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Ignition Switch - How to test - Sure it's problem, but other weird electrical issues!

Discussion in 'Stock 1995 - 2001 Explorers' started by buddhalite, January 6, 2011.

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    1. buddhalite

      buddhalite New Member

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      City, State:
      Lafayette, Louisiana, USA
      Year and Model:
      00' XLS
      Hello,

      I need some advice on my 2000 Ford Explorer XLS.

      This thing belonged to the local electrical utility where I used to live - and picked it up a few years back. Great truck for the most part - missing a few options - but it has served me well!

      About two weeks ago, I had the blower motor quit on me. I replaced both the resistor and the relay (they were cheap, and I figured while I had it all apart, I'd just go for it).

      Well - that didn't fix the problem. With 12v direct to motor, it worked perfectly. I assumed that the ground was broken in some fashion so I fashioned a direct ground to the body - and the fan worked flawlessly. That is until now!

      Yesterday, as I exited my vehicle, something strange happened. I had the keys in my hand, the door open, and the 'your keys are still in the ignition' beep was sounding. Additionally, the radio was still playing, and my cell phone charger (in the switched outlet) was still powered.

      So, I grabbed the keys, stuck them back in the ignition figuring that the ignition wasn't fully switched off - didn't work. I thought maybe the tranny wasn't full in park and it was angry (makes no sense, I know) but that didn't fix it either.

      As it sits right now - the truck with the battery hooked up - everything works as if the ignition is in the on/acc position. The truck will crank and run as if nothing is wrong. I can drive anywhere I want, but I have to pull the negative battery cable if I want to crank it in the future.

      From everything I have read and know about my vehicle, I have to assume that the ignition switch is probably to blame. The switch has always had a "catch" in it since I bought it (you have to sometimes re-insert the key or jiggle the ears of the keyhole a bit to get the key to turn) but hasn't appeared to get any worse, that problem has actually gotten better as of late.

      So - how do I test this switch? I've replaced a switch before, but it was on a '79 Dodge - and I am sure this will be quite different!

      What is the testing procedure - and more importantly - could this also be related to my blower motor failure?

      I've searched the forums - and can't really find any advice for such a strange set of problems.

      Anyway - thanks for looking and giving any advice that you can!
       
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    3. Gabe96Explorer

      Gabe96Explorer Active Member

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      City, State:
      DIRTAY NEW JERSAY
      Year and Model:
      96 Explorer 4x4 Sport
      These are instructions on how to replace on the 2002 model, but I can't find anything on the 2000.

      http://www.ehow.co.uk/how_7270852_replace-switch-2002-ford-explorer.html

      1 Disable the airbag system by parking the Explorer with the wheels straight. Turn the key to "Lock." Wait at least two minutes for backup power to drain.

      2 Remove the plastic knee bolster panel by detaching the two Phillips screws at the bottom of the panel. This is the plastic panel under the steering column. Carefully pry the top of the panel loose at a point directly above the lower-left screw, using a flat-head screwdriver.

      3 Remove the three Phillips screws from the lower half of the steering-column cover. Lower the cover and set aside.

      4 Remove the screw that holds on the upper cover. This screw is exposed when you remove the lower cover. It is below the turn signal arm towards the dash. Lift off the upper cover and set aside.

      5 Detach the ignition switch connector from the ignition switch. It is mounted on the driver's side of the steering column.

      6 Remove the ignition switch by pressing on the release clips on the top and bottom of the switch and pulling it out of the steering column. Take careful note of how the spring under the switch is positioned because you must put it back the same way when you install the new switch.

      7 Push the electrical connector onto the switch. Engage the ignition switch with the spring and snap it into place on the steering column. Replace the screw for the upper steering-column cover and reinstall the lower cover. Reattach the knee bolster panel by securing it with the two Phillips screws.
       
    4. RomeovilleIL

      RomeovilleIL Well-Known Member

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      City, State:
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      Year and Model:
      98 LTD, 00 XLT
      Not sure on whether your issues are related. I can tell you changing out the ignition switch takes maybe 20 minutes. Removing the steering column covers is quick and painless, but would add to take off the bottom cover you need to remove the tilt handle first. It is threaded in like a screw, turn it counter-clockwise. If its never been off before you may need a pair of vice grips to clamp on and turn. Wrap a shop towel around it first so you don't chew up the surface. Once you have the bottom off, put the tilt handle back on so the column can move up/down as needed for your convenience. Also, the top cover comes off easier by tilting the column down and pushing the hazzard blinker switch in.
       
    5. buddhalite

      buddhalite New Member

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      City, State:
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      Year and Model:
      00' XLS
      Okay - replaced the ignition switch - and nothing changed. At least it was only $15!

      Any thoughts on where to go next? This is puzzling me. I have driven it all over town today - nothing is wrong - except everything just keeps on running.

      I am really confused!
       
    6. RomeovilleIL

      RomeovilleIL Well-Known Member

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      Year and Model:
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      Do you resolve the problem?
       

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