3

My daughter has a 2009 Honda Fit. It seems someone has done something to the car which has caused the battery to go flat. Also, the only door key (driver's side) won't unlock the door. Since the battery is flat, the car only makes a slight (and I mean very slight) noise when you press the unlock button on the fob. How in the heck do I get the door unlocked and open? And before you say, use a rock on a window, that is absolutely the last resort.

What I've tried:

  • I've tried going in from the grill to pop the hood so I can put a charger on the battery and then the fob would work ... but I cannot tell where to get at anything to pop the hood latch. I can get to the hood latch, but there's nothing to twist or turn (which I can find) which will pop the hood.
  • I took the piece of rubber which helps seal between the car door and the window to see if I can get at the locking mechanism. I can see the locking mechanism, but it is completely encased in plastic. Seems Honda wants to help owners to thwart thieves, even when you're a Dad who is in the pooper because he cannot get his daughter's car started. I did manage to pull the cable which goes down from the key mechanism out of the slot, so now, even if I could get the key to turn, it won't be unlocking anything (have to get it fitted back into place).

I'm at a loss. Hoping someone can provide something I can use!

  • Can you get anything past the side window to try and manually flip the door lock on the inside? – Moab May 17 '18 at 3:03
  • Have you tried the key on the hatch? It should work there as well. – GdD May 17 '18 at 7:28
  • 2
    If you jack the car up, can you see where the positive cable attaches to the starter. Is it possible to remove the cable and connect it to the charger? – mikes May 17 '18 at 9:54
  • @Moab - The door lock mechanisms on the side are all slick ... no real way to get ahold of them to do that. Thanks for the suggestion, though. – Pᴀᴜʟsᴛᴇʀ2 May 17 '18 at 12:45
  • @mikes - That's probably the best idea I haven't thought about already. Was thinking about places where I could attach the battery charger to get power to the system ... this actually seems like it might work. Just have to jack up the front of the car and figure out where the starter is at, lol. Hopefully I can get to it. – Pᴀᴜʟsᴛᴇʀ2 May 17 '18 at 12:46
5

My solution to the situation was to completely remove the bottom aero stuff which connects to the bottom of the bumper (goes from wheel well to wheel well, from bumper to the engine cradle area). To do this, you have about 20 push pins holding it in place. I was then able to move the bumper portion out of the way towards the front of the car. This left me enough room to reach my hand up to where the cable for the hood latch was located and detach it where the sheathing mated up with the latch base. I then just pulled on the entire cable, which popped the hood. Once the hood was open, I applied power to the battery which allowed me to use the key fob again to unlock the door.

To prevent this in the future, I plan to attach a pair of leads to the battery I can get to which I can apply power directly. I'll place the ends where I can get to them without the hood being open. This will work until I can get the door apart to fix the key mechanism.

  • 1
    Please check and find out what caused it to go flat in the first place... – Solar Mike May 17 '18 at 14:48
  • @SolarMike - On the agenda. I looked for things which might have been on in the first place, but found nothing (very peculiar). The car had sat for a week while she was out of country, but the car started right up without issue after sitting that long. It sat in the driveway overnight without any apparent power drain and the battery was flat. Go figure. It's going to be harder to figure out than typically finding a light left on or something. – Pᴀᴜʟsᴛᴇʀ2 May 17 '18 at 14:50
  • good luck with that then - it could be a duff battery - loose internal link... – Solar Mike May 17 '18 at 14:53
  • @SolarMike - With this car, I'm not assuming anything is good, so yes, battery is on the list. Thank you, though. – Pᴀᴜʟsᴛᴇʀ2 May 17 '18 at 14:57
  • 1
    Perhaps use a magcode power socket? I like those – Martin May 17 '18 at 19:51
3

The Honda fit should have a key override on the rear hatch as well as the drivers door, I'd try that first before anything else.

Getting power to the car is tricky, if there's a trailer plug you could charge the battery through that, or at least power up the system enough to operate the locks. If the lights were left on then you could theoretically power the car through the headlight or taillight plug socket if you could get at it as the circuit would be closed. You could probably tell if it's lights by looking through the window. If you can get under the car you might be able to power the car by connecting a charger or other battery to a positive line, but that's tricky and potentially could damage things if you connect to the wrong thing.

Next I'd look at windows, specifically non rolling ones as fixed windows are easier to replace. In some cars you don't have to break one to get in, you find a window that's held on with a gasket, these you may have to cut out or in some cases they pop off. I had a Ford Fiesta where the back window popped off when I was trying to get a suitcase in, I had it back on in 5 minutes with a butter knife! If you have these on your car then problem solved! However, the Fit's windows all seem to be screwed on unfortunately. On the Fit you have front and rear vent windows which seem like prime candidates for breaking into, you'll have to take door card off to replace it. The rear quarter windows are also a possibility, they're bigger but further away from the doors, so may not be a big help. If you break one of those you'll probably need to remove some paneling to replace it.

  • 1
    You make the same points I did... – Solar Mike May 17 '18 at 9:14
  • Same general points @SolarMike, I've gone into more detail. I've listed a second place the key may work, how he could possibly power the car through a headlight socket, and which windows would be best for breaking as well as how they are replaced afterwards. – GdD May 17 '18 at 9:25
  • Can you get the headlight out to get to its socket ? I pointed out the locks, trailer socket etc if you need the points I’ll do +1 for you... and as for charging the battery through the headlight socket - won’t the headlight switch need to be on ?? If it is off - then will that work? – Solar Mike May 17 '18 at 9:46
  • @SolarMike, I'm not after points, I'm trying to help someone out of a tough spot. Sure, we make similar points but I'm not copying you. As for the headlights the switch will need to be on, as I point out in my answer you can probably tell if the headlights are on by looking in the window at the switch. – GdD May 17 '18 at 9:50
  • The only key override is the on the driver's side door - very unfortunate!! – Pᴀᴜʟsᴛᴇʀ2 May 17 '18 at 12:47
1

The lock / unlock system usually has two methods : either the buttons on the remote or the physical key in the lock - as the battery is flat (lights left on?) then why won’t the physical key work?

Does it have a towbar - that socket may have a positive terminal allowing you to jury rig a charger for the battery, but this may only power whatever caused it to go flat in the first place.

You may be left with two options either a professional or breaking a window - if you consider a window do find out which ones are in stock...

1

Although the problem was solved, let me provide another answer, the solution I would use on my car.

I would just connect the block heater cord to 230V electricity. The block heater in my car has a fixed smart battery charger. I have two cords for the block heater; one is in the car trunk, another is indoors in my house.

I have noticed new cars have less and less mechanical locks and they may seize due to not being used, leaving battery drain a true risk. For this reason, I opted for a fixed battery charger which didn't cost that much extra when I already selected the block heater option.

Other car drivers can follow my advice and choose the battery charger option for the block heater, and purchase another cord for the block heater or store the only cord indoors.

A cheaper option is to provide a positive terminal somewhere convenient that can be accessed with all the doors locked.

Your Answer

By clicking “Post Your Answer”, you agree to our terms of service, privacy policy and cookie policy

Not the answer you're looking for? Browse other questions tagged or ask your own question.