Turn signal problem 1996 Town&Country [Archive] - The Chrysler Minivan Fan Club Forums

: Turn signal problem 1996 Town&Country



JMW
08-08-2004, 09:19 AM
:help_wsig Hi all , I own a 1996 Town&Country and both the turn signals go out at random times,they might stay off 5 minutes or a couple hours, I have checked all the bulbs and when the turnsignals are out the 4 ways are all still working, I've changed the multifunction turn signal/wiper switch and still the problem exist, after the new switch was installed, LOL I was so proud that I thought I fixed the problem, my wife takes her van and is gone but 1 hour ,when she was pulling in the driveway,the turns signals didnt work again for her, I go out and sure enough they are not working , im sitting there with the van running and the left turn on( thought it is not blinking)and looking through the manual for a relay or fuse I might of missed by the way (no fuse is shown for the turn signals) and no relay either :eekkkk: and 5 minutes into looking for any info in that cursed book, it just starts blinking again, ok this is getting evil now, I think her mini van is possessed, lol just kidding but is there anyone out there who can help me fix this damn thing im going bonkers now.

Police Interceptor
08-09-2004, 12:43 AM
Try replacing the turn signal flasher. It's like a big round thing in a fuse box. You might want to check all the wiring as well.

JMW
08-09-2004, 09:21 AM
Thanks ,will look for that and see if that fixes it ive checked all the wiring I could and its looking in good shape no dry rot or anything looks brand new,any info is a help, thanks again and ill get back with ya to tell ya how it went . :)

JMW
08-14-2004, 08:38 AM
aint found the problem yet , im stumped :jpshakehe

But I've got a Dodge?
08-16-2004, 08:06 PM
Whoo hoo, newbie first post and already I've got something to contribute... well sorta.
I have the same exact problem as you JMW. I think it happens more when it's cold or like when it has been raining. But don't go by that because there is no pattern. This problem of mine has somehow gone away since the winter after I started futzin around the fuze box. Problem came back after we received a dose of rain here in north jersey. Banged on the fuze box and seems to have disappeared again. Weird???

JMW
08-18-2004, 09:26 AM
:cool: hee hee well if it ever gets fixed by you plz come back and let me know the exact fix ,im starting to lean towards the inside fuse area too i was checking relays and some seemed hot more then others not sure if a short is in there or not thanks for input and please keep feeding me info lol it all helps :)

But I've got a Dodge?
08-18-2004, 05:01 PM
It's acting up again. weather has been damp here in nj and a little cooler. This may have been causing the intermittent problem. Once van has been running hot then signals are ok.

I hate this van. This is only one of the weird problems I've got in this van. and it's not something you can easily figure out too:cussing:

coneill
11-15-2004, 08:19 PM
Hi there,

I have the exact same problem - annoying isnt it? :-)) Did you ever get this fixed?

Cheers
Colin

Zuul24
11-15-2004, 11:45 PM
Forgive the stupid question but did you happen to try changing the flasher module?

I changed the one in our 1998 because I wanted the daytime running light function.

I still have the original non-DRL one sitting on my desk here.

It does look like a relay. (taking a picture.)

The DRL version is twice as wide with three extra prongs but fits right in because all 1996 - 2000 are already wired for daytime running lights. You just need the bigger relay.

Ironically, the NON DRL version costs $2 more than the DRL version. :ask_wsign

The thing plugs right into the fuse box under the dash. If you look with a flashlight, you will see the holes for the DRL version right next to it. I will take a picture of that also.

I will edit this and add the pictures is a few minutes.


Chas

Zuul24
11-16-2004, 12:39 AM
Here are the photos. And yes, I got caught taking her van apart again!

http://www.zuul24.com/images/hosted/cmv/NON-DRL.JPG

http://www.zuul24.com/images/hosted/cmv/drl.jpg

Note the extra three contacts on the right.

http://www.zuul24.com/images/hosted/cmv/fuse-drl.jpg
Here is the flasher in place. And below, removed.
http://www.zuul24.com/images/hosted/cmv/flashersockets.jpg

Hope you guys figure out your problems. Sure sounds like bad flashers to me.

I had to take about 15 pictures of the fuse box before I got a clear one. Ever try taking a photo in pitch black? Plus my Mavica does not like to focus in pitch black either! :)

You can't really see it all that well in the picture but it is actually imprinted into the plastic FLASHER between the two sockets and DRL above the one socket. Not like you can read the word flasher while it is plugged in though.

Chas

Zuul24
11-18-2004, 10:59 PM
WELL???? Did anybody try changing the flasher?

Did I risk my wife's wrath for nothing in taking pictures??? :eek:

Chas

mr_fixit
11-18-2004, 11:34 PM
hey guys, Is the clockspring involved in the turnsignals in any way??

AMD Rules
11-18-2004, 11:50 PM
Zuul....I like yor pics....really nice! :biggrin:

mr_fixit ... The clockspring is essentially behaves like a a 'coil of wires' that allow you to turn the steering wheel, while providing power to any of the wheel mounted devices. This could include air bags, horn, cruise and stereo controls if equipped. Turn signal switches are not mounted on the steering wheel itself, thus the switches are wired directly to the PDC. A failed clockspring would not have impact on the turn signals.
http://autoclinic.net/article/chrysler/96_airbag_horn.htm
Picture #5 and #6 in that link show the clockspring enclosure for a '96 van. It mounts beneath the steering wheel.

eifeldude
12-18-2008, 02:59 AM
I have a 96 plymouth voyager 3.3l and had the exact same problem. On a cold day, the flasher may or may not work. Once it warmed up, it would work. It wouldn't happen everyday, but just enough to annoy you. Then one day it quit working all together. I decided to change the flasher. I went to all the parts stores and found that it is only available at the dealer. I went and picked one up from the dealer and it was $48 (ouch) Most regular flashers are around $5. This special flasher that the 96 uses is a huge thing that runs both the 4 way and 2 way and it uses relay coils instead. I changed the Flasher out and i have not had a problem since. I opened up the old flasher, and found that the points had burned on them. Hope this helps

RIP
12-18-2008, 03:43 AM
This was posted on another forum a while back. You can repair a flasher:

Repair a flasher module
An intermittent or occasional Dodge Chrysler 4686094 flasher module can be repaired easily! SAVE YOUR $45!!

1. Pull out the flasher;( it is 1"x1" x 2" #4686094 relay module under dash, put your head against the brake pedal and look up, it sticks up higher than most and is 3/4 way up on relay panel; if you push on the relay with the blinker on, and it may start clicking to help you identify it. My car is a 1996 dodge caravan ). The relay is a pain to get out, but keep thinking of the $45 you save.

2. Now to repair the relay. On the spade pin side of the relay, bend and brake off the two 1/2" x 1/32" plastic ears that hold the relay cover on and slide the relay cover off.

3. Look at the circuit board side with the shiney solder connections. The exterior pins go thru the plastic base and are soldered to the circuit board. These solder connections to the pins get hairline stress fractures and are intermittent as they make and lose contact. If you use a magnifier glass you can see the offending cracked solder joint.

4. Re-Solder each contact point on the circuit board edge. This can be done by just reheating the contact with a solder iron till the solder flows a little . If you do use some extra new solder, make sure it does not flow across (bridge) the contact points. It is not necessary to re-solder the component connections on the board.

5. Put cover back on and secure with a dot of glue or short piece of scotch tape , and reinstall in car (I cursed alot when having to blindly reinstall, it is more a pain than removal, but I kept thinking of the $45 saved).

Try this and keep from giving $45 dollars of hard earned money to the unworthy dealer.

AzTraveller
12-24-2008, 01:35 PM
RIP, Good coverage and steps.
While you're inside the case, clean the contacts, too.:headbange

98t&c
12-24-2008, 06:00 PM
Wonder if the flasher problem ever got fixed?

FWIW, I have a 95 Dogde Intrepid with 3.3L and the flashers were intermittent. Sometimes they would work and sometimes not. After changing the flasher unit, checking bulbs and simple stuff, I knew this was no easy fix.

Without boring you with the details, after several hours of tracing voltages, I found the problem to a bad connection right at the + terminal of the battery.

The flashers on the Dodge are powered by about a 12 gauge wire that runs right into the terminal. It is shrink wrapped in plastic. When I cut the plastic wrap away, I found that the connection was all corroded. I soldered it back together and all was well.

Again, wonder if this every got resolved or if others are still having a problem? :ask_wsign

eljefe91
12-27-2008, 10:04 AM
It was refreshing to see this post. We've been having a similar problem in our '97 T&C and I'm now compelled to beg for help. I'm a little wary of getting out a soldering gun at this point and $45 sounds great to fix our problem. At first the turn signal was intermittent and turning on the hazard lights seemed to make them work when the turn signal died. I replaced the multifunction switch on the steering column and that wasn't the problem--I also blew the male and female ends with compressed air to clean them off as one had suggested.

Here are the symptoms now:
- Turn signal is no longer intermittent it just never works
- The hazard lights always work when activated
- After the car has been running for a while the right turn signal begins on it's own and stays on with the audible warning chime going non-stop (enough to make a three hour trip pure ****)
-- However, the warning chime will stop for 40 seconds if I tunr the hazard lights on for a second
- Also, when the card is turned off and the key removed (and headlights off) when I open the driver's side door the warning chimes as if I've left the key in or lights on.
- The battery is fairly new
- I've had the relay replaced about a year and half ago when the intermittent thing first started.
:help_wsig :nut:
Also I'm not sure if it's related but the check engine light is on becuase I'm waiting on a downstream O2 sensor which should solve the P0141 code. I don't think the O2 sensor is part of this problem however.

eljefe91
01-02-2009, 07:50 PM
An update in case anyone is reading. ('97 T&C no turn signals but had hazard lights)
- I cleaned the battery terminals and on my trip home from vacation I didn't have the right blinker/chime problem.
-- I had my hazard lights but no turn signals at all
- I was at my wits end and took it to the dealership. In another post I mentioned that the mechanic said the body control module (BCM) had gone bad and that they'd charge me $700 for the module and $300 for labor. After leaving the dealership my hazards no longer worked
- I went to junkyarddog.com and entered what I was looking for and a few minutes later I got an email from a company that could get me the part 14 miles from my house.
- Today I got the BCM and installed it--no change in the light situation
- When I looked again at the possibility of a relay in the fuze box and I think my relay is now missinghttp://i543.photobucket.com/albums/gg478/el-jefe-91/my_no_flashers_picture.jpg

- I need to do some research but if anyone knows does this realy control both turn signals and hazards?

eljefe91
01-02-2009, 08:21 PM
- Oh yeah, the best case scenario is that my new (used) BCM actually works and that I'm just missing my relay

98t&c
01-02-2009, 09:08 PM
So, have you changed the Flasher module yet?

Looking at this schematic from Autozone, it does not appear to me that the BCM controls the flashers. It simply monitors them and knows how long they have been on.
The flasher bulbs(both turn signal and hazard) are controlled by the Flasher module.

PS: I am researching schematics. The one I looked at may be for Canadian T&C's. Trying to verify....

98t&c
01-02-2009, 09:26 PM
Also, NAPA shows a Flasher part (also called a Lighting Control Module?)

http://www.napaonline.com/MasterPages/NOLMaster.aspx?PageId=430&Keyword=flasher&KeywordCat=Flasher&VehCode=Y

sorry, the entire link does not show. You have to enter your vehicle and search for "flasher".

eljefe91
01-03-2009, 03:33 PM
Thanks for trying to help 98t&c. I replaced the flasher (Mopar part #4686094 - and it controls both the hazards and the turn indicator according to the Chilton manual) and I'm back to the symptom:
- The right flasher is continuously on regardless of where the multifunction switch tells it to go
- the hazard lights work and override the right only mode
- I think I've ruled out the flasher and BCM and am leaning towards a wiring problem
- I'm looking at p 12-42 of the Chilton manual "Chassis Electrical System"
-- It appears that the default position on the multifunction switch (MFS) is to be an open circuit and that moving the MFS into the desired position closes the circuit. Somewhere, somehow the circuit is getting closed such that the MFS is bypassed but I'm still getting dashboard indication (which tells me that the BCM is seeing a closed circuit as well/)
-- I need to figure out a way to trace the circuit to find the short
- Any advice? Does it require me taking the steering column completely apart? WHere do I start?:help_wsig

eljefe91
01-03-2009, 07:06 PM
The flashers on the Dodge are powered by about a 12 gauge wire that runs right into the terminal. It is shrink wrapped in plastic. When I cut the plastic wrap away, I found that the connection was all corroded. I soldered it back together and all was well.


As I'm running all the possibilities to ground, what exactly did you solder? The connection at the module or right at the battery terminal? I thought I'd check into just replacing the positive leads but the dealership said that it was an engine harness and cost $1200 (of course):cry:

98t&c
01-03-2009, 07:49 PM
Ok, el, don't panic. We can work this out but its gonna take some patience as it is hard to troubleshoot from 1000 miles away. I don't think this is the same as the Intrepid problem that I had. Electrical problems can be tricky but with some careful troubleshooting, you should be able to get it nailed.

For starters, can you take a look at fig. 13 from this Autozone site and see if it looks the same as your Chiltons?

http://www.autozone.com/az/cds/en_us/0900823d/80/1a/46/ba/0900823d801a46ba/repairInfoPages.htm

eljefe91
01-03-2009, 10:05 PM
For starters, can you take a look at fig. 13 from this Autozone site and see if it looks the same as your Chiltons?

http://www.autozone.com/az/cds/en_us/0900823d/80/1a/46/ba/0900823d801a46ba/repairInfoPages.htm

Yes, they are similar enough. What I see is that the turn signals and hazard lights are on separate circuits to the combination flasher module (and that according to the diagram, the BCM should have no effect). I'm assuming now from my substituting parts that the multifunction switch and combo flasher module aren't the problem. I think I will need to test the wires on the prongs of the harness on the steering column but am not sure how. I've searched for diagram of the actual connectors but have come up empty. Are there more in-depth manuals that I should have beyond the Chilton?
Thanks for flying on my wing on this one!:beerchug:
Jeff

98t&c
01-03-2009, 11:12 PM
Hey Jeff, No problem on being your wingman. I am an electrical engineer by trade and actually enjoy these kind of challenges :wall:

Yes, I wish the electrical diagrams were a bit more detailed but perhaps they are ok for now. I will try to do a search for better and more detailed schematics.

For now, can you take a look at the connector between the Flasher unit and the Turn/Hazard switch? (you may be calling the switch the multifunction switch). According to the AutoZone diagram, there should be about 4 wires coming out of the MFS connector...Dark Blue/Pink (DBL/PK), Light Blue/White (LBL/W), Light Blue/Yellow(LBL/Y) and Black(B).

Can you verify the colors of the wires? This will help confirm the accuracy of the schematic.

Now, you say that the R. turn signals just stays on, correct? With this happening, can you pull the MFS connector so that it no longer connects to the Flasher module and tell me if the R. turn signal then quits flashing?

Ok enough questions for now. I have more for you to check but want to hear these answers before moving on. Please try these things and let me know.

eljefe91
01-04-2009, 12:27 AM
For now, can you take a look at the connector between the Flasher unit and the Turn/Hazard switch? (you may be calling the switch the multifunction switch). According to the AutoZone diagram, there should be about 4 wires coming out of the MFS connector...Dark Blue/Pink (DBL/PK), Light Blue/White (LBL/W), Light Blue/Yellow(LBL/Y) and Black(B).

Can you verify the colors of the wires? This will help confirm the accuracy of the schematic.

Now, you say that the R. turn signals just stays on, correct? With this happening, can you pull the MFS connector so that it no longer connects to the Flasher module and tell me if the R. turn signal then quits flashing?

Here's a quick shot from my camera of the wiring harness on the steering column: http://i543.photobucket.com/albums/gg478/el-jefe-91/Multifunction_Switch_bad-1.jpg
Bottom line is tha there's a lot more than 4 wires. I'll doublecheck tomorrow on the colors since you can't see the wires very well.
Also, when I disconnect the MFS on the steering column the blinking stops.

alvin
01-04-2009, 12:47 AM
Is the replacement BCM the correct part number? I know it has a matching junction block, but the pinouts of the external connectors did change from year to year.

eljefe91
01-04-2009, 11:03 AM
Is the replacement BCM the correct part number? I know it has a matching junction block, but the pinouts of the external connectors did change from year to year.
Yes, good question. I matched the part number 4686671 exactly. Apparently the odometer is tied to the BCM since my odometer is reading about 55' miles less than the van really has. I'm going to send the original BCM in for repairs. I saw a place that will repair it for around $200.

eljefe91
01-04-2009, 12:49 PM
OK folks thanks for all the help. I think I had multiple problems with my electrical system that I've now solved. I snugged all the wires on the harness to the multifunction switch (MFS) on the steering column and I decided to test again with the new MFS that I bought. Guess what, the darn thing works again. My BCM, MFS, and harness may all have been bad which is frustrating. I now have a BCM with the wrong mileage and tied to another VIN. I will start another thread to ask more about the BCM and whether or not I sould send my original one in for repairs for $200. Thanks to 98t&C and RIP for flying as instructor pilots.

98t&c
01-04-2009, 02:27 PM
OK folks thanks for all the help. I think I had multiple problems with my electrical system that I've now solved. I snugged all the wires on the harness to the multifunction switch (MFS) on the steering column and I decided to test again with the new MFS that I bought. Guess what, the darn thing works again. My BCM, MFS, and harness may all have been bad which is frustrating. I now have a BCM with the wrong mileage and tied to another VIN. I will start another thread to ask more about the BCM and whether or not I sould send my original one in for repairs for $200. Thanks to 98t&C and RIP for flying as instructor pilots.

Jeff, One more thing to ponder before you write this off as solved. The reason that I asked you to disconnect the MFS was to see if losing the signal from the stalk switch would cause the Flasher to respond. And it did.

From the schematic, it looks like the turn signal switch grounds the appropriate input on the Flasher module when a turn direction is selected. If no turn is selected, the input "floats" (usually high) and that tells flasher module not to flash.

Yours having a continual R. turn flash tells me that the MFS wire(LBL/Y) to the R. input of the flasher was grounded all the time. By moving the harness around, you disturbed the ground somehow. You might have a chaffed wire(insulation cut or scrapped) in the column that sometimes touches the metal chassis and causes the R. turn to blink. Think of what would happen over the years if that wire were continual rubbed by some metal component of the steering column.

Your BCM, Flasher module or MFS may never have been bad. But its "fixed" now.

I just noticed the other thread pertaining to this issue but will just answer here.

Regards

dano726
02-26-2010, 05:58 PM
Posted this in wrong forum. Sorry I'm new.

dano726
02-26-2010, 06:01 PM
I couldn't figure out why the blinkers wouldn't work on my newly acquired 96 Voyager. The owners manual is worthless for anything electrical. I see you posted the photos over 6 years ago but what a help! I found the flasher relay easily (because of your photos). I pulled it out, banged it around and now the blinkers work again! Who knows for how long but replacing it will now be easy.
Thanks Zuul24!!:thumb:
dano

angrysmileyface
02-27-2010, 08:13 PM
Does anyone have the part number for the combo relay/flasher?

GW97
03-04-2010, 01:40 PM
1997 NS
04686094 Combo
04686190 Daytime Running Lamps

LoxMurda
03-17-2010, 08:24 PM
Here are the photos. And yes, I got caught taking her van apart again!

http://www.zuul24.com/images/hosted/cmv/NON-DRL.JPG

http://www.zuul24.com/images/hosted/cmv/drl.jpg

Note the extra three contacts on the right.

http://www.zuul24.com/images/hosted/cmv/fuse-drl.jpg
Here is the flasher in place. And below, removed.
http://www.zuul24.com/images/hosted/cmv/flashersockets.jpg

Hope you guys figure out your problems. Sure sounds like bad flashers to me.

I had to take about 15 pictures of the fuse box before I got a clear one. Ever try taking a photo in pitch black? Plus my Mavica does not like to focus in pitch black either! :)

You can't really see it all that well in the picture but it is actually imprinted into the plastic FLASHER between the two sockets and DRL above the one socket. Not like you can read the word flasher while it is plugged in though.

Chas

I would like to thank you very much. I was about to rip out the fender to search for bad grounds and corroded wires. I know these minivan are notorious for corrosion on the battery side. I had a 98 Town & country LXI and after my girl had and accident to the fender, we couldn't get the wipers to stop once turned on. The dealer wanted $2500 to replace the main wire harness because they couldn't figure out the issue.:angry1:. So I installed a inline fuse with a switch in the dash to kill power to wipers when I wanted, cost me $10. Now I a 2000 Grand Caravan. I noticed the left turn signal was out, when to check the bulb and noticed the female connector was fully corroded. The repaired it and then noticed things were not right. The light worked now but it was brighter than the right turn signal, not only that but when i used the turn lever, the left blinker stayed on even after I returned the lever to normal position. It went off when i pressthe brakes but came back like it was teasing me. The right light worked fine but when I turn leftg both lights flashed. WTF. Funny thing is that it seemed to work ok when the lights were off, but if the were set to on or auto things got really wacky. I took off both headlight and stop lights and still had the problem with the blinker staying on. I changed all bulbs including headlights and still no fix. After putting everything back together again. I noticed now my brake lights were always on as if I had my foot on the pedal, and this was regardless of the headlight setting. My train of thought was since the connector was corroded, maybe I have more corrosion down the line. I was pissed about having to remove then fender and spend a day tracing wires. Then i checked this site and got lots of wonderful insights. I took the advise, went to the junkyard, $5 bucks got me 2 parking/DRL/flashers. Replaced it and boom no problem. What a relief. You guys saved me time and money. Thank you.:beerchug:

vman858
03-17-2010, 10:32 PM
An update in case anyone is reading. ('97 T&C no turn signals but had hazard lights)
-
- When I looked again at the possibility of a relay in the fuze box and I think my relay is now missinghttp://i543.photobucket.com/albums/gg478/el-jefe-91/my_no_flashers_picture.jpg

- I need to do some research but if anyone knows does this realy control both turn signals and hazards?
erested
Well I spent alot of time on this and you can open DRL flasher and resolder all connection and it should fix problem. If anyone is interested I uploaded scanned images from the factory service manual of the circuit back when I spent alot of time on yahoo groups. You may need to join group but all the diagrams are there with the location etc.

http://autos.groups.yahoo.com/group/Chryslers_MiniVans/files/1998%20GC%20turn%20signals/

wamaroe
03-21-2013, 03:25 AM
I'm a little late to the party on this one. The same thing has happened to me several times over the last year. I've found that by turning on the emergency flasher (switch on the steering column) and then turning it off, the turn signal starts working again. This van has a very expensive flasher (almost $100) that probably operates both.

RIP
03-21-2013, 04:06 AM
May already be in this thread but sometimes the solder joints in the combo flasher crack creating intermittent dead turn sigs. Just take the cover off the flasher and reflow the solder joints securing the external contacts to the circuit board.