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Eric, Automotive Repair Shop Manager
Category: Saturn
Satisfied Customers: 32354
Experience:  20+ yrs. experience as repair shop manager and technician.
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Saturn VUE I own a 2004 Saturn VUE. The daytime running lights

Resolved Question:

I own a 2004 Saturn VUE. The daytime running lights have stopped working. When car is driven into the sunlight, the DRL display on the dashboard comes on, blinks for ~8-10 seconds, then goes off and the DRL lights never come on. All the headlights lights are good, the fuse is good, and a new DRL resistor does not fix the problem. Mechanic suggests that it is the body control module, which is very expensive and I'm not sure I want to incur that expense if there is no safety issue with the failure of the DRL lights. I can always turn on the headlights manually during the day.
Submitted: 6 years ago.
Category: Saturn
Expert:  Eric replied 6 years ago.

the two common faults that cause the loss of the DRLs are: faulty resistor and faulty BCM. As the resistor has been replaced, that leaves the BCM as the culprit.

As long as your headlights still work, it poses no safety issue at this time. As the BCM controls many functions and could suffer more circuitry failure, if you start having failure of interior lamps, radio, power locks or windows, at that point you will want to go ahead and replace the BCM.
Customer: replied 6 years ago.
I'm sending some quick follow-on questions. I'm quite satisfied with your initial answer. Thank you. Will send in a minute...
Expert:  Eric replied 6 years ago.

ok, sounds good
Customer: replied 6 years ago.

Shoot - that prompt wiped out my draft.


OK - thank you for your answer - you've corroborated what my mechanic told me and that's reassuring.


My Saturn has low mileage - 72,000 - and I'd hoped to drive it for many more years. Since it appears there's not a safety issue at this time, would a catastropic failure of the BCM still enable me to drive the car to a safe spot, manually open the doors, and turn off the vehicle?


If so, would you roll the dice and just keep driving it as is, or bite the bullet and replace the BCM now?


Also, the mechanic wanted to "chase" the wiring to see if perhaps the problem is there, rather than with the BCM. Any possibility of that being successful?



Expert:  Eric replied 6 years ago.

Ok, a complete failure of the BCM while driving would still allow you to drive home and open the doors and turn off vehicle, but it would be a no-start condition after turning it off as part of the antitheft system goes thru the BCM, and its failure would prevent engine from cranking again.

As to chasing the wiring, I believe this would be a waste of his time and your money as I have yet to see this problem caused by a short between the BCM and the DRLs.

If this were mine, this is what would do. Have you mechanic shop around to find best prices for a remanufactued BCM, and once you have the price, start budgeting for it over the next month or two and have him order it to install it.

You can find reman units for $300-350.

here is one site that carries them that i have had good luck with.
Eric and 8 other Saturn Specialists are ready to help you
Customer: replied 6 years ago.

Thank you, Eric! I've been given a quote of $800 for the unit, plus labor - this is a dealer, so that explains some of the high cost. Your information is very helpful and I will be able to make a decision. I can't help but think that this could be a real problem in the near future and I'd better set about getting the new/reman part put in.


Will I be able to view all of this good information via email or my JustAnswer login?