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Taurus/Sable Electrical Problems



  • kdmcgannkdmcgann Posts: 7
    here's another one...The car is locked, but the red "theft" light is flashing inside. No amount of using the car key, or the remote key, makes it go away. The car starts just fine. The theft light blinks all the time (ecept maybe when car is running?) No after-market stuff is installed -- this is the Ford security system. And yes, I have the same key I've had for years, without this problem. However, I believe that a service guy has disconnected the power (at the battery) a few months ago. Any answers or references to other places (specifically)?
  • Its supposed to flash to let you know that its working. One flash about every 5-10 seconds or so I think. If itw asn't flashing I would think that your security system is not working
  • Well, just an update.. turned out our problem was none of the things we thought it was. The sputtering and electrical problems were because one of the spark plugs was malfunctioning. Unfortunately we found out too late because it blew itself right out of the cylinder and my car had major malfunctions while driving - had to take it in to the shop. They put a helicoil in it for the spark plug and suddenly everything was fine. Unfortunately something else went wrong and the rolling lifters needed adjustment as well at that point and a nice little tick tick tick began to ruin our day. The mechanic said I might as well get a new engine and have it put in... no thanks. Bought a new car and said goodbye to this one. I sold the car this past weekend to a nice couple with more kids than I for $850 cash ....Even if they spend 1000 or more on fixing it they will have a great car for a more than decent price.
  • I have a 2003 Ford Taurus SES. I purchased it in January and it has recently been stalling when I stop. I hear a whining noise and then the theft light starts blinking, then the speedometer goes hay wire, then it stalls. Sometimes it just stalls when I stop without those indications. It also almost stalls while driving at highway speeds, only sometimes though, when I brake, use cruise control, or signal but it doesn't completely die, and resets the radio from on to off. It's like a power outage for 2 seconds then everything comes back online. The odd thing is that these things only happen once in awhile, but they are occurring more frequent lately. I have read that many people have had this problem but no one has been able to isolate the problem. Has anyone found out what the problem really is? Thanks for your help in advance.
  • patelskipatelski Posts: 1
    YES THERE IS A PROBLEM!!! My 96 Taurus OD light flashes on. the car won't shift into overdrive. I have a manual that said to replace the # 3 solonoid. We did and it did not fix it. will be working on it today for another answer.
    please ask dealer what it takes to fix it and let me know?
    steve :lemon:
  • rhollerrholler Posts: 1
    My 02 Ford Taurus acts like it is going to stall and the theft like comes on ? It actually did stall at a red light once and the theft light came on ? Some times the key pad will not unlock my car, I thought the key pad battery was dead but it wasn't. Does anyone know anything about this ?
  • Hi,

    We have the same problem with the dashboard lights.

    Did you get an answer to your problem or get it fixed?

    Please advise.

  • kdmcgannkdmcgann Posts: 7
    Its not fixed. I asked a mechanic, who speculated that the cause was in the electronic circuit board in the back of the dashboard display, which would be very expensive to replace. However, I don't believe that's it, and I can't say that he was speaking from "experience".
    I believe that the cause is in the headlight switch, on the dashboard below and to the left of the steering column, along with the dimmer. I believe that the problem is with a lose contact in there. I think the problem depends on the temperature outside; the dash doesn't work in the winter cold, but sometimes works in the summer heat. (It just resumed working temporarily last week.) I think that the temperature shrinks or swells a metal contact (or plug) just enough to break the circuit. (Or else its just loose!!) I haven''t invested in replacing that switch yet. I had the exact same problem with an earlier-model Taurus, and i think they were still using the same switch in manufacturing the 2001.
    If you replace that switch and it works, let me know!
  • tbear2278tbear2278 Posts: 2
    I have a 2000 Sable with the same issue and I have replaced the headlight switch. It has somewhat fixed the problem. Now only on occassions and very intermittent does it happen when the lights are worked manually. However it still has the same problem when the lights are on automatic. So I just turn my lights on and off and that seems to be fine.
  • cull57cull57 Posts: 1
    Purchased in 2004 with 45k miles and now have 165k miles. Love the car - sharp looking, all leather, all the bells and whistles.
    I've has some issues though. Got recalled for coil issue and ended up costing me $600. (sway bar/front end problems). Year later I replaced the ball joints, coils, struts and rotors. (~$1000)
    That being said, the car has been a good soldier - I drive lots of miles and it has been very reliable - I would buy another....
    Few issues currently:
    *Door ajar light on which sort of disables the auto door lock feature and messes with interior lights too - Going to try the WD-40 trick I just read about.
    *Low Coolant light comes on intermittently, but the coolant level is fine?
    *Cruise Control stopped one day? Is there a fuse for this? What fuse?
    *AC blows warm? Going to try loading a can or two of refrigerant?
    These are small nuisance-type problems, but in Massachusetts, I can not get an inspection sticker with a dash warning light on!
  • chemoppchemopp Posts: 3
    My daughter drove to my house from work, the car ran fine. When she tried to leave, the car would not start. I pulled the starter, took it down to the shop and had it checked. Starter checked out fine. Put it back in, ran a jumper from the battery to the starter, engine turned over, but would not start. Next changed the starter relay, checked all the fuses; replaced the ignition switch. when the ignition switch is turned, you hear the relay kick in, all lights, radio comes on but the starter is not engaging. Can someone please, let me know what I need to do to get it started?
  • I have an '01 Taurus with just 32,000 miles on it. The driver's window has a problem opening and closing...some times it does, some times it doesn't. Relay, module, motor, wiring all good. Now they're saying it might be the "gem module" $700 plus labor! Anybody know anything about this?
  • I've been reading the postings & haven't found anyone yet with the same issue as mine. I have a 2003 Mercury Sable GS, about 54,400 or so miles that I purchased used about 4 years ago with around 12,000 miles on it. It has a sporadic problem that I think is an electrical issue. Off & on for the last couple of years, it will turn off for a split second while I'm driving but it comes right back on. I haven't had to pull over or anything yet. It doesn't matter if I'm driving in town or on the interstate - same thing happens. Some lights come on but go off again as fast as they came on so I'm not sure which lights & it has varied. I've tried driving with no radio or air on but that hasn't helped. Also, sometimes after I park the car, turn it off & take the key out, I'll hear a click-click-click noise coming from the steering column & while that is happening, the power windows & locks won't work. It stops after a minute or so. However, today, it was doing that click-click-click noise when I got into my car after it had been sitting all day while I was at work. When I started the car, the airbag light came on & went off again right away. The issues might happen a few times in a week & then not again for 6 months or so but lately, it has been happening frequently. No lights stay on though so when it was hooked up to the computer to check for error codes, none were found. Other than what I've described, the air conditioner doesn't blow as cold as it should & the fan blower is starting to make a little bit of noise (in last week or two) but air still flows fine. The rear window defrost hasn't worked since I bought it & one of the headlights has condensation inside of it. I'm not sure if any of those things are contributing or causing the issue but hopefully, someone can help. I'm a single mom on a very tight budget & I don't have lots of money to let someone poke around & try things, hoping it fixes the issue. I would appreciate any help. Thank you! :)
  • Well, this is just an update about this popular and devilish problem of the dashboard lights intermittently NOT turning on when you turn on the headlights manually (they work!) in my Taurus 2001. I think the problem is in the headlight switch, and suggested earlier that it may be an electrical "contact" affected by the weather/temperature. The thing didn't work all winter. In June it worked occasionally. It has now worked everyday, reliably for the last 10 weeks. This is New England, its been hot and rainy. I think that the temperature shrinks or swells a metal contact (or plug) just enough to break the circuit. We'll see, in October.
  • wijocowijoco Posts: 462
    I know early model (96+up) Taurus/Sable models had problems with bad wiring in the autolamp circuitry. I don't know of that was updated or not.
  • My daughter got pulled over because of her left headlight was out. I naturally went to local parts store and bought 2 Why, because they were probably put on the same day in the factory and if one goes bad, shortly after the second one will go. i installed a new one and still didn't work. I installed the second one on same side and the second new one doesn't work...HELP :sick:
  • I have a 2005 Mercy Sable GS 63000 miles and you have described the problem perfectly. It is still under warranty but the mercury dealership has been unable to fix the problem... Please let me know if you find a solution.
    Thanks :lemon:
  • I gave up on the car because safety & reliability were key for me - plus I didn't want to spend lots of money trying to figure out the issue & repair it. I drive my children & their friends around & take a lot of long distance weekend trips. I traded it in & bought a GM certified 2007 Chevy Impala. I was skeptical about buying another used car but went ahead since it was a certified vehicle that is still under warranty. I hope I have better luck with this car. If you ever find out what is wrong with your car, please let me know. I'm still curious about the issue.
  • my girlfriend has a 1999 sable wagon. she has simular problems. the car shuts off when driving, the lights flicker, whipers go off by them self, and sometimes the auto locks are funny. we reported it under warranty but of course ford found nothing wrong with the car.
    i have a friend that asked me when telling him all of this if her drivers seat was electricly adjustable, which it is. he told me ford/mercury have problems the the electric seats that cause problem (shortage) in other spots on the car. she took it to a garage and the guy said it was pretty much an elecrtical problem that would cost at least a grand to try to fix through a shop he knows that specializes in that. though that doesn't mean it will be fixed. so now she kinda just deals with it. it seemed to happen more in the summer when it was hot out. sounds like a constant problem with this company if you ask me :lemon:
    this is our second car from ford/mercury... it will be our last.
  • I gave up on my car too for the exact same reasons you listed. I also traded it in & bought a GM certified 2007 Chevy Impala. I too was skeptical about buying another used car but since it was certified & also still under warranty, I went ahead with it. So far, I really love my "new" car. I wish I knew what was wrong with the other car & like you, am also curious about the issue. How do you like your "new" car?
  • Hello, did you ever figure out what the issue is? I've just started getting the same issue with an '02 Taurus.
  • I had the same problem with a 2001 Taurus. At first I thought the door wasn't closing right. It turned out to be a bad electrical connection. The (very good) mechanic checked the circuits carried inbto the door within the flexible wiring harness between the door and the body. This takes a lot of beating with use. He said the "ground" wire was broken, loose, or detached (I forget exactly). He re-attached it. Problem solved, cheap, no replacement parts, just good detective work.
  • I had the same problem with a 2001 Taurus. At first I thought the door wasn't closing right. It turned out to be a bad electrical connection. The (very good) mechanic checked the circuits carried inbto the door within the flexible wiring harness between the door and the body. This takes a lot of beating with use. He said the "ground" wire was broken, loose, or detached (I forget exactly). He re-attached it. Problem solved, cheap, no replacement parts, just good detective work.
  • Sorry, airbear, misplaced my reply to another problem (windows). No clue.
  • I also have a 2003 Ford Taurus and noticed that it was taking a long time for the side mirror lights to turn off. I timed it and they seem to turn off after about 30 minutes. Haven't been able to determine if there is a way to adjust the duration or if this is simply how it is designed. Would appreciate any suggestion...
  • my 95 ford taurus like to die when you keep the gas at a steady pace. The engine light comes on and sometimes it wont start back up. does anyone know what the problem maybe? :confuse:
  • bzawbzaw Posts: 2
    I have a 96 sable that recently started losing the radio, window power and power steering (only things that are noticable) while in reverse only. All other gears everything works fine. In reverse, the headlights, dash lights, and everything else appears to be fine. When shifting from park into drive, it will lose the above things and then the seatbelt light comes and goes off (no other warning lights on the dash only the seatbelt) on once you get it into drive or back into park.

    The battery was recently replaced as was the cam sensor and idler pulley.

  • i to have this same issue now for 3 years. the car has been to the dealer numerus times with no fix, many parts just trown at it. last summer i put a new battery in and the problem went away till this winter when i used the heater, was there ever a fix for you?
  • bzawbzaw Posts: 2
    For me it was a transmission range sensor or neutral safety switch (it's a sensor that sits on top of the transmission that regulates how the car goes into gear and has the gear arm attached to it). A fairly easy fix (took bf and I about a half hour). It is listed as a service bulletin by Ford for '96 Taurus/Sables I don't know if the newer ones have the same issues.
  • this would cause my car to act like it was shuting off cause dash lights to come on for a split second, then goes on its way. only happens when the blower is on high.

    While driving on the highway and running either A/C or heater at max fan with Radio on, the car engine will die or stall violently jerking the car with all warning lights on and then continue OK. This happens at random but semi-frequent intervals. The more electronics I turn off, the less it happens but it happens all the same. No error codes or engine lights are displayed after the fact. (In one instance, it also seemed to make the AC over heat.) The radio will also turn on and off and automatically change volume as a forewarning to the sudden stall on the highway. (It has also stalled and died under similar conditions at slow speeds.) (Any suggestions will be greatly appreciated, thanks in advance.)
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