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Old 02-27-2019, 05:03 AM   #1
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Two electrical/mechanical questions

First one is how do I figure out why the abs light randomly comes on?

Second is how do I troubleshoot the driving lights in the trailer wiring? They work on some trips and don't on others. All of the other functions work ie: brake lights, blinkers, and I electric brakes. Just spotty running lights. I hooked the trailer to my truck and had no problem with the lights. So I know it's the van

Thanks for all your input
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Old 02-27-2019, 06:01 AM   #2
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Two more electrical/mechanical questions (additional info needed):

1. Have you run a diagnostic scan for any ABS DTC's? If so what are they?

2. Are the van's running lights spotty or is it just whatever's connected to the trailer wiring connector?

Its also very important to cite what you're working on---year and model at the very least, fuel type too just in case that's needed.
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Old 02-27-2019, 06:30 AM   #3
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My apologies. It is a 2008 e-150 will the 5.4.
1) haven't checked codes, every time I think I will go by Auto zone, the lights abs light is off. Also sometimes it is in conjunction with the traction control

2) the lights on the van work all the time. It is just when I hook to a trailer/camper. The other day I had both my truck and van backed up to the camper and switched the 7 way plug back and forth. Hooked to truck, all running lights came on, hooked to the van, no running lights.

Every once in a while on a trip they will just come on
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Old 02-27-2019, 08:24 AM   #4
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The factory connection for the trailer light wiring is tied to the frame just above the rear axle, left side, usually. It's pretty wide open under there. I'd roll under there with a good light (and safety glasses so you don't get crumbs in your eyes) and look at the wiring harness. It could've easily been botched or modded by a former owner or simply need to be cleaned up. Check your grounds. People do not have much trouble out of these, it's probably a minor problem.

ABS, on the other hand......Ford vans have this issue a good bit. It's most likely a speed sensor on one of your wheels. Cheap part usually but not always easy to figure out in my experience. Seems like some years of vans have a pattern on the flashing light that tells you something. Google is probably the place to find it.

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Old 02-27-2019, 09:02 AM   #5
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Check to make sure one of the flat "pins" in the 7way didn't need get smashed. Happened once to mine, causing the same problem but with my brake circuit. I was able to straighten it out using a right angle pick and small flat screwdriver.

For the ABS, first no cost step is to wipe off all the speed sensors with a shop rag. It doesn't take much metallic dust to create a bad sensor. This dust can come from the brake pads.
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Old 02-27-2019, 05:51 PM   #6
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Idiot mechanic here. Anyone have a pic of the speed sensor? Not a clue of what I'm looking for... I can do the basics. Change brakes, oil and filters. But past that... Total noob
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Old 02-27-2019, 06:06 PM   #7
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Oh I also changed a starter out the other day on a Tahoe!
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Old 02-28-2019, 08:25 AM   #8
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Pull one of your wheels and you will see a wiring harness going from the frame to the rotor. The only other thing coming from the frame to the hub is the brake hose/line so it's easy to spot.

Not quite the same as the van but basically this:

https://knoxville.craigslist.org/ctd...829743847.html
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Old 02-28-2019, 08:38 AM   #9
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Originally Posted by KyleC View Post
1) haven't checked codes, every time I think I will go by Auto zone, the lights abs light is off. Also sometimes it is in conjunction with the traction control

Go by Autozone and buy an OBDII scanner......or amazon....a perfectly functional one is $18......saves everyone a lot of time and guessing.
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Old 02-28-2019, 08:41 AM   #10
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Nice. Thanks guys
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