn't always happen.
When I get to a destination and put the car in park and turn off the headlights, as soon as the runnings lights come back on, they flicker and I hear that clicking noise.
Like I said, it's intermittent and never lasts long.

Can anyone tell me where I should be looking for a problem?
Are the connectors located under the dash?

Thanks
 

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This problem just started for me... it doesn't always happen.
When I get to a destination and put the car in park and turn off the headlights, as soon as the runnings lights come back on, they flicker and I hear that clicking noise.
Like I said, it's intermittent and never lasts long.

Can anyone tell me where I should be looking for a problem?
Are the connectors located under the dash?

Thanks
Withoug hearing the noise, from your description it sounds like it could possibly be your DRL control unit. I know on 2001-2005 Civics it will make a screeching/whining noise. The circuit board in the control unit develops hairline cracks on some of the solders and because of the resistance it causes either the control unit relays or the actual DRL relay to make noise.

Easiest way to find out if it's the DRL control unit is to look under the driver's side dash for a gray box with a blue male connector plug on it:

http://cgi.ebay.ca/Honda-DRL-Relay-...Accessories?hash=item1e59b14cc1#ht_500wt_1182

When your DRL lights are supposed to be on or they're flickering, give the box a good tap or flick with your finger. Most of the time if it's a bad solder the vibration is enough to create a connection again and the lights should either come on or will go out completely then come back on again whenever you flick/tap the box.

Granted, this is not the most technical method to determine the integrity of a DRL control unit but it has worked for me 99.99% of the time (the other 0.01% the solders were completely broken).

P.S. The unit below is commonly yet incorrectly referred to online and in conversation as the DRL relay, however it is a CONTROL UNIT. When ordering at a dealership it might be best to call it by it's proper name to avoid them selling you the wrong item. The actual DRL relay is a small black four- or five-pin relay which is usually paired with a gray four- or five-pin LOW BEAM CUT RELAY on newer vehicles. Colours of the relays can differ slightly but they tend to be either gray or black.
 

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Great info -- thanks man!
I'll let you know...
 
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