'98 Explorer - Relay Module | Ford Explorer Forums - Serious Explorations

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'98 Explorer - Relay Module


July 29, 2002
Reaction score
City, State
herdnon, va
Year, Model & Trim Level
Navajo (Explorer Spt) '93
I have a problem with my internal lights (domes, courtesy) and ground illumination lights - they don't come on! The internal lights (domes only) do come on if I move the instrument panel dimmer to all the way on, but when I open the door manually and when I use the keyless remote, no lights (internal or external ground illumination) work.

I'm thinking it may be the interior light relay which is located in the relay module. In the diagrams I have, it looks like it is behind the Instrument Panel. The question I have is what is the easiest way (if there is one) to get to the relay module to check to see if the interior relay is the problem?

Any suggestions welcome!


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If its a 98 Explorer, that function is built into the GEM (generic electronic module). It controls a lot of stuff including the battery saver function which turns off the dome lights and such to keep from draining the battery if you leave the door open too long.

I don't have any manuals here, but I could check later if someone else can't help.

The GEM is accessed by removing the radio assy. It is behind the center section of the dash.

Thanks for the reply. From the manual, I see that the GEM controls these functions. I think (hope) that the GEM is ok, and that it drives the internal lamp relay to turn on/off the lights. I'm trying to verify that configuration w/ the wiring diagrams, but's it's taking some time.

I was hoping I could get at the relay easily to test it seeing that it should be an easily serviceable item, right!?

I was just looking at my factory manual. The battery saver relay is located in the relay module which is behind the dash in the center. It is fed by a 30A fuse(#8) in the power distribution box. The GEM completes a circuit to turn it on or off.

The battery saver relay in turn feeds a 10A fuse (#27) in the interior fuse panel(located on left end of dash under cover). The 10A fuse feeds the interior lights.

I would check both fuses, then check relay. Hopefully it isn't the GEM, but I think these are pretty reliable.

sorry for double post, but I wanted to make sure you saw edit to last post.

Keep in mind that my schematic is for 97 explorer, but should be very similar to 98.

The last post was edited because I was wrong about the location of the battery saver relay. It is now corrected.

The Interior Lamp Relay may be your problem. It gets power from the same 10A fuse (#27) mentioned above. It does turn on the lights when the GEM grounds the circuit similar to the battery saver relay.

You would never guess where this relay is located. Those jokers at Ford :D

According to my manual the Interior Lamp Relay is located in Aux Relay Box #4. This is located above the left rear wheelwell. I'm not making this up. It is located next to the door unlock,door lock, driver's door unlock and trailer tow park lamp relays. You may need to remove the rear trim panel to get to it.