Electrical System Nightmares (Post #520) 12/22/2014

This has not been a very fun couple of weeks for Big White Bus. My all time favorite thing on an automobile to work on is the electrical system. /end sarcasm.

I live by five simple rules.

  • I don’t play with electricity.
  • I won’t live any place I’m not the tertiary member of the food chain.
  • I never get less than twelve hours sleep.
  • I never play cards with guys who have the same first name as a city.
  • I’ve never gotten involved with a woman with a tattoo of a dagger on her body.*

The twelve hours of sleep has long since become merely a guideline and no so much a rule. And playing with electricity is also sometimes necessary. This week especially. 

Lets start with the symptoms….

First, we had the lovely “turn the key and nothing happens” issue again. You remember the one, that was the one where I replaced the battery twice to finally get one that worked. I even had to jump the Range Rover a couple of times to get her to the next destination.

While driving on the “totally awesome” highways of Oklahoma City (think concrete washboards made by Beelzebub Road Construction, Inc.) the Range Rover would shut down. Totally shut down. The dash would give me a full set of lights, just like when you turn on the key to start. And depending on the severity of the road I was on the BWB would either coast and restart or require me to turn the key to get it started.

I knew there were issues with the battery cables. The Rangie is twenty-one years old the battery cables are original. Battery cables corrode and need to be replaced. The battery connectors weren’t anything to write home about either. In a vain hope to sort out the problem I replaced the connectors with a set from O’Reilly’s. Lets just say when the Evil German saw them, his haughty looks of derision were hard to take.

I am holding back the rubber boot jacket and the zip tie on the back side of the ignition switch. The white portion with the wires is separating from the silver metal portion of the ignition tumbler.

After several calls to JagGuy and the Evil German Dude the consensus was the ignition switch was failing. We have had this issue before. I sorted it out once again by replacing the zip tie that holds the electrical connection to the back side of the ignition tumbler.

I drove a few days with the steering column cowl off so I could address any issues with the ignition switch immediately. I drove on the Oklahoma Quality Roads Bell Isle Bridge Project with no problems. Needless to say, since I could address any issues, it didn’t act up at all.

I buttoned her up this weekend after we replaced all the battery cables and haven’t had any trouble since.

You can read about the battery cable swap in the next post.

Thanks for reading and Happy Rovering.

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