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P0617 is a diagnostic trouble code (DTC) for "Starter Relay Circuit High". This can happen for multiple reasons and a mechanic needs to diagnose the specific cause for this code to be triggered in your situation. Our certified mobile mechanics can come to your home or office to perform the Check Engine Light diagnostic. Once we are able to diagnose the problem, you will be provided with an upfront quote for the recommended fix and receive $20.00 off as a credit towards the repair. All our repairs are backed by our 12-month / 12,000-mile warranty.
The P0617 code indicates that there has been an abnormally high voltage reading detected by the PCM from the starter relay circuit.
The starter relay is part of the system that activates and engages the starter motor. Vehicles that utilize starter relays also require signals from the battery, ignition switch, and other components, to operate properly. The starter relay collects these signals, and sends an output signal to the PCM. If the PCM receives a signal from the starter relay circuit that is higher than the manufacturer’s specifications for the current drive conditions, the code P0617 will be stored.
The most likely cause of a high voltage reading in the starter relay circuit is a faulty ignition switch. However, because the starter relay relies on several components to accurately determine voltage output, there could be any number of other causes, including:
The symptoms related to the P0617 code could be almost anything, from an illuminated Check Engine lamp, to a complete no-start condition.
After verifying the P0617 code with an OBD-II code, technicians should begin with a visual inspection of all electrical components, including wiring and connectors. Anything that is damaged, corroded, loose, shorted, open, or disconnected should be repaired or replaced. Always be sure to clear the code and test the system after each potential repair is attempted, to be sure that no unnecessary repairs are performed.
If repairing the electrical components did not stop the code from reappearing in the PCM, the next step is to inspect the battery cables and battery. If the battery is fully charged, perform a voltage test on each of the components related to the issue, checking the readings against the manufacturer’s specifications until the faulty component is discovered.
Most often, technicians report that replacing the starter motor without performing a thorough diagnosis will cause the most issues later on. It’s far more likely that the starter motor is operating correctly, and that the electrical components are to blame.
This trouble code represents a very serious issue that should be repaired immediately. If there is an issue within the system that starts the vehicle, it will eventually lead to an inoperable state, even if the vehicle is currently able to start.
There are many ways that a technician can address a P0617 code detection. They include:
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