Changed headlight bulbs and now car wont start


Asked by Apr 11, 2013 at 09:03 AM about the 2003 Mazda MPV LX

Question type: Maintenance & Repair

He was able to replace the bulbs fairly quickly, I paid and attempted to leave. The car wouldnt start!! It cranks and cranks but wont start. Mechanic says its not getting fire to the engine. He seems to think its the security. Is there anything that can be disturbed while changing a simple bulb? Has anyone ever had this happen to them. We have taken off the cables in hopes to reset it but that didnt work either. Help!!

69 Answers


There should not be anything that can be disturbed when changing a bulb. The guy is a mechanic so he should know if the battery is good. The no fire condition can be scanned to see what failed.

3 of 3 people found this helpful.

if security you can try manually lock doors ,unlock doors a few times.maby will reset


Battery if only few months old. The terminals are fine, had a conditioner on them. Is the factory keyless entry and system that can disable the ignition? It just seen to churn & churn

2 of 2 people found this helpful.

How do you check a fire scan tenspeed

2 of 2 people found this helpful.

Put a scanner on the OBDII port under the steering wheel. That will read the codes in the computer. If anything is wrong, a trouble code will be displayed. -- You need power to the coils to fires the plugs. You also need a crank position sensor to tell it when to fire. It could be a security issue. I don't know if the Mazda has a security system that shuts the ignition down.


The codes on the computer say n/a. I always thought the key fob was just a lock and unlock system. I didn't know it was a security system. The mechanic is puzzled. Especially since this is first time it had never started for me. I would understand a crank sensor but it should show that code. Any ideas on the N/a code result

1 of 1 people found this helpful.

Would the fuel sensor in the fuel tank do this? I know that is going bad to. My gas hand fluctuates some times, not all the time

1 of 1 people found this helpful.

no fuel problem, check fusible link in box under hood 1 inch tall 1/2 x 1/2 plastic plug in, im guessing the 30 amp ,usually white plastic square amongst others


Would this not show up in the codes on the computer???

1 of 1 people found this helpful.

I do see one of these on the outside of the fuse box. And its very near to the headlight plug location

2 of 2 people found this helpful.

your instructions in the owner's manual doesn't cover something like this, 2003---not enough time for the owner's manual to get lost, probably is in the glove box, battery is good, not sure what jim is getting at with his fuse, but that mechanic says it's a security thing, but did not offer a solution, tsk...tsk will start researching this now---

1 of 1 people found this helpful.

if you could find your way to an OBD trouble scanner, we'd know, you're absolutely right, there's something that just ain't right...these things are touchy and could have been something the hapless greasemonkey unplugged unwittingly, but would appear in your trouble codes such as P1004 which we could look up to get a clue~

1 of 1 people found this helpful.

Ive never had an issue with the factory keyless entry. This was instantaneous. No issues led up to this. no missing, no not starts, no noises. i just had a blown low beam headlight on the drivers side.

1 of 1 people found this helpful.

Still looking for more data on the LX model....give me some more time...

n/a means not connected-


what does a N/A code mean? no issues or no read out?

1 of 1 people found this helpful.

....verrrry suspicious!

not connected. not applicable-

gotta say something. n/a = not applicable, which- of course it's applicable, what else? some people's kids, I tell ya-

will stick with you until we come up with an answer-

going to pull on DavidH25's ear to see if he can help us, he's a good man, and happens to be No1 guru-


Thanks. If he unknowingly unplugged or loosened this fusible link, would that make the screwy codes and no start?

3 of 3 people found this helpful.

yes yes yes, but everything would go dead.

don't think that it's a handy little white box like 7jimmy7 said, I've always known them to be a link (or length of wire), that's old school (93-96) when I was a mechanic. every day is a new chance to find out what I did not know.


i have power to inside radio and such when turned to the ACC switch. even when i crank it over the O/D off light blicks, which is weird. Trying to give ya every bit of info i can

1 of 1 people found this helpful.

thinking....thinking just need more time to research this-


There is a longer fuse box with a small box beside it, both black. There are a few wires coming out with a white fuse connector with a 30 fuse in it. its wires run down in the same direction that the mechanic had to reach to change the bulb



is the thing with the 30 fuse in it the fusible link

H25 knows now, he put a couple o stuffs in my hands tooo, we both have our hands full, but because you're just sittin' there tryin' to hack it out...stranded, you get top priority in my book- still researching this security problem but haven't found much on the LX model in the forums I've researched~

I am researching this before I post...take just a few minutes..I have an idea but want to make sure..BRB

What I can say, without reading all 32 answers, one of the guys might have already said this but.. yes... it's way too much coincidence that suddenly it won't start after a mechanic changes headlights.

DavidH25 to the rescue!!


So whats the cause DavidH25. Fusible link or crank sensor?

1 of 1 people found this helpful.

How's the crank sensor suddenly going to happen? This one would put you out of business immediately. it'd crank with no ignition going on~

If it is the 'security' he should know how and re set it for you~~ free. But: The powertrain control module (PCM), or engine control unit (ECU), is a circuit board computer that stores information. The PCM will trigger the indicator light to illuminate to inform you there may be an issue with your car. Disconnect the "Negative" terminal clamp to your battery. . Sit in the driver's seat. Push down and release the brake pedal five times consecutively. Reconnect the "Negative" terminal clamp on your battery. If that is not it, I'm not finished either way

1 of 1 people found this helpful.

I will try. Thanks

If it's not the passkey .... I am going with fusable link. Shandi what you wrote about an hour ago, you are on to's right where he was working. Hold on...

This is how to change headlights in your car: when he did, if he touched some wires together while hot, there goes that fuse. If he didn't use the right procedure to change them... Park the car on a flat surface, turn off the engine and apply the parking brake. Pop the hood and look behind the burned out headlight. Remove the plastic covering to gain access to the interior of the headlight assembly. Unplug the cord coming out of the headlight assembly that connects the headlight to the Mazda's electrical system. Remove the old bulb. Simply press the tab on the wire clip holding it in place and pull the bulb out. Insert the replacement H1 bulb. There will be a flat edge to the base of the bulb; make sure that is facing upward when inserted into the socket. Secure it with the wire clip. Plug the connector back in and replace the plastic cover

1 of 1 people found this helpful.

Shandi I hope I was of some help..what I want to hear is Horray it worked! I keep going back to the same thought..the mechanic screwed it up and should fix it, Just too much coincidence as I said before. I stated from scratch, I did not read tenspeeds answers, didn't take the time... I am going to do that now.

Yep, N/A is the scanner is not getting a signal, or it might as well say 'i don't know" on the scanner screen,,,and tenspeed's first post, 40 posts back is the heart of the whole thing.

Notice how he spells out what the PCM and ECU gotta know what these things are if you're gonna carry any weight around here- once again thanks David, you're a godsend.

Thanks for the ego builder Judge, really. Only problem is I don't think I was much help other than explaining them. I do paste things sometimes and flat plagiarize other people's words but not that one..and acronyms have a place but if you don't know what a particular one is it's no good to the person seeking help


I will get the mechanic to check this fuse case on the outside of the box. I will also do the brake test as DaidH25 suggested. The mechanic was fed up last night and told me to take it to a dealership. Thanks for the spelled out directions. I will attempt to change them again myself, next time!!! I will keep you posted. Keep thinking though guys, we may be close

We are close indeed. and WILL get to the bottom of this. I have a visual Shandi, the guy raising his hands in the air...says #$^%$# it take it to the dealer..


That is about right David


so the fuse by the box if pulled loose or blown would give the computer a N?A code?

This is off topic, just a story that this thread reminded me of. A woman (17 years old) asked her boyfriend to fix her headlights and he said he needed $50 to get the headlight fluid. He said Halogen fluid is more expensive than 'regular' headlight fluid. When she told her Dad this he forbade her to ever see the guy again. And made him give the 50 bucks back. But she didn't know.. true story


I wouldnt have even fallen for that one!!!!!

you're thinking if it's a fuse, you might just be able to replace it and off you'd go then...what amperage? 30?

again with the n/a? it's not applicable~


I understand that its a not applicable! But what Im asking is would this fuse cause that readout?

akin to yellin' at a deaf guy.

it's not reading? something isn't gettin' connected in tinker-town, If I was doin' it would be certain that the unit is plugged in, just can't be, this n/a business, means wasn't plugged in~

There are two scenarios possible, One is that the OBD will store the codes and if the faults were stored before the fuse went, they will still be there and read on the scanner. But if the fuse went first the OBD never got the codes. So the answer is maybe..sorry 'bout does not answer you I realize..

still stuck in the parking lot of the Hy-Vee?


Im taking it to another mechanic that's local on Monday. See if her will lol at it. The other is done with it.

Yay, you could print out this entire score, so he would not step into the same dog piles~


have you tried disconnecting the battery


Several times Raleigh


Can you guys tell me how to reset the anti theft????

1 of 1 people found this helpful.

I would reset my ECM, do this by turning key to on position with a/c on then remove positive battery cable, wait 30 sec. the turn off key and replace battery cable. Good luck with it.<<<

here's another: Turn ignition to the ac position, open all doors, turn key to the off position, remove keys, close all doors and close using key not remote. this resets system


Air condoning on Judge Roy, referring to the first option

1 of 1 people found this helpful.

yay...kinda almost worked...sorta?


Who had bets on the blown fuel pump relay?????

good one. no one did~


check for a 10amp fuse labeled u/h relay. that same thing happened to me. if you must attempt getting around a Passlock Security issue. check out this out

2 of 2 people found this helpful.

Was this problem every resolved? I just changed the injector coils and spark plugs for my 2003 Mazda MPV LX, and I'm now experiencing similar symptoms: Cranking but engine doesn't start. O/D light blinks. Belts rotate slowly. Thought it might be a vacuum leak but I've checked all the connections and hoses. Tried jumping the car too.

1 of 1 people found this helpful.

Your Answer

Add photo

Related Questions


Looking for a Used MPV in your area?

CarGurus has 323 nationwide MPV listings starting at $2,500.


Search Mazda MPV Questions

Mazda MPV Experts

#1 bobbyleveille
Reputation 1,020
#2 Gary John
Gary John
Reputation 490
#3 Michelle Ann
Michelle Ann
Reputation 320
View All

Related Models For Sale

Used Honda Odyssey
213 Great Deals out of 20,908 listings starting at $1,900
Used Toyota Sienna
224 Great Deals out of 29,669 listings starting at $1,495
Used Dodge Grand Caravan
168 Great Deals out of 26,542 listings starting at $2,300
Used Chrysler Town & Country
276 Great Deals out of 16,152 listings starting at $900
Used Nissan Quest
65 Great Deals out of 2,760 listings starting at $2,499
Used Mazda MAZDA6
130 Great Deals out of 15,770 listings starting at $1,750
Used Toyota Camry
1,101 Great Deals out of 90,760 listings starting at $1,599
Used Kia Sedona
113 Great Deals out of 8,967 listings starting at $2,200
Used Honda CR-V
919 Great Deals out of 59,346 listings starting at $1,990
Used Honda Accord
947 Great Deals out of 77,739 listings starting at $899
Used Honda Civic
812 Great Deals out of 88,108 listings starting at $1,299
Used Honda Pilot
389 Great Deals out of 22,307 listings starting at $1,500
Used Nissan Altima
1,153 Great Deals out of 79,677 listings starting at $500

Used Cars For Sale

2006 Mazda MPV LX For Sale
27 listings starting at $2,500

Content submitted by Users is not endorsed by CarGurus, does not express the opinions of CarGurus, and should not be considered reviewed, screened, or approved by CarGurus. Please refer to CarGurus Terms of Use.