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Strange things in the night (electrical)


padgett
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Back home again and driving back from the airport, I noticed some stange things:<BR>1) no illumination of the side switches (lights, wiper, cruise, etc.<BR>2) does not seem to be a "one swipe" wiper capability (aka mist)<BR>3) dash lights do not always dim when turning headlamps on - sometimes need to cycle fog lights to dim. Same-same when tried to set brightness from CRT - lights were on but got "must have parking lights turned on" until turned fog lights on.<BR>4) no indicator for fog lights or "anti-retract"<BR>5) no "you left the lights on, dummy" chime or beeps<BR>6) CRT returns to daylight readable setting (BRIGHT) when turn lights off<P>Is this activity normal or is there a probable likely common (for some or most) source ?

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Come on folks, just trying to figure out what is worth troubleshooting. Lets just try the important ones:<BR>1) to get the dash lights to dim I must turn on the fog lamps. When "lights" button is pushed with fog lamps off, the head and taillights turn on but the dash/CRT does not dim. Push the fog lights button and digitals dim and backlights (other than pods) come on.<BR>2) there is no illumination of the light or wiper switches (either pod in p 2-18 of the 88 owner's manual)<BR>3) the dash goes through a "light test" any time the door is closed with the engine off.<P>are these normal ?

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I would make a random guess that your light switch is bad/in need of cleaning. I don't know if the switches turn the parking lights on directly or through the BCM (I'm fairly sure that the dash lights are under BCM control.) Try looking at the BCM data diagnostic screen and make sure taht the BCM knows the parking lights are supposed to be on when the switch is pushed w/o the fog lights.

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Guest Shaffer

I don't know, but my grandmothers 1988 Chrysler New Yorker (all digital) has been acting weird. I am not sure if all of this I list is correct, but here goes. Lately, these lights will NOT go off (these are not digital, just warning lights) brake, door open, fasten seat belts. Even though belts are fastened, brake is off and doors are shut. Also, she said one day, the speedometer would not come on. Also, the overhead console, reads "fasten seat belt", <BR>"codes OK" (sometimes reads codes OK) then just goes black. It is supposed to go to Compass/temp/other codes after reading fasten belts/codes OK. Obviously they are not OK. They have had this car for years, and it has been nothing but trouble since day 1. Electrical seems to be the worst. It has had to have new rings/seals, alternator, transmission, power steering pump, and other various parts. Not to mention the car still has less than 100,000 miles and my grandfather rarely drives it over 45 MPH, my grandmother slightly faster. They have finally wised up and decided to sell it, as they have put over $5,000 in repairs in a car that is only worth about $2,500. Now the good thing about the car is that is has a very nice body style, and is like new in/out, but that is the ONLY good thing about it. Good luck on getting yours repaired.

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All I can say about the Chrysler is they used to make great engines 413, 440, 426...<P>Still no answer to a very simple question - are the switch pods (lights, wipers) supposed to be illuminated when parking/head lights are on ? I cannot tell from the manual but it seems dumb to leave them dark. The indicator lights seem to work fine.<P>Fog lights seem key to most everything else. If on, they and the parking lights come on in RUN and you cannot turn the parking lights off. Also the panel lights only seem to dim if the fog lights are on. First part is possible, second sounds like a wiring fault. All the owners manual says is "they are turned on and off by pressing the key pad..."<BR>FSM shows in same circuit as parking lights but no indication that anything should happen other than being on in RUN and off when high beams are on.<BR> <BR>Did find that the antics in the displays when you close the driver's door without starting the engine is something called "display on entry" and normal.

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When I frist bought my 89 about 3 years ago I had a similar problem. My dash lights would not come on nor would my CRT dim when I turned on the headlights, but would do so with the fog lights. My problem turned out to be the headlights switch. Some have cringed when I have mentioned this cure before, but hey, it worked for me. I put the long tube attachment that comes with WD40 and sprayed a small amount between the buttons on the headlight switch while pushing the buttons rapidly. Wonders of wonders the panel lights have worked correctly ever since. I do think some of your problem is in the light switch since, if I understand correctly, the panel lights up when the door is opened. I'm afriad I don't have any ideas regarding the wipers or the tattletails on the fog/headlight switch. I hope some of this helps you out Howard<p>[ 06-21-2001: Message edited by: Howard ]

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Thank you, Howard. Agree that WD-40 is probably not a great idea but Rat Shack tuner cleaner/lubricant did the trick on mine. Now the dash lights dim when Park is pushed and OFF works even if fog lights are on.<P>Still leaves the issue of no illumination of HDLT/Park/Off/Cruise/Hazard on one pod (except for tell tales) and wiper suite on the other. Test/Metric/Trip set/Guage below the IPC are illuminating though. Suspect this means one of the 110v electroluminecent power supplies but which and where ? Every answer opens another question but am slowly starting to understand this beast. Am just going to have to find a good parts source. Will be in Seattle (Bellview) and LA (Irvine) this week. Any suggestions ?

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Sorry I didnt answer Your post earlier but I missed it. I can at least help You with the switch illumination. I too had that problem. Those switches have 110 volt a/c <BR>illumination in them. The are fed this <BR>voltage by a voltage invertor that is fastened to the underside of the dash behind the headlight switch pod. You have to reach under the dash to get it. You cannot go from the drivers seat and touch it. It is a pain. Anyway the inverter is fed a varing voltage from Your dimmer. It is a 12 volt or less d/c voltage, and then it converts this to a high voltage for the pods. I checked mine by getting the inverter loose and putting a meter on the terminals. There are actually 4 pins on it and 2 of them have a varying d/c voltage and 2 of them should put out a varying 110 a/c voltage. Mine goes from <BR>about 80 to 114 volts. I found a lot of info on this subject by doing a search in this site. It is a useful tool. If I can help anymore let Me know.

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