Saturday, January 15, 2011

Cruise Control

On October 13, 2009, Ford Motor Co. expanded its largest-ever recall by about 4.5 million vehicles equipped with a faulty cruise-control switch linked to at least 550 vehicle fires nationwide, and the destruction of many homes and other properties. Ford has now recalled more than 14 million vehicles in eight separate recalls over a 10-year period because of the problem. Included in this recall were van models used to build Lazy Daze motorhomes:
1992-1993, 1997-2003 E150-350

1996-2003 Ford E-450 gas
All LD owners of vehicles included in the above list should determine by VIN whether their vehicle is included in the recall, and if not the original owner, verify whether the recall has been accomplished. You can check to see if your particular vehicle is affected on the Ford Recall Page.

Possible Warning Signs Before a Fire

- Cruise system won't activate or stops working

- Brake lights stop working

- Low brake fluid

- ABS and brake warning lights illuminated on dash

- Inability to get the vehicle out of park

Cause of the problem

Ford found that brake fluid could leak through the cruise deactivation switch into the cruise system's electrical components and cause corrosion. Corrosion can cause a short and keep the cruise control from working, but in some cases it can lead to a higher flow of current that can overheat and cause a fire at the switch.
Fixing the Problem
To repair trucks, Ford will install a jumper harness between the cruise control deactivation switch and the cruise mechanism. The harness will act as a circuit breaker and will turn off the current at the switch if the switch becomes shorted.

Cruise control will not engage
There are a few simple things you might try before heading to a repair person. The cruise control has its own fuse underneath the dash. There are lots of fuses in that panel, but I believe the Ford owners manual will help you locate it. If you've had the recall done there is an added small section of wire harness under the hood with a fuse in it. If that is blown, I would check the brake switch for any leaking brake fluid or corrosion first before replacing it with a fuse of the same value. Intermittent readings from the speed sensor would make the cruise control not work. If you have the Scangauge, it will readout your speed. If that speed were fluctuating or otherwise incorrect, that could be the problem. I don't know if the speedometer uses that same sensor. I seem to remember someone had a problem getting the control to engage because of a wiring problem to the brake lights; it might have been a burned out bulb.
Contributors: WxToad, Ron B
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