If this is an am / fm / cassette radio with a remote cd player, look at the model number of the radio. If it ends with a "132", that is only one of two models that are not practical to repair and an aftermarket replacement is the best solution. I rarely recommend an aftermarket radio over factory, but this is one of them. I tried to make one good radio out of six but every time I removed a circuit board and reinstalled it, I had new problems. Come to find out they have capacitors that leak their oil which is corrosive to the copper circuits on the circuit board. Wiggling or vibrating it causes that copper to crumble off. It's not practical to keep on chasing the broken circuits all over. Most of them are very tiny and run under the integrated circuits. Removing one IC to replace it is time-consuming. Removing all of them to see where the circuits go would result in a cobbled mess that still wouldn't work.
To add insult to injury, Ford stopped allowing us to buy radio service manuals and parts after 1997 when they became Visteon products. GM did the same thing after 1993. They didn't like me horning in on their lucrative grossly over-priced repair business.
If you have the larger new-style cd / cassette combo radio with two mounting screws along the bottom, there are two different models that look the same but are different internally. One version develops no sound but as I recall, the two mechanisms appear to work and the radio tunes stations. I never sat down with one of those to figure out the problem. The other model is more commonly found with two small holes on each side of the faceplate for the removal tools, but they made a version for the Mustang too with the two mounting screw holes along the bottom. I have one of those left in my trailer. That version is famous for developing a display that fades out and fades back in randomly. The internet is full of places that list that as one of the things they repair. I have the three circuit boards they replace at the factory-authorized repair centers but my cost on those was over $125.00. They will develop the same problem in the future. Now I repair the power supply regulator board which is an extremely frustrating job. I tell car dealers I'm either keeping their radio for two weeks to be sure it's really fixed or I'll ship them a different radio. There are about 80 places to look for intermittent connections. I've already had some act up a week after I thought I had them fixed. That's why I let them play for two weeks on the test bench. Once that problem is taken care of, it usually never happens again, and besides that problem, that version seems to not have any other common problems. The two versions are interchangeable but one of them may not have a clock in it.
I repair and sell factory radios at the nation's second largest old car show swap meet about 50 miles from my house. The Ford radios are real popular for upgrades and for replacing one with that display problem. I don't see many with the sound problem.
I should add a warning too if you want to check eBay for that larger-style radio. Don't get suckered into buying a Ford six-disc changer / radio. They absolutely will not survive the vibration of shipping, especially if the UPS basketball team delivers it. I have two new changer mechanisms here. They come with a ridiculously huge metal shipping bracket to keep everything in time and alignment. There's also a big sticker on top that says "scrap if dropped". Quite the quality piece! There's no way any seller is going to have that bracket because you can only get them with a replacement mechanism. There's no instructions either on how to set the mechanism to install that bracket. The Chrysler four-disc changer, whether it's in the radio or a remote unit, is equally touchy unless you install the four shipping screws, but how many people are going to have those? Their six-disc changers go into an automatic shipping mode when power is removed so those will survive, but the Ford six-disc and Chrysler four-disc cause a lot of hard feelings. The eBay seller knows he shipped a good working radio and the buyer got one that doesn't work. Stick with the cd / cassette combo if that's what you have now. I haven't been back to eBay in many years but there used to be a fellow called Mrcd1 who sells a lot of oem radios. I worked on one that a local fellow bought, but there's no way the seller was likely to notice the intermittent problem it had so you can't blame that on him. His feedback rating was very high, but he's quite proud of his products and charges accordingly.
Tuesday, June 28th, 2011 AT 4:52 AM