1998 Windstar Intermittant Red Warning Light

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  #1  
Old 01-30-02, 09:09 PM
Ron AKA
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Question 1998 Windstar Intermittant Red Warning Light

On my 1998 Ford Windstar a red warning light on the left hand side of the dash comes on intermittantly. It appears to be an "I" with a circle around it. The light is coming on more and more frequently but always goes away. The only pattern that I can see is that most often it comes on after slowing down to turn a corner and or stopping. The light comes on while accelerating after the slowing down and/or turning. It always goes away again after getting up to speed or sooner. Any thoughts on what it could be?

Thanks,
Ron
 
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  #2  
Old 01-31-02, 07:55 AM
Joe_F
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Check your light bulbs in the rear. Likely a bulb out.
 
  #3  
Old 01-31-02, 10:03 AM
joelp
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Wouldn't hurt to open the car's manual and read it.
 
  #4  
Old 01-31-02, 10:05 AM
Joe_F
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That is very true .

That might be the brake warning lamp although it usually says "Brake".

Most cars are going to international symbols so they can be sold and marketed in various countries, including those that are not English speaking.

Red warning lights mean danger, because the amber ones are caution.

Find out the cause and rectify it .
 
  #5  
Old 01-31-02, 06:29 PM
Ron AKA
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Post Thanks for the responses

I have to admitt that I have not opened the owners manual, as I can visualize what it says "Take your vehicle to the dealer and have it checked as soon as possible - bring lots of $$". Will look tonight though. It does not make immediate sense that it is a burned out bulb, as the light comes on and stays on for about 5 seconds and then goes out again. Seems to have no relation to putting on the brakes or having turn signals on.

I had a similar problem with a Toyota Camry years ago. It started with it dropping out of cruise control. Later the red brake light would come on intermittantly. I even took the brakes apart before I realized it was simply the brake fluid low. This was listed in the factory service manual which I owned, but did not read. It was not listed in the owner's manual. I've checked the brake fluid level on the Windstar as best I could as it is in an ugly spot and don't think it is the reason. I was wondering however about transmission fluid level? I recall I had an oxygen sensor go when the van was only about a year old, but I think that was an amber light that did not go out.

Any more suggestions?

Ron
 
  #6  
Old 01-31-02, 07:10 PM
Joe_F
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Yup, check the owner's manual as suggested and tell us what the light is and we can tell you the problem.

Low brake fluid in a master cylinder means a leak. Unless the fluid overheats and boils.
 
  #7  
Old 01-31-02, 09:40 PM
Ron AKA
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Thanks all

Well I read the owners manual and it was better than I thought. It said it is either the parking brake lever not fully released or the brake fluid is low. Obviously it must be the latter. The master cylinder is in a miserable spot, but I checked it as best as i could with a flashlight and if it is low it does not seem to be by much. However, because of the spot you can't unscrew the top and simply look in.

Now the question is whether I should do the quick fix and just add some fluid or do the proper job and replace the front brake pads. In my experience brake fluid almost never leaks out, the brake caliper cylinders just extend more and take more fluid as the pads wear out. Since it is cold out and I don't feel much like replacing the pads I'll probably do the quick and dirty and add more fluid. This just sets me up to make a mess when I do replace the pads as the master cylinder will overflow when I compress the cylinders to get the new pads in. Ah - pay me now or pay me later!

Thanks again.

Ron
 
  #8  
Old 02-01-02, 03:27 AM
Joe_F
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Fix it right.

If you suspect bad pads, change them. Adding fluid on lining that are like baloney slices is dangerous business.
 
  #9  
Old 02-01-02, 04:29 PM
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Join Date: Jun 2001
Posts: 247
Some of these windstar(not sure if it applies to your van) had
a recall on them for this concern.Basically it was related to the fluid level sensor in the master cylinder.After checking brakes and if you don't see a problem you might give a dealer a call to check
or post your vehicle ID# and i can check for you.
 
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