Honda Stereo Security Reset

A coworker of mine had her 1999 Honda Accord in the shop for repairs. The battery was disconnected while the work was being done. When reconnected the stereo no longer worked, the result of a security feature that leaves me scratching my head.

As I understand it, to reset it you need a five digit code that is typically found in the owner’s manual or a label in the glovebox or door jam. Well, my coworker is not the first owner of this car and doesn’t have that paperwork.

You can also get the code from a Honda dealer or this web site if you know the stereo serial number, usually found on the stereo itself, and the car’s VIN number. You will need the following info for verification:

Vehicle VIN #
Phone Number and Zip Code matching those on file
Device Serial Number

Naturally I called two local Honda dealers just to see what they suggested. The first one said I needed the serial number of the stereo and the VIN number of the car. If I provided that information he would look up the reset code. Fair enough.

The second dealership I called said they’d pull the stereo out and get the serial number for $97.

My question is this. If the idea is to prevent stolen stereos from being used in other vehicles without the right info, wouldn’t a thief know this and write down the VIN number of the car when stealing the stereo?

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