P0513 - INCORRECT IMMOBILIZER KEY

POST UPDATED IN February, 2023

Description of DTC code P0513 Generic

Modern vehicles have anti-theft systems that vary according to the manufacturer but have characteristics in common. The main basis of these systems is that several control modules have to interact with each other and with the ignition key. If this communication does not exist, the injection and ignition system will not work.

In general, both the Powertrain Control Module (PCM), Body Control Module (BCM), and the PIM or Powertrain Interface Module must decode the security code of the key. Then, all these modules need to interact once again through the CAN system to verify that they have not only recognized the key but also that they have recognized each other. Once all the modules have recognized the key and also each other, the PCM enables the fuel injection and ignition system, allowing the vehicle to be started.

If a fault occurs that interferes with the interaction of the modules, the DTC code P0513 OBDII will be stored.

Symptoms of fault code P0513 Generic

  • The warning light (Check Engine) of the safety system is lit on the dashboard.
  • The engine may not start.
  • The engine may start but only runs for a few seconds.
  • On some models, there is a limit to the number of attempts allowed to start the car with an unrecognized key. If this electrical limit is exceeded, the vehicle will be turned off.

Causes of OBD2 P0513 Generic

The reasons for setting the diagnostic code P0513 OBD2 are

  • The battery level of the key can be very low.
  • Incorrect programming of the key or the key itself may be defective.
  • Connectors burned out or shorted out.
  • Ignition lock in bad condition.

Possible solutions of the DTC code P0513 Generic

To solve the error code P0513 OBDII, you can do the following:

  • Check your vehicle's source of information for TSBs (Technical Service Bulletins).
  • Check the cables and connectors related to the system, also inspect the key. If you notice damage to the key fob housing, maybe the circuit board has been damaged, this may be the cause of the code set. Change the batteries in the key.
  • By using a scanner, diagnose the Control Area Network (CAN) system to detect faults or defects that interrupt communication between the safety system's controller modules. Although this code is usually caused by problems with the key, if you have the right tools for key reprogramming, follow the instructions carefully.
  • If after reprogramming the key the vehicle still does not start, the ignition cylinder may be blocked. Refer to the manual for the location, routing, color coding, and function of all wires associated with the ignition lock. Check the continuity, resistance, and grounding values of all related wires, check the readings against the specifications. If you find any differences, make the necessary repairs. Clear the code and see if it comes back.
  • If the code returns even after you have made all of the above repairs, you must change the ignition lock. To do this, follow the instructions in the manual correctly.

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