Electrical Gremlins

I’ve resolved that this weekend will be mostly electrical in nature on the Range Rover. This is not my favorite thing  to fix. I took electronics at Mid-America Vo-tech school when I was still in high school. I was only mildly interested in it. My dad was an electronic technician for the Federal Aeronautics Administration (FAA). He learned it in the Navy and wanted me to have the same life. That was not to be. I didn’t fall far from that tree, I went into the computer industry.

I have quite a list to address this weekend:

  • Sunroof
  • ABS Sensors
  • Utility light
  • Clock

Those are the electrical issues. This is not to mention my radio is still not working. But that is another post. I decided to start with the sunroof tonight. Mrs. OkieRover was going out to a Pampered Chef party which left me at home to drink beer work on my Range Rover.

I opened up the PDF of my workshop manual and found the location of the sunroof’s relay. I have already tested for power at the switch. The fuse is good and I’m pretty sure now it is the motor. I think I have a few more things to test but I’m mostly convinced either the controller is dead or the motor.

Next up was the ABS sensors. I mentioned in an earlier post that I wanted to test each one for conductivity. I did that tonight. I required me finding the ABS sensor plugs. The fronts are located inside the engine bay on the fenders. A quick pull and measure, done. The rear are located on the bottom of the bed just above the rear axle. I pulled those and measured, done. All four have the same value when run through the ohm meter. As does the other end when checked toward the computer.

That’s mostly disappointing. As I was hoping for a Sesame Street easy, this one is not like the others and I could swap it and my life would be ABS complete again. The second thing to test is that the sensors are fully seated against the ABS rings. This requires a dowel rod and hammer to knock the rear sensors back into place. When you start rolling the sensors are set at the correct distance and should start functioning correctly.

I haven’t got her rolling yet so I’m not sure if this made any difference. Hopefully I’ll find its all good. I said hopefully, I’m not insane, I know it won’t, but until tomorrow there’s still hope.

Not excited about the blue plastic dust shield.

Having had so much success with my projects so far, I thought I should do something I knew would be completed. I decided to fit the new Terrafirma steering damper. That was pretty easy. The old Bilstein I bought in 2000 was probably ready for a swap. If you are thinking of this job, its a One on the Difficulty Scale.

Tired Bilstein

I then looked into the Utility light under bonnet. I went to a breakers yard in 2001 and parted a light off of a Chevy Suburban. It’s a low watt light with a long extension cord. For some odd reason this “amazing piece of American technology” (end sarcasm) had stopped working. I checked all the wires back to the battery and everything was in order.

Mounted near the radiator overflow tank.

From the driver’s side across the top of the engine.

 This left just the light itself as the problem. I tested the bulb and concluded either the cord or the switch had failed on the light. The cord was the less likely so I pulled the light off and decided to fix the switch. The switch it used was a simple friction switch. Turn the switch 90 degrees and the a wedge presses a tab against another tab for contact.

I cut the plastic casing away and found a very gunked up contact point. I cut away more and then fitted a proper toggle switch. I soldered it all up and now have a working light again.

Tomorrow I’m out to Newcastle to see a T-ball game and then back in the garage.

Take a minute and visit this clever fellow’s site (http://www.mez.co.uk/lucas.html). He has several funny jokes about Lucas, The Prince of Darkness.

Thanks for reading, and Happy Rovering.

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