How to reset car computer memory

Written by nicholas wyatt
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How to reset car computer memory
Reset your car's computer memory to clear error codes. (Connector used to read data from the On Board Diagnosis image by Albert Lozano from

There may be times when you have engine codes appear an automotive code reader that may cause you to think there are major problems with your car. Usually engine codes signify a change in the normal attributes of the car, although sometimes, codes may trigger for reasons they shouldn't. You can use an automotive code reader or reset your car's computer memory manually. You can do this often as needed.

Skill level:

Things you need

  • Automotive code reader
  • Gloves (optional)
  • Crescent wrench
  • Pliers

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  1. 1

    Plug the automotive code reader into your car's computer memory module behind the steering wheel. Unlatch the panel behind the steering column and plug the reader into the wire adaptor ribbon. This will tell you the codes and their meanings. You may also use the automotive code reader to reset the car's computer memory.

  2. 2

    Open your car's bonnet to manually reset the car's computer memory. Disconnect the positive and negative wires connected to your battery using your crescent wrench or pliers.

  3. 3

    Leave the battery disconnected for about 10 minutes to refresh the car's computer memory. This will also reset your radio presets, settings and clock and other devices you may have.

  4. 4

    Reattach the negative wire first, then the positive wire. The car's computer memory will be reset.

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