BCU 002818.31 – Operator Presence Switch Not Activated. John Deere Information Advisory.

BCU 002818.31 (BCU 2818.31)

Code: 002818.31

Shortcode: 2818.31


Error code BCU 002818.31 is an operator information alert issued when the Basic Control Unit (BCU) of a John Deere vehicle detects that the operator presence switch has not been activated despite the operator having selected functions that require presence confirmation. This could indicate that the operator has left the seat or that there is a malfunction in the switch itself. If the code appears even though the operator is seated, it suggests a potential issue with the switch’s functionality or connection.


The system may disable certain functions or equipment operations that require operator presence as a safety precaution, preventing usage until the switch is activated.


  • Check Operator Presence: Ensure that the operator is properly seated in the driver’s seat and that any adjustments to the seat or operator’s position are made to engage the presence switch correctly.
  • Inspect Operator Presence Switch: Examine the switch for any visible signs of damage or wear. Check connections to the switch to ensure they are secure and not corroded.
  • Perform Operational Check: Refer to Section 245, Group BCU of the service manual to conduct an “S40 Operator Presence Switch, Operational Check.” This test will help determine if the switch is functioning correctly and can detect the presence of an operator.
  • Repair or Replace Faulty Components: If the operational check indicates a malfunction in the switch or its connections, repair or replace the necessary components to restore proper function.
  • Reset the BCU and Clear Diagnostic Codes: After repairs or adjustments are made, reset the BCU to ensure it recognizes the presence of the operator and clears any related diagnostic codes.
  • Monitor System Post-Repair: After resetting the system, monitor the functionality of the operator presence switch to confirm that it responds correctly when the operator is seated and that no further issues are detected.


Ensuring the proper functionality of the operator presence switch is crucial for the safety of the equipment and the operator. This switch is a critical component that prevents the operation of machinery without proper supervision, reducing the risk of accidents. Regular maintenance checks and timely attention to any alerts related to operator presence can help maintain the safety and operational integrity of John Deere vehicles.