E-Brake indicator is failing | Ford Explorer Forums - Serious Explorations

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E-Brake indicator is failing

Skibum1989

Well-Known Member
Joined
May 30, 2005
Messages
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City, State
Sammamish, WA
Year, Model & Trim Level
'95 XLT
The E-Brake indicator light is failing to recognize and illuminate probably 70% of the time i have the E-Brake on the gauges. Anybody replaced light bulbs under the gauges of a 1995 X?

I read the post that is for modding indiglo gauges, but it only takes me to the part where my gauge cluster is seperated from the car. Before i start disconnecting stuff left and right, what is the procedure for removing the face plate of the gauges and servicing the light bulbs? Thank you for your help.
 



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Mine doesn't work all the time either. Doesn't seem to be bulb related.
 






I don't know how the newer ones work, but my old 89 ranger had a small plastic switch behind the e-brake. It was cracked and would be intermittent. It eventually broke all the way and quit. Just a small bolt to replace it, if that the problem.
 






The back of a cluster looks kind of strange. There aren't any wires, just an electrical type tape that goes all around making connections. most bulbs are 194s, but all you do is twist and pull the things out. It sometimes can be intermittent because either the connection can be loose to the bulb, or the filiment is kind of dangling in there. It looks similar to this:

inst_cluster_back2.jpg


-Drew
 






Brian_B said:
I don't know how the newer ones work, but my old 89 ranger had a small plastic switch behind the e-brake. It was cracked and would be intermittent. It eventually broke all the way and quit. Just a small bolt to replace it, if that the problem.

Does anyone know if the e-brake setup on an Explorer (2000) is the same? This sounds more like the problem I have than a bulb issue.
 






Thanks for the responses, especially the pic.
I'm begining to think that it is not a bulb problem now. When i depress the brake, the light either goes on or turns off after each "click" of the brake. There is no pattern in this, but it only seems to change when the brake is clicked. This suggests a sensor malfunction or electrical signal issue in the wiring itself. Anyone know what the sensor for the 95's looks like?
 






celly said:
Does anyone know if the e-brake setup on an Explorer (2000) is the same? This sounds more like the problem I have than a bulb issue.


I don't know. Look behind the lever and see if there is a white plastic spring loaded switch behind it. Its just screwed to the kick panel/wall under there. Most of the older fords I have worked on had them.

There has to be some way for the light to know where the arm is.
 






There is indeed a switch on the foot pedal assembly. I'd check that first.
 






Brian_B said:
I don't know. Look behind the lever and see if there is a white plastic spring loaded switch behind it. Its just screwed to the kick panel/wall under there. Most of the older fords I have worked on had them.

There has to be some way for the light to know where the arm is.

Brian, I'll have a look. I checked today and my light does NOT come on at all anymore. It's used to come on periodically.

Thanks for the pointer. :thumbsup:
 






Okay I think I fixed it.

My X dosent have a simple switch that is thrown each time the brake pad is depressed, rather it has a circut-like set up. When the brake is not depressed, a spring-loaded metal disc disconnects two wire endings that likely hook the power source to the E-Brake light. When the pad is depressed, the spring is coiled and compressed to the point where the metal disc touches the wires and completes the circut, causing the light to go on. It's difficult to describe but I suppose I could take a picture if you want.

In my case, there was dust, dirt, or some other substance on both the metal endings and the connection disc that prevented the electrical current from flowing. Using rubbing alcohol and a cotton swab, I cleaned the endings off and now the light goes on 100% of the time, the problem was not bulb related.
 






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