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Discussion Starter · #1 ·
I have a 2011 CTS Coupe, park assist has always worked in the past. Recently I noticed that the rear bumper wasn’t the same color as the rest of the car, before I bought it someone must’ve had an accident and did a pretty bad job repainting it. I brought it to get 3-staged painted and it looks great.

Now when I turn the car on and go into reverse I get the service park assist message, none of the sensors work at this point. When I clear it and drive the car, the next time I go into reverse all the sensors work fine and it’s like nothing ever happened. If the car sits for the rest of the day or overnight, I’ll get the message again when I start it up the next day.

I’ve tried everything, I’ve cleaned the sensors, I’ve pulled and reinstalled them, I’ve checked fuses. They clearly work but only intermittently, is this a paint job problem? Was the paint applied too heavily on the sensors and is that causing the problem? Anything helps!
 

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I have a 2011 CTS Coupe, park assist has always worked in the past. Recently I noticed that the rear bumper wasn’t the same color as the rest of the car, before I bought it someone must’ve had an accident and did a pretty bad job repainting it. I brought it to get 3-staged painted and it looks great.

Now when I turn the car on and go into reverse I get the service park assist message, none of the sensors work at this point. When I clear it and drive the car, the next time I go into reverse all the sensors work fine and it’s like nothing ever happened. If the car sits for the rest of the day or overnight, I’ll get the message again when I start it up the next day.

I’ve tried everything, I’ve cleaned the sensors, I’ve pulled and reinstalled them, I’ve checked fuses. They clearly work but only intermittently, is this a paint job problem? Was the paint applied too heavily on the sensors and is that causing the problem? Anything helps!
Too thick paint can be a factor with sensor operation, but I would think if that was the cause the sensors would be inop each time. You may have a poor/damaged sensor connection at the harness or a sensor that is in the early stages of failure.

You can easily check the sensors for proper operation.
1. Get someone you trust to put the vehicle in accessory mode and shift to reverse while holding their foot on the brake. You can also block the wheels for added protection.
2. Put your ear to each sensor. When they are working, you will hear a faint, repetitive ticking noise. A quiet spot will make it easier to hear them.
 

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'14 CTS-V LongRoof; '16 ATS-V Sedan,' 04 Trailblazer 4x4; '10 CTS LongRoof gone but never forgotten
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My first thought was paint. Second thought was bad connections.
 

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Discussion Starter · #4 ·
Too thick paint can be a factor with sensor operation, but I would think if that was the cause the sensors would be inop each time. You may have a poor/damaged sensor connection at the harness or a sensor that is in the early stages of failure.

You can easily check the sensors for proper operation.
1. Get someone you trust to put the vehicle in accessory mode and shift to reverse while holding their foot on the brake. You can also block the wheels for added protection.
2. Put your ear to each sensor. When they are working, you will hear a faint, repetitive ticking noise. A quiet spot will make it easier to hear them.
I'll definitely do this as my first step. I'm thinking the shop might've damaged the sensors when pulling them out and maybe it isn't a paint job problem (it is a collision shop from a dealer, I can back up their paint work). Possibly a carelessness thing when removing problem and could've caused some damage. Like I mentioned, this never happened before and only after I got the car back, so who knows.

Connections are good as far as I know, but I'm not too keen on removing the bumper to get to them. I'll have to stick my hands up there and try it blind first.
 

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I'll definitely do this as my first step. I'm thinking the shop might've damaged the sensors when pulling them out and maybe it isn't a paint job problem (it is a collision shop from a dealer, I can back up their paint work). Possibly a carelessness thing when removing problem and could've caused some damage. Like I mentioned, this never happened before and only after I got the car back, so who knows.

Connections are good as far as I know, but I'm not too keen on removing the bumper to get to them. I'll have to stick my hands up there and try it blind first.
How long has it been since it's out of the shop? Have you contacted them? What a PITA!
 

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Discussion Starter · #6 ·
How long has it been since it's out of the shop? Have you contacted them? What a PITA!
It's been back in my hands since February 26th. I tried to diagnose it myself but after I couldn't pinpoint it I texted the manager to see if he could scan it or figure it out. As a courtesy when I picked the car up, he had his workers clear any stored codes on the car with a Tech II, there were "system open circuit" codes on every sensor, but they still work on and off, so I'm hoping that didn't make something screw up or maybe clearing the stored codes brought it back to life.

I talked to him again today and told me to keep looking, but I've been looking for a week. Clams that if I don't have a starting off point to diagnose that they won't do anything different than what I can do, so that's where I'm at currently.
 

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So, to cut to the chase, you're screwed.
 

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Discussion Starter · #8 ·
Mmmm not yet I don't think. When I get home this weekend I'm going to throw it on the lift and poke around, see if there is something I missed. If there really isn't anything, there is a place near me called Randy's cadillac. Been around forever and only services cadillacs, they charge much less than the dealer and can pinpoint it for me. Hopefully I don't have to get to that point but it is quite frustrating that I have to spend money because of the collision shop's work.
 

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The dealer should stand behind this, especially if told the system worked before the repaint.
 

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Discussion Starter · #10 ·
The dealer should stand behind this, especially if told the system worked before the repaint.
I agree, but the dealer that I know the manager at is a honda/acura dealer. I only brought them the car to do body work and paint work. I'll be giving them a call sometime tomorrow to see what they are going to do for me. If the sensors need replacing, those are $150+ each and I'm not going to foot the bill on something that worked before I dropped the car off.

Just the module is almost $100 used and probably needs to be programmed to the car as well...
 

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I have a related question. The parking assist hasn't worked since I bought the car. I asked a couple of questions in another thread (which I can't find now) and Long told me the LEDs in the back seat should all be showing red. They never have.

So I actually crawled into the back seat for the fourth time today. There ARE no LEDs in the back seat. The car has the sensors, and the software clearly thinks the system exists, it tells me every time I start the car.

What happened to my car?
 

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I agree, but the dealer that I know the manager at is a honda/acura dealer. I only brought them the car to do body work and paint work. I'll be giving them a call sometime tomorrow to see what they are going to do for me. If the sensors need replacing, those are $150+ each and I'm not going to foot the bill on something that worked before I dropped the car off.

Just the module is almost $100 used and probably needs to be programmed to the car as well...
You can get those sensors for around $10, you just need to know where to look.
I've replaced two on my Tahoe with factory units painted to match. If it comes down to being a sensor, let me know.
 

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Why would the bumper being replaced eliminate the LEDs from the headliner? There isn't even a hole where they might have been.
Other way around, think about it for a minute.
 

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I'm so confused!
 

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Discussion Starter · #17 ·
You can get those sensors for around $10, you just need to know where to look.
I've replaced two on my Tahoe with factory units painted to match. If it comes down to being a sensor, let me know.
I'll diagnose more over the weekend, where can you find sensors that are $10? Carid? I'll definitely look into that as I got the paint from the manager with clear coat, could just do it myself at this point.
 

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Other way around, think about it for a minute.
If I understand you correctly, you're saying a bumper with sensors was put on a car without the system. Which might be possible, if it weren't for the car saying "Service Park Assist" every time I start it. Next theory, please?
 

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Oh, and my other question which came up in trying to deal with this car today. Why isn't there a fuse for the URPA? Or did I just forget how to read after 54 years?
 

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These sensors can be very sensitive to the thickness of the paint that covers them. The rule of thumb is to never repaint them or even add clearcoat. They should have been removed or masked for a bumper paint shoot. As far as we know, the OP's sensors may have been repainted twice now - and that would be a definite no-no.

Sporadically working means that the system is still functioning but it "gets confused" every once in a while - probably dependent on what else is operating in the car, voltage levels, etc. Best bet is to spring for new sensors - they're cheap and easy to install. Aggravating though.
 
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