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'03 Turn Signal Makes Clock Flash

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Old 20 Oct 2013, 01:20 am
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Question '03 Turn Signal Makes Clock Flash

I've got a bit of an odd one here. Sometimes, when I put my turn signal on, all of the lights on my instrument panel and my clock/radio display flash in time with the turn signal. This does not happen all the time. It will happen once, and then the next time I use the turn signal, it will not happen. Any ideas on the cause and a fix? I am not a mechanic, but I'd like to try to resolve the problem myself.

My car is a 2003 PT Cruiser Limited, Manual Transmission, with 200,750 miles on it.

Just in case this might help with some theories (i.e., there could be some relationship to wiring or wire harness), I also recently got a check engine light and my car went into limp mode. I did the key dance and got a P0340 and a P0301. The check engine light stayed on for a couple of days, then went off for a week, then came back on for a couple of days, then went off. When it has been back off, my car has been running perfectly. I have not yet tried replacing the cam sensor or the spark plug. As the check engine light is jumping on and off, I'm wondering if I am even actually having those issues or if I am getting some false positives.

I would appreciate any theories and help.

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Old 20 Oct 2013, 07:13 am
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Join Date: Sep 2001
Posts: 27,758
Default Re: '03 Turn Signal Makes Clock Flash

With that many miles, things are bound to start happening.

You wiring harness for both the multi-function switch (lights/turn signals) and the clock/radio all go down the steering column together. It's possible, somewhere the wires are crossing and maybe touching together.

While standing still with both the turn signal and radio on, used the adjustment on the steering wheel to raise and lower the wheel to see if you can make it happen.

On the P0340 and P0301, there lots of reasons for those codes. Have you ever replaced the Camshaft sensor and when was the last time the plugs and wires were changed? There's other cases but that's the easiest place to start.

Also check the wiring harness to the sensor and look for any vacuum leaks on the upper manifold or where the upper and lower manifold come together around cylinder #1.

Last edited by CREWZIN; 20 Oct 2013 at 07:15 am.
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Old 20 Oct 2013, 08:34 am
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Default Re: '03 Turn Signal Makes Clock Flash

I would suspect the charging system. Weak battery bad connections. Clean all the wire connections from the battery to the block and to the starter. Follow the wires to where they bolt to and remove and wire brush and reinstall. Don't forget the two ground locations on the inner finder. I also read a ground on the steering column can cause the flickering. Get the ignition tested if you don't see a improvement.

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Old 20 Oct 2013, 08:21 pm
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Default Re: '03 Turn Signal Makes Clock Flash

Crewzin, I tried moving the steering wheel up and down, but could not make it happen. However, when I ran an errand this evening, it did happen on its own one time. Then the next time, it did not happen.

As for the camshaft sensor and the plugs, I am the 3rd or 4th owner, and have only had it for the last 50,000 miles. So, I don't know what was done for the first 150,000. However, I have not replaced the sensor or the plugs since owning the car. It is probably time, eh?

As for cleaning the connections, I will give that a try and let you guys know.

If you have any other ideas, please pass them along.

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Old 21 Oct 2013, 03:44 am
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Location: Rochester, Michigan
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Default Re: '03 Turn Signal Makes Clock Flash

Both of the above replies are good places to start looking for the source of your light flashing problem. There have been several posts on here in the past regarding a poor steering column to frame ground causing strange similar problems but, sorry, can't seem to find it now .
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