How to Clean the FCW Sensor? Detailed Guide

Collision sensors are a great addition to any car. They help you to avoid some unfortunate collisions by sending warning sounds, visuals, or vibrations. These sensors are located in different parts around your car and are always prone to dirt, snow, or ice. Hence, they will need some cleaning occasionally. 

For cleaning sensors, you will need warm water, some car shampoo, and a microfiber cloth. Dip the cloth in a solution of warm water and an advised amount of shampoo and use it to meticulously wipe off the dirt from the sensors. This should be done gently to ensure that you remove all the dirt and debris. 

This article takes you through the cleaning procedure of your car sensors and where some of them are located. Read on. 

How Do I Clean the Sensors on My Car? 

how to clean fcw sensor

Car manufacturers have your safety in mind and they have achieved this by installing important sensors in your car. These sensors include the Forward Collision Warning (FCW) system, blind spot monitoring system, adaptive cruise control, rear camera, and backup warning.

Depending on the location of these sensors, they are likely to be blocked by snow, dirt, or ice easily. Therefore, they will need some cleaning at some point. 

Anytime the sensors are dirty or covered in snow, mud, or ice, they are not likely to work efficiently. Therefore, it is very important to keep them clean at all times. Cleaning them is a straightforward task. 

What You Will Need: 

  • Car Shampoo 
  • Warm water 
  • Soft microfiber cloth 

How to Clean the FCW Sensor

Use a bucket or bowl and fill it with warm water. Add some car shampoo to the water. 

Dunk the microfiber cloth into the mixture and rinse. Ensure that you gently remove any additional dirt on the cloth so you do not drag it around the surface of your car.

And then, using a dump microfiber cloth, gently wipe the dirt off the sensors. It is advisable to do so in a circular motion and with the tip of your finger. This ensures that you have effective coverage and dirt removal. 

What Are Parking Sensors? 

A parking sensor is basically a device installed on the vehicle. It is designed to emit ultrasonic or electromagnetic waves that bounce back off nearby objects. In case of anything, it sends a signal to the car that there is something nearby. You will typically find these sensors on the rear bumper to aid during reversing. Newer car models come with both front and rear parking sensors. 

Where Are Collision Sensors Located?

With all the sensors installed in your car, it may take some strolls around the car for you to locate them. Since the FCW collision sensor is put in place to check the road ahead of you, it is usually located behind the lower grille or on the front bumper. They work by warning you if the car in front of you has stopped or slowed down by sending a braking pulse, sounds, vibrations, or visuals.  

How Many Times Should You Stop to Clean Your Car’s Sensors?

If your sensors are dirty, they are likely to give inaccurate results or appear broken. This often leaves you unsure whether to clean or replace them. With time, the sensors tend to accumulate salt grime, snow, or ice. Ideally, you should clean them anytime you are cleaning your car. The frequency may increase depending on the road conditions you tend to drive on. 

What Does FCW Unavailable Service Require to Mean?

Usually, the FCW Unavailable warning displays accompanied by a chime to indicate that the road conditions temporarily limit its performance. You will often notice this when there is poor visibility such as when caused by heavy rain or fog.

What Is the Difference Between Parking Sensors and Park Assist?

The parking sensors aid in both active park assist and park assist. Park assist is the common system that warns the driver by giving audio and visual alerts when he is close to nearby objects. Active park assist, on the other hand, uses normal parking sensors and other car systems to actually park the vehicle in the parking space. 

Final Thoughts 

Nowadays, among the specifications that car owners go for when looking for a new purchase is the sensors. These features help in many ways such as aiding when reversing, helping to avoid collisions, and aiding in parking.

However, just like any part in your car, they can get dirty. Hopefully, this article comes in handy when you need to know how to go about cleaning them.

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