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 Post subject: Power door lock problem
PostPosted: Wed Aug 01, 2007 1:36 am 
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Location: Bryan, Ohio, USA
Using the power door locks to lock all the doors has been getting intermittent when using the driver's side door lock switch on my '89. A couple of days ago, though, the 'intermittent' part of the above sentence gave up completely, and the doors could only be electrically locked from the passenger side.
Time to fix it, of course, and I dread trying to splice broken wires inside of the door flex conduit. Sure isn't much room to do anything in the space between the door and the jamb.
So, I decide to remove the wiring harness completely from the door and van body. I figure I'll really replace the broken wire and that'll be the end of it for quite a while.
Removed the door panel, heavy door paper, and the kick panel...Contorted my fingers and arms in a way that no 55 year old should have to, and finally got the wiring harness off the vehicle. Slid back the flex conduit from the wiring and saw this:

Image

Well, not too hard to see why the locks didn't work, what with that completely broken blue wire and all. But I was a little surprised to see the condition of the other wires. Wouldn't have been long and they'd have broken, too. You can see in the photo where I repaired previously broken wires and the splice was taking up space in the flex conduit. Time to do it right and replace the bad wiring by placing the splices close to the cable ends.
If I was smart, I'd leave it at that. But I've never liked the door switch position; it's awkward to get at to press the window and lock buttons. I'd like to see those switches on the dash where they'd be easy to press. Help! Can't stop myself from wanting to move the switches off the door...

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Rob Shaver
1989 Astro 305 with an MSD 6A ignition and a dash-mounted MSD timing control, a 4160 Holley 465 cfm four barrel carb, and an HEI distributor.
Moog 625 front springs and Energy Suspension poly bushings. Rear OEM sway bar. Edelbrock shocks.


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 Post subject:
PostPosted: Wed Aug 01, 2007 6:03 am 
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Location: Artesia, NM -a beautiful desert oasis
Rob moving the switches to the dash is a GREAT idea!! =D> =D> GO FOR IT!!!

I lost the ability to open my passenger's door from the inside handle because one of the inner rods broke. I order rods and they would be too long. So the only other way to open the door was with my door popper fob (shaved door handles). Well that can get a little frustrating/inconvenient for the passenger. So I wired the unlock switch into the solenoid. (Thanx V8Famvan!!) \:D/ Now you hit the unlock button and it opens the door. :supz:

If you decide to do it I will be watching; front row and center. I want to move my switch too for safety reasons.


Sorry. Your plea for help has fallen on deaf ears out here in the desert!!
:whistle:

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Last edited by trybe13 on Thu Aug 02, 2007 7:04 am, edited 1 time in total.

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 Post subject:
PostPosted: Thu Aug 02, 2007 3:04 am 
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Wow Rob, that looks really familiar! I just had to do the same repair, I let my wife drive my van it it came back with the drivers side window permanently down. Doh!! I pulled the conduit apart, saw what you have there only worse (so that's why the power mirror only goes 2 ways...), and devised a repair. I pulled the harness out of the door of my beloved parts van, and was tickled that they had the same colors and numbers of wires. I did like you and removed the entire harness, and rats, some of them were broke/breaking. So...what I did was cut the bad wires (all of them) out of my original harness (about 7"), and used the never-before-bent wires that were up in the door of the parts van (12" or so placed in the conduit), and western unioned, soldered, and taped them in between so that the splices were in the door and up in the kick panel, isolated from the strain/bend point. It worked great and has been a sucess so far. Be careful, there and two of several of the colored wires, but they can be identified easily since thy are different gages. Mine has power mirrors, maybe that's why, I don't know. I don't see as many in your pic.


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 Post subject:
PostPosted: Thu Aug 02, 2007 7:46 pm 
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Uh, James, you are supposed to tell me to just replace the broken wires, not do a custom make-over that'll take months for me to get finished... #-o O:)

Roy, my 89 has power mirrors,too. That's the splice you see in the photo--it got those working again.

Still thinkin' about moving the switches...

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Rob Shaver
1989 Astro 305 with an MSD 6A ignition and a dash-mounted MSD timing control, a 4160 Holley 465 cfm four barrel carb, and an HEI distributor.
Moog 625 front springs and Energy Suspension poly bushings. Rear OEM sway bar. Edelbrock shocks.


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 Post subject:
PostPosted: Wed Oct 10, 2007 10:27 pm 
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Well, I considered moving the switches to the dash, really I did. But I finally got tired of seeing the driver's door apart and all, so I just replaced the broken wires and re-installed the wiring harness.
... since I had the door apart, it only made sense to replace the broken door handle...that sure wasn't much fun.
Replaced the window lift motor, too. I really don't want to have to go back in there for a while.

I then disassembled the passenger door and replaced its ailing window motor, too.
However, I now see that the passenger side power mirror only has up/down movement. Looks like I need to tear into the wiring.
It never ends!

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Rob Shaver
1989 Astro 305 with an MSD 6A ignition and a dash-mounted MSD timing control, a 4160 Holley 465 cfm four barrel carb, and an HEI distributor.
Moog 625 front springs and Energy Suspension poly bushings. Rear OEM sway bar. Edelbrock shocks.


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 Post subject:
PostPosted: Fri Oct 12, 2007 11:03 pm 
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After getting into the passenger side door, I found that the power mirror problem wasn't due to a broken wire in the flex conduit--all the wiring for the mirror is intact--the problem is back in the dash somewhere and I suspect it's pretty close to the mirror switch. Didn't have enough daylight left to yank the instrument bezel off, so that's a job for later. At least I got the passenger door all put back together. Did find that 3 of the power window wires were about to break, so I fixed that before it became a problem.

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Rob Shaver
1989 Astro 305 with an MSD 6A ignition and a dash-mounted MSD timing control, a 4160 Holley 465 cfm four barrel carb, and an HEI distributor.
Moog 625 front springs and Energy Suspension poly bushings. Rear OEM sway bar. Edelbrock shocks.


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 Post subject:
PostPosted: Sat Oct 13, 2007 1:43 am 
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You gotta love it! ](*,)

:D


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 Post subject:
PostPosted: Sun Oct 14, 2007 10:30 am 
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Oh, boy, does it get weirder. I'm exiting a store yesterday, walking to my van, when I see a guy press his key fob to unlock his car. That's not unusual, but I could swear that I heard the locks in my van respond with a clunking sound. No way this could have happened--my van doesn't have a remote anything wired into it.
As I use my key to unlock the driver's door, the van re-locks the door. I unlock the door again and quickly get the door open; the van is now cycling the door locks. I jump in and close the door--the door locks are really going nuts now.
So there I sit, listening to the locks clunking away. I mentally go over the door lock schematic and wonder what wiring could be intermittently shorting together to cause this.
I look down at the lock switch on the driver's door--it looks odd. I press it and notice that it has a lot of wiggle in it, and the angle of the rocker switch is strange, but the locks stop cycling. A closer look and I see that the switch's pivot point has one side broken. The switch rocker button is close to just flopping around and its spring tension is causing the contacts to close sporadically with the slightest bit of van movement. I carefully center the rocker switch and the locks stay quiet for the 25 mile ride home. After getting home and parking the van, I listen for a few seconds to see if all is well. Everything is normal, but I'm wondering if the locks are doing their thing right now out in my driveway! I got to look up the fuse for the locks and yank it until I get a new switch.
This van is just full of surprises, but I guess having the locks cycling is better than the windows going up and down of their own accord.

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Rob Shaver
1989 Astro 305 with an MSD 6A ignition and a dash-mounted MSD timing control, a 4160 Holley 465 cfm four barrel carb, and an HEI distributor.
Moog 625 front springs and Energy Suspension poly bushings. Rear OEM sway bar. Edelbrock shocks.


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 Post subject:
PostPosted: Sun Oct 14, 2007 12:58 pm 
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My dad has a 99 clubwagon, and ford thought having a power lock switch in the lower corner of the right rear door was a good idea. His tool box would occasionally nudge it, and lock the doors. sometimes it would get against the switch, and cycle like you talked about. He has keyless entry, and blamed it on that first.
If it's not one thing, it's another.


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 Post subject:
PostPosted: Mon Dec 10, 2007 3:26 am 
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Location: Canton/Holly Springs GA (Atlanta)
For someone who may be reading this thread and thinking BROKEN WIRING ...
The driver's door power lock switch not working but the passenger door power lock is working could be just the connector is partially off the driver's door switch. Happens to my '90 every month or so. I can do the field fix is 15 seconds. Pop the small panel and push the connector back on. Been to busy or to lazy to put a ty-wrap on it.

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1990 Astro (Z motor) mostly original @ 343,584 miles (552,944.8488960001 Canadian) (03/2008). Bad startup puff. Starting to spray for skeeters. Gone 06/07/08.
1993 Astro with a bad W motor. Parked next to a chicken coop in Talking Rock GA
I'm 'tween Canton and Holly Springs (North NorthWest of Atlanta GA)
I haul bottled water everyday- between 500 and 2500 pounds (226.796185 and 1,133.980925 Canadian) INSIDE the van.


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 Post subject:
PostPosted: Mon Dec 10, 2007 4:52 pm 
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SafariRob wrote:
Oh, boy, does it get weirder. I'm exiting a store yesterday, walking to my van, when I see a guy press his key fob to unlock his car. That's not unusual, but I could swear that I heard the locks in my van respond with a clunking sound. No way this could have happened--my van doesn't have a remote anything wired into it.
As I use my key to unlock the driver's door, the van re-locks the door. I unlock the door again and quickly get the door open; the van is now cycling the door locks. I jump in and close the door--the door locks are really going nuts now.
So there I sit, listening to the locks clunking away. I mentally go over the door lock schematic and wonder what wiring could be intermittently shorting together to cause this.
I look down at the lock switch on the driver's door--it looks odd. I press it and notice that it has a lot of wiggle in it, and the angle of the rocker switch is strange, but the locks stop cycling. A closer look and I see that the switch's pivot point has one side broken. The switch rocker button is close to just flopping around and its spring tension is causing the contacts to close sporadically with the slightest bit of van movement. I carefully center the rocker switch and the locks stay quiet for the 25 mile ride home. After getting home and parking the van, I listen for a few seconds to see if all is well. Everything is normal, but I'm wondering if the locks are doing their thing right now out in my driveway! I got to look up the fuse for the locks and yank it until I get a new switch.
This van is just full of surprises, but I guess having the locks cycling is better than the windows going up and down of their own accord.


Not sure how I missed this post but I sure got a helluva laugh picturing you in your possesed van Rob,LOL


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