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rizwan602

join:2004-03-20
Gilbert, AZ

KAM (Keep Alive Memory) reset

Hello,

I am looking to purchase a used vehicle. I am afraid that its possible to get rid of the "check engine" light by performing a KAM (keep alive memory) reset. I think one way to do that is to disconnect the battery for half hour and turn on the head lights so that there is a load on the system that will drain any remaining current in the system.

So how can I buy a used vehicle from a private party and know for sure that the KAM has not been reset?

I believe the KAM reset will turn off the check engine light until after so many miles of driving and/or so many start/shut off engine cycles.

Thanks for any information you can provide.

Rizwan



CylonRed
Premium,MVM
join:2000-07-06
Bloom County

The best way to protect yourself with a used car buy - get a prepurchase inspection.



neonhomer
KK4BFN
Premium
join:2004-01-27
Edgewater, FL
reply to rizwan602

Most good scan tools, like a Snap-On or OTC, will be able to tell you how many key cycles have passed since the last reset.

So if you look and see only a few key cycles, then it's a bet the memory has been reset.


Beezel

join:2008-12-15
Las Vegas, NV

Try to take it to a trusted mechanic for a inspection. That is your best bet if you don't have the tools or knowledge to do it your self.


slyphoxj

join:2002-06-23
Brook Park, OH
Reviews:
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1 edit
reply to rizwan602

You can get a cheap (around $20) OBDII scan tool from Amazon that you can plug into the OBDII port under the dash (usually on the driver's side) that will tell you the status of all the OBDII I/M Readiness Monitors that the particular vehicle you're looking at supports. If any of these I/M Readiness Monitors show up as being "Not Ready" on the scan tool, then that's a tipoff that someone reset the Check Engine light (either by disconnecting the battery or using a scan tool to do the deed).

I just went through this today after replacing the Flex Fuel module on my mom's 2005 Ford Taurus to fix the gas gauge (the Check Engine light was also on). I used the scan tool I referenced above to clear the Check Engine light after replacing the Flex Fuel module. I drove the car around for a while until all but the EVAP I/M readiness monitor went to Ready. I was even able to get it to pass the Ohio E-Check today with that one readiness monitor still in Not Ready status (here in Ohio they now have self-service kiosks that you can go up to and plug their monitor into your car's OBDII port and get your E-Check certificate).

EDIT: I got to thinking... there's also the possibility that the seller of the vehicle in question could have reset the Check Engine light and did a drive cycle to get all of the I/M Readiness indicators to go to Ready status, and you test drive the vehicle during a small window between when all of the I/M readiness indicators show Ready and the Check Engine light comes back on. Or maybe the Check Engine Light would come back on before all of the readiness indicators show Ready if the problem that caused the CEL to light still hasn't been fixed?



Doctor Olds
I Need A Remedy For What's Ailing Me.
Premium,VIP
join:2001-04-19
1970 442 W30
kudos:18

said by slyphoxj:

there's also the possibility that the seller of the vehicle in question could have reset the Check Engine light and did a drive cycle to get all of the I/M Readiness indicators to go to Ready status, and you test drive the vehicle during a small window between when all of the I/M readiness indicators show Ready and the Check Engine light comes back on. Or maybe the Check Engine Light would come back on before all of the readiness indicators show Ready if the problem that caused the CEL to light still hasn't been fixed?

Depends on whether it is a hard fault or an intermittent fault, as a hard fault is going to relight the CEL the next start/run before you can even drive away.
--
What’s the point of owning a supercar if you can’t scare yourself stupid from time to time?