Keyless Entry 1996 Honda Civic

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Hi all,

I have a 1996 Honda Civic EX with factory keyless entry. A few weeks ago, I had a new stereo installed, but since the keyless entry system for Civics of that generation is wired through the radio, the original radio was placed underneath the dashboard and wired to the car by means of a split harness. The idea, for those who are not familiar with this issue on the 1996-1998 EX Civics, is that the new radio is connected to the speakers, while the original remains connected to power and to the doors/dome light only so that it can control the keyless entry.

For about a week, both the new radio and the keyless entry system functioned correctly, but I walked out to my car about a week later to find the dome light blinking strangely and the door locks randomly locking and unlocking. When I got into the car, the door locks would lock as soon as I shut the door, then continue randomly locking and unlocking. The horn would sound as soon as I put the key in. The situation was identical to that described in this thread:, except that once I turned on the engine, the weird behavior quit immediately and was never a problem again, even after the engine was turned off.

However, the keyless entry system now does not function. Power locks still work normally, as does the dome light door sensor, and since the dome light is also connected through the factory radio, the factory radio must still be connected and powered. The new radio also still works normally.

I tried the solution mentioned in the other thread (disconnecting and reconnecting the battery terminal) to no effect. Does anyone have any idea what might be causing this problem, or what I should do to fix it? Thanks for any insight...

posted by  sumitsu

Double check the wiring on the radio or have a shop do it 'cause it sounds like that is the problem.

posted by  srober32

I was hoping that there would be something less time consuming or expensive to try first, but you're probably right...

Anything in particular I should look for? Loose wiring harness, etc?

Anyway, thanks for responding...

posted by  sumitsu

Also... after two attempts of my own, I had a professional shop install the new radio. Given that I can't prove that their work is what caused the problem (though it does seem very likely), should I expect them to be willing to re-inspect the setup of the two radios without charge? Whoever has an opinion, let me know... thanks...

posted by  sumitsu

if you had a cd deck i would put in a stacker.and stick with the original unit.since remote controls are RF units ,the close proximity might be causing interference .CHECK THE GROUNDING especially if there is a whining when you accelerate.BECAUSE IT IS ON THE FLOOR AKE SURE A WIRE DID NOT GET KNOCKED LOOSE.

posted by  the lobster

My honda civic's dome light is doing the same thing. It seems to happen when we haven't driven it for a week or so. Just while I was reading your situation the car horn beeped as my husband put the key in. This was a new behavior. I hope someone knows what is going on.

posted by  mamamoo

Hello, did anyone find a resolution to your problem? The exact same thing happened with my girlfried's '98 Civic coupe (DX I think). HEr aftermarket radio was stolen, so she got a new one installed at Curcuit City. The radio and keyless enty had been working fine for a couple months, then the other night she put her key in the ignition and the horn started honking and the doors started locking and unloacking. When she started the car, the horn stopped honking and locks stopped locking/unlocking. The radio works fine and the power door locks work fine, but the keyless entry doens't lock or unlock the doors. I've checked all the fuses, and they seem to be fine. I don't hear any relays clicking, so perhaps a relay needs to bereplaced?

Many thanks!

posted by  coopbs

I've had a similar problem in recent years with my 96 Honda Civic EX Coupe. It has factory keyless entry & factory radio w/ Cassette (no CD).

For the past 3 years, occasionally (perhaps every month or so) the car will freak out and (a) lock its doors and arm its alarm (b) the dome light will flicker randomly (c) the remote will not work. Each time I am forced to unlock the car with the key, open the door (triggering the horn/alarm) and then race to insert the key and press the "valet" switch on the factory radio to turn off the alarm.

> However, the keyless entry system now does not function...

Each time this happens I need to reset the keyless entry computer to respond to keyless entry remote. This is done (at least in my car) by turning the key to "On" (I forget whether it's On 1 or On 2), holding down the "valet" button until you hear the locks "click" and then pressing the remote control button until the locks "click" again (and only then releasing the "valet" button). This should allow your keyless entry system to work again (until the next time...).

A couple of years ago (~2005) I attempted twice to have this fixed at a Honda dealership. The first time they replaced some kind of "door" or lock activator switch --- no help. Second time they replaced the keyless entry computer part which sits on top of the radio (as I understand it). This didn't help either and I was out ~$400 between these 2 attempts.

Eventually I posted on some blog (which I can no longer find) where someone else was seeing the same problem in the same model civic and a third person responded that the problem was the factory radio and that getting a new radio should solve the problem. So now I'm unhappy to hear that people with after-market radios have similar problems.

posted by  BruceK

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