Have you noticed the FCW system failed message on the cluster and you wonder why the message appeared and how to resolve this problem? Well, if this is the case, then you are in the right place. Because in this article, we are going to share all you need to know when it comes to tackling this problem on your car.
Doing good and thorough research online is the way to go in our opinion. Especially when it comes to certain lights and messages that can pop up. Or, your car’s dashboard symbols and their meanings. Like the FCW system failed warning light for example.
We are saying this because the solution to the problem can be very simple in most cases. Especially in this case when the forward collision light turns on. This is why you should not panic in this situation and get your emotions under control.
Maybe in this situation, there will be no need for expensive repairs. Sometimes the medicine is free and we just are unaware of it. This is why we are here to help you out. First, we are going to learn what is the FCW system and how it works. Then we will cover the meaning behind this message.
Once we clear that out of our way, we will move on to cover the causes and symptoms. As well as the troubleshooting process when it comes to the FCW system failed error message. So, buckle up because it will be a long ride.
Now before we dive into more complex topics like the FCW system failed message, let’s first learn more about the basics when it comes to this system. Since a lot of people are struggling to grasp the basics when it comes to the FCW system. So, let’s further elaborate on them and understand a bit more about what this system is and how it works.
As you probably know, the cars of today are incredibly advanced. And nowadays there are more and more safety features that are popping up. Carmakers are trying to maximize the safety of their products and deliver the best safety score on the market in order to sell more vehicles.
So, now we have many systems. But for this article, we are specifically interested in the FCW, also known as Forward Collision Warning. So, what is this system?
Well, this is a system that is there to alert you if you are nearing a collision with a different vehicle. The car essentially knows when a collision is a possible scenario.
In this case, there will be an alarm that will go off to alert you. And once you get the message or an audible beep, you should apply the brakes.
There are also some other systems that apply the brakes for you. But this isn’t the case with every car, seeing that some automakers offer this as an optional feature, not fitted as standard. So, you have to be aware of this. We can say that this is a really nifty feature that will help you out in some tight situations.
But how does this FCW system works? Let’s elaborate more on that topic before we dive into the problem when you have an FCW system failed message.
How Does FCW System Work
Now let’s learn more about how the FCW system works before we cover the message of FCW system failed. This is often useful for people who are new to these systems and want to learn more about this system in general. So, how does it work?
Well, this system uses a camera, specifically the Honda system, which is applicable to other carmakers, too. Since this is the main system that malfunctions and troubles people.
But there are also other sensors and radars that are closely connected to this system. These sensors, cameras, and radars are constantly monitoring the surroundings of the car while the car is driving.
And the computer is programmed in such a way as to notify you whenever there is a possibility for a collision.
In this case, for example, if you don’t adjust the speed of the car that is in front of you, the message will pop up and the system will also give you an audible alert.
Sometimes it could even vibrate the steering wheel in order to alert you. Overall, a really good system that will come in very handy. Especially for people who drive a lot and get tired. When you have this system, you will make sure that the car alerts you if you come into a situation that is dangerous.
In addition to this, you can set up this system however you like. You can adjust the system to warn you for short, long, or regular distance ranges. But leaving the system in the stock setting is probably the ideal way to go.
But there are also situations when this system malfunctions. And you can get the FCW system failed message. But what does this code mean? Let’s further elaborate in the next chapter.
FCW System Failed Meaning
Now let’s move on to the next topic and learn more about what the FCW system failed means. What is the meaning behind this message?
Well, this is a message that troubles a lot of Honda owners. So, if you got this message, you probably have a Honda and this system has malfunctioned.
So, this problem often appears in the Honda Accord and Honda Odyssey. That’s why if you notice this problem on your Honda, you should know that this is a common malfunction in these cars.
Especially on the 2013 to 2016 model of the Honda Accord. And in most cases, this problem was triggered by certain items which we are going to cover in a bit when we will cover the causes.
The important thing to know is that this malfunction often happens in very hot environments. This system simply does not like 100-degree weather as an owner reported on carcomplaints.com.
So, what is worth noting is that when you get the message, you just don’t know if the system is working or not. Which is a sad thing.
This system can basically save your life on the freeway. That’s why we strongly recommend that you fix the problem. But how serious is this problem when it comes to the proper function of the car? Let’s further elaborate more on that before we cover the causes of the FCW system failed problem.
Is This Problem Serious
So, is this problem with the FCW system failed serious or not? Let’s further elaborate in this chapter and see how serious this issue is.
There are two scenarios that will happen when you come across this problem. The first scenario is probably the worst.
This is the case when the car starts and is running, you get the FCW system failed message and a bunch of other lights on the dashboard. And in this case, the car is very unresponsive and does not react to the driver’s input.
Or a situation where you only get the FCW system failed and everything works well, except for the FCW system on your Honda.
If the first scenario is happening to you, then you should take your car to the shop to get it sorted quickly. And you also shouldn’t drive the car.
When it comes to the second problem and this light appears here and there, you should not be alerted too much. But you should still aim to fix the problem before the issue becomes greater.
Not to mention that this system is really important when it comes to safety. You still want to be safe on the road when you drive the car and have this system constantly on, in order to avoid possible danger.
So, always look forward to fixing this problem and don’t just look away when you see the message FCW system failed. But what could be causing this problem with your car? Well, let’s further elaborate on this topic in the following chapter.
FCW System Failed Causes
Now that we covered more about the problem with the FCW system failed and learned that this is a common thing on Honda vehicles.
We think that now it is time to move on and learn more about the causes of this problem. What could be causing these issues and cause all these headaches to you? Let’s elaborate in the following chapters in detail and see what could be the reason behind this.
1. Software Problem
Now let’s start with the causes of the FCW system failed problem. What could be causing this issue with your car?
The first option is bad software. And this is a common reason because this system greatly depends on software.
And software tends to carry some bugs, there is hardly any software that runs perfectly. So, there could be some bugs that can trigger this code. Especially when the software meets some conditions that cannot evaluate.
This is why if you have a problem like this, we would strongly recommend taking your car to the dealership. Since maybe the only thing that you need is a software update.
That’s why if nothing works, you should try to do an update on the software and maybe this would solve this problem for you. Now let’s move on to the next probable cause for the problem.
2. Dirty Camera
The second most common cause for the FCW system failed problem is a dirty camera. So, why is this the case?
Well, the forward collision system warning system needs to have a camera. This camera is basically the sensor that is recording data and the computer evaluates this data when to trigger the warning alert.
So, we can say that the camera is a crucial aspect of this system and without it, the system will basically malfunction.
But what can happen is that there could be some weather conditions that could prevent the camera from recording correctly.
This includes the situation when there is heavy rain or the camera is covered with snow. And this camera is often located on top of the windshield.
So, you have to make sure that the windshield is really clean (and figure out how to clean car windows) unless you want to deal with these error messages. Especially in winter. Always clean the snow in front of this camera in order to have this system operational and in perfect working order.
Now let’s move on to the next cause for the FCW system failed problem.
3. Hot Weather
The next probable cause for the FCW system failed problem is hot weather. That’s right, this is one of the most common reasons for the problem in Honda vehicles.
More specifically, this problem is reported on Honda vehicles on carcomplaints.com. People complained that the system malfunctions in very hot weather.
These malfunctions appear mostly on models built between 2013 and 2016. The Odyssey and the Accord are the most affected.
For more insight into the latter, do check out our list of what years of the Honda Odyssey to avoid, and the best year for the Honda Odyssey. Not to mention, our detailed look at the Honda Accord model years to avoid, the most common Honda Accord problems, in addition to the best Honda Accord model year.
These cameras simply do not like 100-degree weather. So, if this system malfunctions during the summer, you should know that this is often caused by extremely hot weather.
The solution for this problem is to visit your dealership and see if there is a fix for the problem since these are the models most affected by this.
Now let’s move on to the next cause for the FCW system failed problem.
4. Bad Camera Fuse
The next cause for the FCW system failed is often a bad camera fuse. So, what is a camera fuse on your Honda?
Well, every electrical component in your car has a fuse. This fuse is located in the fuse box that is often found somewhere near the steering column.
Fuses are essential because they are the last resort when it comes to electrical malfunctions. For example, if there is a short in the electrical circuit for a certain component, the fuse will pop.
If you don’t have a fuse, the wires will start to heat up and melt, causing a fire in the process. This is why fuses are so essential when it comes to safety. You just don’t want your car to burn to the ground. Also, this could be really dangerous for you and your health as well.
This is why in this case, we would strongly recommend that you check the fusebox and make sure that all of the fuses are good. If the fuse for the camera is bad, just replace it, and also check the wiring to make sure that nothing has shorted out.
5. ABS Solenoid Valve Malfunction
The next probable cause for this problem with the FCW system failed is the ABS solenoid valve. And this is a fairly common problem on Honda vehicles.
The ABS solenoid valve somehow interacts with this forward safety warning system. And this means that whenever it fails, it will cause the car to show the message FCW system malfunctioned.
In the video, you can see how there are a lot of different lights on the car and the FCW system failed. And the mechanic sorts out the problem by replacing the ABS solenoid valve.
So, if you notice something like this and you have a ton of other lights on the cluster, there could be something more than a bad fuse or a dirty camera.
6. Physical Damage
Next on our list of causes for the FCW system failed is the physical damage. So, what is physical damage?
Well, let’s say that you crashed your car. The bumper is damaged or the windshield is cracked. This will prevent the sensors for this system to work properly. And if this happens, you will get an error code like this.
This is why we would strongly recommend that you make sure that all of the sensors and the camera are clean, connected, and in their place.
7. Bad PCM
And the last cause for this problem with the FCW system failed message is the bad PCM. This is otherwise known as the powertrain control module. Sometimes the computer can also malfunction and trigger strange codes, such as the U0100 error code.
This should not surprise you. And if you checked everything and made sure that everything works well, this should be the last thing to check. If so, you might then have to consider the cost of reprogramming the PCM.
FCW System Failed Symptoms
Now let’s cover some of the symptoms of the FCW system failed. What are the symptoms that will be present whenever this problem is occurring?
Well, the biggest symptom will probably be the inability of the car to use the forward collision warning system. There will be no alerts for the driver whenever they come dangerously close to a car on the road.
Also, if the problem is caused by a bad ABS control valve solenoid, there will be multiple lights on the dash, including the ABS light. If you need to learn more, check out our explainer on the meaning of the ABS light, and why is my ABS light turned on. And in most cases, the car will not react to the throttle input that the driver gives.
If you want to learn more about other Honda warning lights, do check out our explainers on the Honda Accord wrench light, the ‘main cruise’ message on a Honda, as well as the ‘check fuel cap’ alert on a Honda Accord, among others.
Troubleshooting The FCW System
Now let’s take a look at how you can troubleshoot the problem with the FCW system failed. What can you do in this case to tackle the problem?
The first thing you should check the condition of the camera and see if there is dirt and debris in front of the camera. If there is debris, give it a good cleaning.
Or if you live in an extremely hot environment, this light can be triggered by the hot weather as we noted previously in the article.
If everything is good with the camera and the camera was not exposed to hot weather, your best bet would be to visit the dealership. Maybe the only thing your car need is a software update to fix the issue.
Another scenario is when you have a lot of lights on the dash beside the FCW system failed. In this case, this can be triggered by the ABS solenoid valve.
So, in this case, proper diagnostics is essential in order to see if this solenoid valve is bad or not. And by this, we mean testing it with a multimeter to see if the solenoid works or not.
How Do I Reset The FCW System
Now that we learned how you can troubleshoot the system and see what you can do to sort out the FCW system failed code, let’s take a look at how to reset the FCW, what can you do in this case?
In this case, your best bet would be to just remove the positive terminal from the battery and let the system drain from power. Then reconnect the terminal and cross your fingers that your problem is gone.
If you have an OBD2 code reader, you can try to delete the codes and remove the lights this way. OBD2 codes are fairly cheap and affordable tools that will save you from a lot of headaches.
FCW System Failed: In Conclusion…
In this article, we covered quite a bit when it comes to the problem with the forward collision warning system on your Honda.
First, we covered what this system is and how it works. Then we learned more about the causes that can be behind the FCW system failed problem, as well as the symptoms that are often common when this message appears. Lastly, we learn some ways of troubleshooting the system and how to reset the computer in the car.
Frequently Asked Questions
Now let’s answer some frequently asked questions.
What Does FCW Mean In A Car
FCW refers to Forward Collision Warning. This is a safety feature that comes as a standard on a lot of new vehicles nowadays. The core of this system is a camera that monitors the traffic ahead and warns you if you come too close to the vehicle in front of you.
What Is FCW On Honda
The FCW system is the Forward Collision Warning system. This is a special system that monitors what is happening in front of you while you drive and warns you if you come too close to the cars in front of you. In other words, it helps you avoid ending up in an accident.
What Does Forward Collision Warning Do
This is a safety system that has a prime focus on giving you a warning that you have a car in front of you. So, if you drive really close to a car, the system will warn you to keep your distance. A very useful system that often helps drivers avoid accidents.
How To Fix FCW System Failed
You can try to inspect the camera and see if there is any dirt or debris on it. If there is dirt, clean the camera. Also, this problem can be caused by big heat. So, if the car heats up a lot, it can trigger this warning. And if there are other lights like the ABS and traction control along the FCW warning, this could be because of a bad ABS solenoid valve.
What Is Pre Collision Assist
This is a safety system that monitors the road in front of you and observes pedestrians and other obstacles. It first warns you and if you don’t react, it applies the brakes automatically.
What Cars Have Automatic Braking Systems
Many cars have automatic braking systems. You need to learn more about the specific model you are interested in and learn if this option is available. But generally speaking, in most newer cars this system comes as a standard or can be optioned out.