The car is less than a month old and I have faced this issue over five times so far.
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I am facing an odd issue with my Punch. The panic mode gets activated suddenly while parked resulting in indicators flashing and the horn blowing continuously as described here.
The difference is the buttons would not have been pressed at all. A few times the key was in a bag but later I kept it on a table without anything over it. Also, it seems unlikely that both the buttons would get pressed.
There is no fixed pattern to this and it has happened within minutes of parking and locking the car or after an hour. The car is less than a month old and I have faced this issue over five times so far. The dealer has asked me to bring the car tomorrow for a checkup (their service camp happens weekly in my town) but thought of posting here for additional suggestions.
Update: The culprit turned out to be a switch mount in the engine bay that had to keep the switch in contact with the bonnet. It was bent a little and that used to result in this panic mode activation. On raising it, the issue vanished.
Here’s a more detailed explanation of how it was fixed:
Upon returning from the trip, I reached out to the dealer to explain the issue. As they do not have a full-fledged service centre in my town, I was asked to bring the vehicle on Friday (they hold weekly service camps) i.e., 25 August to troubleshoot it. I drove the vehicle and the SA sounded surprised about the issue. I was told that this was the first time they were hearing such a complaint. I was asked if all the doors including the boot were properly shut to which I replied affirmative. This was evident, as the auto-folding mirrors were folding up. The SA Robin also brought up an important point which is the car should not honk at all while locking. Now this caught my attention as the single honk used to happen sometimes. But he was clueless about the possible cause and suggested that I pay attention to sounds while locking. I came home and within minutes the car started acting in panic mode. I called him up but was told that they do not have the right tools with them and might need the car at their Mangalore workshop for two days for diagnosis and observation.
I wasn’t keen on giving them the car for two days to figure out the reason and a fix. In a Facebook group discussing Punch, I came across a post mentioning the location of the alarm sensor inside the bonnet. I decided to take a closer look and noticed this switch right away.
Strangely, by this time, the single honk was consistent while locking the car with all doors and bonnet closed. My trial approach was to hold the bonnet tightly after locking it in place and voila, the honk vanished. It was evident that the switch had a role in it but I wasn’t sure what next. The locking behaviour also started becoming inconsistent with mirrors not auto-folding but doors getting locked. I drove back to Robin and showed my observations. While we were at it, the panic mode activated again. We could reproduce the issue by lifting the locked bonnet a little. So that was the culprit!
The switch looked good to them but on closer look, they felt the mount holding it was a little bent. A jugaad fix of lifting it with a screwdriver base was made and locking behaviour became consistent again. No single honk and mirrors started folding up. Two days since then, the issue has not come back!
Keyword: Tata Punch randomly flashes indicators & starts honking: Here's the fix