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Accord: could replacing ignition switch cause remote entry to fail?

A few days ago my mechanic replaced the ignition switch on my 1998 Accord LX (it had been stalling when I tried to start the car). This fixed the stalling problem. However, when I got the car home and tried to lock the doors with the remote, the remote didn’t work (the little red light lit up but nothing happened). The remote was working fine up until this point. I tried replacing the battery, but no luck.

So I brought the car back to the mechanic, who tried reprogramming the remote. Still no luck. The mechanic says I need to take the car to the dealer to have it fixed. He says that the remote entry has nothing to do with the ignition switch they replaced and that it’s just a coincidence that the remote stopped working when it did. Does that seem plausible? Or could this problem in fact be related to the work the mechanic did on the car?

It’s frustrating to get the car out of the shop and find things broken that were working fine when I brought it in! Should I keep pressuring the mechanic to try to figure out how to fix it?

Thanks for any insights!


I don’t have a wiring schematic to look at. The power to the doors is always on, therefore it should not have to go via the ignition switch. Yet, these cars have complicated wiring set ups so the power door circuit could go through the ignition switch.

I do suspect the repair and the misfunction of the power locks are somehow related. You should check all the fuses. Perhaps in changing out the switch some wires got shorted and took out a fuse. The connectors should make the switch replacement just a matter of unhooking the old switch and connecting the new one with no splicing or wires. While changing the switch shouldn’t cause this problem, somehow it did.

Whoever you take this too should have a full electrical schematic to help track down the problem. Do the power door locks work with the key in the door? Do the power locks work with the button on the interior door panel? If yes, then lack of power to the receiver unit of the remote is the problem.

Offhand, I’m not seeing this as anything other than coincidence but anything is possible. The car is 15 years old so problems can surface anytime.

Your car is under a Recall for the ignition switch and this means that the job, unless done previously under the terms of that Recall, could have been performed free of charge at any Honda dealer.
You might contact Honda’s corporate office and they may reimburse all or part of what you paid to have this done. It’s a roll of the dice but worth a shot.

If the key in ignition chime continues to sound with the door open and the key removed from the ignition then there is a problem with the key in ignition switch and the door lock module won’t allow you to lock the doors. If this is the case return to the shop and demonstrate this.

The power locks work with the key and with the button – the only problem seems to be with the remote. I will check the fuses…

The ignition switch was changed once before when the recall was sent out a few years ago. For some reason, it failed again, so this new repair wasn’t covered.

Since reprogramming the remote involves turning the key to various points in the ignition switch, I wonder if the new switch is somehow defective.

Thanks for your thoughts. I never realized how much I relied on the remote (for getting my dog in and out of the car, loading groceries, etc) until it stopped working. But I also don’t want to keep putting money into an older car like this for small repairs.

I dont know if this info will help but I can tell you that my info is correct…use it as you see fit. On my 98’ HONDA CIVIC…CIVIC>… The Keyless entry “brain” is actually located inside the factory Honda radio. I do not know if they did the same thing on the Accord…but the way Honda does things…it is very possible that they did the same thing.

Wondering IF this Accord also has the Keyless brain inside the radio like the CIVIC does…and if so…what does this tell us? Perhaps that when the ignition sw was changed it cut power to the radio or partial power it…or something…dunno…I’m guessing. Perhaps this caused something to get out of synch in the radio/keyless entry?

IF your factory radio comes with a security “CODE” to use when you change the vehicles battery let say … I would locate this code and then pull one of your leads (Pos or Neg cable) off your car battery for a minute or so…then reconnect…afterwards hopefully your radio will say “CODE” on it …enter the code and then see if you have functionality restored to your keyless entry… IF you do not NEED a security code on your radio…try the battery disconnect trick anywho…It just might help…and it cant hurt anything to try this.



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