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Old 12-10-2014, 11:39 PM   #1
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Chasing a short



’97 E250 EB30, factory fuse #4. It’s apparently in charge of the radio, SMB rear radio switch, power mirrors, dome light, keyless entry, Cluster KAP, headlight switch dome light control, and a million other things. This has been a problem since I bought the van in August - throwing it up here for ideas/suggestions.

Right now I’ve got all the dash trim off and door panels off. Radio is sitting in the sink (no water on board at the moment), power mirrors are disconnected, dome light is on the couch, rear radio switch fuse has been removed and the switch is disconnected, and the headlight switch is on the floor. What is “Cluster KAP”? The gauge cluster works off a different circuit so that’s fine. Page 104 of the user manual also says “Radio KAP”, which could be the…radio. I just don’t know what “KAP” means. Which fuse controls the visor mirror lights? Those have never worked even when the #4 fuse was briefly working.

Still don’t know if I even have keyless entry since this fuse has rarely worked. If I have it, there must be a module somewhere that I should look at. Where might that be?

Oh, the power mirror switch never worked when trying to move either mirror to the right. Up, down, and left worked fine. Thought that was it but with the switch disconnected, I'm still blowing fuses.
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Old 12-11-2014, 06:11 AM   #2
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Re: Chasing a short

If you're familiar or experienced working with schematics I'd highly recommend obtaining the factory EVTM, aka Electro-Vacuum Troubleshooting Manual, aka Wiring Diagrams publication. They're available thru eBay in printed or CD-ROM versions. These are invaluable for all things factory electrically related issues, great to have around for quick references.

While the owners manual is helpful for some things its not intended to be a diagnostic tool.

Here's a nice one, priced right too: http://www.ebay.com/itm/1997-FORD-EC...89027b&vxp=mtr
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Old 12-11-2014, 06:14 AM   #3
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Re: Chasing a short

As an aside, the power mirror switch is easy to fix and not terribly expensive. I had to do that on my 98 soon after I bought it.
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Old 12-11-2014, 06:34 AM   #4
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Re: Chasing a short

keyless entry module is on the driver's side wall behind the driver's seat, probably behind super tough to get to in your van since most SMB's have a cabinet or a wall panel there. They are known to be trouble. You can find rebuilt ones on Ebay.
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Old 12-11-2014, 07:29 AM   #5
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Re: Chasing a short

KAP = Keep Alive Power. Basically it just power the memory (setting, presets etc) but not any of the other stereo or cluster functions. In newer rigs they've renamed it KAM (Keep alive memory).

One thing I have found useful for chasing intermittent shorts is replacing the fuse with an auto-rest circuit breaker. At the very least it'll save you from having to dig into the fuse panel each time, but if you are lucky you will be able to hear the short arc (quietly) each time the breaker resets. Also, another thing you can try it probing the accessible power supply wires with the fuse pulled, to check continuity with ground. If you find this, then start isolating circuits or disconnecting components until it goes away. If its a constant short, you can pull one of the better leads, place your DVOM in series, and start pulling components or circuits until you see the amps drop.
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Old 12-13-2014, 01:53 AM   #6
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Re: Chasing a short

Quote:
Originally Posted by 86Scotty
keyless entry module is on the driver's side wall behind the driver's seat, probably behind super tough to get to in your van since most SMB's have a cabinet or a wall panel there. They are known to be trouble. You can find rebuilt ones on Ebay.
Great. My fridge and microwave are right behind the driver's seat.
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