Check SH AWD System Acura: What It Means + Solution

Warning lights are indicators that something is wrong with the car system somewhere.

Even though most users panic at the sight of it, not every warning light has significant problems or malfunctions. Sometimes the light could indicate that a system has been activated.

The Check SH AWD System is a prevalent warning light that comes up in some models of Acura cars. Like every other warning light, it senses a wave of panic in the driver.

Is the warning light a bearer of bad news? Does it signify major malfunctions? Will it result in costly repairs?

This article will establish what the warning light means, its causes, ways of diagnosis, and other vital aspects.

However, let’s dive deep into the importance of the SH AWD system.

Related: Check Emission System Acura: What’s the Solution?

What Is The SH AWD System On Acura?

SH AWD means Super-Handling All Wheel Drive. The system was introduced in 2004 to the RL model and has experienced multiple iterations since then.

It’s also included in other models, including MDX, RDX, and TLX.

The system’s primary purpose is to improve the traction and dynamic performance of the all-wheel drive.

It actively distributes power across the front, side-to-side, and rear to make driving on slippery surfaces better and easier. It also ensures moving through corners is more comfortable.

There are two variations of the SH-AWD system. There’s one for its electrical hybrids and the other for gas-powered cars.

Both systems can send power to the wheels in need and alter distribution as deemed fit. Simply put, SH-AWD provides more control and confidence from behind the wheel.

What Does It Mean When this Warning Light Comes Up?

If you activate the SH-AWD system in your Acura car and the warning light comes on, and the multi-information screen shows an SH-AWD message, it could indicate a malfunction with the All-Wheel Drive system.

Your Acura car will still have the standard front-wheel drive with Vehicle Stability Assist(VSA). However, the benefits of the SH-AWD will not be present.

Such benefits include:

  • Enhanced stability while driving on slippery surfaces such as icy, wet, or snowy roads
  • Improved braking control
  • Control different amounts of engine torque on the wheels based on the driving situation

So, your car won’t have any enhanced traction or performance. The implication is that you’ll have to drive safely when you steer, accelerate or use the brake on a slippery surface.

What Can Cause the Light To Come Up?

When a dashboard warning light comes up, it’s always a moment of worry for drivers. Don’t fret. The SH AWD system warning light is not a complicated problem.

The source of the problem might be an electrical problem. It could be a faulty connection or a weak battery.

Generally, there’s a low chance that mechanical faults cause it. In some cases, the system diff fluid might be too low that it can inadvertently trip the low-level warning and prompt the message.

How to Diagnose the Problem

As we’ve established above, the SH AWD warning light is not often bad news. If the light comes up, it’s not a serious issue if it doesn’t stay long.

If otherwise, you can pull to the side, park the car where it’s safe, and idle the engine to let it rest. The vehicle should reset itself and resolve the problem.

If the cause is a result of low diff fluid, you should check the SH-AWD diff for signs of leakage and ensure it’s at a proper level. Else, the light will start showing more often.

To prevent future occurrences, you should regularly check the SH-AWD diff fluid. Furthermore, cease continuously spinning the front tires of your vehicle.

In an Acura vehicle with the SH-AWD system activated, when you turn the front tire continually, it can trigger the warning light.

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