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hazard lights mysteriously turning on


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drp
New User

Feb 13, 2017, 7:26 AM

Post #1 of 9 (199 views)
hazard lights mysteriously turning on Sign In

Hi all,

This is my first post so here's are details of my vehicle:
2002 Mazda Tribute LX
6 cylinder
180,000 miles

The other evening I went out to my vehicle after not driving it for a couple days. The temperature over that period had been in the teens. I hit the 'unlock' button on my key fob several times and I wasn't seeing the lights flash or hearing
the locks unlock. I got to my vehicle and discovered that the doors were unlocked and the battery was dead, no lights, no nothing. The battery age is about 3 years. The next morning I had AAA come and jump the vehicle, I took it down to Auto Zone
and had them test the battery. They said the battery and alternator tested good. I was puzzled as to what may have drained the battery. I thought maybe it was just the cold weather? The vehicle has been fine for the couple days since having it jumped.
Has started fine. Then I ran some errands, parked in a parking deck and, as I always do, while walking away from my vehicle I hit the 'lock button' on my key fob once, then again to hear the car horn beep. When I came back to the vehicle about an hour
later, the hazard lights were flashing and the doors were unlocked, I hit the hazard light button on the dash to turn them off. It struck me then that, perhaps somehow several nights ago when I hit my key fob ( again, I always hit it twice ) to lock the vehicle, somehow that turned on the hazard lights and they remained flashing for the two days that I was away from the vehicle and that was what completely drained the battery? I have had this mysterious 'hazard lights turning on' phenomenon happen on a couple occasions in the past. Only on those occasions I must have returned to the vehicle before the flashing hazards drained the battery. The hazard light button on the dash has been troublesome for a while, and I have to hit it several and sometimes more than several times to get the hazards to come on. Is it possible that hitting the key fob lock button could somehow turn on the hazard lights? I'm stumped.

Thanks.

D


Hammer Time
Ultimate Carjunky / Moderator
Hammer Time profile image

Feb 13, 2017, 8:51 AM

Post #2 of 9 (192 views)
Re: hazard lights mysteriously turning on Sign In

The question is............ is it the hazard switch that is activating these lights or is it an alarm triggering.

My gut would be that this is an alarm being triggered after it's parked.



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

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.



drp
New User

Feb 13, 2017, 9:15 AM

Post #3 of 9 (185 views)
Re: hazard lights mysteriously turning on Sign In


In Reply To
The question is............ is it the hazard switch that is activating these lights or is it an alarm triggering.

My gut would be that this is an alarm being triggered after it's parked.


Hi Hammer Time,

Thanks for the input. I'm not sure what kind of alarm mechanisms are on this vehicle? Will the hazard lights come on if someone is trying to force their way into the vehicle, or if the vehicle gets bumped too hard when it's locked? I know that I see a flashing red light in the dash area behind the steering wheel when I lock it but don't know what that is exactly. I always assumed it was some type of alarm mechanism.


Hammer Time
Ultimate Carjunky / Moderator
Hammer Time profile image

Feb 13, 2017, 9:24 AM

Post #4 of 9 (179 views)
Re: hazard lights mysteriously turning on Sign In

It's hard to say what that car is equipped with. You could have an aftermarket system and they are nearly always tied into the flashers.



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

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.



Discretesignals
Ultimate Carjunky / Moderator
Discretesignals profile image

Feb 13, 2017, 9:53 AM

Post #5 of 9 (167 views)
Re: hazard lights mysteriously turning on Sign In

I agree that it is probably an aftermarket alarm system. The factory system is PATs and keyless entry. Don't think they had content security on those.





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


drp
New User

Feb 13, 2017, 9:57 AM

Post #6 of 9 (162 views)
Re: hazard lights mysteriously turning on Sign In


In Reply To
I agree that it is probably an aftermarket alarm system. The factory system is PATs and keyless entry. Don't think they had content security on those.


Hi Discretesignals,

Thanks for the input. Upon doing some research on the web regarding anti-theft systems in Mazda, I saw someone post that the little red flashing car on the dash that comes on after you lock your car is a 'fake anti-theft' visual to deter thiefs. Does this sound right?


Discretesignals
Ultimate Carjunky / Moderator
Discretesignals profile image

Feb 13, 2017, 5:11 PM

Post #7 of 9 (140 views)
Re: hazard lights mysteriously turning on Sign In

That is the theft indicator for the PATS system. That little indicator tells you when PATS is active or disabling the engine from starting. The PATS system only immobilizes the engine from starting up if the receiver doesn't detect a PATS ignition key or the correctly programmed PATS key when the ignition is turned on. PATS has nothing to do with flashing the lights or operating the door locks. You probably have an aftermarket alarm system installed that is causing issues.





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


drp
New User

Feb 14, 2017, 6:44 AM

Post #8 of 9 (119 views)
Re: hazard lights mysteriously turning on Sign In


In Reply To
That is the theft indicator for the PATS system. That little indicator tells you when PATS is active or disabling the engine from starting. The PATS system only immobilizes the engine from starting up if the receiver doesn't detect a PATS ignition key or the correctly programmed PATS key when the ignition is turned on. PATS has nothing to do with flashing the lights or operating the door locks. You probably have an aftermarket alarm system installed that is causing issues.


Hi Discretesignals,

Thanks for the input. Is there any way to tell if I have an aftermarket alarm system in my vehicle? The car is down at the shop now. They are replacing the faulty hazard light switch on the dash. Also, although the lock/unlock buttons on my keyfob still work, I've noticed that I need to be very close to the car for them to work. Should I get the battery in the fob replaced?


Hammer Time
Ultimate Carjunky / Moderator
Hammer Time profile image

Feb 14, 2017, 9:58 AM

Post #9 of 9 (111 views)
Re: hazard lights mysteriously turning on Sign In

The controller is usually tied up under the driver's side dash. It's a square box about 4 inches with a lot of wires coming out of 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.







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