Opinions on engine auto-stop-start technology are scattershot: some enjoy the technology and its attempt to increase fuel efficiency, some are indifferent, and the rest downright hate the feature and will go to great lengths to turn the system off at every opportunity, especially in vehicles that don’t offer a way to disable the feature.
We’ve already covered the diverse opinions on the tech and how to disable the feature. But what we haven’t covered is a little-known way to disable the system, and it involves the hood. So, here’s a new tip for those who hate the system.
As it turns out, engine auto-stop-start does not operate if the car is started with the hood open. Moreover, the system remains off even after the hood is closed, effectively disabling the system from functioning until the next key cycle. For those who despise the system, this could be welcomed knowledge.
To take advantage of the workaround, one would need to pop the hood (before starting the vehicle), start the car with the hood open, and then shut the hood. It’s not the most ideal scenario, but it does provide one more option to those with GM vehicles without toggles to disable the engine auto-stop-start system.
In fact, third-party solutions that aim to bypass engine auto-stop-start often take advantage of the open hood workaround What these systems do is wire a timer relay to the hood sensor. When the vehicle is not running or in accessory mode, the relay causes the ECU to “see” an open hood regardless of what the sensor actually reads. Once the car starts, the relay closes, correctly indicating the hood’s status as closed. This prevents the engine auto-stop-start system from operating while guaranteeing that the pesky open hood indicator light disappears with the rest of the warnings that flicker to life upon starting a vehicle with an open hood.
Is this an end-all solution to disabling the engine auto-stop-start system? Of course not. Opening the hood every time you start the car sounds rather laborious. Even so, it’s a nice trick to know just in case your frustration grows with the intrusiveness of some systems.