I am the original owner of a 2007 Chevrolet Equinox with 40,000 miles and now have a small issue. When I press the open button on the remote-key fob, nothing happens. I must open the door with the key at the driver’s door. When opening the door, the horn sounds until I either put the key in the ignition and turn the key, or, after opening the door, then press the open button on the key fob.

QUESTION: I am the original owner of a 2007 Chevrolet Equinox with 40,000 miles and now have a small issue. When I press the open button on the remote-key fob, nothing happens. I must open the door with the key at the driver’s door. When opening the door, the horn sounds until I either put the key in the ignition and turn the key, or, after opening the door, then press the open button on the key fob. Then the horn stops sounding. If I press the key fob twice (after opening the door with the key) the other doors and rear lift gate can now be opened. Upon exiting the car I can lock the car with the key fob. I would not care, it is only a minor inconvenience, but I leave my house for work some mornings before 6 a.m. and I do not want the horn awakening my neighbors. This just started happening. What is going on? I changed the battery. Same issue with both of my remotes.


ANSWER: I see a lot of problems such as yours on a variety of vehicles. You need to take the car to a shop that has a factory Tech 2 scan tool. The technician can watch the operation of the key fob to see where the problem lies. It could be a simple reprogramming, unlock solenoid or weak key fob or key fob battery. If you had a second key fob, try it. If you only have one, purchase a second and have it programmed.


 


QUESTION: I own a 2000 Buick LeSabre. For the last several years there has been a hooting sound (as when you blow over the top of an empty bottle) when I press the brakes and come to a slow stop. This occurred with old brakes and again with new ones. It does not affect the efficiency of the brakes in any way. My mechanic says there is nothing wrong. It is driving me crazy and will probably compromise any future sale of the car. Do you have any thoughts on this?


ANSWER: My question is, can you get the noise while you are stopped? If the answer is yes, the most common problem is the vacuum brake booster is at fault. If the noise happens when the car is moving only, the problem is brake pad and/or rotor related.


 


QUESTION: I need your help. I have a 2004 Honda Accord. My problem is the front and back passenger blinker blinks at a very fast rate and the front blinker becomes very dim and is very difficult to see in the sunlight. To try and correct this I have tried the following: I have changed all the blinker bulbs front and back with new ones and I also changed the flasher, to no avail. I would appreciate it if you have any more suggestions on what I can do to correct this problem.


ANSWER: The first suggestion is check the ground connections at the sockets both front and rear. I see a lot of poor ground connections that will cause this problem.


 


QUESTION: I have a 2002 Hyundai Santa Fe. The horn and cruise control stopped working, so I had the spiral cable in the steering wheel changed. That fixed that, but then the air bag light is on and the mechanic said only the dealer can fix it. If this is true, can you tell me?


ANSWER: The spiral cable, or clock spring as it is called, is located under the steering wheel and is the connection for horn, cruise control and all steering wheel controls, radio, etc., when equipped. If the technician did not disconnect the battery when replacing the spiral cable, it will set an air-bag light on. Most inexpensive scan tools do not have the capability to reset air-bag codes. That is why the shop said you need to go to the dealer. At my shop we have over $150,000 in scan tools and yearly updating of $4,000. This is the price we have to pay to service vehicles, and this is for both American and imports. Most smaller shops cannot justify the expensive scan tools, and I do not blame them. The same hold true for buying a $15,000 tire machine or a $12,000 wheel balancer. You will have to find a shop or dealer that can reset the air-bag light in your vehicle. The price should be $90 or less depending on the shop. The original repair shop should pay 50 percent if it is just a simple resetting of the code. If the code is related to their repair they should be responsible for the total additional repair.


 


Junior Damato writes weekly about cars. You can send questions to him care of the Old Colony Memorial, 182 Standish Ave., Plymouth, MA 02360.