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What Does the SRS Light Mean?

On the second generation Acura CL (and many other Acura & Honda models), the SRS (Supplemental Restraint System) light may come on and stay illuminated on the dashboard. If the SRS light stays on, that means that there is a problem with the airbag system, which could lead to the airbags not deploying in the event of a car crash.

Part of the SRS system are the seat belts and belt buckle components. On the 2nd gen Acura CL, the seat belts are known to malfunction and throw an SRS DTC (Diagnostic Trouble Code). If there is an SRS code (or several SRS codes thrown, the SRS light will come on and stay on. These Acura CL’s are notorious for throwing the 15-1, 15-2, and 15-3 SRS codes, which are related to the OPDS (Occupant Position Detection System), namely having to do with the seat belts and buckles on the car.

If you want to resolve the error codes, the only way is to fix the issue that is triggering the SRS code(s) and then reset the SRS light. This usually means replacing the seat buckle that is throwing the code (front driver’s side, front passenger’s side, or either side’s rear seat.) Then, an Acura dealership will be able to reset the SRS diagnostic trouble code. If you own a special OBDII scan tool that can reset SRS codes, you can use that to reset the SRS light.

How to Reset SRS Light

There are a few known ways of resetting the SRS light on the 2nd Gen Acura CL. You can either take it to an Acura Dealership to get it reset, or you can reset it yourself with a special scan tool or even by jumpering the MES (Memory Erase Signal) connector located underneath the dash.

If you plan on using a scan tool to reset the SRS light, you will need one that has that capability. Search for Scan Tools with SRS Reset Capability.

How to Use a Jumper Wire to Reset the SRS Light

With the jumpering option, you can use a paperclip or a jumper wire on the MES connector. The MES connector is located at under the dash on the driver’s side. If you look around for the do-it-yourself jumper wire procedure, you may find that many people refer to an old Geocities site from user myintegra96 being linked to which no longer works. You can use look at internet archives like WayBackMachine to find the old site, but it’s plastered with old Photobucket image errors so it’s hard to read. I’ve taken the procedure and placed it here for your convenience:

Image from: http://www.geocities.com/myintegra96/srs.html

Look up at the fuse box in the driver’s side footwell, you will see two yellow plugs. The smaller one of these two is the MES connector. It is plugged into the back side of the fuse box.

Image from: http://www.geocities.com/myintegra96/srs.html

The MES connector is technically plugged into a dummy plug, so it’s not actually making any sort of connection when plugged in. It’s just a place to secure the MES connector to keep it from moving around.

  1. Unplug the MES connector and jumper the two leads with a paperclip or wire while ignition is OFF.
  2. Turn the ignition to ON (do not start the car).
  3. The SRS light will come on for about 6 seconds and then will go off. Disconnect the jumper.
  4. The SRS light will come on again, reconnect the jumper.
  5. The SRS light will go back off. Disconnect the jumper and leave it disconnected.
  6. The SRS light will then blink twice if you did the procedure correctly.
  7. Turn the ignition off and wait for 10 seconds.
  8. Turn the ignition back to ON and confirm if the SRS light stays off.
  9. If the SRS light stays off, then you have successfully reset the SRS light and you can proceed to reconnect the MES connector back into the dummy plug behind the fuse box. If the SRS light is back on, retry the procedure.

SRS Light Warranty Extension on the 2nd Gen Acura CL

Apparently, Acura issued a warranty extension back in 2006 (S/B 06-008) that addressed the 15-1, 15-2, and 15-3 SRS trouble codes that would cause the SRS light to come on. This warranty extension was issued for 2001-2003 Acura CL’s (as well as other Acura models.) On paper, it’s supposed to cover the vehicle for an additional 10 years or 150,000 miles, whichever comes first. I’ve also read other members stating on the AcuraZine Forums that this is a lifetime warranty– that any Acura Dealership will replace the seat belt buckles for the life of the vehicle.

I’m not totally sure about it being a lifetime warranty as I haven’t seen any formal documentation indicating that this is a lifetime warranty. Everything I have read indicates the warranty is only being extended, although I took my Acura CL to the dealership (it was within the 150,000 miles but far past the 10 year extension per the warranty extension) and they still replaced all the seat buckles triggering the SRS codes under warranty.

I would recommend that if you are experiencing the SRS light coming on unexpectedly, that you simply take it into your local Acura Dealership to get it inspected. I’m not sure exactly how long Acura will honor the warranty extension for, but I suggest you get it checked out to see if they will replace the seat belt parts for you. Also, if your local dealership declines the warranty extension, definitely try another dealership as you might get another one that will be more willing to take care of it for your free-of-charge. Some people on the forums have been turned down at one Acura dealership, yet have another dealership honor the warranty. So, it doesn’t hurt to try!


Hi there! I'm Scott and I run The Track Ahead. My goal is to write helpful articles, tutorials, and reviews based on my personal experience with car maintenance and detailing. I've been wrenching on and detailing cars for 15+ years and now share my knowledge with others on this site to help them care for their vehicles.

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