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Reset Maint Req instructions?

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Old 07-17-2007, 12:30 AM
novablue69 novablue69 is offline
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Default Reset Maint Req instructions?

I have searched the archives and everyone has an opinion or advice, but no one can tell me how to reset the "Maintenance Required" light on my 1988 Dakota truck. I need to know what to look for and how to do it. Yes, I am a real dumby when it comes to electonics. I could use your help on this one.
Thanks in advance!

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Old 07-17-2007, 02:56 PM
belowrdr belowrdr is offline
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Default RE: Reset Maint Req instructions?

It is in the engine computer. You have to be able to access the computer with a code reader/diagnostic readout & reset it, similar to erasing trouble codes after a repair.
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Old 07-18-2007, 12:28 AM
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dodgerules86 dodgerules86 is offline
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Default RE: Reset Maint Req instructions?

Try disconnecting the battery negative cable for about 10 minutes. I don't actually know if that will do anything, I know thats how you can clear regular troublecodes.
IIRC, the "Maintenance Required" light doesn't actually mean anything is wrong (thats what the "Check Engine" light is for), it just comes on as a reminder to service the emissions crap, at a pre-determined intervail. You could probably just take the bulb out [8D]. (Again, I don't know what year they got rid of those lights, but like the air pumps, the '96 models don't have the maintenance lights)
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1996 Dodge Dakota, 4x4, extended cab, 3.9L, automatic. - my baby
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Old 07-18-2007, 03:05 PM
novablue69 novablue69 is offline
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Default RE: Reset Maint Req instructions?

Tried disconnecting the battery with no results. Autozone tells me the only way to get engine codes is through the ignition key. Apparently there is not a code reader for the 1988. One thread I found said there was a "module" behind the dash just below the headlight switch. I found a strange box in that location but there is no visible way to reset anything. I am thinking strongly that removing the light might be an option, but I would prefer to reset the system if at all possible. I can't see paying Dodge umpteen bucks to flip a switch or poke something that I could do. Sort of makes me mad. I will keep looking, because someone knows how to do this. If I am successful, I will post my findings and solution here.
Thanks again for all of the suggestions and ideas. Thomas Edison considered eliminating the things that didn't work one step closer to finding the one that did work. I am closer to finding that solution.
Thanks to all, and keep looking.
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Old 07-20-2007, 12:16 AM
Nicegy525 Nicegy525 is offline
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Default RE: Reset Maint Req instructions?

you can always call the service dept at the dealer and ask. Usually techs have no problem explaining procedures. If you do need a scanner then take it in.
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Old 07-20-2007, 04:09 PM
novablue69 novablue69 is offline
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Default RE: 1988 Dakota reset solution found!

Problem Solved!
Thanks to Niceguy, I called the dealer service department and got an answer. According to one of the mechanics, 1988 was an odd year that used either a battery or a reset switch. According to the mechanic, both were "stupid." The service department said that if they had to reset the Maint Reqd light it would be $84.00 to replace the battery and $48.00 to flip the switch.
I figured I could screw things up cheaper than they could so I dove in.
Step 1. Remove 5 screws and remove the lower dash cover below the steering column and below the headlight switch.
Step 2. Find the blue box under the headlight switch. It measures about 3x4 inches.http://www.dodgeforum.com/photo.asp?...=6&apage=1
Step 3. Carefully wiggle the box offof the tang it is attached to. You will put it back when done.
Step 4. One end of the box has a large rectangular opening you should be able to see easily. I assume this is where a 9v battery would fit. Mine did not have a battery, so I began looking for a switch.http://www.dodgeforum.com/photo.asp?...=6&apage=1
Step 5. There is a smaller hole that allows you to see inside of the box through the battery hole. (see photo). Just inside of this hole you will see a small micro switch. The micro switch was the push button type.http://www.dodgeforum.com/photo.asp?...=6&apage=1
Step 6. Start the car and use a pencil or some other similar, non-conducting tool to gently press the button. Your Maint Reqd light should be out.
Step 7. Reassemble your car and count the money you saved.

Tools I used: phillips head screw driver, paint brush handle (to press the button) and a drop light to see.
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1969 Chevy Nova - I am the original owner.
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Old 07-20-2007, 11:13 PM
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dodgerules86 dodgerules86 is offline
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Default RE: 1988 Dakota reset solution found!

Sweet... thanks for letting us know how you went about this.
Hmm.. yea, '88 must be weird. I re-looked at my '90 service manual, and it says you need a super-duper expensive DRB scan tool to turn that off. Damn them and their DRM scan tools.
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1996 Dodge Dakota, 4x4, extended cab, 3.9L, automatic. - my baby
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Old 07-22-2007, 07:54 AM
dabeckass dabeckass is offline
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Default RE: 1988 Dakota reset solution found!

does anyone know if this will work with a '91 ???
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Old 07-23-2007, 10:16 PM
Nicegy525 Nicegy525 is offline
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Default RE: 1988 Dakota reset solution found!

check for the box behing the headlight switch. or else there is a manual switch on the firewall behing the throttle body. Open it and you should find a screw. Turn it clockwise about 1/4 turn until it sets in and it should be reset.
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Old 07-26-2007, 05:27 AM
dabeckass dabeckass is offline
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Default RE: 1988 Dakota reset solution found!

thanks....i'll give it a try
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Old 07-26-2007, 05:27 AM
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1995, 88, dakota, dodge, light, maint, maintenance, ram, ramcharger, reqd, required, reset, resetting, sprinter, truck

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