Keyless Start System Problem [Meaning, Causes & Solution]

Here we’re going to take a look at the keyless start system in the car. This system can stop working prematurely, and this is a known fault, especially in the 2016 – 2017 car models. If you are experiencing problems with your car not starting using the engine start/stop button, this is because you have probably lost the use of your keyless start system.

Upon failure of this system, when you press down on the “ENGINE START/STOP” button to start your engine, nothing will happen, and an error message will pop up telling you that there has been a keyless start system problem. This article will explain the possible causes of a keyless start system problem and how to resolve it.

What Is The Meaning Of The Keyless Start System Problem?

If your car has this problem, it could be because your Key fob battery is dead. And needs a replacement, a malfunctioning start system sensor, or the keyless start system fuse is burned out.

What Are The Causes Of The Keyless Start Problem?

A keyless start system can fail for many reasons. The causes can range from some poor coding practices to inconsiderate end-users performing various tasks in an incorrect order.

1. Faulty Key Fob Battery

The car key fob is a necessary piece in the keyless entry/start system. It needs to have enough power to send signals to your car’s keyless start system to start the engine. Unfortunately, if the battery in the key fob dies, then your car will not be able to receive these signals. Also, if your battery no longer supplies enough voltage for the system to work properly, it will cause the signals to be weak. The ignition sensor will not detect a weak signal, so the engine won’t start. A keyless start system relies on an electronic signal to operate.

2. Malfunctioning System’s Sensor

As you probably already know, your car sensor receives signals from a key fob and instructs the control unit. There are 2 probable reasons for a sensor malfunction. First, some accidents can cause them to malfunction, or they may get buried in dirt and not be able to detect any fob signals.

3. Problems With The Brake

As earlier mentioned, the push-button start system only works after pressing the car’s brake pedal. However, sometimes you may find it hard to apply reasonable force when pressing the button.

4. Software Issues

Does your vehicle’s keyless start system stop working when you try to push the button many times? It may be because of a software glitch. If a software glitch caused the keyless start system problem.

5. The Starter Is Bad

If your push-button starter keeps coming on and off, it’s probably a problem with the starter. To identify whether or not the keyless ignition system is to blame, you can try jump-starting it directly.

If the push button still doesn’t start the engine, there’s a good chance one of the starter’s components is faulty. Many parts inside starters cause them to break down. For example, the ignition switch might stop transferring power effectively when it wears out, causing the starter to have less contact.

6. Faulty Car Battery

Your keyless start system needs sufficient voltage to work. It may not work if the battery powering it is faulty. Fortunately, you can use a voltmeter to check if it’s at a decent enough level by checking your battery’s voltage.

If it’s below 12V, you’ve got a bad battery, and you should have it replaced immediately to make sure that other parts of your engine running on electricity aren’t affected negatively.

7. Faulty Wires

Suppose you experience a keyless start system problem whenever you push the start button, and the engine doesn’t crank. Usually, this occurs because the wires have worn out over time, causing reduced voltage and thus affecting the system.

8. The Keyless Start System Fuse Is Blown

The keyless start system utilizes voltage to function, so it’s fitted with a wire fuse to protect the electronic ignition system. However, any time the electronic ignition system receives excessive voltage, the wire fuse will blow up in order to protect it.

9. Cold Weather

In cold weather, the car may not start. It does this because it needs more voltage for everything to work. This is because cold temperatures slow down chemical reactions in your battery and make it hold less power than normal, since the keyless ignition system requires a certain amount of voltage, you might find that you cannot use it when the weather is cold.

How To Fix The Keyless Start Problem?

Here are some steps to fix the keyless start problem in your car:

Step 1:-

Suppose this issue is mainly occurring in 2016-17 Honda Pilots before taking your vehicles to a mechanic for proper diagnosis and repair.

In that case, it’s important to confirm whether your specific vehicle comes under warranty for keyless start security systems. If your model does fall within a warranty period or extended warranty, you should contact the manufacturer for assistance in fixing the issue.

Step 2:-

When your car is out of warranty, you must troubleshoot errors occurring by yourself or with the help of a mechanic. This can be most commonly caused by a faulty START/STOP switch that needs replacing.

Step 3:-

The replacement procedure is done with a Phillips screwdriver and requires removing the glovebox, starter assembly, and steering column assembly.

Step 4:-

Take off the dashboard cover on the passenger’s side. The dashboard trim panel on the passenger’s dashboard must be removed. Now, unplug the connector after you have taken down the dashboard center panel.

Step 5:-

To access the screws for the middle trim on the dashboard center, pull back the right side of the driver’s lower dashboard cover and remove the humidity and temperature sensors.

Step 6:-

You need to unscrew the screws that hold the dashboard center middle trim, then take it out.

Step 7:-

Remove the ENGINE START/STOP switch assembly from the center middle trim on the dashboard. Remember the harness connectors should be disconnected.

Step 8:-

Now, you need to install a new ENGINE START/STOP switch assembly. All parts that were removed should be reinstalled in a reversed order. Use a diagnostic system to clear all DTCs.

Step 9:-

You need to verify that the engine start/stop switch now works and the error message on the dashboard has completely disappeared.

Therefore, these are some steps through which you can easily fix the keyless start system problem.


1. Can I Make My Car Keyless Start?

Many are finding the push-to-start technology useful for their vehicles because it’s a lot easier to get into your car without dealing with many buttons. But if you don’t have one installed and want one, the good news is, it is possible to do so.

2. How Do You Start a Keyless Car Without a Key?

If your vehicle doesn’t accept the key fob, there’s still a way to start it. If your vehicle doesn’t have a mechanical ignition key slot, you can still use the key fob if its battery is functioning properly. Your car may have a backup system working with the START button. Consult your owner’s manual if you’re unsure what kind of backup system your car has.

3. How Do You Reset a Push to Start Car?

Turn your key to the accessory position (or activate the car’s engine by pushing down the start button without pressing the brake pedal). Next, press the lock button for your remote starter. After turning it on for five seconds, shut down the car or turn off the ignition.

4. What Happens if the Push Start Button Doesn’t Work?

Hold down the Smart Key close to the center console button while pressing the Start button. Keep holding them both for at least 15 seconds before releasing. If this does not work, try changing your smart key battery.


As easy and convenient as keyless start systems may be, sometimes you run into some unexpected problems. Nevertheless, It’s important to understand what might cause the keyless start system problem and how you can solve it to be ready when you’re faced with such a problem.

We hope the above-mentioned information will be helpful to all the readers. If anybody’s doubts persist feel free to comment in the comment section below. We’ll try to solve your doubts as soon as possible.

Leave a Comment