Dome lights. Front stays on. | Ford Explorer Forums - Serious Explorations

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Dome lights. Front stays on.

Number Twelve

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City, State
15 miles west of Tampa Florida
Year, Model & Trim Level
2005 Ford Explorer XLT
I tried to say it all in the title. The rear dome light acts just as it should. The radio goes off when I open the door. The front dome light (both bulbs) never goes off. The wiring diagram says the front and rear dome lights are on the same wire. Obviously, this is impossible. Voltage check shows voltage always on at the wire in the ceiling pod. I cut the wire to the "both" connection and the manual switches work correctly. Is this a wiring fault or is there maybe 2 relays that power the dome lights separately?

2005 Explorer XLT Ceiling pod has rear air controls, sun roof control, and 2 light bulbs.
 



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I noticed this when I switched my interior bulbs to LEDs. Its always on but very dim. I dont have the controls for the back or moonroof, but my light stays on.
 






This has been the case for me for quite a while. I have to manually turn off the lights with the dimmer that is next to the light switch. If you turn it all the way down until it clicks off, the dome light will stay off.

This first happened to me in the winter and I came out to find a dead battery. It was a snowstorm, so I had parked myself in with another vehicle to get my truck off of the street. I ended up having to call AAA for a jump because I couldn't get another vehicle close enough for my jumpers. The guy who came out to do the jump said he had the same issue with his explorer and had to manually turn it off.

I don't see how this could be an issue with a broken wire in the door boot or from wear in the front wiring harness like many of the other electrical issues on this design. I would be interested to know if anyone knows what the issue is an how to fix it. Currently, I have a door ajar, dead oil pressure gauge, check gauge light, and blinking air bag light, along with the dome light. Clearly I have some electrical to wade into once the weather finally starts to get reasonable again.

LMHmedchem
 












Doesn't, "The radio goes off when I open the door" indicate that the door switch is not faulty?
 






Doesn't, "The radio goes off when I open the door" indicate that the door switch is not faulty?

I would imagine so ... but the door ajar / dome light staying on might be a different door than the drivers door causing the issue ... maybe ? :)
 






Door ajar & dome light staying on are obviously related
That's funny, for some rather bizarre reason I never connected the dome light staying on the the door ajar light. It would be nice if I could fix two issues with one repair. That doesn't happen to me very often.

I will check out that video, thanks.

Do I understand right that OP does not have the "door ajar" light on?

LMHmedchem
 






Do I understand right that OP does not have the "door ajar" light on?LMHmedchem
That's right. I have now made three posts indicating that I checked the door switches.
 






That's right. I have now made three posts indicating that I checked the door switches.

Yes .. I should have read them properly instead of 'skimming' :(

Looking at the late model wiring diagrams shows the actual 'control' of the interior light circuit is performed by the microprocessor in the instrument cluster:

Inst%20cluster_zpsot5fe2wo.jpg


Which feeds the interior light circuit:

Int%20Light%20Circ_zpskurx2vn3.jpg


Would seem them we need to find what is telling the microprocessor to leave power to the circuit & keep the lamps illuminated ? As you have stated, it turns off with the dimmer switch manually but when turned onto 'Auto' it stays on instead of shutting off after the door is closed.

I notice with my two Exploders that the interior lights when set on 'auto' will turn off either after a preset time after closing the door ... or when you lock the vehicle with the remote.

When you lock your vehicle with the interior light / dimmer switch on 'auto' do they turn off at all or remain lit after the vehicle locks ?

Will study the wiring diagrams a bit more & see what else is responsible for controlling the on/off of the int lights.
 






I just found a separate 2005 Supplement in the manual ...

Shows the same thing ... interior light circuit controlled by microprocessor in the instrument cluster:
Int%20Light%20Circ%202005_zps6wwljljz.jpg


The Instrument cluster diagram shows all the door ajar switches reporting to a separate Vehicle security microprocessor which in turn reports back to the instrument cluster microprocessor.
Inst%20cluster%202005_zps3uhgs56h.jpg


One thing I notice on my Exploders is that if any of the doors inc liftgate are not closed & you remove the key, exit the vehicle, lock it with the remote ... the interior light will remain on when normally it will simply fade off once the vehicle is locked via the remote.

I would probably check each door inc tailgate & liftgate separately to see if there is an issue there as obviously SOMETHING is telling the instrument cluster microprocessor to keep sending power the the interior light circuit ?
 






I see on your diagrams that the puddle lights, the rear dome light, and the front dome light are all on the same wire. That's how it looks on my diagram. Now, the fact that the puddle lights and the rear dome light go out, but the front doesn't, seems to indicate that they are NOT on the same wire. According to your stated logic, I should go looking for the signal which is telling the microprocessor to power only the the wire which goes to the front dome light, but not the rear (cargo) light and the puddle lights. That confuses me! Am I missing something very important here?

ps, I did not try moving the dimmer switch while measuring the front dome light wire, but I can try that later today.

pps, And thank you for providing new information.
 






Update: I connected a volt meter to the ceiling wire to the front dome lights (bk/light-blue). The dimmer switch turns it off at the extreme bottom position. The dimmer switch also turns off the rear dome light (I had the door open).

It seems I have established that the dimmer switch will turn off both dome lights, but I don't want to forfeit having any dashboard lights at night, so this doesn't seem to be the answer to, "How can I get the front dome light to turn off, same as the rear dome light and the puddle lights?" I still think it's a wiring harness fault but I pray somebody can tell me it isn't, and which part to focus on.
 






I just picked up a clue from a BigRondo post. Is the battery saver relay supposed to eventually turn off the dome light? If so, that relay might be stuck. Anybody Know if this is true?

Edit: Answering myself: No, but it explains the glove box being always powered and maybe the intermittent fuel gauge.
 






The battery saver will turn off the domes after 20 minutes or so.
 






The battery saver will turn off the domes after 20 minutes or so.
OK! I have something to focus on! Now, if I can just get that blankety-blank fuse block out from under the dashboard.
 






I know! it's hard to see the fuse block!
 






I don't want to forfeit having any dashboard lights at night, so this doesn't seem to be the answer to, "How can I get the front dome light to turn off, same as the rear dome light and the puddle lights?
I still don't know the root issue, but I don't have the problem that you suggest in this quote. When in the truck at night, I turn up the dimmer all the way until it clicks on at the top and then turn it down just enough until it clicks again. The front dome light comes on and stays on, but it does go off after I have driven for 15 seconds or so. The dashboard lights function normally. The front dome light only stays on permanently if you turn the dimmer all the way up until it clicks and leave it all the way up. If you turn the dimmer down just until the first click, the dome light will go off after you start driving. You just have to remember to turn the dimmer all the way down and click it off when you shut off your engine and are going in for the night.

The battery saver will turn off the domes after 20 minutes or so.
This actually didn't happen for me. As I said in my earlier post, I ended up with a dead battery when this first started happening. My truck is a 2002, so I guess it is possible that these things were improved some in the later gen 3 models.

I hope I am not confusing the issue here. My problem seems to relate to the door sensor, so maybe the situation is not similar enough to be relevant.

LMHmedchem
 






I still don't know the root issue, but I don't have the problem that you suggest in this quote.

This actually didn't happen for me.

My problem seems to relate to the door sensor, so maybe the situation is not similar enough to be relevant.

LMHmedchem
Yes. This is my 4th post in this Thread indicating that I CHECKED THE DOOR SWITCHES.
So, why do you keep posting when you have nothing to contribute?
 






You should check the door switches. : hides: lol

No seriously though, did you ever figure what the issue was?
 



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