Cruise control can be an extremely convenient feature when driving on long stretches of open highway. However, when your Honda Accord cruise control stops working properly, it can be frustrating and even dangerous. In this comprehensive guide, we’ll explore the common causes of Honda Accord cruise control not working and how to get your system functioning properly again.
Overview Of Cruise Control System
Before diving into the specific issues that can cause problems, let’s do a quick overview of how cruise control systems work in most modern vehicles including the Honda Accord.
The cruise control system utilizes a series of components to maintain the vehicle’s speed once set. These include:
- Cruise control module – The computer brain that processes data from sensors and executes commands.
- Speed sensor – Monitors the vehicle’s speed and relays info to cruise module.
- Brake pedal switch – Disengages cruise when brake is pressed.
- Throttle actuator – Automatically adjusts the throttle position as needed.
- Associated fuses & wiring
When these components are operating properly, you can set your desired cruising speed, take your foot off the gas pedal, and the system will take over managing the throttle position to maintain that speed.
However, if there is an issue with any part of the system, the cruise control can stop working or fail to engage at all.
Common Reasons For Honda Accord Cruise Control Not Working
Now that we understand the basics of how cruise control works, let’s go over some of the most common issues that can cause problems:
- Failed Or Faulty Cruise Control Module
- Problems With Speed Sensor
- Issues With Throttle Actuator
- Brake Pedal Switch Problems
- Blown Cruise Control Fuse
- Loose Electrical Connections
Failed Or Faulty Cruise Control Module
The cruise control module is essentially the brain of the system, processing data and coordinating throttle adjustments to maintain speed. A faulty module may prevent cruise from engaging or cause it to stop maintaining speed properly. On older Accords, a failed module may not produce any warning signs before completely stopping operation.
Replacing the cruise control module is typically required to resolve an issue with a failed unit.
Problems With Speed Sensor
The vehicle speed sensor allows the cruise control module to monitor the vehicle’s speed. If this sensor fails or has any problems, it can disrupt this vital data stream to the computer. This can cause issues like:
- Cruise control not engaging
- Cruise disengaging randomly
- Speedometer reading incorrectly
Sensor replacement or repair is needed if the speed sensor is faulty.
Issues With Throttle Actuator
The throttle actuator is responsible for electronically adjusting the throttle position to speed up or slow down as needed. Any issues with the actuator can manifest as:
- Cruise not maintaining set speed
- Cruise disengaging unexpectedly
- Delayed or jerky throttle adjustments
Fixing throttle actuator issues may require anything from cleaning to replacement.
Brake Pedal Switch Problems
The brake pedal switch disengages cruise control when the brake pedal is pressed. If this switch malfunctions, the cruise may think the brakes are pressed even when they aren’t, preventing operation.
Switch replacement is the solution for brake pedal switch problems.
Blown Cruise Control Fuse
Like many electrical systems in your car, the cruise control has a dedicated fuse in the fuse box. An electrical short can cause this fuse to blow and disable cruise operation.
Replacing the blown fuse with an intact one of the same amperage will restore function if this is the only issue.
Loose Electrical Connections
Faulty wiring or loose connector pins in the electrical system can also interrupt the communication between components, potentially causing cruise to stop working.
Inspecting connectors and wiring related to the cruise system and fixing any loose connections is key in this case.
Now that we’ve covered the most common culprits, let’s go over how you can diagnose and fix cruise control problems on your Honda Accord.
Diagnosing Honda Accord Cruise Control Issues
When your Accord’s cruise control is not working correctly, here are some tips for figuring out what’s wrong:
- Try turning the cruise system off and on to reset it – This can sometimes resolve intermittent issues.
- Check for diagnostic trouble codes (DTCs) – Codes pointing to specific components can help identify faults.
- Test the brake pedal switch – Make sure cruise disengages when pressing the brake.
- Verify fuse is intact – Check the cruise control fuse in the fuse box.
- Inspect throttle actuator operation – Key on, engine off, have an assistant press the gas pedal while you look for actuator movement.
- Check electrical connectors – Wiggle wiring harnesses and connectors to check for looseness.
- Monitor cruise engagement on test drive – Attempt to engage cruise at different speeds to pinpoint any problems.
Going through basic troubleshooting steps like these can help narrow down the cause of your Honda Accord cruise control not working problem.
Fixing And Replacing Faulty Components
Once you’ve diagnosed the specific issue causing your Honda Accord cruise control not working, you can move on to fixing or replacing the faulty components.
Cruise Control Module
If you’ve determined the cruise control module is defective, it will need to be replaced. Be sure to use a new OEM Honda part to ensure proper fitment and functionality. Carefully remove the old module and install the new one as directed in your vehicle repair manual. Reconnect all electrical connectors securely.
For a faulty speed sensor, carefully detach it from the vehicle and replace it with a new Honda OEM sensor. Make sure to properly reconnect the wiring connector to the new sensor. Route the wiring properly to avoid damage.
A problematic throttle actuator may just need cleaning if debris or corrosion is found inside. Use electrical contact cleaner spray and compressed air to thoroughly clean it out. However, if cleaning doesn’t restore function, you’ll need to install a new actuator. Be sure to adjust the cable slack per instructions after replacement to ensure proper actuation.
Brake Pedal Switch
Swapping in a new brake pedal switch is straightforward. Position it for proper pedal travel so cruise disengages as intended when the brake is pressed. Adjust and test it until the spacing is correct.
Simply replace any blown cruise control fuse with a new fuse that has the same amperage rating as the original one in your Accord. Make sure it is securely fitted in the fuse box slot.
Electrical Connectors And Wiring
Carefully inspect wiring harnesses and electrical connectors associated with the cruise control system. Look for damage, loose pins, or corrosion. Repair or replace components as needed to restore solid electrical connections. Use wire splicing techniques and heat shrink tubing for reliable repairs.
Helpful Tips For Honda Accord Cruise Control
Beyond addressing specific issues, here are some good general tips for operating and maintaining your Accord’s cruise control:
- Only use cruise when appropriate based on traffic and road conditions.
- Reset the cruise system periodically by turning off and on even if working normally.
- Keep an eye on your speedometer to verify proper cruise operation.
- Do not exceed maximum recommended cruising speeds.
- Avoid using cruise control in wet, icy, or snowy conditions.
- Service your Accord regularly to help prevent cruise issues.
Following basic usage and maintenance best practices will help minimize problems with your Honda Accord’s cruise control.
When To Call A Mechanic?
While many cruise control problems can be addressed DIY-style, if you don’t feel comfortable digging into the repair yourself, don’t hesitate to call in a professional mechanic. An experienced Honda technician can efficiently diagnose exactly what’s wrong with your system and make the required repairs to get cruise control functioning properly again.
Cruise Control Is An Important Safety Feature
When operating correctly, cruise control allows you to maintain consistent highway speeds without fatigue and adds a level of convenience to long drives. However, when cruise control fails, it can create hazardous situations if abrupt deceleration occurs.
So if you notice your Honda Accord’s cruise control not working properly, make sure to address it promptly before a safety issue arises. Refer to the troubleshooting tips in this article to restore full function or seek professional repair assistance if needed. With some attention and care, your Accord’s cruise system can be up and running smoothly again in no time.