Getting a “Code 16” message on your Vauxhall Meriva dashboard can be a worrying experience since you are not sure what it could mean. Fortunately, it’s not as bad as it looks.
In this article, I will explain what Code 16 means and how to fix it.
Vauxhall Meriva Code 16 Meaning
In short, code 16 on a Vauxhall Meriva is a fault code that means your Meriva has detected a problem with one of the three brake lights, it is typically triggered when the brake light bulb is faulty or has broken filament in the bulb.
What Causes Code 16 on a Vauxhall Meriva?
Now, that I have briefly explained what this code means, let’s look at the main causes of code 16 on your Meriva
Blown Brake Light Bulb
The main cause of code 16 is a blown/Bad brake light bulb. Over time brake light bulbs do get bad and you should check them regularly.
If your brake light bulb is blown, then it’s likely that code 16 will set off immediately when you turn on the ignition or press down on your foot on the brake pedal in a Meriva.
Fortunately, this is a relatively easy fix, all you have to do is get a new bulb and have it replaced by a mechanic or DIY (If mechanically inclined).
After you have replaced the burned-out bulb and reset the system, code 16 should disappear from your dashboard display.
As a mechanic, I’ve found that 95% of the time if you just replace the brake light bulb with a new one, that will fix your problem.
Broken Brake Light Bulb Filament
If you are still getting code 16 after replacing the bulb, then there is a good chance that it’s not your brake light bulb but rather the filament inside that has broken.
This is actually more common than people think, especially if you have been driving around with old bulbs for a while.
The filament inside of the bulb can break due to age and stress on it over time; this causes it to fail and trigger code 16 when turned on.
Blown Fuse/ Bad Wiring
Another possible cause of code 16 on a Vauxhall Meriva is a blown fuse or bad wiring.
If you have recently installed an aftermarket alarm system and it has been triggered, then this could be the cause of your problem.
It’s worth checking that all of your fuses are OK and that there is no damaged wiring anywhere in your Vauxhall Meriva.
Although this rarely happens it can happen from time to time.
What Causes Brake Light Bulbs to Fail?
Now, that you know code 16 is commonly caused by bad brake light bulbs, let us get to what is causing the light bulbs to fail on a Vauxhall Meriva.
1 . Water:
Water can cause your brake light bulbs to fail. If you live in an area that gets a lot of rain, or if you drive through puddles often, then this could be the problem.
Water can get into your Vauxhall Meriva’s lights and cause corrosion which will eventually lead to a blown bulb.
2. Bulb Age:
As with any bulb, your brake light bulbs will eventually burn out.
The average lifespan of a brake light bulb is around five to seven years, but this all depends on how often you use your car and how much stress your brakes put on the lights.
If you only drive short distances every now and then chances are that the bulb in your Vauxhall Meriva will last longer than if you drive long distances daily.
3. Faulty Electrical Wiring:
The wiring in your Vauxhall Meriva’s brake lights is essential to keeping your brake lights working properly. If there is an issue with the electrical system or a faulty connection then this can lead to blown bulbs.
How to Fix and Reset Code 16 on a Vauxhall Meriva
When you are ready to fix your Vauxhall Meriva’s code 16, there are a few different ways that you can go about doing this.
You can either have a professional mechanic replace the brake light bulb, or you can do it yourself.
If you decide to take on the task yourself, Here is a useful video showing how to do it.
After you replaced the bulb all you have to do is reset your Meriva by disconnecting and reconnecting the battery. This will reset your car’s computer and turn off the code.
Brake Light Failure Prevention and Maintenance
Now, let’s go over things you can do to prevent code 16 (brake light failure) from occurring again. I have created a table below to use it as a guide.
|Regularly Check Brake Lights||Ensure that all brake lights are functioning properly by regularly checking them. This can be done by turning on the vehicle and observing the brake lights or by having a friend or family member check for you.|
|Properly Maintain the Brake System||Regularly check and maintain the brake system to ensure it is in good working condition. This includes checking brake pads, rotors, and fluid levels.|
|Replace Bulbs as Needed||Regularly check the brake light bulbs and replace them as needed. This will ensure that they are functioning properly and will not burn out unexpectedly.|
|Check for Cracks||Check the brake light housing for any cracks. If any are found, have them repaired or replaced to prevent water from entering the brake light during rainy weather.|