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Strange blinking light


CrAzYhOrSe's Avatar
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12-23-03, 08:10 PM   #1  
CrAzYhOrSe
Strange blinking light

96 Ford Explorer w/97500 miles. Recently tuned up. This auto has an electronic overdrive. The O/D OFF (overdrive) light in the lower right hand corner of the speedometer panel is flashing on and off.
But I have just noticed, the check engine light, which has been lit up for thousands of miles is now off. And the "brake" light which has also been lit up for some time is now off too. Not sure if that means anything or not. But the flashing O/D OFF light has just started today. And cant get the auto in overdrive. Any idea's ?

 
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12-23-03, 10:26 PM   #2  
mike from nj
i bet the owner's manual will explain just fine what that 'strange' light means. read up on the brake light and check engine light too, you might find it interesting.

it sure would be a shame if you had a sensor (cheap) problem all along, and it finally caused some trans damage from neglect.


let's see if there's a ford specialist in here during the holidays to give you a better answer

 
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12-24-03, 02:39 AM   #3  
That's a very bad sign usually. It means the TCM has set a code and you need to take it to a trans shop to be diagnosed. The prob is that almost all of the codes that are monitored deal with input and output shaft speeds and generally mean complete overhaul. I find it very strange that the other lights went out though. I guess it's a mute point since your in the habit of ignoring these important indicators.

 
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12-24-03, 03:41 AM   #4  
CrAzYhOrSe
What is TCM ?

 
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12-24-03, 04:21 AM   #5  
TCM= Transmission Control Module. Its the computer for the transmission.
If you didnt care about the check engine light or the brake light enough to have them checked, why bother with this light? Oh wait, its not shifting right..... GEEZ!!!
It is EXTREMELY important to have these things checked as soon as they appear, otherwise Ford and all other car makers wouldnt have been putting them there for the last 20+ years.
Billy

 
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12-24-03, 10:19 AM   #6  
CrAzYhOrSe
Who said anything about not caring about the other lights ? I think you just assumed I didn't care about it. The check engine light, I was told, by the service tech. could be any number of things, including a gas cap that was not on securely, which I thought was B.S. but since I know very little about automobiles, and almost nothing about those with computer controled equipment, who am I to say different ? As a matter of fact, I was told that there was no explanation as to why those lights were on. And that I should not worry about it. It was thought that maybe the brake fluid might be low, as a reason the brake light stayed on. But the level was normal. Brakes looked good too since they were replaced less than 15k miles earlier. Now suddenly the check engine light and brake light are out and the O/D OFF light is flashing on and off. And there is no problem with the shifting. Just that the electronic overdrive is not kicking in. I came here to ask for an opinion and got chastized with sarcastic remarks. Hey ! If you dont know, just say you dont know. I'll ask somewhere else.

 
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12-24-03, 10:33 AM   #7  
If you were told that the lights were not important then you should never take your vehicle there again. The lights are there for a reason and that reason is to let you know that there is a problem. If someone , whoever it may be, dismisses the lights as "no big deal" then that person(s) obviously do not understand their true importance to the vehicle and the environment. It IS true that a loose or leaking fuel cap will cause the light to come on faster in some cars than others. I used to always fuel my 2001 Mazda PU while it was running, the light never came on, but you do that just once with say a 2001 Dodge Intrepid and that light will likely be on faster than you can blink. It all depends on how often the computer monitors certain things.
I was not chastising you. It just burns me up that people in this society today dont give half a shake about maintaining their cars until it lets them down and then its the mechanics fault when he tells you what its gonna cost to get you on the road again. Its just a reality check. I am a mechanic and I see this every day. For example.... People bringing their cars in wanting a tune-up because their car is "not running right" and their check engine light is on. It is VERY important to have these things checked as soon as they appear. Not just blow it off as a way for the manufacturers to get you back to the dealer to rip you one!!!
Billy

 
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12-24-03, 01:00 PM   #8  
Billy's getting a little excited but he IS 100% correct. People say those things aren't important because they have no clue why the light is on. The ECM monitors hundreds of things and tells you when it sees something wrong. The gas cap is only one example. By the sounds of it you have some serious problems with at least the transmission. You also have an engine related computer problem to get diagnosed. You never know, they could be related. That tech might have told you what you wanted to hear but HE was an idiot.

 
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12-24-03, 02:15 PM   #9  
my 2 cents

First off if you have a light get it checked ASAP.Yes it might be a nusance light like a loose fuel cap but It might also be a hard fault light.
If you drive with the light on because it is a nusance light and you get a real serious fault you will not be aware because the light is already on.

 
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12-24-03, 02:34 PM   #10  
KurtDixon
Get away from that mechanic. Yes it could be a loose fuel cap, or 1000 other things. The purpose of those "idiot" lights is to help narrow down problems. They set a code in the computer and a competent mechanic would use a scanner to check the codes and then he would check various things on the car.
This should have been mentioned earlier, but it is very difficult to guess at problems over the internet.
Take this vehicle down to a different mechanic and get them to check it over, including the trans problem.

 
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12-25-03, 03:09 PM   #11  
CrAzYhOrSe
Thanks for the replies. The mechanic is an authorized Ford mechanic and works at the local Ford dealership. It was my thinking if any mechanic would know anything about these lights, it would be an authorized Ford mechanic. I also deal with another mechanic. I like the guy, but he's dirt poor (not that, that makes a difference) and he has very little electronic dianostic equipment. Therefore, I guess he would not be a good one to visit about this problem, am I correct ? I am a little worried about this now. I guess I could go back to the Ford dealership again and let them try again. But I'm not gonna like getting a bill for "I just dont know what it could be", again. Although as of last night and this morning, to and from work, the "O/D OFF" light is no longer flashing. And the overdrive is kicking in. Still abnormal though. Cause either the "overdrive" or "O/D OFF" light is supposed to be lit. Now neither is lit.

 
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12-25-03, 05:19 PM   #12  
If hes got a scanner, no matter what kind, its worth a shot to take it to him and let him take a look at it. He will more likely give you a straight answer than the guy who already told you he didnt know. Your problem is very strange, and it definately needs to be looked at ASAP. For your (and your wallets) sake.
Billy

 
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12-25-03, 06:55 PM   #13  
Originally posted by CrAzYhOrSe
I could go back to the Ford dealership again and let them try again. But I'm not gonna like getting a bill for "I just dont know what it could be", again.
Any Ford tech that would give you an answer like that for a problem that is occuring at the time, shouldn't be a Ford tech. If the problem is intermittant and not ocurring at the time he looks at it then that's another story.

 
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