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sudden my power windows, radio, and fuel gauge stopped working..fuses

All of a sudden my...
All of a sudden my power windows, radio, and fuel gauge stopped working. I have checked all fuses and even replaced a few, but still they don't work. Any thoughts?
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Answered in 13 minutes by:
10/25/2010
HighwayRepair
HighwayRepair, Auto Service Technician
Category: Ford
Satisfied Customers: 665
Experience: 12 Years Auto Repair Experience. Owner/Operator of Highway Auto Repair, a mobile automotive repair business
Verified

HighwayRepair :

Hello, I would like to assist you with your vehicle. I know you said you checked all fuses, but I have to ask, did you check in the fuse box in the engine compartment AND the fuse box under the dash on the driver side of vehicle?

JACUSTOMER-2wj619b4- :

I checked both the engine compartment and the fuse box under the dash. I replaced a 60A fuse under the hood that said it was for Power Windows & Audio. I also replaced the 30A Power Windows Circuit Breaker. I didn't replace any fuses under the dash. I couldn't find any that seemed to be for the windows or radio.

JACUSTOMER-2wj619b4- :

The fuel gauge doesn't work (all other gauges do) and a check engine light has come on.

HighwayRepair :

Fuse 17 in the central junction box ( under dash fuse panel) controls the operation of a relay called "accessory delay relay", this relay provides power to multiple components in the vehicle. This fuse also provides power to a portion of the instrument cluster

HighwayRepair :

I would check Fuse 17 as a very likely culprit. Do you have a tool to read fault codes in the system?

JACUSTOMER-2wj619b4- :

Fuse 17 was bad. I put another fuse in (it sparked when I first touched it) and then it blew too.

HighwayRepair :

ok, we have definitely located the issue, now to determine the cause. something being powered by fuse 17 is shorted ( either a component or a wire). Has the vehicle been in an accident?

JACUSTOMER-2wj619b4- :

no

HighwayRepair :

are you still here? this fuse powers multiple components, so locating the short may be quick ( if we are lucky) or may be a drawn out process

JACUSTOMER-2wj619b4- :

yes, I am here. It has not been in an accident.

HighwayRepair :

are you comfortable removing some components on the car and diagnosing this complaint?

HighwayRepair :

unfortunately an issue like this gets resolved by "eliminating" components in the circuit until the problem goes away, then visually inspecting that circuit for an electrical short

HighwayRepair :

this fuse power up your windows, radios, part of your instrument cluster and the interior lighting on your vehicle

JACUSTOMER-2wj619b4- :

yes, I think I can do that

HighwayRepair :

the first thing we are going to want to do is remove the drivers side a-pillar this is the plastic panel that your "entrance handle" atttaches to, that runs alongside the left side of the windshield

HighwayRepair :

behind that panel ( the a -pillar) is an electrical plug, this plug provides power to all the lighting in your vehicles roof ( dome light, vanity mirrors) I would like you to unplug this electrical connector. ( your interior lights will no longer work) and replace fuse 17 and check to see if the fuse immediately blows again, or if the radios and windows resume normal function

JACUSTOMER-2wj619b4- :

does the panel just pop off?

HighwayRepair :

HERE are the instructions for removing the a-pillar. You should just need a screwdriver and a plastic wedge

HighwayRepair :

HERE

HighwayRepair :

You will have to unbolt the handle that is used to help you into the vehicle, once that handle is unbolted ( 2 bolts) the a-pillar will "snap" off, please be careful not to damage the a pillar, do not force it off, be gentle

HighwayRepair :

the black weatherstripping around the a-pillar will also need to be pulled aside, just enough so that it does not cover the a-pillar anymore

JACUSTOMER-2wj619b4- :

That's it. I did what you said and everything works once I unplugged the electrical plug

HighwayRepair :

excellent, so we know the short is located somewhere "under" the headliner

HighwayRepair :

the next step is to check ( and hope) that the short is in the vanity mirrors ( sun visors)

HighwayRepair :

each one ( there will be one driver side sunvisor/vanity lamp, and one passenger side) has a base where the sunvisor pivots

HighwayRepair :

on this base there are screws that attach the visor to the roof, what we want to do is detach the sunvisors one at a time, not both at the same time, so we can determine which ( if either of them) is at fault

HighwayRepair :

so lets start by removing the screws for the driver sun visor and removing the driver sun visor from the vehicle, once removed, reconnect the electrical connector you unplugged, this will reapply power to everything except the sun visor that is unplugged, if the fuse blows again, we move to the passenger visor and repair, if the fuse does not blow, we visually inspect the wiring to the driver sun visor

JACUSTOMER-2wj619b4- :

Hi sorry I did not get back to you sooner. I have been away for a few days. I really appreciate your help. Thanks again.

HighwayRepair
HighwayRepair, Auto Service Technician
Category: Ford
Satisfied Customers: 665
Experience: 12 Years Auto Repair Experience. Owner/Operator of Highway Auto Repair, a mobile automotive repair business
Verified
HighwayRepair and 87 other Ford Specialists are ready to help you
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You are very welcome. Were you able to locate the exact location of the short? If you end up needing further assistance with this issue I will be available. I hope you have it completely figured out, if not please let me know if you need anything else.

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HighwayRepair
HighwayRepair
HighwayRepair, Auto Service Technician
Category: Ford
Satisfied Customers: 665
665 Satisfied Customers
Experience: 12 Years Auto Repair Experience. Owner/Operator of Highway Auto Repair, a mobile automotive repair business

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