Power Systems indicator on and will not allow Sport or Econ mode

Discussion in 'Clarity' started by Bill Paz, Aug 9, 2019.

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Power Systems indicator on and will not allow Sport or Econ mode

  1. Yes

  2. No

  1. Bill Paz

    Bill Paz New Member

    Hello all, h as anyone had this issue before? When I press Sport or EV buttons I see "Drive Mode Change Unavailable" and noticed that POWER SYSTEM in red is lit up to the right of the speedo. It was happening off and on and today I noticed the POWER SYSTEM indicator. I have an appointment next week with the dealer. Otherwise the car drives fine and I can access HV mode so go figure. This is a new car with less than 250 miles on it and basically started the day after I picked it up.

    Attached Files:

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  3. KentuckyKen

    KentuckyKen Well-Known Member

    Although it always drove me crazy when the IT Dept at work just wanted to re-image my computer instead of troubleshooting the problem, I will mention that a hard reset by way of disconnecting the 12 V battery will sometimes fix the odd electronic “hiccup” in the Clarity. All settings will be retained and all you loose is the driving history but the GOM will recover in 3-5 drive/charge cycles.
    And you will have to put up with a plethora of warning indicators for the first few miles which are harmless and will soon go away. (I think but am not sure that you may also need to re-calibrate the TPMS.)

    Then if the problem returns, you can go to the dealer. This might save you the time and effort of a trip to and wait at the dealer.
    Let us know what happens either way.
  4. Bill Paz

    Bill Paz New Member

    I have an appointment Wednesday and will report afterwards. I am going to leave it as is for now and let the experts deal with it. Thanks for the reply, I appreciate it.
  5. The Gadgeteer

    The Gadgeteer Active Member

    This is may not be your situation but here is some info:
    “Drive mode change unavailable” will happen if you try to change modes while on a curve or turning.
    When in Sport mode the sides of the speedometer will turn red.
  6. David in TN

    David in TN Well-Known Member

    Ah, grasshopper! You may find, over time, that the "experts" live in this forum. Looking forward to hearing back from your experience on Wed.
    coutinpe and Louis Nisenbaum like this.
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  8. sniwallof

    sniwallof Active Member

    It's not a fault, rather the car is saying, I'd rather not do that right now, for some technical reason Honda's engineers built in as some kind of safety measure.

    I've seen it several times when I'm in max push button operating mode, usually in a turn trying to go to sport mode. Doesn't seem to have any adverse after effects or to be indicative of any problems, other than perhaps a hint that the car thinks the driver might be pressing its buttons a bit too much :)
    Last edited: Aug 10, 2019
  9. Bill Paz

    Bill Paz New Member

    The car has been driving fine but I do not think not being able to go to sport or ev mode is normal and the power systems indicator on is normal nor a safety feature. I started out with a full charge and drove about 60 miles today with the power systems warning lit up the whole time unable to go to sport or ev mode of course. I went to a charge station and after about 2 hours 30 minutes went back to the car and now the power systems warning is off and I am able to go to sport and ev modes. Something is not right. My service appointment is Wednesday.
  10. MrFixit

    MrFixit Well-Known Member

    I would agree that this kind of persistent indication / error is not right. It's too bad it has gone away because now there is a good chance that when you go for service there will be nothing wrong and they will just shrug their shoulders. Let's hope the problem returns before you go in... Intermittent things are the hardest to fix.
  11. sniwallof

    sniwallof Active Member

    Agree, I've never seen that indication for more than a moment (e.g. in a turn). If it is on for extended periods of time, that does sound like something may be loose or broken.
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  13. 2002

    2002 Well-Known Member

    I assume you mean Econ not EV?
  14. Groves Cooke

    Groves Cooke Active Member

    2002 is correct. There is no 'EV' mode. There is ECON and there is SPORT. NORMAL is when neither ECON or SPORT is selected. Then there is HV, which must be selected. When HV is not selected the car will run on electric most but not all of the time. Confusing I admit.
    KentuckyKen likes this.
  15. 2002

    2002 Well-Known Member

    I am pretty sure they meant Econ and I am guessing that most people who were trying to assist assumed that also. I just pointed it out to avoid confusion as some people reading the thread (and the thread title) might have interpreted it that the OP was saying the HV button wasn't functioning and not allowing them to go in or out of EV, but I'm pretty sure they meant that the Sport and Econ buttons were not functioning. An easy mistake to make when you are new to the car and going from memory what the different names of the modes are.

    Although I am curious if the HV button is also blocked while that message appears since that also is a mode change button. Although I suspect not since switching in or out of HV has no effect on pedal mapping, LKAS aggressiveness etc. like switching in or out of sport or econ does.
  16. Bill Paz

    Bill Paz New Member

    Yes you are correct, I meant ECON. HV works fine and does not exhibit the drive mode change unavailable notification.
  17. Bill Paz

    Bill Paz New Member

    Dealer is keeping the car and has to consult with Honda support. No codes came up but there is a communication issue that they have no information on how to resolve at this point.
  18. Bill Paz

    Bill Paz New Member

    Dealer consulted with Honda support and they found that the coolant heater is not working and ordered the part. Not sure how this works with the sport and econ modes but if it fixes the problem then all is well. Part due in early next week. I will update again next week after the repair.
    coutinpe and Louis Nisenbaum like this.
  19. coutinpe

    coutinpe Active Member

    Thank you so much for bringing this up. Now we know what to expect if this happens to us. Interesting learning curve living with this baby!
  20. 2002

    2002 Well-Known Member

    Kind of hard to make a logical connection between Drive Mode Change Unavailable and the resistive coolant heater. I know that the different modes have some effect on climate control, but if you need cabin heat you need cabin heat and if ICE is off the coolant heater is the only way to provide it, regardless of what mode you are in.

    The only even tenuous connection I can come up with is maybe in Econ mode it will try and drag the last bit of heat out of the engine coolant before starting the resistive coolant heater, but still at some point even in Econ mode you will need the coolant heater, so I still don't get why a problem with the heater keeps you from switching driving modes.

    Unless this is a total red herring and someone just looked up the wrong code or something.
    insightman likes this.
  21. Bill Paz

    Bill Paz New Member

    I picked up the car and they replaced the elec coolant heater part number 79900-trw-a01 and billed honda about 3k for the repair. All modes working fine now. Makes you think twice about getting an extended warranty since this part was not that big. I recently purchased an extended warranty from Good Sam for my 2013 Nissan Sentra with 90k on it and the cost is like $65 per quarter. I will have to get a quote on the Clarity and post it.

    Attached Files:

  22. 2002

    2002 Well-Known Member

    79900-trw-a01 retails for about $1,800.

    So the drive mode unavailable message appeared due to a problem with the resistive heater. Just goes to show that a failing part can cause unexpected and seemingly unrelated symptoms. Does your invoice list any error codes that they obtained?

    There is a thread about extended warranty here:

    Last edited: Aug 24, 2019
  23. ThomasZ

    ThomasZ New Member

    My car has the same problem and it was just out of regular warranty for 1 month!!

    Will this be covered by the powertrain warranty? The Honda service agent wants to charge me $210 for mere diagnosis.

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