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-   -   Electrical Mystery - Help? Suggestions? (http://legacygt.com/forums/showthread.php?t=196589)

dahoseman 11-18-2012 07:18 PM

Electrical Mystery - Help? Suggestions?
 
Sorry, this is about an Outback XT instead of a LGT, but I figured the electrics are essentially the same and there's a lot more traffic on here than the outback forum. I recently bought my 5MT 2005 OBXT and it was fine until a crappy electrical problem developed today that is beyond me.

My cruise control was acting a bit jerky on a drive and then stopped working as i was driving it. It then showed a flashing 'Cruise' light on the dash. I decided to unhook the battery power cable, clean the terminals, and let it sit unhooked for a few hours while I was indoors and let it clear to see what would happen.

When I hooked the battery cable back up later, it turned over just fine, but it had difficulty starting and I had to turn it over several times to get it to start. It was idling a little rough, but I figured the ECU had been reset and needed to relearn again. Over the 8 minute drive back home, the idling did not improve and it nearly stalled at stop lights. The ABS light also came on.

When I was parking it at home, it stalled before I could shut it off and I noticed all of the dash electrical lights/systems were off even though the key was still in and on. I tried to restart it, but it nothing came on. It was as if it had a 100% dead battery, except the battery is fine and the electric seats work fine. I couldn't get the window rolled up because it does not respond without the ignition working. The keyless entry does not respond.

I checked and cleaned the battery terminals/cables again and went through every fuse on the car without success. It's currently sitting in my driveway with the window down, completely unresponsive except for the electric seats.

Any tests, thoughts, suggestions? Is my ECU fried? Does that cause the ignition to not respond?

Max Capacity 11-19-2012 05:31 AM

How old is the battery ?

You say it's fine, but don't tell us the voltage in the battery. It's hard to believe the battery is fine when you tell us this type of info without giving hard facts.

Have you tryed to jumper cables from another car.

Next time you get a CEL have it read for free at any auto parts store. BTW, CC alway's flashes when you get a CEL

BarManBean 11-19-2012 06:51 AM

MaxCap alluded to it, but the flashing cruise light is a precursor to the engine throwing a CEL. Instead of clearing it by unplugging the battery, get it read next time so you have an idea of what's going on. Post the code up here and people will usually be quick to help.

__raj 11-19-2012 09:35 AM

I had similiar symptoms and it turned out to be a bad alternator more specifically the regulator jumping voltage making car go haywire. I never got a CEL and dash was haywire including dash warning lights on/off like a christams tree and jumping instruments etc.

mikeyd 11-19-2012 09:38 AM

Yeah find out what codes are thrown and in the meantime you may want to check out the various threads on the OCV (oil control valve) issue. Many have experience the ruff idle/stall due to the ocv going faulty and not moving the intake cam shaft(s) back to low rpm position.

dahoseman 11-19-2012 10:44 AM

Unfortunately, I can't do any of those things. There is nothing "on" to read. It's not driving/starting, anything. The car is essentially a paper weight right now. I can't even get the window rolled up because it doesn't turn on with the ignition. When I say that it has no response, I mean nothing comes on. No dash back lights, no radio, no lock/unlock, keyless entry does not respond at all, nothing. Yet, the seats work fine (not slugglish or pulsing power)

I hooked up my Forester with the engine running by jumper cables (to the car cables themselves, not just the battery terminals) just to make absolutely sure it's not a battery or terminal connection, there was no change or response. I even took the battery out of the OBXT and put into the forester just to see what happened. The Forester started and worked just fine with the OBXT battery.

Once again, the seats work fine and the driving lights come on if I flip the steering column "on" switch. And just to reiterate, all obvious fuses are intact, both under the dash and under the hood.

I took the steering column plastic off and connected a jumper cable lead to my circuit tester on a few wires. I got a light on the tester at the starter wire when I turned the key, so it's got a ground through the circuit. However, nothing came on.

I haven't seen anything like this before on any vehicle, so I am at a loss. If anyone has any idea what I should look at or test next, please let me know.

If nothing else, I would just like to get the driver's window up before it rains/snows. I have just have to 'jump' the window with a cable from the battery.

Max Capacity 11-19-2012 11:19 AM

I'm thinking now its in the key or the ignition switch in the colume.

Wiggle the key as your turning it to start

dahoseman 11-19-2012 11:38 AM

Thanks for the advice/info.

I have been wiggling every wire, key, connection I can think of just hoping it's a loose connection, but I haven't gotten so much as a flicker.

Is there a safe way to jump that to test the ignition?

Max Capacity 11-19-2012 12:02 PM

Quote:

Originally Posted by __raj (Post 4164816)
I had similiar symptoms and it turned out to be a bad alternator more specifically the regulator jumping voltage making car go haywire. I never got a CEL and dash was haywire including dash warning lights on/off like a christams tree and jumping instruments etc.

OP, try pulling the connector off the Alternator and then try starting the car, if it starts, I think you have fouind the problem

dahoseman 11-19-2012 08:25 PM

Quote:

Originally Posted by Max Capacity (Post 4165103)
OP, try pulling the connector off the Alternator and then try starting the car, if it starts, I think you have fouind the problem

Thanks for the suggestion. I unhooked the harness and tried. Then I did the harness and cable. Still no dash lights.

Any suggestions for getting the window rolled up?

Question: If it was the ignition, shouldn't the keyless entry lock/unlock still function?

dahoseman 11-19-2012 08:28 PM

BTW, I'm getting desperate to at least get the window rolled up so that it's not snowing or raining in my car. I'm going to have to either put plastic over the window or dig into the wiring to jump the driver's window.

Any suggestions for that?

lieutenantcolumbo 11-19-2012 08:52 PM

Real long shot, but just for the hell of it try another key.

dahoseman 11-19-2012 09:58 PM

Unfortunately, I only have one chipped key and one remote, otherwise I would try that.

I'm trying to figure out what electrical system controls: (NOT WORKING)
-Keyless entry (lock/unlock, rear hatch, panic)
-All ignition systems (dash gauges, all interior lights, windows, sunroof, radio, etc)
-Start

But does not control: (WORK FINE)
-Driving lights (switch on top of steering column)
-Electric seats

MAP 11-19-2012 11:31 PM

I havent looked at the battery or distribution box for this car but it sounds like there may be bad/ burned open fusible link. Usually there are a couple wires running from the battery's positive battery terminal. One goes to the starter and the others go to the power distribution box where there are relays or fuses. It sounds like possibly the fusible link of one of these wires is burned open or wire is broken. Use a test light to probe these wires as they go to the distribution box. It sounds like one is ok since you have power to a couple items.

The other possibility is that one of the main ground wire connections is loose or broken.

Max Capacity 11-20-2012 03:25 AM

^x1, sounds like its time to measure voltage from the battery to the next items down the line.


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