How to Reset the Check Engine Light on a Ford Sport Trac

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Ford Explorer Sport Tracs have a check engine light which turns on to alert you of diagnostic trouble codes stored in the power train control module. Once you retrieve the codes, troubleshooting the issue, and repair the problem, the time will come to reset the check engine light. With the right tool and a few minutes of time, anyone with basic automotive repair experience can reset the light. Never reset the light without first correcting the concern.

Things You'll Need

  • Scan tool
  • Climb into the Sport Trac’s front seat and remove the dust cover from the front of the diagnostic port. The port is located just under the dashboard on the driver side. You can identify the port by looking for the black cover, which has the letters “DTC” embossed into its face.

  • Plug the scan tool’s datalink cable into the diagnostic port. Most major auto parts retailers offer a wide variety of scan tools for purchase. Make sure the one you buy works with Ford OBD-II software.

  • Run the scan tool through a self test. You will need to refer to the scan tool’s specific owner’s manual for running a self test with your particular brand and model of scan tool.

  • Clear the codes when the scan tool prompts you to do so. This is usually done by selecting "YES" when the scan tool prompt appears on the scan tool's display screen.

  • Complete the self test and then disconnect the datalink cable from the Sport Trac’s diagnostic port. Put the dust cover back over the port to prevent contamination of the port from dirt, dust and other debris.

Tips & Warnings

  • Diagnostic trouble codes (DTCs) correspond to troubleshooting tests which, when performed, pinpoint the malfunction the vehicle is experiencing. Resetting the check engine light without first repairing the malfunction simply gives the Sport Trac amnesia and can lead to further damage.

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