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Service Driver Assist System Message: Causes & How To Fix

When encountering a service driver assist system message for the first time, many questions might flood your mind. You may want to know what it means and if it signals an immediate danger. Importantly, understanding what triggers this problem and how to fix it becomes a priority. Drawing from personal experience and expertise, the message often appears without a clear cause, leaving drivers curious and concerned about the safety of their vehicle.

Modern cars are equipped with advanced driver assistance systems (ADAS), designed to provide complete control over the vehicle and increase the safety and comfort of driving. These systems are made of electronically controlled parts that can sometimes malfunction. It’s crucial to resolve these issues promptly to ensure the safety of not only the people within the car but also other drivers on the road. Whether it’s a lane departure detection, drowsiness detection, or an automatic brake system that engages brakes on the driver’s behalf quickly enough during an emergency, each feature helps in avoiding collisions and alerting drivers to possible risks or mistakes. Ultimately, these systems aid in saving lives by preventing incidents involving moving vehicles.

What Does the Service Driver Assist System Message Mean?

Encountering a service driver assist system message on your dashboard can initially be perplexing. This message typically signifies a malfunction within the Advanced Driver Assist System (ADAS) of your vehicle. The ADAS is a cornerstone of modern vehicles, equipped with sophisticated technologies that refer to a variety of control functionalities. These systems are designed to ease your driving experience, making it more comfortable and safer. From lane departure detection to drowsiness monitoring, and obstacle location finding, each feature aims to alert drivers to errors or hazards, enhancing the safety of the driving environment.

The message could be triggered by anything from electrical components faults to issues with auxiliary functions like route planning. Given the complexity of these systems, which can vary based on the model, make, and manufacture year of the car, understanding the cause can be challenging. Continued use of a vehicle without addressing these warnings can lead to degraded performance and safety. Therefore, it’s essential to undertake occasional maintenance to keep the system in top shape, ensuring that your vehicle remains a reliable guardian on the road, regardless of its complexity or simplicity.

What Causes the Service Driver Assist System Message?

The service driver assist system message is often triggered by a few common causes, ranging from broken or shorted haptic seat motor circuits to software errors. Although it’s rare, failing steering wheels can also result in this message appearing on your dashboard. Each of these issues points to underlying problems within the system that require immediate attention to maintain the safety and efficiency of your vehicle. Understanding the details behind these causes is crucial for drivers seeking to ensure their vehicle remains responsive and secure on the road, highlighting the importance of regular maintenance and prompt response to any system alerts.

Possible Cause #1: Broken or Shorted Haptic Seat Motor Circuit

A broken or shorted haptic seat motor circuit is a frequent cause behind the service driver assist system message. In the driver’s seat cushion, there are typically two haptic motors – one on the right side and the other on the left. These motors receive output voltage from the seat memory control module, allowing them to run and vibrate to alert the driver through feedback in specific situations. However, with continued use, these circuits may break or short-circuit, leading to the activation of the message. The wire breakage of these haptic motors is among the most common causes for concern, signaling a problem that is often challenging to fix. Drivers may mostly see this notification without any corresponding Diagnostic Trouble Code (DTC), although codes like B172E or B172F may sometimes be present in the Seat Memory Control Module, indicating an intermittent short-circuit has triggered the issue.

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Solving this problem can be often challenging, as it requires precise diagnostics to identify the broken or shorted components within the circuit. The seat memory control module plays a pivotal role in this function, providing the necessary voltage for the motors to operate. When these circuits fail or have a short circuit, it disrupts the normal operation, leading to the service driver assist system message appearing on your dashboard. This highlights the importance of regular maintenance and the need for a keen eye on alerts that could indicate such problems, ensuring that your vehicle remains in optimal shape and continues to warn you of potential hazards in a timely manner.

Possible Cause #2: An Issue with the Software Part

While it’s rare, some people have encountered the service driver assist system message without a noticeable system malfunction, leading experts to think that a software error could be at fault. Unlike cases of wiring breakage, where the problem is more tangible, those suffering from this issue said that no codes appeared after a DTC check, indicating that the malfunction might not be hardware-related. Users who have seen this warning without experiencing any apparent malfunctions describe it as a glitch in the system’s software, facing an issue that reported diagnostics fail to produce any leads on. This scenario underscores the complexity of diagnosing service driver assist system messages, where not all problems are directly tied to physical components but may also stem from software anomalies.

Possible Cause #3: Faulty Steering Wheel

A faulty steering wheel is a rare problem but has happened to enough people to warrant attention, indicating it could occur regardless of the car’s age. This issue can trigger the service driver assist system message not just due to a wiring issue or a fault in the haptic seat motors but because the steering wheel itself, responsible for directing and controlling the car, becomes unreliable. Sometimes, this malfunction causes the ADAS to detect an unstable steering mechanism and alert the driver with a flash on the dashboard. Whether it’s a Buick Envision or an Escalade, the message can appear as a direct result of steering wheel problems, emphasizing the need for drivers to check this essential component if they encounter the service driver assist system notice. This scenario underlines the steering wheel’s critical role in vehicle safety and functionality, showcasing how even seemingly minor issues can significantly impact the system’s overall performance.

Possible Cause #4. Faulty Module

A faulty adaptive cruise control module represents an unusual but potential reason for the service driver assist system notice to light up on your dashboard. This module is one of two crucial components utilized by the driver assistance system, with one located beneath the front bumper cover and the other behind the rear. They play a vital role in controlling various functions, including adaptive lighting and providing collision warning alerts. When these modules malfunction, they can trigger the service notice to appear, affecting vehicles across brands like Chevy, GMC, and Cadillac. It’s important to keep an eye on such malfunctions, as they directly impact the vehicle’s ability to assist and alert the driver to potential dangers, underscoring the significance of these systems in maintaining safety and driving convenience.

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How to Fix Service Driver Assist System? 6 Easy Ways

To fix the service driver assist system, start by inspecting for visible damage on components. A simple reset can be done by disconnecting the battery for a short period. Updating the vehicle’s software might solve the problem if it’s software-related. Calibrating sensors and cameras ensures they function correctly. Check the adaptive cruise control module for any faults and replace if necessary. If issues persist, seek professional help from a technician skilled in advanced driver assistance systems. These steps aim to maintain your vehicle’s safety and efficiency.

Diagnosis To Identify The Issue

Diagnosing the root cause of a service driver assist system issue is crucial for a quick resolution. By inserting a scan tool into the car’s OBD II port, you can access various error codes displayed on the screen. Each error code is a critical clue, indicating specific parts that are the source of the problem. This method allows for a targeted approach, focusing on the particular parts identified by the codes, streamlining the troubleshooting process and ensuring a more efficient fix.

Inspect the Hepatic Seat Motor Circuit

To inspect the haptic seat motor circuit, start by opening the seat to access the haptic motors. Examine them for any damaged or visibly worn-out wires, focusing on the wiring pigtail close to the seat motor as a probable issue. If damaged, the motor will likely need replacement. A common but risky method for fixing pigtail wiring is soldering the wires together. While cost-effective, this approach poses hazards and may lead to more complex problems in the future. If wire breaks are not visible, utilizing an OBD II scanner to run a DTC check on the Memory Seat Module (MSM) is advisable, which controls the left and right motors.

Should the motor not operate after the DTC check, it indicates the need for further troubleshooting. Repairing the pigtail wiring might seem like a budget-friendly solution; however, it’s imperative to consider the long-term implications. If error codes are absent, direct your attention to the MSM and Active Safety Control Module for a more in-depth analysis. Following the repair process thoroughly is crucial, yet if the problem resolves before all steps are completed, further actions may be unnecessary, streamlining the fix and ensuring the service driver assist system operates efficiently.

Eliminate Incorrect Codes

To eliminate incorrect codes within the service driver assist system, it’s essential to first acknowledge that error codes can sometimes appear randomly. By clearing all codes using a diagnostic scanner and then driving the vehicle for a period, you can observe which, if any, codes come back. This process helps in determining whether the codes were mistakenly generated or if they signify an actual problem. If no codes come back, it suggests a temporary glitch; however, if they reappear, it indicates necessary fixes are required to address the underlying issues effectively.

Inspect the Software Part

To inspect the software part of the service driver assist system, start by disconnecting the battery’s negative connection for about 15 minutes. This reset can help clear any temporary glitches. After reconnecting the battery, use an OBD II scan tool to clear any engine fault codes that may have been triggered during the system’s downtime. It’s also necessary to reset all your settings, including the memory seat module. Follow the instructions on the digital information center meticulously until the process is complete. If the issue persists after these steps, it suggests that the cause might be more complex than a simple software glitch, requiring further investigation into the system’s hardware or deeper software issues.

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Replace the Steering Wheel

If the steering wheel is identified as the cause of the problem with your service driver assist system, a replacement might be necessary. Should your vehicle still be under warranty, it’s crucial to check with your dealer, as they may cover the cost of this replacement. This step not only ensures the functionality and safety of your vehicle’s assist system but also leverages any warranty benefits you’re entitled to, potentially saving significant expenses.

Restart the System

Restarting the system can be an effective strategy to remove the notification from your service driver assist system. While every car has its unique reset process, a common method in vehicles like Ford involves turning the ignition on and off while the vehicle is stationary. Additionally, closing and opening the door when your car is stopped serves as another reset technique. This approach is particularly useful if the message was incorrect or after you’ve fixed any bugs within the driver assistance system, potentially restoring its functionality without further interventions.


In conclusion, the service driver assist system plays a pivotal role in not only improving safety and saving lives but also in making driving more comfortable. Whether the notification stems from a haptic motor short circuit, a malfunctioning steering wheel, a faulty module, or a software bug, pinpointing the exact cause is crucial. Utilizing an OBD II scanner stands out as the quickest method to diagnose the issue, ensuring that drivers can address any problems promptly and maintain the system’s integrity and functionality.


Driver assist systems, known as ADAS (Advanced Driver Assistance Systems), function through a sophisticated human-machine interface to significantly increase car and road safety. Utilizing automated technology like sensors and cameras, these systems are adept at detecting nearby obstacles or driver errors and responding accordingly. This technology doesn’t just aid in driving; it paves the way for various levels of autonomous driving, marking a pivotal shift towards more intelligent, safer vehicles.

In the realm of ADAS (Advanced Driver Assistance Systems), a variety of sensors are utilized, including cameras, radar, LiDAR, and sonar/ultrasonic, each fulfilling distinct functions. Among these, camera sensors stand out for their critical role in detecting objects on the road, thus enabling crucial features such as adaptive cruise control and lane departure warning. These sensors collectively enhance the safety and functionality of modern vehicles by providing comprehensive environmental awareness and assistance to drivers.

For the development of ADAS (Advanced Driver Assistance Systems), MATLAB® and Simulink® are pivotal tools supporting each stage of the workflow. These platforms facilitate analyzing data, synthesizing driving scenarios, and designing ADAS planning and control algorithms. Their comprehensive support enables developers to refine and enhance the functionality of driver assist systems, ensuring higher safety and efficiency in modern vehicles.

The service driver assist system (ADAS) is categorized into two main types: passive systems and active systems. Passive systems are characterized by their non-interventionist approach, providing feedback only after an accident occurs. In contrast, active systems are engineered to detect potential hazards and take corrective action to avoid accidents, playing a proactive role in ensuring vehicle safety and driver assistance.

The Advanced Driver Assistance Systems (ADAS) Market is primarily dominated by established players like Robert Bosch (Germany), Denso (Japan), Continental AG (Germany), Magna International (US), and ZF Friedrichshafen (Germany). These companies are pivotal in providing ADAS components to global OEMs, playing a crucial role in the advancement and distribution of driver assist technologies across the automotive industry.

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