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2002 Chevy Malibu - Dashboard Lights only show when Raining!?


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P€ARL
Novice

Sep 28, 2016, 12:01 PM

Post #1 of 12 (769 views)
2002 Chevy Malibu - Dashboard Lights only show when Raining!? Sign In

I have a 2002 Chevy Malibu and I've recently began experiencing issues with my dashboard lights and only when it is raining. When it is raining the (!) and (P) lights come on and they stay on during the duration of driving and go away when car is turned off. Again this only happens when it's raining and there are no problems with my brakes.

This happened twice in the last month. I've never had this problem before. One month ago I took my car to Midas for an oil change and tire rotation. The mechanic had told me that I need to have my 2 front tie rods replaced and a wheel alignment. I brought my car back the next week and they did the work. A few days after this when I was driving in the rain the (!) and (P) lights came on and went away when I turned car off and didn't come back until 2 days ago when I was driving in the rain and it happened again. I went back to Midas and they were more focused on explaining to me how it's not related to the work that they did and that they didn't know what it was because they didn't make the problem... they refused to look at car unless issue is happening but frankly I don't trust them.

(This post was edited by P€ARL on Sep 28, 2016, 12:11 PM)


Tom Greenleaf
Ultimate Carjunky / Moderator
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Sep 28, 2016, 1:48 PM

Post #2 of 12 (760 views)
Re: 2002 Chevy Malibu - Dashboard Lights only show when Raining!? Sign In

Hard to make symbols with a keyboard but the " (!) " should be a parking brake or hydraulic failure!!!! That light should be RED! No joking with that warning - find out first if fluid is full and parking brake is off - really off no dangling cable under the car.


The " (P) " do you just mean parking lights are on? Not sure which symbol that is at the moment. May just look it up in owner's manual.


Could something they did cause this? Hard to say. If a cap left of brake fluid when checked that would splash out fluid and be low?
Sorry they didn't take you seriously if this just after working on car. Not saying anyone did anything just always curious when things just done,


T



P€ARL
Novice

Sep 28, 2016, 2:49 PM

Post #3 of 12 (755 views)
Re: 2002 Chevy Malibu - Dashboard Lights only show when Raining!? Sign In

The lights are red. But they've only come on twice when it was raining. I've driven my car many times since then and the lights don't come on. They said my fluids are fine and I don't have any brake issues.

It's weird because lights only come on when raining and then go off and every other time I drive there's no lights. I didn't have this issue until they played with my car and they refuse to help me or tell me what's wrong. They want to charge me to look at brakes.... but how is it my brakes if the lights only come on when driving in the rain.


(This post was edited by P€ARL on Sep 28, 2016, 2:51 PM)


Tom Greenleaf
Ultimate Carjunky / Moderator
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Sep 28, 2016, 9:51 PM

Post #4 of 12 (739 views)
Re: 2002 Chevy Malibu - Dashboard Lights only show when Raining!? Sign In

Arrg. Only does this in the rain and nothing feels wrong or looks wrong. IDK - would be looking around as wires, electrical anything doesn't love being wet is a reason but still shouldn't.


I'm having a mental block what the RED (P) means right now. These are warnings and shouldn't be ignored as just a fluke because car was worked on not necessarily anyone's fault.


I still wonder about the parking brake - cables thru full operation of it that it's all proper. Myself included do NOT use that every time nor much at all on my own and other do and it is suggested. If they did just moving your car around, parking it and it hasn't been used in ages could be a reason which would be a rear brake inspection fully and propably have to suggest doing that. Not just a glance with wheels off but full inspection, parking brake and service brake operation, wear, rust anything, dirt and re-lube calipers while there. Should be that costly to really check them out. What I'm talking about is more than just what you see at a glance rather take them apart for a full inspection and a shop would have a claim that's extra work and chargeable time.


Some will for free but expecting if something found you do go ahead and fix it.


In short - don't ignore RED warning lights even if somehow they are coming on errantly they shouldn't,


T



Discretesignals
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Sep 29, 2016, 4:37 AM

Post #5 of 12 (735 views)
Re: 2002 Chevy Malibu - Dashboard Lights only show when Raining!? Sign In

Here are some reason why those indicators are coming on:


Quote
Brake System Indicator
The Body Control Module (BCM) sends a message to the IPC via the Serial Peripheral Interface (SPI) requesting illumination. The IPC illuminates the brake indicator when the following occurs:
^ The BCM detects that the park brake is engaged. If the vehicle speed is greater than 5 km/h (3.1 mph) with the park brake engaged, the BCM sends a class 2 message to the radio in order to activate an audible warning.
^ The BCM detects a low brake fluid condition, signal circuit is low. The BCM also sends a class 2 message to the radio in order to activate an audible warning.
^ The BCM detects a malfunction in the brake fluid level circuit. The BCM also sends a class 2 message to the radio in order to activate an audible warning.
^ The Electronic Brake Control Module (EBCM) detects a malfunction in the braking system. The BCM receives a class 2 message from the EBCM requesting illumination. The BCM also sends a class 2 message to the radio in order to activate an audible warning.
^ The IPC performs the displays test at the start of each ignition cycle as commanded by the BCM. The indicator illuminates for approximately 3 seconds.



You might need to bring it to your mechanic, so basics can be checked out. It may need to have an enhanced scan tool connected to access the BCM to see which input is causing it to light up the indicators. You could also have water intrusion into an electrical portion of the system causing issues. Need to find out which input is causing the BCM to tell the ICM to illuminate those indicators.





Since we volunteer our time and knowledge, we ask for you to please follow up when a problem is resolved.

(This post was edited by Discretesignals on Sep 29, 2016, 4:39 AM)


P€ARL
Novice

Sep 29, 2016, 10:22 AM

Post #6 of 12 (724 views)
Re: 2002 Chevy Malibu - Dashboard Lights only show when Raining!? Sign In

Thank you guys for the replies. I called a few local mechanics and the general consensus is that it's just water/moisture affecting the wiring and circuits. Since I'm not experiencing any issues with my brakes and they say that it's not an issue that needs to checked at the moment unless my brakes start having difficulties.

Also for the late reply about what the lights mean, I had to find my owners manual that was somehow taken out of my car. The manual says that both (!) and (p) lights come on together and mean either low brake fluid or parking brake or brake malfunction. But again I wasn't experiencing any of those issues so I'm leanings towards the rain affecting wiring.


Tom Greenleaf
Ultimate Carjunky / Moderator
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Sep 29, 2016, 11:05 AM

Post #7 of 12 (721 views)
Re: 2002 Chevy Malibu - Dashboard Lights only show when Raining!? Sign In

IDK - I'd want to know for sure this isn't a serious problem! DS mentioned a procedure to get done or do - probably have to get that done.


I'm thinking plain brake cables that don't retract fully usually from lack of use regularly. Does the light(s) always come on if you use the parking brake? It/they should when dry and not doing this just from being wet.


These are important warnings and wouldn't ignore it. It's real hard to tell at first a parking brake isn't fully OFF if dragging is why - then real serious problems with stopping could really happen,


T



Hammer Time
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Sep 29, 2016, 11:25 AM

Post #8 of 12 (719 views)
Re: 2002 Chevy Malibu - Dashboard Lights only show when Raining!? Sign In


Quote
Since I'm not experiencing any issues with my brakes and they say that it's not an issue that needs to checked at the moment unless my brakes start having difficulties.


That is the exact response a "mechanic" will give you when he has no clue how to diagnose the problem and doesn't want to admit it.



~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~

We offer help in answering questions, clarifying things or giving advice but we are not a substitute for an on-site inspection by a professional.



P€ARL
Novice

Sep 30, 2016, 6:43 AM

Post #9 of 12 (706 views)
Re: 2002 Chevy Malibu - Dashboard Lights only show when Raining!? Sign In

Yesterday it was raining really hard and the mechanic said to drive my car until lights came on then bring it in and he will scan computer. I drove around for 30 mins and surprisingly the (!)(p) lights didn't come on? Which they did before. So the mechanic said there wasn't anything he could if the car wasn't having the issue and tried saying sometimes cars have computer glitches....??? I don't know anymore. My brakes worked fine too. I guess I'll have to wait to drive it in the rain again and see if it happens.

Thank you for all the advice and information.


Hammer Time
Ultimate Carjunky / Moderator
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Sep 30, 2016, 6:59 AM

Post #10 of 12 (702 views)
Re: 2002 Chevy Malibu - Dashboard Lights only show when Raining!? Sign In

That is only partially correct.

I agree he cannot troubleshoot the problem when it is not present but as far as codes are concerned, the modules have retained memory and the codes will be stored there if there are any.

Computers don't really have glitches unless they are defective. It is problems that they are reporting that could only show up once and a while.



~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~

We offer help in answering questions, clarifying things or giving advice but we are not a substitute for an on-site inspection by a professional.



P€ARL
Novice

Sep 30, 2016, 9:53 AM

Post #11 of 12 (699 views)
Re: 2002 Chevy Malibu - Dashboard Lights only show when Raining!? Sign In

Interesting. 2 mechanics told me they will only scan computer if problem is happening and otherwise won't be able to tell and another 2 want to charge me over $120 for something that is unclear to me... they said something on the lines of that they would do a thorough wire inspection but didn't say anything about the cars computer. It's hard to know what to do or think when I get different advice and solutions from every mechanic I talk to... no one seems to agree on what I should do and just want to charge me all this money to do checks on all these different things to figure it out! Sorry I'm just really frustrated. I don't know what to do or trust anymore and I don't have all this money to spend on all these inspections I keep getting old to do. I just spent $600 on tie rods, wheel alignment, and oil change.


Hammer Time
Ultimate Carjunky / Moderator
Hammer Time profile image

Sep 30, 2016, 10:06 AM

Post #12 of 12 (697 views)
Re: 2002 Chevy Malibu - Dashboard Lights only show when Raining!? Sign In

I don't disagree that you should let it go until it gets worse. I was just clarifying incorrect statements they made. Both the PCM, BCM and Dash cluster have the ability to store codes but they alone may not be enough to get to the bottom of the problem.



~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~

We offer help in answering questions, clarifying things or giving advice but we are not a substitute for an on-site inspection by a professional.







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