Dash lights, tail running light, and tailgate lock simultaneous failure
I have a 2002 KJ Liberty Limited Edition. About 3 weeks or so ago, the dashboard lights, including the gear shift lights (auto tranny), right rear running light (but not the brake light, which is the same bulb), and tailgate lock motor failed at about (if not exactly) the same time.
I located the fuse (I believe it's fuse #9?) that was blown - the rest are in good shape. If you replace it and start the car it will blow immediately.
The battery was in bad shape, so I replaced it (SuperStart from O'Reilly's, working great so far), but it did not fix the problem.
I run a CB+PA system and a sound system. I disconnected both from the battery to make sure they weren't causing the problem and the fuse still blew.
I took it in to the dealer to get the tailgate motor fixed, in addition to getting some tune-up done that I didn't have the time to do myself, and they tried to fix the problem but couldn't, and although the gentleman there said his technician had briefly fixed the problem, once he started the car back up the fuse blew again and the problem recurred.
Can anyone provide insight as to what the problem might be (my suspicion is a grounded/shorted wire somewhere), if this is a known occurrence, and more importantly, where the short might be occurring and how to fix it? I understand electrical problems are always a needle-and-haystack pain in the tail. Any help is greatly appreciated.
Surprisingly, I haven't been stopped by Smokey yet for the running light. (knock on wood)
UPDATE: fixed by dealer tech. Turns out I drilled into a wiring harness by accident when installing mounts for the PA system. Talk about feeling like an idiot. For anyone who might be wondering, the harness is located on the bottom left side of the vehicle, above the recess in the sheet metal before the exhaust and oil pan etc. start. Will definitely be checking the diagrams (like I should have done) before I drill next time. Lesson learned.
You will need to trace the wiring to look for shorts or fraying to ground...not always possible as they go in a large common harness which runs all the way around the engine bay. Then you will have to isolate the various branches of that circuit that is blowing the fuse.....have fun;)
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