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PT Cruiser Electrical and Lighting Problems



  • bstackbstack Posts: 3
    A couple of months ago, (before I checked this site) my local mechanic replaced my whole turn signal assembly to remedy the fog light problem. I went to my local guy because: 1) I trust him; 2) He is less expensive than the dealer; 3) My car is out of warranty (48,000); and 4) I did not know that this was a chronic problem with Cruisers. I took your advice and called the "hotline" today. While they were happy to register my complaint, and give me a reference number, they were unable to tell me if there was a planned recall, only that my vehicle had received all known recall service.
  • Got my fog lamp problem apparently repaired at the dealer yesterday. They did the same thing as bstack noted in post #237. They replaced what they call the "multifunction switch" which includes turn signal, hazards, etc. The part cost me $89.50 (plus labor). For anyone going the dealer route, they probably know it as "multifunction switch" but the part number listed on my invoice is 5073049-AB.

    I'm pretty sure it's fixed as I had noticed liked some others that jiggling the headlight/foglamp control would/could turn the fog lamps on/off. The new switch does not behave this way(!). I'll drop a note if I do see the problem recur anytime soon and otherwise wait and hope to hear that maybe Chrysler issues a recall for it. I'm dreading that the new switch will fall prey to the same problem in a few years if it isn't recalled/fixed/redesigned...
  • pt4mept4me Posts: 1
    I just had the exact same problem today. Before I could even get the information out the service writer told me it was a multi-function switch and the cost was $210.00. Another lady I work with who owns a Crusier is having the same problem. The service writer told me that he has replaced four in the last few weeks. Currently Chrysler has no recall going on but I made a formal complaint anyway.Recommend you do the same. Maybe if enough people complain they will recall the item and refund our repair money.
  • dicksmithdicksmith Posts: 2
    Same thing happened to me today. For some reason, when i put the turn signal in the left turn position, they go out. think i'll do the fuse removal method.
  • My PT engine light come on, then it will down shift into a lower gear and won't come out of it. When I switch the engine on and off three times It give me three problem codes P1682, P1684 and P0700. Also the air bag light come on all the time. The dealer won't tell me whats those codes represent. They want me to bring the car to them. Can someone help me?
  • I have a '02 TE PT and had the same problem w/the fog lights just a few months ago. I inadvertently discovered that when you leave the left turn signal on, the fog lights turn off. That worked fine, until I forgot to turn on the turn signal a few times and returned to find a dead battery on the car the next day. I ended up taking it to the dealer and having them replace the whole turn signal switch/arm. The problem is now gone - it cost about $130.
  • My wife called me yesterday morning and said high beam light in the dashboard came on by itself. When she pulled the turn signal handle back towards her, the high beam light went out but the Fog Lamps signal in the dash came on. She could not get the lights to go out, when she noticed smoke coming out of her steering column. She made it home but the smoke continued and the fog lights remained on. I was able to make it to the dealer with a minimum of smoke. Once there, the high beams came back on again, even though there were no keys in the car. I was informed that is was the "multifunction switch" in the steering column. It was not a covered part in my CHRYSLER extended warranty. When it shorted out, it burned the wires together in the main harness. The switch will cost $250 or so, but the harness will be $3300.00. That's right 3300. They agreed to switch out the connector on the existing harness for a mere $500. So, it is going to cost over $800.00 to replace the switch and wiring. If it is something that needs maintaining, an I don't maintain it, then I should be responsible, but for something that is installed at the factory and has no maintenance required, I think Chrysler should be responsible for these repairs. I will file a complaint tomorrow and follow up on this site for more instances of this switch failure. If enough people complain, Chrysler will have to respond with a recall.
  • I have read about starting problems on the PTs I have a problem were the car will not start at all. All dashboard lights work and the headlights dont dim when I try to start the car with the lights on ,I get no noise, no clicking just dead .
    I have added a new battery cable to the starter as per feedback on this forum and thought it worked but after a month I was unable to start again yesterday. When I try and jump the car battery it will just sit there and then for some reason it jump started after 10 trys.
    It doesnt seem to be a battery are starter problem. Maybe a ignition switch?
    Someone said something about the alarm system doing this. Does anyone know how to disconnect the alarm system? Any help PLEZ
  • My wife is having the same problem with her 2002 PT Cruiser. The dealer replaced the starter about a month ago, and it's doing exactly what you stated...I'm thinking about purchasing a battery with a much higher CAAs...but after reading your post I'm not confident that that's the solution....If you located the problem, can you please let me know what the solution is? --Thanks!!!
  • My wife and I also have had similar problems. Did you ever get your PT Cruiser problems fixed? Here is an account of our situation:

    Sunday, 12/4/05

    Got up to go to church. Car wouldn’t start. Had car towed to Midas where they replaced battery and fixed battery cables on Monday, 12/5/05 ~$180.00

    Tuesday, 12/13/05

    My wife went to work. When she got there the car wouldn’t shut off. She came home. We took it to Midas and talked to our Mechanic, Virgil (store manager). He had us take it to New Country Dodge (Saratoga Springs, NY) to run specific diagnostics.

    Wednesday, 12/14/05

    Stopped at Donahue Motor Car (Ballston Spa, NY)and talked to Mike. Explained that our PT Cruiser was in the shop once again…and we might be pursuing Lemon Law (purchased used vehicle with 80,000 miles on it 11/3/05…had it three days car wouldn’t start Monday 11/7/05…had it towed to Gil’s Garage in Burnt Hills, NY…they had car and couldn’t find problem…returned car to us that night…we took it to a banquet…when we returned home car wouldn’t shut off…had Gil’s tow it Tuesday 11/8/05…they kept it for over a week without problem arising…we sent info about ignition switch…Tom at Donahue’s had car brought to Terry Morris where the ignition switch was replaced for $9). Mike explained that Tom would make good on any repairs and to keep receipts. :lemon:

    New Country performed diagnostic. Couldn’t find any problems...manager said he wouldn’t charge us…said he spent 2 hours on the Internet and couldn’t find anything about the problem…guess he didn’t look hard enough. When we asked him what we should do if the car wouldn’t shut off again he had no clue. I said something about pulling fuse 11, which shuts off the engine and fuel pump, then he agreed. Seems he was giving us the company line…not very computer literate…not good when you’re the manager and use computers.

    Saturday, 12/17/05

    I needed a new key…somehow mine got lost on Wednesday 12/14/05. Lowe’s made a new one ~ 10:00 am. Opens the doors. Unfortunately when I turned on engine it started then shut off. Put my wife’s key into ignition and it started. We got home.

    Left to go shopping ~ 3:30 pm. My wife's key was in the ignition…didn’t even leave the garage. Car started then shut off. I did the following: 1) Pulled fuse 11 (engine). Nothing happened when we turned key. 2) Pulled fuse 12 (PDC Relays LDP) this shut off the idiot lights but the car wouldn’t start. 3) Pulled fuse 10 (Cluster RKE) and car then started OK.

    We got to our destination. My wife turned off car, pulled out the key…BUT car was still running. I pulled fuse 11, which shut off the car…Thank you Lord.

    Sunday, 12/18/05

    We went to a Christmas get together. When we were leaving, we unlocked the car with the remote and the idiot lights turned on. My wife started the car but it shut off after a couple of seconds. I did the following: 1) Pulled fuse 12 which shut off the idiot lights…2) Pulled fuse 10 which reset the cluster (except the check engine light stayed on). The car started and we returned home. Everything shut off OK

    As you can see we are dealing with problems similar to yours. Any help we can get would be appreciated. Will continue posting our developments.

    Dan V.
  • Today we had an electrician look at the car. He found and replaced one of the relays...was covered with soot. Hopefully this will correct our problem. :shades:
  • I have had a problem with the fog light indicator going on without me touching it. I work for an airline and have to leave my car for a few days at a time....I have come home 3x this month to a dead battery--and we have had the battery replaced and checked out. Each time my car was jumpstarted, the green light on the dash (fog light) would come one. We pulled the fuse and are hoping for the best! I also called the 800 # listed here to report the problem. Thanks for all the info provided here.
  • I wouldn't buy a PT Cruiser GT Convertible if it was the last car on earth. My wife and I purchased a brand new 2005 Turbo and we have had nothing but problems with it. I have tried different dealer to get it fixed but to no avail. I have tried invoking the lemon law in our state because I can't get any help from even Chrysler corp. The car barely has 10,000 miles on it and we have been battling the problems with it for almost the last year. It all started with it just not running. It would just stop running and won't start until it got ready. The dealer replaced the computer and two weeks later the same thing happened again. The dealer had the car for a week and couldn't find anything wrong with it again. It happened again this time at 70 mph on the freeway it just stopped running and didn't start again for about 20 minutes. This time I had the car taken to another dealer and he has had it at least 4 times and it still isn't fixed. Whether this is a common problem or not doesn't really matter what matters is the lack of concern by Chrysler Corp and the dealers. So, if you buy one good luck I would rather have a Mustang at least they run.
  • slowmo1slowmo1 Posts: 2
    bought my 05 convert. 12000 miles ago. not 1 problem in this time frame. it also is a gt,and i run away from mustangs. ;) :shades:
  • Joe i am having the exact problem with starting--have done all that you have done still having problems--have also put 3 starters--removed the alarm system and replaced cables--have you found the starting problem with your pt??
  • I am having the same problems with my 2002 PT Cruiser. It is at the shop now where they are trying to charge me $237 to replace the battery cables because they are "corroded". This is the 3rd time I have had it to this dealer for the same "No starting" problem. (It has happened 2 other times though) They replace the starter the first time. The next time they told me it was "corrosion on the battery" and when they brushed it off, it was fine. (I had the battery replaced 6 months earlier because of the "no starting" thing) Now they are telling me it is the battery cable. There has to be a larger explanation somewhere.
  • I have the same problem. I opened the switch and the small plastic lever that actuated the contacts for the fog lights wore away allowing the contacts to close, keeping the lights on and killing the battery. I think this is a poor design because every time you actuate the turn signal it wears in this small glass filled plastic lever.
  • I have the same problem. I opened the switch and the small plastic lever that actuated the contacts for the fog lights wore away allowing the contacts to close, keeping the lights on and killing the battery. I think this is a poor design because every time you actuate the turn signal it wears on this small glass filled plastic lever. As it wears it creats a small gap that can cause the contacts to arc and potentially cause a fire since the car manufacturers don't think it is necessary to use flame retardant plastics in electrical circuits.
  • jlawyerjlawyer Posts: 12
    Have someone check the wiring to the O2 sensors. There might be a kink in the wiring, that will intermittently kill the sensors, giving the computer faulty air/fuel mixture readings, and cause this exact problem. It affects not just idle, but acceleration. What you described is exactly the problem my 2003 GT was having. Trust me, I replaced the plugs, plug wires, and the dealer still couldn't find the problem (my car spent 7 weeks in 3 months in the shop). I took it to another dealer and they found the problem only after their diagnostics found 2 faulty O2 sensors(what are the odds of that happening?).
  • minman55minman55 Posts: 2
    I have a 2002 PT and just was having the same problem. I was not able to find the issue a quick but I had the multi function switch replaced at the dealer and it has not reoccurred. It was about $200 to fix.
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