15 AMP FUSE issues

Tiny
JAMJELLS
  • MEMBER
  • 1994 FORD ASPIRE
  • 200,000 MILES
Have had never had a problem till now with this car. But one day the blinkers and gauges stop working. I found (2) 15 amp fuses have blown. These two fuses run the blinkers (Not Hazard; the lights blink in hazard mode) and the gauges to gas and temp and gear shift prompt. I replaced them once and everything worked okay till I turned on my head lamps, but also they blew in day light after having an expensive repair (distributor replaced) that did not cure the issue. I am going to take it back to the mechanic, but also replaced the head lamps two weeks before. Could I have used the wrong bulbs? What other common short would effect the blinkers and maybe even fry the distributor?
JamJells
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Monday, April 29th, 2013 AT 7:01 AM

4 Replies

Tiny
DUGSMOBILE
  • EXPERT
Sounds like you have multiple issues. First GM did have out a service bulletin for weak aftermarket fuses unexpectedly blowing. The head lamps blowing quickly usually indicates excessive voltage. With high voltage comes high current which can cause a lamp to blow quickly. Your voltage regulator should checked as this can cause many electrical nightmares, possibly to include a distributor module. Second I'm wondering how did the shop relate the distributor to be the cause of the problem with the lights?
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Monday, April 29th, 2013 AT 1:14 PM
Tiny
JAMJELLS
  • MEMBER
First the blinkers went out. I replaced the (2) fuses with 15 amp fuses and then the car died after maybe five miles after that. Couldn't re-start the car, but had cranking amps. Blinker problem popped up just before the car died again for the second time. The car did have poor horsepower and the gas mileage had dropped to 27MPG, so felt it was okay to change out.
Also know now that replacing fuses doesn't fix a short. Only a amp meter and know how can do that. I know that "some mechanics" up sell repairs. No surprise there. But rather have a good running car in the end and know that after getting the car back that I will have maybe 25 to 50K miles more depending if I watch for signs of things to take care of. Oil, brakes, alignment etc. Taking the car back now that he got his money and should dig any deeper than another 90 bucks for labor to really fix the problem. BTW. He did replace the fuse that burnt out the second time. Question I have is why didn't he look for the short? This brings me to your website and where is the logic of how to approach a short problem. He claimed he had to fix the firing problem to look at the short problem, but it returned. So did he look for it, or assumed that it was connected to the original problem? Will report back with you're comments welcomed too.

JamJells
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Monday, April 29th, 2013 AT 4:56 PM
Tiny
DUGSMOBILE
  • EXPERT
Glade to hear you have confidence in your mechanic. One thing though, it is a common misconception that all electrical problems are shorts. The reality is that short is short for short circuit, meaning the circuit was changed and a connection made where it was not supposed to and created a shorter less resistive path, this is when fuses blow due to uncontrolled currents. The head lights were working and did not blow the fuse but blew the bulb instead. Even using the right bulb if the supply voltage increases the resulting current of the circuit will increase accordingly. The majority of elec compaints in autos and other equipment is usually either a change in the resistance of the circuit, (corrosion or loose conections etc.), Or what's refered to as an open, (disconected or broken connections). Fuses are there to protect the wiring of the car not the item or load as it is called. Have seen many customers put in aftermarket headlamps that pull to much current and either melt the connections or the wires while still not blowing the fuses. The fuses you described seem somewhat unrelated but may be. Has the car ever had a hitch or other things attached to the rear lights? Seen alot of lighting fuses due to bad "tape jobs" done to trailer connections. Causes momentary shorts while driving. Just threw that in.
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Tuesday, April 30th, 2013 AT 4:37 AM
Tiny
JAMJELLS
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Well very good info to note. And Murphy is up there laughing. As it has turned out right now the car is working and I have found the problem to be a bad swap of fuses that were put back into the wrong slots! Yes I paid 568 bucks only to find out the service center that replaced my Distributor installed a 15 amp fuse where the 10 amp fuse should have been and the 10 amp fuse where the 15 amp fuse should have been. Replaced the 10 amp fuse with 15amp and installed a fresh 10 AMP into its correct slot. Could have fried the new distributor with that 15 amp where a 10 amp should have been. Guess you have to check the work that is paid for these days. Only two electrical auto shops that have good Yelp ratings and now know that isn't always a proof positive your not going to get taken for the up sell and have them dis-pair your car. Won't bother to throw them under the bus because its hard to find a good mechanic and so I will continue to look if I shall ever need electrical work done again. Will report back if more happens to my little car. But for now the problem is resolved. JamJells
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Tuesday, April 30th, 2013 AT 1:31 PM

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