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Old 01-06-2008, 04:32 AM   #1 (permalink)
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How I fixed my VTM4 light once and for all

I have a 2003 with a VTM4 light that comes on every so often. When this happens it turns into a FWD, and the torque-steer is incredibly dangerous when you least expect it. It was in 3 times for this problem and Acura could not fix it. Finally it went out of warranty and they wanted to charge me $900 for a new controller box.

The problem was not caused my the infamous EGR valve. There are about 20 things that will trigger the VTM light, and because it is a low voltage system it is prone to errors caused by lazy sensors/connectors. The problem turned out to be a crappy plug/connection at the controller box. Here's how to fix it:

1. Unbolt front of third-row passenger seat. Pop the plastic covers and take out the 2 14mm bolts.

2. Fold seat back

3. Pop off small door on side wall. There's your box.

4. Pop off both wires/plugs, and unbolt box with 4 12mm bolts.

5. CAREFULLY bend each pin on the box connector about 1mm. You have to figure out how the pins in the plug "handshake" the pins in the box, and basically bend one side to make a firmer "grip". This is where the system is losing voltage and throwing errors. Once you bend all 30 pins or so, try to get the cables back on - if it doesn't go on you bent too much!

6. put it all back together and enjoy the car the way it should have been in the first place.
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Old 01-31-2009, 10:19 PM   #2 (permalink)
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Re: How I fixed my VTM4 light once and for all

Quote:
Originally posted by drader
I have a 2003 with a VTM4 light that comes on every so often. When this happens it turns into a FWD, and the torque-steer is incredibly dangerous when you least expect it. It was in 3 times for this problem and Acura could not fix it. Finally it went out of warranty and they wanted to charge me $900 for a new controller box.

The problem was not caused my the infamous EGR valve. There are about 20 things that will trigger the VTM light, and because it is a low voltage system it is prone to errors caused by lazy sensors/connectors. The problem turned out to be a crappy plug/connection at the controller box. Here's how to fix it:

1. Unbolt front of third-row passenger seat. Pop the plastic covers and take out the 2 14mm bolts.

2. Fold seat back

3. Pop off small door on side wall. There's your box.

4. Pop off both wires/plugs, and unbolt box with 4 12mm bolts.

5. CAREFULLY bend each pin on the box connector about 1mm. You have to figure out how the pins in the plug "handshake" the pins in the box, and basically bend one side to make a firmer "grip". This is where the system is losing voltage and throwing errors. Once you bend all 30 pins or so, try to get the cables back on - if it doesn't go on you bent too much!

6. put it all back together and enjoy the car the way it should have been in the first place.

Has this worked for you permanently? I am about to do this but I'm scared to death of touching and bending the pins. If one breaks I am out a LOT of cash...
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Old 06-22-2009, 12:39 PM   #3 (permalink)
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Nope, my fix ultimately failed. The code I get now says the box is bad. The problem with the vtm system is there are about 20 different things that can throw the light, and it is a low voltage system, susceptible to dirty contacts. After I bent the pins the light stayed off for 6 months. It tends to be off during winter, and on during summer, but it has never thrown the temp sensor code, or the egr code, or the low fluid code. I am so sick of these computer systems - do like Subaru and make everything mechanical. Based on this problem and how my dealer has handled it and treated me I will never buy another Acura again. The dealer was so nice the last time; vowed to help me solve this once and for all. Then when it came time for me to drop the car off they said "look - if we help you out on price... are you ever going to buy anything else from us? Can we count on your future business?" This was a week after I spent $600 on a starter with them. This was Acura in Sunnyvale, CA, btw. They initially told me they'd get Acura to cut the price in half and pay for labor, but then they wrote it up as $900 for the box, and $300 labor that I'd have to pay if they couldn't find anything wrong with it. Now how they gonna find anything wrong with a computer box with an intermittent problem?

I am now searching for a donor box, and will probably bypass a bunch of the BS sensors. All I want it to do is turn on the diff when it senses slip; all other system bureaucracy can go to hell. Of course the MDX is getting long in the tooth; 90k miles of this problem, and 5 visits to the dealer for it couldn't fix it.
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Old 06-22-2009, 01:26 PM   #4 (permalink)
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yogi fixed his by replacing the vtm4 temp sensor.

What DTC number are you getting?
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Old 06-22-2009, 11:50 PM   #5 (permalink)
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Quote:
Originally posted by midnightMDX
yogi fixed his by replacing the vtm4 temp sensor.

What DTC number are you getting?


Yup, changed my vtm fluid at the same time and the problem has gone away since then. 3 months or so...
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Old 07-21-2010, 01:58 PM   #6 (permalink)
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Hi Guys, i have a stupid question, is it possible to clear VTM light myself?

My problem was the next, the service center remove the tranny for the service and then put it back. VTM light goes on, they said that they dont have a special box to read the code and reset it, i need to do it at Acura/Honda official dealer(o'really?)
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Old 07-21-2010, 04:18 PM   #7 (permalink)
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I dont know if resetting the battery would make it disappear. If the VTM is still on, there is a problem.

Someone posted a link on how to find out the DTC. But you need a service manual to know what part it affects.
VTM-4 DTC Code 43
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Old 07-22-2010, 02:51 AM   #8 (permalink)
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Originally Posted by midnightMDX View Post
I dont know if resetting the battery would make it disappear. If the VTM is still on, there is a problem.

Someone posted a link on how to find out the DTC. But you need a service manual to know what part it affects.
VTM-4 DTC Code 43
resetting the battery wont help, i already done that.

Does VTM light works the same way as Check Engine(as i understood), i mean, if there was a problem and it was resolved do i need to clear error to turn off the light or it should turn off automatically?

Thanks for the link, i will try to read the codes.
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Old 07-22-2010, 03:04 AM   #9 (permalink)
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Yea, when the problem is fixed, it should go away.
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