Why did my safety system malfunction?

This is a Subaru logo on display at the Pittsburgh International Auto Show in Pittsburgh Thursday, Feb. 11, 2016. —AP Photo/Gene J. Puskar

It was raining very hard on a recent trip, and I got a warning that the advanced safety system shut down. Did the system malfunction when it got wet?

Q. My new Subaru has EyeSight, an advanced safety system, designed to help prevent collisions and keep me and my family safer. On a recent trip, it was raining very hard, and I got a warning that the system shut down. On the return trip, everything was fine. Did the system malfunction when it got wet? I’m afraid it may not work when I need it the most.

A. Like many newer cars, the pre-collision system uses a system of sensors, cameras, or a combination of both. I have driven many Subaru vehicles in all kinds of weather and found that the advanced safety features are not perfect in all weather conditions. Not surprisingly, snow, heavy rain, and even very bright sun could be problematic if the cameras get covered. There is nothing wrong with your car because these pre-collision systems have limitations. They get better over time, but no system takes the place of an fully engaged driver.


John Paul is AAA Northeast’s Car Doctor. He has over 40 years of experience in the automotive business and is an ASE certified master technician. Email your car question to jpaul@aaanortheast.com.

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