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Electrical Randomness. Is there any hope?

 
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Old 02 Aug 2014, 02:07 pm
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Post Electrical Randomness. Is there any hope?

I have seen that there is a fair amount of electrical mayhem that seems to go on with these cars! I have not yet seen anything like mine though, so I'd like some opinions.

I currently drive an '02 Touring Edition, automatic transmission, pretty well loaded with all the options. I have had The Gopher for 5 years now and I am afraid she may be reaching the end of the line. Her mileage is currently just over 166K.

This could get long, so I will summarize and provide further details as needed.

Door locks - This could be a book! The locks randomly lock and unlock by themselves when the car is on or off. Since my key fob died years ago, I unlock the doors manually. Unlocking the door from the passenger side results in the alarm sounding and it will not turn off. Attempting to unlock from the back hatch now results in the locks unlocking, then immediately locking again. The latest on the list of shenanigans is that stepping on the brake pedal locks the doors. This has happened with a witness who was just as confused as I was. Generally, these issues don't bother me since it is mostly just a slight inconvenience. The thump of the locks and the random alarm freaks out my dog though. There's nothing like driving down the interstate with a tweaking border collie!

Blinker lights - At random times, always when no one else is present, the radio's clock will blink in time with the blinker lights. The digital mileage counter just started doing it too. It is more common for this to happen during damp weather, but it does happen on dry days too.

Dash board - Probably completely unrelated to the electrical issues, but all the lights on the dash board panel, except the one illuminating the speedometer between 35 and 80 MPH, blew out, one by one, in the last two weeks.

The battery and cables are new. If anything, the problems got worse with the new battery/cables. I have had to sink nearly two grand, which I really haven't had to spare, into The Gopher in the last four months for several other, non-electrical issues.

What is the general opinion? Am I looking at a seriously complicated wiring issue or could there be a simple explanation and fix?

For the Dash Board, how much of a pain in the butt is it to replace all those lights? I have not yet looked into it. I do a fair amount of driving at night and would really like to see how fast I am going and how much fuel I have left!
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Old 02 Aug 2014, 03:39 pm
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Default Re: Electrical Randomness. Is there any hope?

There's seriously only ONE thing you can do now !!!!!!! call "GHOST BUSTERS" obviously your Cruiser is possessed
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Old 02 Aug 2014, 03:51 pm
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Default Re: Electrical Randomness. Is there any hope?

the dash lights are unrelated. I did a tutorial on the speedo removal. Removing upper dash, bezels, and speedometer!

The locks I believe are the product of the box under the dash cover. To the far right with the plug coming out.
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Old 02 Aug 2014, 06:04 pm
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Default Re: Electrical Randomness. Is there any hope?

Quote:
Originally Posted by Kachine View Post
I am afraid she may be reaching the end of the line. Her mileage is currently just over 166K.

that's it? i got 100k on you.



Door locks - This could be a book! The locks randomly lock and unlock by themselves when the car is on or off. Since my key fob died years ago, I unlock the doors manually. Unlocking the door from the passenger side results in the alarm sounding and it will not turn off. Attempting to unlock from the back hatch now results in the locks unlocking, then immediately locking again. The latest on the list of shenanigans is that stepping on the brake pedal locks the doors. This has happened with a witness who was just as confused as I was. Generally, these issues don't bother me since it is mostly just a slight inconvenience. The thump of the locks and the random alarm freaks out my dog though. There's nothing like driving down the interstate with a tweaking border collie!

our caravan does this, for us it is a shady door ajar switch on the rear drivers side door. you might roll the windows down, open and angrily slam all the doors and hatch. without reopening anything, see if the problem persists. it makes sense that the body flex during braking could affect a shady door switch.

Blinker lights - At random times, always when no one else is present, the radio's clock will blink in time with the blinker lights. The digital mileage counter just started doing it too. It is more common for this to happen during damp weather, but it does happen on dry days too.

check the connector at the back of the turn signal switch for corrosion or melting. clean the contacts and apply dielectric grease. also move the steering wheel up about an inch. see if this problem persists. personally i would giggle if my car did this. i'd focus on the other stuff


Dash board - Probably completely unrelated to the electrical issues, but all the lights on the dash board panel, except the one illuminating the speedometer between 35 and 80 MPH, blew out, one by one, in the last two weeks.

this you just need new bulbs. they are all the same age and burning out around the same time is common, happened to me.

The battery and cables are new. If anything, the problems got worse with the new battery/cables.

check the ground wires in the inner fender wells. they are hard to see, but there are black wires anchored in there on both sides. look in behind the motor mount. waaay in. like 4-6" into the opening by the upper right engine mount with a flashlight, then look at the same place, opposite fender.


What is the general opinion? Am I looking at a seriously complicated wiring issue or could there be a simple explanation and fix?

before doing anything, go have the battery load tested with a battery tester. these cars get weird when a battery has a bad cell.

you may need a RKEM (keyless entry) module, but dont run out and buy one unless you're sure. you should also take the battery out of your failed remote just in case that's your culprit.

depending how much money you have, it might be cheaper to disconnect the power locks instead of buying a RKEM, or a new car. most of the problems are kinda funny IMO



For the Dash Board, how much of a pain in the butt is it to replace all those lights? I have not yet looked into it. I do a fair amount of driving at night and would really like to see how fast I am going and how much fuel I have left!

this should take about an hour. it is not hard. maybe 10 screws and a beer and it's over with. i can do it in about 20 minutes now. luckily you can even sit on your butt in the seat for most of the time.

all that being said, i'm not a mechanic so this is all opinions of what i could check for each based on problems i've either had myself, or seen repaired on here. personally, i dont see one problem on here that would make ME want to sell the car.

Last edited by rob342; 02 Aug 2014 at 06:09 pm.
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