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Old 15th May 2010, 13:15   #1
MX6
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Default Strange issue in my car

Dear all. Since yesterday I've noticed this strange issue in my ford ikon flair. I drive for 15 - 20 mins with the a/c on and the cd player on, all of a sudden both switch off. Then there's no power supply to them for next 3-4 mins. I can't switch on the player and if I switch on the a/c it just functions as a blower for next 5 mins (a/c lights also doesn't switch on). Then all of a sudden power supply is restored and a/c starts functioning. Also the player turns on, but has lost all the stored radio stations and settings. Even the clock on the player is reset to 12:00 hours.
Is it some problem with the wiring? Or is it to do with the fuse or anything? Your suggestions and advice are very much appreciated. Thanks.
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Old 15th May 2010, 13:19   #2
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Make sure the battery terminals are tight and not rusted. If rusted, sand paper it after disconnecting both terminals. Spray a little WD40 and then tighten. Then cover them with a lil bit of grease.

EDIT:
How old is your battery?
Check battery water and fan belts as well.

Last edited by Tejas@perioimpl : 15th May 2010 at 13:20. Reason: see edit
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Old 15th May 2010, 13:43   #3
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This doesn't seem to be a fuses issue, because if the fuse burns out, it wouldn't work again. I suspect that it might be the alternator. Have you noticed any warning lights turning on in the dash when this occurs? It might be that the alternator is giving out, and the accessories cut out when the engine runs off the battery. In any case, you need to get it looked at by a service center or an auto electrician. It doesn't sound like a minor issue, and could get you stranded in the middle of nowhere.
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Old 15th May 2010, 14:11   #4
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Quote:
Originally Posted by vivekgk View Post
This doesn't seem to be a fuses issue, because if the fuse burns out, it wouldn't work again. I suspect that it might be the alternator. Have you noticed any warning lights turning on in the dash when this occurs? It might be that the alternator is giving out, and the accessories cut out when the engine runs off the battery. In any case, you need to get it looked at by a service center or an auto electrician. It doesn't sound like a minor issue, and could get you stranded in the middle of nowhere.
An alternator charges the battery. If it can't charge the battery, the battery will soon run out of juice and then it won't charge at all. But in his case, it comes on and off. This points to nothing but loose contact.
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Old 15th May 2010, 14:16   #5
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I tend to agree with tejas. But will check out completely. Because only the a/c and my cd player stops and starts. The headlights work fine, the indicators work fine, even my navigator which I connect using the cigarette charger works completely fine. So does the horn.
I guess I will have to check the connections, and will also check the battery.
I'm not sure how old the battery is as I bought this car second hand from a dealer and it looked pretty new. But I've driven around 26K since buying this in the last 7 months and this is the first time I've seen any issue.
Thanks Tejas and vivekgk.
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Old 15th May 2010, 19:10   #6
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Check the following :
> Battery terminals and proper earthing (negative).
> Wiring to the dashboard connections and their negative. Check the connectors and for any loose contact.
> Battery and alternator
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Old 15th May 2010, 20:45   #7
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To my notice, check the grounding wire of the A/C compressor. it will be with bunch of black wire connected to the body. I donít think any problem with battery or terminals . If so, car does not start , h/light power will be weak.
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Old 15th May 2010, 21:19   #8
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Check your fuse box. The fuse connection or the wiring into the fuse box has probably come loose, and you end up with an open connection when it sparks and heats up.

Is your ICE an after-market fitment? The AC and CD player are not supposed to share the same power supply.
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Old 15th May 2010, 21:22   #9
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Here's what I observed now. I took it out for a spin. When I turned the ignition on, the a/c and player didn't switch on. After 5 mins of driving I tried turning on just the cd player and that started working. I also pressed the switch for the circulation mode and the lights came on there. But didn't switch on the a/c. I just tried driving without the a/c and just the player on. Next 25 mins there was no issues with the player working properly. When I stopped the car and turned off ignition and turned it on again, the player didn't turn on automatically. Further when I opened the doors, the light inside the car as well as the boot took almost 2 - 3 minutes to glow.
Tomorrow in the morning, I'm going to drive with just the a/c on to see. I feel that probably, this is an issue with the a/c compressor wire grounding or maybe some loose connection. Monday morning I will drive over to the ford a.s.s. (something which I hate doing).
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Old 15th May 2010, 21:34   #10
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Quote:
Originally Posted by MX6 View Post
When I turned the ignition on, the a/c and player didn't switch on. After 5 mins of driving I tried turning on just the cd player and that started working.

When I stopped the car and turned off ignition and turned it on again, the player didn't turn on automatically. Further when I opened the doors, the light inside the car as well as the boot took almost 2 - 3 minutes to glow.
A loose solder / connection somewhere, most likely in the fuse box. Causes sparking when the current is on, and after a bit the metal components manage to conduct.

Why don't you try a regular auto electrician? (unless your car is under warranty)
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Old 15th May 2010, 22:23   #11
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Its definitely loose connection, and I mean not on the main batt terminal. Check it ASAP. as these are hazardous problem.
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Old 15th May 2010, 23:13   #12
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Quote:
Originally Posted by SS-Traveller View Post
A loose solder / connection somewhere, most likely in the fuse box. Causes sparking when the current is on, and after a bit the metal components manage to conduct.

Why don't you try a regular auto electrician? (unless your car is under warranty)
You've nailed the problem on it's head there SS-Traveller.
A short while ago, the security came up stating that my theft alarm has gone off in my car. I immediately though that it's probably the wiring that's acting up again. When I went down, the car is all silent. Even the red led that keeps blinking when the alarm's engaged was off. I opened the car door with my keys and the lights on top didn't switch on automatically. Fearing that the battery has drained completely, I tried to turn the ignition on, keeping my eye on the ice and the a/c panel.
I noticed while I turned ignition on, that for a milli second the lcd lights on the a/c switches lighted up and so did my player.
Now I knew this has got to do with the fuse box.
I opened the fuse box and just pushed my finger on the fuses and lo-behold, the lights on top switched on immediately. So did the led's on the a/c switches and the player started playing my cd.
I also noticed the sparking in one of the fuses.
I pushed them in firmly. To be safe, I did a complete inspection of the battery and the connections. They appeared to be fine. This does seem to be an issue with the fuse and I intend to take it to the nearby auto electrician tomorrow.
I also decided to lock my car with the keys and not engage the theft alarm for the night. I don't want any sparking to happen which might be dangerous.
I come up and thought of reporting this in this forum and when I see your message, my jaw drops.
You rock SS-Traveller. your words "causes sparking - connector conducts" was so apt. Seems like you were sitting on my fuse box while commenting!

All other members who put in valuable comments, thanks a lot. I did a check based on your comments (except the alternator part) and based on what the auto electrician suggests, I'll update you all.

Thanks for the advice Sir Alec. Especially after noticing the spark, I want to be very careful. I'll get it thoroughly checked.

Thanks a lot folks!
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Old 15th May 2010, 23:15   #13
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Quote:
Originally Posted by MX6 View Post
You've nailed the problem on it's head there SS-Traveller.
You're welcome. Glad to be of help.
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Old 15th May 2010, 23:39   #14
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@ MX6: If you are as good with a car as you are with the camera (I have been admiring your photographic prowess), I'd suggest you do the following yourself:
  1. Disconnect the battery
  2. Remove the whole fuse box from its mounting on the chassis (there'll be a couple of screws holding the box to the body)
  3. Remove all the fuses (note and mark which came from where)
  4. Check behind and inside the box for any plastic burn/melt marks
  5. You've located your problem
  6. Change the fuse box if necessary (badly burnt/melted)
  7. Use a pair of thin nose pliers to tighten / crimp the wires connecting to the spring clips
  8. Use a thin screwdriver/pair of tweezers to push out the copper spring clips holding the fuses, to make for a tighter connection
  9. Replace all the fuses back into their sockets. Check that they go in tight and snug.
  10. Mount up the box into its position
  11. Connect the battery. You're good to go.
OR

Get that local electrician to do the same. Forget about visiting a Ford Service Centre and substantially lightening your pocket.
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Old 16th May 2010, 16:39   #15
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Thanks for the points there SS-T. I pushed the fuse that's been giving the trouble in and drove the car around for 30 mins with a/c at full blast and my player belting out music. There was absolutely no issues. So I didn't want to remove the fuse box for any further inspection. I'll do a couple of trial runs tomorrow and the day after. I normally drive 70 kms a day (up and down to work and home). So, on Wednesday I'll have it inspected by an auto electrician for safety sake.

Thanks for your appreciation on my photography skills.
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