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Radio code

I bought a 2002 Honda Accord used and the previous owner did not leave the radio code behind. When I had to disconnect the old battery to put in a new one, the radio went out and I had to have the radio pulled out to get a number behind it to give to the dealer to get the radio code. Is there a way that I could have provided continuous power to the radio while switching out the battery to avoid pulling the radio? The old battery had not quite died yet.

Yes, the machanics use a “memory saver” which is basically a 9v battery on a plug-in to the lighter/power outlet.

Yes what Ken said, but think of this as your low stress chance to get your radio unlock code. Did you look through the manual,I used to write them on the last page of the owners manual.

Yes, most repair shops use a device that plugs into the OBD port under the dash that maintains system power while changing a battery. The radio is only one of many items that may not work properly after losing battery power.

For future reference, the radio unlock code is probably stamped on the underside of the underhood fuse compartment cover.

Thanks - I hadn’t heard of that and my mechanic didn’t do it.

Nope - not in the manual!

I’ll look. The dealer didn’t mention this when I first asked them about the code. They said I would have to pull the radio.

Hard lesson learned. For anyone looking to buy a used Honda (or other cars with such codes), ensure the radio code is provided and verified that it is the correct code. I have mine written down several places.

Some vehicles (Most VW’s, some Toyota’s, not sure what else) code the radio to the car’s computer. In those vehicles, there’s no need to maintain any voltage when you remove the battery.

Makes some maintenance easier, anyway.


Look for a small white sticker on the sides of the glovebox, lots of dealers will leave the code there. Otherwise, most Honda radios do not have to be pulled to get the code. Press the one and six preset buttons at the same time with the radio off, the press the power button(keep the one and six buttons pressed), the serial number will then display on the screen. The dealer can get the code from the serial number.