Blinkers, hazards, and melted plastic - JeepForum.com

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post #1 of 27 Old 07-19-2013, 02:31 PM Thread Starter
mattman998
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Blinkers, hazards, and melted plastic

2002 Wrangler Sport - 4.0 manual

My headlights stopped turning off and on the other day, and it wasnt a bulb or fuse problem. I tracked it down to the multifunction switch, which is the left lever behind the steering wheel. It controls headlights, turn signal, fogs, etc.

I replaced this part 8 months ago so it seemed too early for it to go out, but luckily it came with a lifetime warranty. Replacing it fixed the headlight issue, but now my turn signals and hazards dont work. I looked at the fuses behind the glovebox and they look fine, but I noticed the 'MF SW' fuse was blown in the under-hood fuse box/PDC. It's a 20A fmx fuse. I pulled the fuse and replaced it, and it blew right as I pushed it in. I didn't disconnect the battery before swapping the fuses because I didn't think there was any reason to.

When I pulled off the multifunction switch to replace it, I noticed there was what looked like melted plastic in one part. There is also a slight crack in the wiring connector housing that comes in at that same area. Also, the flasher relay was pretty hard to get back into place on the multifunction switch, but I think it went in ok.

Here are potential problems and fixes that I see:
1. do I need to disconnect battery before replacing fuse?
2. need a new flasher relay? Would a malfunctioning relay cause a fuse to blow?
3. The connecter needs to be replaced (god I hope it's not this)

Any other ideas? I can get some photos of the connector tonight if it might help. I understand Jeep makes a repair kit for the harness. Maybe there are some junkyard vehicles I could pull the connector from? I never see a TJ in the yard.

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post #2 of 27 Old 07-19-2013, 03:11 PM
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The connector needs to be replaced. It's such a fun job. Do one wire at a time unless toucan get an accurate diagram.

Buy my transmission cooler. Derale TJ cooler.
http://www.jeepforum.com/forum/f126/...0561-a-2936825
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post #3 of 27 Old 07-19-2013, 04:30 PM Thread Starter
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Originally Posted by DBLJ View Post
The connector needs to be replaced. It's such a fun job. Do one wire at a time unless toucan get an accurate diagram.
Would you recommend the repair kit from Jeep or trying to find a junkyard connector?
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post #4 of 27 Old 07-19-2013, 04:58 PM
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You need to find the underlying problem causing the overload & melting wires/connector. The fuse blowing is telling you that you have a short & you need to find it before replacing the wires or connector.

It doesn’t really matter if you disconnect the battery or not. If it’s disconnected the fuse won’t blow when you put it in but will when you connect the battery if you have a short as you do if the fuse blows. Also melted wires or connectors or switch failure is a sign of heavy amp draw so the 2 are probably related.

What color is the wire where the connector is melted?

Do you have wiring for trailer lights or any other wiring added to the light circuit?

Fuse 7 is the one blowing, right? If so, push the 4 way flasher switch (button) one time & try another fuse. If the fuse still blows, there may be an internal short in the flasher. Unplug it & try another fuse. If the fuse does not blow with the flasher in place, step on the brakes. If both brake lights come on, turn on the key & try the turn signals see if the fuse blows when either the left or right signal is tried.

See where that gets you & report back for further instructions.
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post #5 of 27 Old 07-19-2013, 05:21 PM Thread Starter
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Rubi4MyMrs View Post
You need to find the underlying problem causing the overload & melting wires/connector. The fuse blowing is telling you that you have a short & you need to find it before replacing the wires or connector.

It doesnít really matter if you disconnect the battery or not. If itís disconnected the fuse wonít blow when you put it in but will when you connect the battery if you have a short as you do if the fuse blows. Also melted wires or connectors or switch failure is a sign of heavy amp draw so the 2 are probably related.

What color is the wire where the connector is melted?

Do you have wiring for trailer lights or any other wiring added to the light circuit?

Fuse 7 is the one blowing, right? If so, push the 4 way flasher switch (button) one time & try another fuse. If the fuse still blows, there may be an internal short in the flasher. Unplug it & try another fuse. If the fuse does not blow with the flasher in place, step on the brakes. If both brake lights come on, turn on the key & try the turn signals see if the fuse blows when either the left or right signal is tried.

See where that gets you & report back for further instructions.
The fuse that blew was #13 under the hood.

I don't have any extra wiring aside from my CB that goes right to a fused connection with the battery.

I'm not sure what color wire is near the crack in the connecter. I'll post photos ASAP.

Thanks a lot for your help so far folks.
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post #6 of 27 Old 07-19-2013, 05:45 PM
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Are you sure it is 13? For 2002 that shows as a 40A fuse for the ignition switch. Which then powers fuse 19 in the block which is for the cig lighter/power outlet. I don’t see any connection to the m-f switch.
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post #7 of 27 Old 07-19-2013, 06:04 PM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by mattman998 View Post
Would you recommend the repair kit from Jeep or trying to find a junkyard connector?
I got mine from the dealer. The price wasnt too bad. I wouldnt bother with a junkyard one because you may need new wire ends that come with the kit.

Buy my transmission cooler. Derale TJ cooler.
http://www.jeepforum.com/forum/f126/...0561-a-2936825
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post #8 of 27 Old 07-20-2013, 04:23 PM Thread Starter
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Here's a photo - looks a little more wrecked than I thought.
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post #9 of 27 Old 07-22-2013, 10:05 AM Thread Starter
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Rubi4MyMrs View Post
Are you sure it is 13? For 2002 that shows as a 40A fuse for the ignition switch. Which then powers fuse 19 in the block which is for the cig lighter/power outlet. I donít see any connection to the m-f switch.
You're right - I replaced Fuse #7. Not sure why my head had #13 in it.

Anyway... I tried disconnecting the battery and double checking that every connection was tight, then i put in a new fuse and reconnected the battery. Fuse blew right away, so I'm ordering the connector this morning. I'm not looking forward to cutting and splicing 20 wires.

On a brighter note, I got my front bump stops, shocks and new track bar installed I didn't even know for the last year and a half that I've had the Jeep that the shocks were blown. It's so much nicer to have working shocks. It'll be even better once the rears are on I'm sure!!
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post #10 of 27 Old 07-22-2013, 11:27 AM
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Did you try this (from post #4)?

…push the 4 way flasher switch (button) one time & try another fuse. If the fuse still blows, there may be an internal short in the flasher. Unplug it & try another fuse. If the fuse does not blow with the flasher in place, step on the brakes. If both brake lights come on, turn on the key & try the turn signals see if the fuse blows when either the left or right signal is tried.

The bad spot on that connector looks like it is the wire for the power to the low beam headlights (your original problem). If so, that won’t fix the short you have in the turn signals. You should be able to plug the connector back into the m-f switch even with the bad spot to try to find the short in the signal circuit.
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post #11 of 27 Old 07-22-2013, 12:45 PM Thread Starter
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Rubi4MyMrs View Post
Did you try this (from post #4)?

…push the 4 way flasher switch (button) one time & try another fuse. If the fuse still blows, there may be an internal short in the flasher. Unplug it & try another fuse. If the fuse does not blow with the flasher in place, step on the brakes. If both brake lights come on, turn on the key & try the turn signals see if the fuse blows when either the left or right signal is tried.

The bad spot on that connector looks like it is the wire for the power to the low beam headlights (your original problem). If so, that won’t fix the short you have in the turn signals. You should be able to plug the connector back into the m-f switch even with the bad spot to try to find the short in the signal circuit.
No I didn't try that - I will tonight.

When you say 4 way flasher you mean the hazards right? So I'll turn in to the ON (depressed) position and then try another fuse? If the fuse doesnt blow I'll try the brakes, then try the signals? This is all narrowing down what exactly the problem is right?

So replacing the wiring at this point might not even fix the problem? Could be the flasher relay or something like that?

I have everything plugged in right now, but I don't have turn signals or brake lights so I'm driving as little as possible.
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post #12 of 27 Old 07-22-2013, 01:23 PM
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Yes, 4 way flasher = hazards.

The connector has to be back onto the m-f switch to test for the short in the signals/hazards.

Since you are blowing the fuse that has B+ power to the flasher relay which is for the hazards (fuse #7) you have to find out if the short is in the lighting wiring (most likely) or from the fuse to the m-f switch which also includes the flasher relay. The reason I say to push the hazards switch (button) 1 time is because the hazards may be on or off, I can’t tell & you may not know either, & if it is on right now & blowing the fuse the short can be anywhere. If pushing the switch 1 time which will then turn the switch off causes the fuse not to blow you know the short can is downstream from the switch. Then doing the brakes & signals can further isolate the short.



If you know for sure that the hazards switch is off & fuse 7 is blowing then just try removing the flasher relay & put in another fuse & see what happens.

As stated in post #4, you need to fix the short & replacing the connector won’t do that. Now since it looks like the bad spot in your connector is for the low beam headlights, there could be something causing that to overload but that is separate from blowing the fuse for the signals/hazards.
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post #13 of 27 Old 07-22-2013, 01:52 PM Thread Starter
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Rubi4MyMrs View Post
Yes, 4 way flasher = hazards.
If you know for sure that the hazards switch is off & fuse 7 is blowing then just try removing the flasher relay & put in another fuse & see what happens.
One of my tests yesterday I accidentally left the relay off and the fuse blew. Then I put it back in and blew another fuse.

I'm up to $12 in fuses

The only wiring I've changed was cutting out the fog light connectors and wiring lights directly in to the fog wiring. They still work currently, and I think I did a pretty good job at the wiring.

Thanks a lot for helping me with this, I appreciate it.
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post #14 of 27 Old 07-22-2013, 04:25 PM
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OK, if fuse #7 blows when the flasher relay is removed that means the short is between the fuse & the m-f switch. Try unplugging the connector to the switch & try it just in case there is some kind of short within the switch otherwise it is down to inspecting the wiring in the harness. Since this seems to have started when you replaced the m-f switch & had trouble getting the flasher relay in, maybe that is where the short is. So unplug it & check, even put the old switch back in if you have it.


If it comes to checking the harness, after checking at the connector, start at the fuse end by lifting the PDC & inspecting the wire coming from the fuse. It should be on the bottom row far right end as facing it as in you photo above. It should be a black/white wire.
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post #15 of 27 Old 07-23-2013, 09:34 PM Thread Starter
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I took the connector apart, one of the wires wasn't locked into place. All of the wires looked good so I snapped them into the new connector.

I put in a new fuse and started it up. Brake lights and turn signals turned on, but flashers stayed on steady and didn't blink. I hit the hazard and the fuse blew. I was back to no brake lights and no flashers.

Put in a new fuse and took out the flasher relay. Everything works but the blinkers. When I turn on the hazards the brake lights stop working.

The wiring all looks good under the fuse box, and at the connector as well. I'm running out of ideas but I think I now need a new flasher relay. Thoughts?
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