Drove til batt dead, now P0420 & P0430 - Toyota FJ Cruiser Forum
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post #1 of 58 (permalink) Old 09-21-2016, 11:38 AM Thread Starter
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Drove til batt dead, now P0420 & P0430

My alternator died and I drove home with a dying battery. I drove it until it died and I coasted it into the driveway. I replaced the alt and battery, no problem.

However, now I'm getting P0420, P0430, and c1201 codes.

Could I have damaged the cats by driving with a dead battery? Or, are the codes not related to the dead battery?

I have new O2 sensors ordered but not in yet.

Any advice would be appreciated.

2007 FJ with 135K miles, auto trans.
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post #2 of 58 (permalink) Old 09-22-2016, 04:48 AM
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Re: Drove til batt dead, now P0420 & P0430

You couldn't have driven very far with the dead battery obviously, but my guess is all the codes are related to the engine not sparking strong enough due to the battery losing charge which led to incomplete combustion. The O2 sensors probably threw the code because the cats weren't working efficiently due to incomplete combustion in the engine. IMO, all the codes should clear themselves but you could always clear them yourself and see if they come back.
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post #3 of 58 (permalink) Old 09-22-2016, 05:06 AM
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Re: Drove til batt dead, now P0420 & P0430

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You couldn't have driven very far with the dead battery obviously, but my guess is all the codes are related to the engine not sparking strong enough due to the battery losing charge which led to incomplete combustion. The O2 sensors probably threw the code because the cats weren't working efficiently due to incomplete combustion in the engine. IMO, all the codes should clear themselves but you could always clear them yourself and see if they come back.
Yep. Clear the codes and see if they come back. If not, no prob.
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post #4 of 58 (permalink) Old 09-22-2016, 10:25 AM Thread Starter
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Re: Drove til batt dead, now P0420 & P0430

I've cleared the codes a few times. They come back once the engine is warmed up from completely cold.
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post #5 of 58 (permalink) Old 09-23-2016, 11:18 AM
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Re: Drove til batt dead, now P0420 & P0430

Driving with a dead battery would not have damaged the cats or the o2 sensors. If anything, the computer is still freaked out due to the unstable voltage that it received when the alternator died. I would disconnect the wiring harness to the computer for a good 15 minutes or so to ensure the codes are cleared. Then test the battery voltage to make sure that the new battery is at the proper voltage (12.6 volts I think). If it is lower than that, charge it up before you reconnect the computer.

And if all that fails, put some electric tape over the check engine light and all of your current and future engine problems are solved
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post #6 of 58 (permalink) Old 09-25-2016, 01:44 AM
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And if all that fails, put some electric tape over the check engine light and all of your current and future engine problems are solved
Genius!
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post #7 of 58 (permalink) Old 09-25-2016, 10:42 AM Thread Starter
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Re: Drove til batt dead, now P0420 & P0430

Unfortunately, I cannot get a smog cert with the CEL on. Also, the traction control is not functional.
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post #8 of 58 (permalink) Old 09-25-2016, 10:43 AM
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Re: Drove til batt dead, now P0420 & P0430

The major concern initially is the C1201 code, "Engine Control System Malfunction".

This indicates some problem with the engine control system, electronically a pretty complex system with many sensors, actuators, and a lot of wiring harness with many connectors. Simply running the battery down to the point where the engine stopped running should not have induced any permanent damage in any of the control system components, although if the engine ran excessively rich for the last 10-20 minutes of life it is possible that the air/fuel or oxygen sensors are fouled.

Questions:
1. At any point in this incident did you "jump start" the engine, or connect any type of auxiliary DC power supply to the vehicle?

2. Have you verified the engine-off battery voltage? It should be 12.6 - 12.9 volts measured at least 1/2 hour after engine shutdown.

3. Have you verified the battery charging voltage with the engine running at ~2K RPM, with all major electrical loads turned off? It should be between 13.2 to 14.8 volts.

These voltage measurements should be made with a good quality digital voltmeter, NOT an $8 Harbor Freight model. Make these measurements at the battery clamps, then also again at the battery posts.
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post #9 of 58 (permalink) Old 09-25-2016, 11:27 AM Thread Starter
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Re: Drove til batt dead, now P0420 & P0430

Never jump started and never connected any sort of power supply.

Also, I replaced the battery when I replaced the alt.

Voltages are all good and it is running well.

CEL is on and the three lights below the CEL are all on.

Check engine, VSC Trac, VSC off & slippery lights all have come on. Currently orange in colour

Last edited by Glenn Goodlett; 09-25-2016 at 11:47 AM. Reason: Add which dash ights are on.
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post #10 of 58 (permalink) Old 09-26-2016, 06:04 PM
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Re: Drove til batt dead, now P0420 & P0430

What are you checking your codes with ? What codes do you have now? Have all the loops run? You say its running good and feels like plenty of power ?
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