honda crv wrench light meaning

Honda CR-V Wrench Light: Meaning (How to Reset)

Nothing raises the anxiety levels of a driver quite like a strange light appearing on the dashboard, and I include the Honda CR-V wrench light icon in that statement! If you have recently seen a wrench symbol light up on your CR-V dash, here’s what it means, when to worry, and how to reset it…

In this guide you can see a table I created which explains all the Honda CR-V wrench light meanings, and how you can reset the indicator once any problems are solved. Here’s the short answer first, then scroll down for full details.

What does the wrench light mean on a Honda CR-V? The orange wrench light symbol on a Honda CR-V is a maintenance reminder light. The Maintenance Minder feature in Hondas reminds you of recommended tasks such as oil changes, air filter change, tire rotation, trans fluid change, and more.

So, should you be worried when the Honda CR-V wrench icon comes on with that orange glow, and should you continue to drive with the wrench light on? All these questions and more are answered below, so if you want to fix any maintenance issues, and turn the wrench indicator off, read on.

What does wrench light mean on Honda CR-V?

Of all the dashboard lights that appear on your Honda CR-V, the wrench icon is probably the one you least need to panic about immediately. The reason? It’s alerting you to a recommended maintenance task, not an immediate emergency or problem.

What does wrench light mean on Honda CRV
The Honda CR-V wrench light shown above means a service is due.

The wrench symbol light on a Honda CR-V is a feature of the Honda Maintenance Minder, which tracks the condition of your car and alerts you when maintenance is needed.

For example, the orange wrench in a Honda CR-V could mean the oil life of your engine has reached 15%. This is just one reason the warning symbol comes on, the rest are shown in the table below.

Your car’s mileage determines the oil life of your engine and the last time you had an oil change. The wrench light does not affect your car’s overall performance, but it is important to carry out the recommended maintenance checks. 

Handy Hint: Here’s the best oil you should use in a Honda CR-V engine, as recommended by the manufacturer.

As the Honda CR-V wrench symbol lights up on your dashboard, there should be a letter and a number displayed on the dash, indicating the type of maintenance your Honda CR-V needs at that time. 

Your CR-V’s manual will contain all the codes and the type of maintenance recommended. The codes combine the letters “A” or “B” of the alphabet and numbers from 1 through 7.

The following table indicates the meaning of each alphabet and number as stated in your Honda CR-V’s maintenance guide, depending on its model.

Code (Alphabet)Maintenance items
AReplace engine oil
BReplace engine oil
Replace oil filter
Replace fuel filter element (low pressure)
Drain fuel filter (high pressure)
Inspect front and rear brakes
Check parking brake adjustments
Inspect tie rod ends, steering gearbox, and boots
Inspect suspension components
Inspect drive shaft boots
Inspect brake hoses and lines (including ABS/VSA)
Inspect all fluid levels and condition of fluids
Inspect exhaust system
Inspect fuel lines and connections

Code (Numbers)
1Rotate tires
2Replace air cleaner element
– If you drive in dusty conditions, replace every 15,000 miles (24,000km).
Replace dust and pollen filter
– If you drive primarily in urban areas with high concentrations of soot in the air from industry and diesel-powered vehicles, replace every 15,000 miles (24,000km).
Replace fuel filter element
Inspect drive belt
Inspect valve clearance
Inspect fuel tank
3Replace transmission fluid
4Replace spark plugs
Inspect valve clearance (cold)
5Replace engine coolant
6Replace rear differential fluid
7Replace brake fluid
Table showing what the Honda CR-V wrench light icon means

Once you learn to interpret these codes, you should know the maintenance checks to carry out when you see such codes alongside the orange wrench light indicator on your Honda CR-V’s dashboard.

Related questions on the Honda CR-V wrench light meaning

How do I reset my Honda wrench light?

After addressing all the maintenance issues indicated by your Honda’s maintenance minder system, you must reset the oil life to 100% manually to turn off the wrench light.

However, it is important to note that resetting the oil life without carrying out the recommended maintenance checks would result in you not getting these reminders when needed. 

There are different ways to reset the oil life or wrench light of your Honda CR-V, depending on its model. Unlike the older models, you can reset the oil life in the newer Honda CR-V models in two different ways.

Here’s how to reset wrench light on a Honda CR-V…

Honda CR-V 2006 to 2011 models

This method of resetting the oil life / wrench light only works for the 2006 to 2011 models of the Honda CR-V.

  • Turn on the car ignition without starting the engine.
  • On the left side of the cluster, locate the button that says “SEL/RESET.” Press it until the “OIL LIFE” screen is displayed.
  • Once the “OIL LIFE” screen displays, press and hold the “SEL/RESET” button for about 10 to 15 seconds until the display blinks.
  • When the display starts blinking, release the “SEL/RESET” button. Then press and hold the “SEL/RESET” button for about 5 seconds. If you do this accurately, the oil life will change to 100%.

Honda CR-V 2012 to 2015 models

There are two ways to reset the oil life / wrench light on the 2012-2015 Honda CR-V models.

Resetting with the cluster button

  • Turn on the car ignition without starting the engine.
  • Press the “TRIP” knob repeatedly until the “OIL LIFE” screen displays.
  • When the “OIL LIFE” screen comes up, press the “TRIP” knob until the display blinks.
  • Release the “TRIP” knob starts flashing, then press and hold down the knob again until the oil life percentage is 100%.

Resetting with the steering button

  • Turn on the ignition with the engine off.
  • Locate the “MENU” button on the left side of the steering wheel and press it to go to the main menu.
  • Use the arrow navigation buttons to go to “VEHICLE INFORMATION.”
  • When the “OIL LIFE” screen is displayed, press the “ENTER” button to reset.
  • Select “YES” to reset. Your Honda’s oil life should reset automatically. 

If you have any issues while resetting your oil life, consult your maintenance guide manual.

Can I drive with the CR-V wrench light on?

In most cases, it’s ok to drive your Honda with the wrench light on until you get home. However, if you are driving long distances, it’s not advisable to drive with the wrench icon on.

What you should always do is check what the Maintenance Minder code means, and then make your decision on whether to drive based on that.

As an example, if the Honda CR-V wrench light indicator is asking you to replace the oil soon, you know you can book an appointment but still drive for a few days with no issues.

What are the benefits of regular maintenance for your Honda CR-V?

You might feel like frequent maintenance checks on your vehicle is a lot of work. However, you stand to gain a lot from performing routine maintenance checks on your Honda CR-V. The benefits of regular maintenance checks on your vehicle include:

  • Fewer vehicle repairs: When you carry out regular maintenance checks on your vehicle, you notice car problems earlier. This helps you nip serious issues in the bud early enough to avoid expensive repairs in the future.
  • Safer driving: Proper and regular maintenance of your vehicle makes sure that everything works as it should. This reduces your chances of getting into road accidents.
  • Saves money: Regular maintenance ensures that your vehicle is always in good condition. This saves you money that would have been spent on repairing malfunctions.
  • Increases the vehicle’s value: Well-maintained cars have a higher market value than poorly maintained cars.


Now you know what it means when the wrench lights comes on in your Honda CR-V, don’t panic. When you get home, look in the manual, identify the code, then call a mechanic. 

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