Toyota/Lexus “VSC Off” & “Check Engine” Lights On

A common problem with Toyota and Lexus vehicles is that you might find the “VSC OFF” and “Check Engine” lights lit simultaneously. We’ll walk you through what this means and ideas to fix it.

Most Toyota owners will find that when the Check Engine and VSC lights are lit, there is a problem with an O2 Sensor or gas cap. Try tightening or replacing the gas cap for a hopefully cheap fix.

VSC System OFF and Check Engine Light is On

If you notice that the “VSC Off” icon is on, don’t worry because your car is still safe to drive. But, you must be careful on the snow or slippery road because the car won’t stabilize itself.  VSC stands for “Vehicle Stability Control.” It is likely that “Traction Control” will not work while this light is illuminated. On some vehicles, the “skidding vehicle” or “TRAC OFF” light may also be lit as well.

How to Fix the Problem

To fix the ‘VSC Off,’ you might have to read codes for diagnostic information. An OBD2 Scanner can help you pinpoint the exact cause of the problem, whether it’s an ABS or engine sensor. When the VSC Off light turns on, the check engine light goes on too. To reset both without a scanning tool, disconnect and re-connect the terminals after 10 minutes.

To be sure of the problem, you may want to take your vehicle to an Auto Zone or NAPA store to have them plug in a code reader to determine the problem. Another option would be to take the vehicle in for service.

If your problem turns out to be O2 sensor related, you can continue driving the vehicle without problems, but you may not achieve the most efficient gas mileage. O2 sensors can be difficult or easy to replace depending on the make and model of the vehicle. Some require access under the vehicle, while others are accessible under the hood.

VSC System ON

When the VSC System is ON, it automatically redirects engine power from certain wheels, playing an active role in stabilizing your car from losing traction. In Toyota and Lexus models, traction control ensures that a vehicle does not skid in hostile weather by correcting its course.

Models with a VSC system include:

  • Toyota Camry
  • Toyota Avensis
  • Toyota Verso
  • Toyota Sienna
  • Lexus RX400H
  • Lexus is250
  • Lexus is220d

16 thoughts on “Toyota/Lexus “VSC Off” & “Check Engine” Lights On”

  1. Our code reader said the O2 sensor was the problem. We have replaced every O2 sensor on the vehicle, but the light still comes on about every 200 miles. We take it off, it comes back on. We replaced the gas cap. What is the problem?

    Reply
  2. Same issue with my Highlander. All three lights come on sometimes, but other times they don’t. I’ve had the engine, the O2 sensors, AND the gas cap replaced. Still… Lights come on. And… It fails emissions when the lights are on.

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  3. My car would not start this morning and there was no power so I got someone to boost my battery for me and it did start but the engine light is on and the traction light is on and it says check VCS so when I went to go drive and it Would only let me go the speed of 15-20 km
    What do I do.

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  4. My engine light and VSC came on just today never had a problem. Check everything and drove the car and light is on.

    Reply
  5. If the car runs rough or skips like a cylinder is not firing you may have a bad coil. It can be an intermittent problem the check engine light may or may not come on.
    Have a diagnostic check done, sometimes it will show what cylinder is the problem. But they are easy and relatively cheap and easy fix $70 for all four coils.

    Reply
    • James- I had a similar issue to what you are describing and replaced all the coils and spark plugs but the lights are on still.

      Reply
  6. It’s your steering angle sensor.It needs to be calibrated.Theres a video on you tube.put in the search box(2006 Scion xB check engine,vsc,and traction control lights all come on.Turn your steering wheel straight ,turn your ignition off and put a paperclip between two pins on the obd port and the lights will start flashing for like five seconds and it will reset your steering angle sensor and your lights won’t come back in.

    Reply
  7. Did your “VSC” light come on after giving/receiving a jump start? I noticed mine came on after giving a jump start to someone else.

    Reply

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