1999 Ford Taurus Computer Problem?

Tiny
ALFADIRR
  • MEMBER
  • 1999 FORD TAURUS
  • 6 CYL
  • FWD
  • AUTOMATIC
  • 162,841 MILES
1999 Ford Taurus Sedan: All of a sudden the wipers came on, the lights on the dashboard started coming on and off (check engine, brake light, battery light, etc). The fuse box started making clicking sounds rapidly (about 4 clicks per second) and immediately after the car stalled and would not start. When trying to start the car, you can hear the starter clicking but it won't turn over. The first time this happened, it started after waiting 24 hours, but now I can't get it to start. Is this a computer problem, fuse box problem or something else? The battery is new, and I checked the cables. Which are also new. They were well attached and there was no corrosion. There was some previous bad corrosion before the battery replacement that did get on the fuse box. I cleaned it off as much as I could with baking soda. Could you please tell me what may be wrong, and what I can check.
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Saturday, December 4th, 2010 AT 8:02 AM

9 Replies

Tiny
FIXITMR
  • MEMBER
It's definately a bad connection. And the fuse box seems to be part of it. Since the computer has no control over lights or starter.
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Saturday, December 4th, 2010 AT 8:59 AM
Tiny
FIXITMR
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Also check your starter connections for clean and tight.
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Saturday, December 4th, 2010 AT 9:02 AM
Tiny
ALFADIRR
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Ok, thanks fixitmr. I'll check the fuse box and pray for a simple and inexpensive fix. I will report back what I find.
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Saturday, December 4th, 2010 AT 5:31 PM
Tiny
ALFADIRR
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Sorry for the delay. With being out of work due to a severe back injury, I had to wait on money for a Haynes book and a friend to come over and assist me. The Haynes book doesn't show me how to remove the fuse box under the hood, and it has led me to another question.

Since the wipers were coming on, along with all the dashboard lights, would the fuses I am looking for be in the steering column or the box under the hood?

Also, if it is the ones under the hood, how or what do I check for the lose connection? I apologize, as I am not a car guy at all. But I would guess if everything is going wonky, there is a good chance that the ground is somehow loose. So where is the ground to that entire box?
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Saturday, December 18th, 2010 AT 9:45 PM
Tiny
FIXITMR
  • MEMBER
Fuse box is not grounded as far as I know. But you have body grounds and main battery cable ground. The starter just clicking could mean you should check starter connections and loosen re tighten to confirm good contact. Sometimes many other hot wires are on the starter post also. Does your manual have a wiring diagram?
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Sunday, December 19th, 2010 AT 5:15 AM
Tiny
ALFADIRR
  • MEMBER
Yes, there is a wiring diagram in the back.

The reason I keep looking into a fuse box problem is because what it did before it died. So perhaps its a starter and fuse box problem.

Before it died, and about 3 days before, intermittently, the car would go "all wonkers". The brake light, check engine light, check oil light and service light all started coming on and off, fairly quickly. Also, at the same time this was happening, the wipers would turn on for no reason. While this was happening the clicking noise was coming from the fuse box, very rapidly. Just like what you hear when the flashers are on. It would do this a few times and then the car would die. After that it wouldn't start.

So now I am wondering if its a problem in the fuse box, and not just the starter.
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Sunday, December 19th, 2010 AT 2:25 PM
Tiny
FIXITMR
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I was just thinking due to mileage if a bad ignition switch could cause this kind of behavior?
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Tuesday, December 28th, 2010 AT 7:22 AM
Tiny
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I assume that is buried in the steering column. (Lucky me)
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Tuesday, December 28th, 2010 AT 10:43 AM
Tiny
FIXITMR
  • MEMBER
Dont sound too bad according to this.
Removal

1
Disconnect the car battery's negative cable, followed by the positive one. Wait two minutes for the air-bag system to run out of power.

2
Insert the ignition key into the lock cylinder and turn it to the "Run" position.

3
Remove the knee bolster on the driver's side and the lower steering-column cover, removing their screws with a screwdriver and prying the bolster off its clips with a trim stick as needed.

4
Remove the screws connecting the ignition switch to the instrument panel with a screwdriver, then remove the center bolt on the harness connector with a small wrench. Disengage the switch from the actuator pin to remove it.

Installation

1
Check the replacement ignition switch and make sure its actuator pin slot is in the "Run" position. If you're holding the switch with its long, flat edge in front of you, the slot's "Off" position is the center of the five positions and "Run" is the first one to the right.

2
Position the ignition switch on the actuator pin and apply its mounting screws with the screwdriver. You may need to move the switch back and forth to line up the mounting screws' holes.

3
Bolt the electrical connector to the ignition switch using the wrench.

4
Reconnect the lower steering-column cover and the knee bolster.

5
Turn the lock cylinder back to the "Off" position and remove the ignition key, then reconnect the car battery--positive cable first, then the negative one.
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Thursday, December 30th, 2010 AT 9:02 AM

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