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I have a hack for you! Blinking miles on dashboard fix.

4049 Views 17 Replies 5 Participants Last post by  Electric Tire Shredder
So. my 500e had this issue like a millions of 500 (including the non electric). The miles on the dashboard started blinking. This is (supposedly) because the dashboard lost it power or something related to that. Time, partial miles, etc all was ok, just started blinking. 12v Battery is NEW, not like new, is a AGM Energizer that I changed 2 months ago. I know. most people say that disconnect the 12v battery and connect it back on, that "should, may be" fix it. I had horrible issues disconnecting the 12v battery so, I just learned live with the blinking odometer. Until.... one of my brake lights went of... and uala! stopped blinking. hahaha.

So. if you have a blinking odometer, take the brake bulb out, hit the brake, error of a brake light burned will come up but the odometer will stop blinking, but the bulb back on. Done :D

Also. anybody noticed that the 500e (at leas on my two models 2014, and 2015). will be inverted? it said left bulb, it even showed a picture of the car and marking the left light. but the actual light that went off was on the right. This happened to me on both cars :D
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Yes. My left brake light died & the display showed it as right, then the right died & it showed left. At least 2 others reported that, so maybe all or at least most 500Es are like that.

Flashing odometer is supposed to need "proxy align" that I don't know how to do. I DO know how to remove & replace a brake bulb, so thank you for the great hack!

12V disconnect isn't supposed to fix THAT, but it can fix several other glitches. Some users report issues when the 12V dies & is replaced but I had no issues when I ran mine down on purpose at least twice OR when I disconnected it about 20 different times when I had a 1/20-size 3Ah motorbike battery with a disconnect switch so it wouldn't die when I was parked unplugged for more than a few days:
Automotive tire Hood Motor vehicle Automotive design Bumper
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UPDATE: Hack in post #1 above has failed in 2 out of 3 cases:
  1. @deftoner reported that it worked.
  2. It didn't work for the next owner reporting. I think it was @Brettucks
  3. It didn't work for me. I disconnected the left light, turned the car on, pressed the brake, got the bulb warning, reconnected, warning gone, odometer still flashing. I repeated on the right, also with no luck.

So I ordered the ~$150 worth of tools to do a proxy align: $140 OBDLink MX+ & $10 Yellow Adapter cable.
I guess if you use the PC version of Alfaobd you only need a yellow adapter cable for the proxy align
Both my PC version of AlfaOBD AND my Android version require a yellow adapter cable for:

Airbag
Hands-free
Body computer (for "proxy align")
Climate control
Instrument panel
Parking
Radio
Tire control.

For both versions, no yellow adapter is needed for:
ABS
Engine
Electronic shifter
Steering
Battery management
Security gateway module.
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UPDATE: Hack in post #1 above has failed in 2 out of 3 cases:
  1. @deftoner reported that it worked.
  2. It didn't work for the next owner reporting. I think it was @Brettucks
  3. It didn't work for me. I disconnected the left light, turned the car on, pressed the brake, got the bulb warning, reconnected, warning gone, odometer still flashing. I repeated on the right, also with no luck.

So I ordered the ~$150 worth of tools to do a proxy align: $140 OBDLink MX+ & $10 Yellow Adapter cable.
Just an update. My left taillight went out while odometer blinking 3/23( it said right side). After replacing no change to blinking ( it continued).
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I’m working on this issue myself. I do have a daytime running light issue, and rpms reading incorrectly. I’m going to order the obdlink+ thing for $150 to use my phone instead of laptop. Hoping for the best here.
If you have a blinking odometer & want to try the standard proxy alignment fix, you also need a Yellow Adapter.

Plus, your Android phone (required for AlfaOBD app) might work with a $50 cable & sub-$10 USB adapter, instead of the $150 unit.

Check item 6 here:

If you have a blinking odometer & want to try the standard proxy alignment fix, you also need a Yellow Adapter.

Plus, your Android phone (required for AlfaOBD app) might work with a $50 cable & sub-$10 USB adapter, instead of the $150 unit.

Check item 6 here:

Okay cool. I added the yellow adapter to list and I can give the $50 unit a try if it works with an android phone
If you have a blinking odometer & want to try the standard proxy alignment fix, you also need a Yellow Adapter.

Plus, your Android phone (required for AlfaOBD app) might work with a $50 cable & sub-$10 USB adapter, instead of the $150 unit.

Check item 6 here:

That was a bit confusing for a newb like myself. I did seem to find the yellow adapter, the alfaobd cable, and the android adapter. I imagine the alfaobd comes with it’s own software so this should be the total cost for everything correct? No additional software cost? Thank you so much again. I love my car and was just going to deal with the daytime light problem and flashing odometer. However my rpm’s being inaccurate or not working is a bit too much to ignore. Crossing my fingers here. My mom had one of the old Fiat spiders as a youth. She said fiat stood for “fix it again Tony” lol 😂
  1. Make SURE you get a proper yellow adapter, not just a plain extension that happens to be yellow colored: Click the link by "Yellow Adapter" in item 6 at the link I posted above.
  2. To check if your phone will work, follow the instructions in item 6.

Or if you want to use Bluetooth, the $81 OBDLink LX is also listed as compatible*. For the AlfaOBD app, your phone still has to be an Android, but you can get a cheap one for about $35 on Amazon & just leave it charging in the car. No service needed, just download the app on WiFi & then connect to the car with the cable or Bluetooth.

*
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That was a bit confusing for a newb like myself.
Sorry. I should have just copied item 6, like this:

"Proxy Alignment" (pic below) will usually fix a flashing odometer. Use the $49 AlfaOBD, a $13 "Yellow Adapter" (click here) plus either 1 of the following 2 options:
  • $50 OBDLink SX USB cable (click here) if you carry a charged-up laptop in the car, or add ~$10 for Amazon USB OTG adapter to fit your phone or tablet, after checking it's compatible, with the free "USB OTG Checker" app.
  • $81 OBDLink LX Bluetooth (or $126 MX+). Prices incl. 10% off if you sign up to the free obdlink.com newsletter.
Click to enlarge:

Shown with MX+, but LX & SX are also listed as compatible.
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I just checked, & the Yellow Adapter that I have is currently available if you click here.

If you already ordered a different one, make sure it shows the adaptive connections, as follows:

  • Pin 6 on the diagnostic tool end of the adaptor is electrically connected to pin 1 on the car end of the adaptor.
  • Pin 14 on the diagnostic tool end of the adaptor is electrically connected to pin 9 on the car end of the adaptor.
& sometimes also:
  • Pin 7 on the diagnostic tool end of the adaptor is electrically connected to pin 12 on the car end of the adaptor.
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Sorry. I should have just copied item 6, like this:

"Proxy Alignment" (pic below) will usually fix a flashing odometer. Use the $49 AlfaOBD, a $13 "Yellow Adapter" (click here) plus either 1 of the following 2 options:
  • $50 OBDLink SX USB cable (click here) if you carry a charged-up laptop in the car, or add ~$10 for Amazon USB OTG adapter to fit your phone or tablet, after checking it's compatible, with the free "USB OTG Checker" app.
  • $81 OBDLink LX Bluetooth (or $126 MX+). Prices incl. 10% off if you sign up to the free obdlink.com newsletter.
Click to enlarge:
View attachment 115518
Shown with MX+, but LX & SX are also listed as compatible.
Super great information here. I really really appreciate this 👍 no reason I can’t fix it with this info.
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That was a bit confusing for a newb like myself. I did seem to find the yellow adapter, the alfaobd cable...
AlfaOBD is the software, not the cable. For proxy alignment you need the $49 lifetime membership version of the app, available at Google Play Store (or AlfaOBD.com if you want the Windows version for a laptop)

...and the android adapter.
Aside from the ~$13 Yellow Adapter, the only other adapter you would need is if you go with the $50 cable (instead of $81-$150 Bluetooth) AND you want to plug it into a phone instead of a laptop.

In that case, you need to adapt the cable's USB-A plug to the phone's USB-C socket. It might even work with a Micro-USB, but with ANY phone, you need to check that it's compatible, with the free "USB OTG Checker" app, also from Google Play Store.

I imagine the alfaobd comes with it’s own software so this should be the total cost for everything correct? No additional software cost?
AlfaOBD is the software. It is the only software needed, but its free "demo" version won't do a proxy alignment. For that, you need the $49 lifetime membership.

After reading this, maybe now my post #12 above will make sense.
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In other words, to use an OTG-compatible Android device, you need 4 items:
  • $49 AlfaOBD app
  • $50 OBDLink SX USB cable*
  • $13 Yellow OBD Adapter that's not just a yellow-colored extension (yes, those do exist :mad:)
  • $10 USB adapter to make the above cable fit your Android*




* If you don't have/get an OTG-compatible device, instead of the USB cable & USB adapter, you'd just need an $81 OBDLink LX Bluetooth (price includes 10% off by signing up for the free obdlink.com newsletter)
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My mom had one of the old Fiat spiders as a youth. She said fiat stood for “fix it again Tony” lol 😂
Not any more. The 500e is very reliable.

Mine still drove fine even when it got a little computer glitch that made the brakes feel weird below 7mph, which was fixed with just a 30-second 12V disconnect.

It also drove fine with a flashing odometer, & also easily fixed for under $123. It cost me $253 because I hadn't learned that the $81 OBDLink LX is also approved, let alone that the $50 SX works with a sub-$10 OTG adapter :rolleyes:.
no reason I can’t fix it with this info.
I keep forgetting 2 important points, so I added them to the end of the sequence so I won't have to remember next time:
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