Another Weird Car Problem

My adventures in diagnosing the BMW made me decide to get another bluetooth OBD plug for the Toyota, and use an Android tablet as an extended dashboard. But I can’t get it to pair. My phone can’t even see it. It can see the one in the BMW next to the car in the driveway, but it can’t see the one that’s two feet away in the 2013 RAV4. The light is on, so it has power, and I turned the ignition on to make sure that it was transmitting, but no dice.

Another weirdness of the car (which may or may not be related) is that one of the keys doesn’t unlock the car electronically, and I’ve never been able to get it to go into programming mode to reset the key, despite following all the incantations of opening and closing doors and turning the ignition on and off that they say to do online.

[Update a few minutes later after a quick search]

Looks like it’s not just me.

[Update a few more minutes later]

Mystery partially solved. I plugged in a stand-alone OBD reader, and there’s no output. Maybe I need to look for a blown fuse?

[Monday-afternoon update]

OK, I pulled the fuse, clearly marked “OBD,” and it’s good. Now what?



I put the fuse back in, and now it works. Go figure.

10 thoughts on “Another Weird Car Problem”

    1. I need to get a tool to pull the fuse. I didn’t switch the O2 sensors, because I broke the wiring on the first one when I pulled it. I have to order a new one, and see if it gives different results.

  1. If the fuse worked after pulling, testing, and replacing, try cleaning the fuse and its socket. If you have some contact cleaner, that could be good to spray on the fuse and the socket.

  2. I put the fuse back in, and now it works. Go figure.

    Who knew that Bimmers ran on Windows?

  3. I put the fuse back in, and now it works. Go figure.

    A trifle of dirt or corrosion on a contact, and the circuit was fixed by the act of removing and replacing the fuse. Possibly a loose wire in the fusebox, jostled back into position.

    (My ’94 Toyota pickup had a loose wire in the box going to the fuel injection pump, which made for some very annoying random loss of engine power, and the shop had to poke at it for an entire weekend to figure out WTAF was going on.

    Admittedly at the time it was something like fifteen years old, with something on the order of 200kmi.)

    ALSO, if the car is more than five or ten years old, it would not be unwise to replace ALL the fuses – they actually age out, and can fail without looking burnt out. It’s good preventative maintenance every decade or so, and fuses are cheap.

    1. Yeah, I figured that I probably scraped off some corrosion in removing and replacing it. Given the location of the box, replacing all the fuses would be a non-trivial exercise; it’s upside down under the driver’s side dash. It killed my back just to do the one, and I needed needle-nose pliers to pull it.

      1. If, after your back heals, you remain inclined to replace the remaining fuses, there are far better tools that needle nose pliers. They are generally available at a good auto parts store, in the aisle next to the flux capacitors.

        Also, what’s the status of your piano-theater connection?

        1. I bought a so-called fuse puller at Autozone yesterday. It was useless. I haven’t done anything with the piano. Nothing obvious in the receiver manual, but I may try to chat with someone at Onkyo about it next week, after our upcoming trip.

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