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Area 451 Parts Support Forum
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1  General Information / Announcements / Forum going into READ ONLY mode. on: January 13, 2014, 09:21:13 AM
Due to an alarming increase in spammers - and the fact this forum is rarely used as the product is mature and stable (and so very few problems ever did come up  ;D) - I'm putting this forum into read-only mode.  The content will remain for all to read, but no new posts can be made.

If you require support, please contact the retailer you purchased from.

Thanks for your support everyone!
2  Customer Support / Product Questions / Re: End cap won't stay on on: September 24, 2013, 08:31:02 PM
I'm sorry nobody answered before now Susie.  I didn't get the usual notification that someone posted.  Sorry :(

First, the decorative cap is an original part of your car.  The installer removed it from the end of the original wiper arm and snapped it onto the end button of your cruise switch (the part that flew off).  You can, and should, remove the decorative cap so you can put it on the new switch.  A razor blade is best, as you can insert the thin blade under the lip of the cap and pry it off.

But on to your more serious problem... the button flying off the switch.  You basically need a new switch.  It is covered under warranty if you bought the kit < 2 years ago (in which case please contact your retailer/installer), otherwise a new switch can be purchased from here.  Before buying one though, I recommend contacting Steven at SmartieParts and perhaps checking if you can get just the button instead of the whole switch... it may save you the headache of having to re-run the switch cable.  Just a thought.
3  Customer Support / Warranty Support / Re: Electronic Stability Control Light on: May 08, 2013, 12:49:16 AM
Hi jrwizzard.

Its unfortunate for your trouble :(.  Of course I can't really speculate on what the cause was.  One possibility is that a component in the cruise failed after these years, certainly.  We offer an excellent warranty on this product that far exceeds most aftermarket electronics.  Typically, aftermarket automotive electronics carry either no warranty (due to the high possibility of installer error and next to no way to tell the difference between "damaged" and "defective" electronics) or 6, 9 or maybe 12 months max.  The Area 451 cruise comes with a full 2 year limited warranty for kit purchases.  In cars which have our kit dealer-installed pre-delivery (ie. a brand new car) then we match (to the dealer) whatever the car's warranty is.  In the US, in most cases, that is still 2 years.  In Canada its 4 years.  Therefore, if you purchased an extended warranty with your vehicle (and the kit was installed by the dealer pre-delivery), then it is possible that your cruise is still under warranty.  But that's a lot of "ifs", so more likely it is not.

If you wish to send the cruise box back, we can look at it and see if it is repairable.  There's no charge other than the shipping.  However, if there really was burning involved, then it is unlikely that a repair would be wise, if even possible, as its impossible to know what weakening of adjacent components my have occurred.

If you purchased both kits directly from SmartieParts, it may not be a bad idea to send an email to Steven.  However, if they were purchased through the dealership then he won't be able to offer any further help.

ps. In all references to warranty, and in all cases, only the cruise control parts that came with the kit are covered.  Labor, shop materials, or any related or unrelated parts are not covered.
4  Customer Support / Product Installation / Re: Cruise turns off when pedal map switch is turned on on: April 01, 2012, 08:03:21 PM
Both features can be used at the same time.  Let's just use some logical analysis to figure out what's going on in your case.

Some questions and/or things to think about to get you started:
  • Are you sure that, when you have it programmed with V1.30.13, the pedal map feature is working?  Ie. can you feel a difference?  You certainly should be able to - 13 is the most aggressive linear map.
  • There's really no difference at all in the cruise related programming with V1.30.x between switch flipped and switch unflipped, so there's nothing stopping the cruise from working from that perspective.  Therefore, are you certain the cruise does work when you have V1.30.13 programmed but have switch #1 unflipped (ie. in the "ON" position which means the pedal map is inactive)?  Or are you programming 1.10 back on to regain cruise functionality?
  • There are many conditions that prevent the cruise from working... consider all of them when testing:  speed too low; any door open; traction control system engaged in any way (triangle lit up in dash); parking brake on.  While I'm sure its unlikely, is it possible your door was ajar when you tested once (failed) and fully shut when you tested another time (success)?
  • I suppose its possible map #13 is somehow flawed and it just never came up before now.  Try a different one
  • I don't think the switch options were ever really fully tested.  For now, make sure only switch #1 is flipped to "OFF" (which means pedal map is active) and leave all the other ones in the "ON" position.

5  Customer Support / Product Questions / Re: Cruise Control for Australian Smarts on: February 26, 2012, 05:09:25 PM
A long time coming... but we have just this morning confirmed that our cruise DOES work on the MHD smarts.
6  Customer Support / Product Questions / Re: CC Question on: February 26, 2012, 05:05:57 PM
The two kits are different in many ways, actually.  The owners of each, of course, claim theirs to be better... but I think ours has a better (and perfect) record in terms of not causing issues with the car's electronics.  Ours meets or exceeds DOT specifications for automotive electronics, whereas the competition's unit can't due to its non-sealed plug being used in a designated "high moisture" area.  And while of course I'm biased... I've tested both and I feel absolutely confident in saying ours actually maintains speed better (and that's the primary purpose of a cruise control).  I'll give them their due... the switch they use offers slighly more functionality (it has a "nudge" up/down where ours does not).

As far as a light goes.  Theirs has a light on the box that is hidden completely out of sight whereas ours has a light on the wiper-arm switch... admittedly out of the direct line of sight of most drivers because the steering wheel obscures the view.  Both have "mods" that can be done to add a light in the instrument cluster, which is what you are referring to.

The mod isn't particularly difficult, but it isn't something we can officially support.  Regardless of which kit, there is a risk of damage to the instrument cluster when attempting the mod - and that is an expensive fix.

Details are found in this thread:
7  Customer Support / Product Installation / Re: Traction control fault upon installation on: December 03, 2011, 11:13:07 PM
A dead gas pedal would seem to indicate either:
  • You had a pin mis-wire.  I've had people (including myself) swear up and down they did it correctly, and on the ninth re-check see that a wire is in the wrong spot somewhere.  This is the most likely I think.
  • The harness had a miswire.  So far we've never had one, but if a harness were assembled incorrectly it would have the same issue as a miswire.
  • The cruise itself is faulty.  I'd say this is very doubtful giving our track record
  • Your gas pedal is half-defective.  The gas pedal has a redundant system with dual potentiometers.  Only the primary is used by the cruise.  If the primary is defective, you may not notice it prior to installing the cruise, but the cruise isn't getting the signal and therefore isn't passing it on to the car's computer.  Given your symptoms, this isn't something I'd dismiss but it should be very rare

From experience, I can say comfortably that its probably the first one.  Still, what I'd do is contact the store where you bought it and request both a replacement harness and a replacement cruise, just to rule that out too.

8  Customer Support / Product Questions / Re: CC disconnects when going downhill on: November 01, 2011, 06:03:06 AM
With proper operation, that too should not happen.  If you use the accelerator pedal to manually speed up a "significant amount" (which is 1 or 2 miles per hour), then the cruise senses that YOU are in control, however it does not shut off.  Instead it flashes the light slowly as a warning that the cruise is still on but not currently in control.  Letting go of the accelerator, it would continue to blink until the car slows back to the set speed, at which point, the light would go back to steady-on and the speed would be held.

That's how its supposed to work.  If its not - and again you are certain you haven't touched the brake - then either something is wrong with the cruise (and I can honestly say I doubt it - there's nothing I can imagine that would manifest itself in the two symptoms you've described in this thread - but we'll address that further below), or something is wrong with the car.  What could be wrong with the car?  Well, let's look at the conditions under which the cruise shuts off:

1) a brake is pressed.  A faulty brake sensor that's somehow triggering (even for a milisecond) at odd times.  Doubtful, but not impossible.
2) the traction control system gets engaged.  A faulty yaw or wheel sensor that triggers the system (again, even for a millisecond) with slight speed changes.
3) the speed drops below about 15mph.  A glitching speed sensor that temporarily reports a speed of zero (once again, even for a millisecond).  My hunch is this one.
4) A door opening.  I can't see how this could be the culprit.
5) Transmission in a non-forward gear.  You'd have other bigger problems if this were the case.

Another possible cause is a general CANBUS fault in your car.  That would render the cruise inoperable and force it to reset.  We tested that scenario when we developed the cruise, but I would think that the car would have more issues if there was a CANBUS fault.  You'd probably have a check engine light on at the very least.

Honestly I'd be surprised to see any of that happening, but its not impossible.  I guess its also not impossible that the cruise is defective... but I really think its less likely.  The cruise itself could be generating a CANBUS fault I suppose, but then it should never work, or at least it would be sporatically shutting the cruise off with no discernable or repeatable reason - it would be completely random.  You seem convinced it has something to do with speed changes (either going downhill or using the accelerator pedal).

Really, at this point all I can suggest is that you send it in for testing.  At the beginning of your first post, you said that we installed your cruise at the 2009 Dells, WI event.  That would have been Steven from SmartieParts.  Please Contact him to make arrangements.  It would be exceedingly handy if you have his jumper plug.  Without it, your car would be inoperable while you waited for the cruise box to make the trip there and back.
9  Customer Support / Product Questions / Re: CC disconnects when going downhill on: October 24, 2011, 06:35:02 PM

For anything, there is a cause leading to an effect.  You know what the effect is (cruise turns off)... to diagnose the problem, we need to figure out what the cause is.  I can tell you with certainty, that its not "start down a hill" - at least not directly.  There is absolutely no way at all for the event "going down a hill" to have any direct affect on the cruise control.  Its simply not possible because the car #and therefore the cruise# has no sensor for "grade" or "inclination" #etc# so its not aware if its going up or down a hill or not.  Therefore, going down the hill, in of itself, can't be the cause of the problem.  So what is?  That's a good question.  With the information you've provided, I admit I'm at a loss. 

Or am I?  Let's look at your other symptom.  You say the light blinks fast.  If you're certain its a fast blink #as opposed to a slow one - see below#, then the ONLY way the cruise control ever presents with a fast blinking light is when the brake is engaged at the same time that you press the button.  So, the obvious thought that comes to my mind... but you probably would have noticed this a long time ago... is that you, as the driver, naturally touch the brake when you go down the hill?  Obviously the brake shuts off the cruise, and if you're riding the brake on the hill when you press the button, that would explain the fast blinking #as well as the cruise not working#.  Since a brake is the only way to get a fast blinking light, then if you aren't consciously pressing the brake when this happens then either a# you are accidentally doing it or b# something's wrong with your car's braking system #or at least its electronic monitoring of the braking system#.

How is the user supposed to know if its a "fast" blink vs. a "slow" blink?  Its all relative, of course... so the best way is to get familiar with them.  To deliberately invoke a fast blink, you can deliberately step on the brake and press the cruise button #you can do this with the car stopped in the driveway - its actually how we test an initial installation to make sure the button is working#.  To witness a slow blink - which indicates when the cruise is on but not directly in control at the moment - you need to experience one of the following conditions:
  • Set a reasonably high speed.  Then brake and drop to a significantly slower speed.  Press and hold the button and it will resume to the previous speed.  During the resume process, the light slow blinks.
  • set the cruise and go down a steep hill such that the car speeds up via gravity more than a few mph above the set speed.  While above the speed, the light will slow blink.
  • Probably the easiest...  set a relatively slow speed and then manually use the accelerator.  While above the set speed, the light will slow blink.
If you are, in fact, experiencing a fast blink as described, then it must have something to do with the brake.  And in that case, as you indicated, the cruise will not function until both the brake and the button are released #at that point, the blinking stops#.  If it is a slow blink, then the cruise IS active while it is blinking #pressing the button will turn the cruise off and it will stop blinking# and in that case, my best guess is you are simply experiencing gravity speeding your car up beyond what the cruise is set to.  But then this shouldn't be the case for a "slight grade".

I hope that helps.  I realize its not an answer to your question... but your question, as written, doesn't provide enough information to detail a problem that can actually exist.  So hopefully my "answer" gives you enough information to better understand what may be happening.  I certainly welcome a reply with more details if I can help you further.

10  Customer Support / Warranty Support / Re: cc set button on: September 09, 2011, 08:59:00 AM
That shouldn't be a problem.  Contact steven at and he'll take care of you.
11  Customer Support / Product Installation / Re: Tip for Smart's with Factory Touchscreen Nav/Stereo system option. on: July 21, 2011, 12:44:00 AM
I believe its a [pretty good] tip for those installing our cruise if they have that particular setup... since the battery needs to be disconnected as part of the cruise install.  Its a warning to have your code with you before doing the cruise install or you'll be without nav/stereo until you find it.

12  Customer Support / Product Questions / Re: Will an '08 module work in a '10 model year smart? on: June 29, 2011, 12:36:03 AM
Sorry for the late reply - yes, it will work on a '08 thru '11 (at least)
13  Customer Support / Product Questions / Re: It works perfect in my reprogrammed turbo model on: March 27, 2011, 11:18:17 PM
I'm glad you're happy with it!  you may find that the button is better if you pull the switch body off and use sandpaper to make the tip of the wiper arm "pole" a little smaller.
14  Customer Support / Warranty Support / Re: cc set button on: March 18, 2011, 01:55:30 PM
It is true that the warranty for the unit is 2 years.  It is a comprehensive warranty covering all aspects of the kit for a full 2 years.  Most automotive electronics have NO warranty at all, because of the potential for installer error to cause damage.  Those that do, are typically 30 to 90 days.  And almost all of them cover only the main components.  But ours is a comprehensive policy for a full 2 years, which I think most people would agree is more than reasonable.

I spoke to Steven and he confirmed he talked to you and informed you that if your unit was purchased more than 2 years ago, which you seem to have confirmed, that a nominal charge would apply for a replacement switch.  They are available on his website here.

15  Customer Support / Product Questions / Re: Cruise control dash light blinks erratically when cruise is off on: March 14, 2011, 06:03:55 PM
Sorry for the late response.  Glad you got it fixed!
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