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Ford Ranger Lighting and Electrical Problems



  • Hey got a '92 Ranger. Idiot me left the lights on one night, obiously killed the battery. I got a jump and ran it and the alternator charged it but it wouldnt start. I took it to where I got the battery they tested it and said the the battery was 12v but the CCA's were bad in it so they gave me a new one. Now I came back from hunting and this time I did not leave anything on and I go to start it and same thing. I noticed the first time my gauge was jumping all over the place but it read a steady 12v on my multimeter. This time it is jumping everywhere again but I haven't looked on the meter. Any advice?
  • bolivarbolivar Posts: 2,316
    A nicely charged battery, at the battery terminals, car not running, ignition off, should show 12.6 volts, using a nice multimeter.

    Running, the alternator should throw a steady 13 to 15 volts measured at the battery. This value will vary according to the temperature and if the battery is discharged.

    The gauge in the truck is a voltmeter. If it is wildly varying while the truck is running, you probably have an alternator that is malfunctioning. If a cell in a battery is going bad, it could cause non-normal readings on the gauge, which could be either low or high, and could jump around some, but usually will not 'wildly vary'.

    If you have another vehicle, and can do it, take the alternator out and take it to Autozone, etc - they can test it. Also might take the battery in, you might have got a defective new battery.

    Of course, there could also be loose/bad/corroded wiring somewhere. The first thing to look at would be both battery cables. Any corrosion showing should be checked. The cables can be 'eaten up' inside the insulation and not visible. Check the connections to the battery posts also, make sure the connections are firm. And the connection where the ground wire is bolted to the block, and where the positive wire connects to - whatever - could be the starter, a relay, etc, etc. And then there are lots and lots of possibilities in the other ignition, charging, etc wiring all over the car.
  • when i turn the key to the on position i lose all power to the truck..i can hear a clicking near the fuse box area on the passenger side when the key turned to the on position. the truck will not even turn over or do anything else...only the clicking.Is this an electrical short and if so where would it be?
  • bolivarbolivar Posts: 2,316
    Do you mean the 'on' position or the 'start' position?

    Clicking at the 'start' position many times means a discharged or failed battery. The clicking is the starter solonid attempting to engage, but there is not adequate voltage to keep it engaged, it just pops back and forth, and all you hear is a click while it is doing this.

    If things go dead when turned to the 'on' position - I don't even have a guess.

    Unless it also is a very bad battery, and it can't even drive the dash lights, etc and you are hearing some small relay attempting to engage, doing the same thing as described above for the starter solonid (which is just a big relay).
  • dper299dper299 Posts: 19
    I have a 98 Ranger 4x4, 4.0 liter V6 vin X, My problem is, When the vehicle sits for about 6 hrs in about 40 deg or below temps when I start it (with no problems) all the lights flicker at idle until the vehicle warms up,When I rev it up the flickering stops.But when its about 40 deg or above it doesnt happen...Could this be the alternator going bad or hanging up in the cold. When I put a meter on the battery it shows 14.5 volts when running and 12.5 when off....Any ideas,,Thanks :confuse:
  • 1994 Ford Ranger XLT dome light will not turn off and the open door or seat belt chime keeps beeping.

    Every so often, this happens, but it has become more frequent recently.
    1. Dome light comes on when door is open, but will take a few minutes to go off after the door is closed and the engine is started or it will not turn off at all. I noticed a surge the light gets brighter when I start the engine. Also, the light remains on even when the truck is not running or idle and all doors are closed.
    2. The door/seat belt chime also will not turn off. This is very annoying.
    3. The head lights will turn off while I'm driving and come back on after a few seconds.
    Finally, the ignition switch may play a role in this mayhelm, because it is loose and sometimes this stops the chime, but only when the engine has been turned off and I move the switch to a certain position.
    If anyone has experience fixing the above problems please drop me a line.

    A ford service personnel says it might be the Door Jam Switch or Multi-Function Module, and the Head Lamp Module may be bad.
    To Fault Trace these problems will be very expensive. Can someone suggest a less expensive solution?
  • bolivarbolivar Posts: 2,316
    Replacing both door jab switches, which are inexpensive, would be the first and easiest thing to try. Or, even cheeper, spray the heck out of these switches with WD-40.
  • Thanks, I will give the WD-40 a try and then change out the switches if that does'nt do the job.

    Where the switches located inside the door panel?

    Any info about the head light problem?
  • We have the same problem--where are the switches?? Thanks for any help.
  • bolivarbolivar Posts: 2,316
    Well, the previous guy had a 1994, I think. Up until about 1995 or 96 the switches were the 'old' kind, just push switches on the front inside edge of the door.

    In later years, the switches moved inside the door, on the outside door handle pull mechanism. To completely get to these switches, the inside door panel must be pulled off. Sometimes relief can be gotten by liberally spraying WD-40 or electrical cleaner through the outside door handle 'slots'.

    These inside switches seem to give more grief than the older type. For mid/late 90's Rangers, they have common complaints about inside lite not going off, door open chimes dinging, etc, etc, etc.
  • chemancheman Posts: 1
    i have a 1998 4x4 ranger 3.0, there is a power distribution box driver's side by the fire wall, there is a relay for the 4x4 in this box they say but i can't find any diagram's that indicate which the # on the relay is any idea's ?
  • I just bought a 2006 Ranger Sport 4wd. Most of the buttons on the radio do not work. It's the AM/FM 6CD changer + MP3
    How do you reboot a radio?
  • Hi, all my lights work but when I back up both reverse lights don't come on. is this on a separate fuse ? could both bulbs be gone ?
    thanks for any info
  • 2000 Ford Ranger XLT Supercab-Manual
    The emergency brake like won't go off. You can pop the break as much as you want, and it will not turn off. Any ideas? It's been like this for a long while.
    Thank you
  • Howdy folks. I recently purchased a 97 Ranger XLT with the 2.3 in it. The guy who had it before me hit a deer on the left hand front quarter panel. It didn't do much damage, just cracked the grill, pushed the bumper back an inch or so, and cracked the turn signal lens. Here's my issue. When you turn on the left turn signal, both the back right and left turn signals blink AND the brake lights blink. When you press on the brake pedal, both back turn signals and brake lights stop blinking and just stay. However, when you turn then right turn signal on, both the front and back turn signals work just fine. This is the weirdest thing I have ever seen and it has me baffled. Any thoughts on what might be causing this? Oh yeah, the dome lamp doesn't work either. The map lights work fine, but the dome light itself won't come on when either of the doors are open, and the bulb is fine.
  • hi All-

    I'd like to disable the "Ross" back-up module/sounder unit.

    Unit is very loud when in reverse..

    I tried disconnecting a few harness pieces near the rear license plate- but no luck
    yet. I am an electronics tech by trade.. but haven't spent much time investigating this...

    Any ideas would be helpful.

    Thanx, rick in n.calif
  • kwekwe Posts: 3
    I just bought a 2000 Ranger 4x4 with the 4 doors (2 small doors) and if I hit a bump, the dome light and chime comes on. I have to slam the driver's door to get it off but it comes back on again if I hit even a small bump. I read your note that the dome light door switch is on or near the outside door handles inside the door panels and that perhaps by spraying WD 40 into the door slots it might free up the light switch. Am I understanding this correctly? Should I just pull off the door panels and if so, can the switch be fixed or adjusted? The person I bought it from just took out the dome light bulb. thanks
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