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tbirdmike63
05-15-2017, 10:01 PM
Hey everyone, got another problem here, my turn indicators on my 66, work fine until I turn my headlights on, then the right one freezes and stays on, if I turn something else on like the heater fan or put the brakes on the left one freezes on too, if I rev. the motor it helps, now, the strange thing is, I got a new voltage regulator, I've had my alternator tested and it fine, my alternator belt is tight. I have taken the plug off of the turn indicator relay and cleaned the connections, I am out of ideas, anybody have a clue to what can get my indicators to work properly? Thanks!

Wyldie
05-16-2017, 12:50 AM
Sounds like an earth issue to me, have checked all your earth connections?

simplyconnected
05-16-2017, 01:37 AM
...my turn indicators on my 66, work fine until I turn my headlights on, then the right one freezes and stays on, if I turn something else on like the heater fan or put the brakes on the left one freezes on too, if I rev. the motor it helps...Let's go to the wiring diagram because that's the FIRST place you should look for common wires.

What is common to your:

Headlights (wire #12)
Right Turn Signal Indicator Light (wire #362)
Heater Fan
Brake Lights
Left Turn Signal Indicator Light (wire #363)

http://www.squarebirds.org/Diagrams-Schematics/1966/1966-TbirdExtrWiring-LH-800.jpg

Looks to me like many of those wires go through the same plug. It's on the bottom and in the middle of the page.

Pull that plug apart and look at the contacts for anything burned or green. While you have it apart, see if those faults go away. - Dave

tbirdmike63
05-16-2017, 06:49 AM
I can see the plug that I should clean in the diagram, but where is it in the car?

tbirdmike63
05-16-2017, 07:06 AM
I noticed a short wire that comes out of the fender on the inside of the engine compartment near the turn indicators that look like ground wires, l cleaned those. I heard that the base of the turn indicators are considered a ground, mine are solidly attached to the fenders, should I remove those and clean the base of them? Thanks

simplyconnected
05-16-2017, 11:07 AM
I can see the plug that I should clean in the diagram, but where is it in the car?Seriously?
Pick a wire. Let's say, a headlight wire. Follow it to the firewall and there you go.

Look at the diagram... it shows the indicator light (on each side) has one wire going to a bullet connector and the lamp holder is grounded. Clean them if you think water got inside. - Dave

tbirdmike63
05-16-2017, 12:03 PM
I cleaned the bullet connectors, and what I thought was the grounds to each indicator. I will follow the wires, I think the the connection is under the dash near the steering column. I don't mean to come off ignorant, electrical work is new to me, I am learning, I think any question is better then no question and wondering if I am doing it right, or wasting alot of time. Thanks for your responses.

tbirdmike63
05-16-2017, 12:15 PM
So, the lamp holder itself is the ground, there is no ground wire coming from it? I need to get under the fender unbolt it from the fender clean both surfaces and reattach?

Joe Johnston
05-16-2017, 01:35 PM
So, the lamp holder itself is the ground, there is no ground wire coming from it? I need to get under the fender unbolt it from the fender clean both surfaces and reattach?

not for testing. Use a length of wire with alligator clips on each end. Clip one end on the ground terminal of the battery, and clip the other on the exterior of the non working bulb's socket. Should the new ground fix the problem, THEN you have to remove and clean everything. In all probability, the ground connection at this light is probably weak and should be cleaned anyhow. Good grounds are very important, but many only focus on the power supply wiring and over look poor or weak grounding connections.

tbirdmike63
05-16-2017, 02:21 PM
Thanks, when you say non working bulbs socket do you the the indicator housing?

tbirdmike63
05-16-2017, 04:22 PM
Ok, I grounded the right indicator with a ground wire to the negative battery post, no change still freezes up when I turn things on in the car. I think I found the plug that the indicators go into under th dash, of course I can't get it apart, there are two tabs on each side of the plug do I squeeze those as I pull? Is there a trick to getting these apart, or is it just brute strength?

simplyconnected
05-16-2017, 06:43 PM
Mike, I'm trying to teach you something, here. You're from Detroit so I know you understand the assembly line, even if it's a little.

Open the hood and imagine yourself as the guy on the line. You get exactly 60-seconds before the next car is upon you. That means, every job must be done quickly and it must be easy.

You don't need to understand the schematic but it helps a lot. I suggested you follow a headlight wire to the connector. I never suggested going under the dash but you did. Back up and follow my direction.

All this makes sense if you think about it. Wires under the dash are protected against rain and weather. Wires under the hood may encounter water frequently because we're in Michigan. Which would you think will fail first?

Let's get back to the guy on the line. He needs to connect every electrical device in the front of the car in one minute. Now, look at the wiring harnesses under the hood and follow a headlight wire back. Where are the connectors? - Dave

tbirdmike63
05-16-2017, 09:13 PM
Ok, I unplugged every connector I could find in the engine compartment, from the headlights to the firewall, and the problem persists, they work fine till I put the car in drive, the idle drops, then they stop working, it seems like there's not enough power going to everything. I don't know what else to do, I read the schematic, unless it's a connector under the dash, or possibly the indicator relay, Im going to try to get that out to adjust it. Any suggestions would be appreciated. Thanks

jopizz
05-16-2017, 10:04 PM
What voltage do you have at idle in gear? It sounds like you're dropping below 12 volts. Did you have the same problem before changing out the voltage regulator.

John

tbirdmike63
05-16-2017, 11:03 PM
Yes I did, I haven't checked for voltage in gear, I was at 14.85 volts at idle in park, and it rose up to 15.39 when I reved it. I will check that tomorrow, if it is dropping below 12 volts while in gear what would cause that?

jopizz
05-16-2017, 11:08 PM
Weren't those readings before you changed the voltage regulator. I'd be interested to see if they're the same with the new voltage regulator. Your turn signals go through the sequential unit that's in the trunk. It relies on a motor that needs full voltage to operate. If the voltage drops too much or the motor is weak your turn signals will stop working.

John

tbirdmike63
05-16-2017, 11:18 PM
I will check the voltage tomorrow, the turn signals work good, its the turn indicators on the fenders that freeze up when put in gear with the headlights on and other accessories are on. Or is there something wrong with my turn signals thats causing my indicators to freeze up?

jopizz
05-16-2017, 11:48 PM
The turn signal motor in the sequential unit also contains the flasher for the turn indicators on the fenders. From there it goes to the turn signal relay which is also contained in the sequential unit. From there it goes to the turn signal switch and then to the fender lights. If it only fails when you have a drop in voltage then I would suspect the turn signal motor/flasher unit.

John

simplyconnected
05-17-2017, 12:19 AM
Hey everyone, got another problem here, my turn indicators on my 66, work fine until I turn my headlights on, then the right one freezes and stays on, if I turn something else on like the heater fan or put the brakes on the left one freezes on too, if I rev. the motor it helps, now, the strange thing is, I got a new voltage regulator, I've had my alternator tested and it fine, my alternator belt is tight. I have taken the plug off of the turn indicator relay and cleaned the connections, I am out of ideas, anybody have a clue to what can get my indicators to work properly? Thanks!

Ok, I unplugged every connector I could find in the engine compartment, from the headlights to the firewall, and the problem persists, they work fine till I put the car in drive, the idle drops, then they stop working, it seems like there's not enough power going to everything. I don't know what else to do, I read the schematic, unless it's a connector under the dash, or possibly the indicator relay, Im going to try to get that out to adjust it. Any suggestions would be appreciated. Thanks
I believe in using 'sound troubleshooting techniques'. I do not throw parts at a problem or change components unless they prove to be 'bad'.

I start at a point where 'it doesn't work' and I let the schematic guide me toward the source as I eliminate possibilities along the way. This technique can be applied to every problem whether it is mechanical or electrical.

By simply unplugging every plug you see, doesn't help. That's like taking every wheel off because one tire is flat. For example, when you took the plug apart for the headlights and turn indicators, what did you see inside the pins? At that point, your headlights and indicator lights couldn't possibly work because they were disconnected. If your fault still existed, do NOT put the plug back together, but follow the wires closer to the source without getting sidetracked.

I never pay attention to someone who says, 'yeah, last time 'it' was (this or that).' That gets you sidetracked. What happens if you have TWO problems? Follow the schematic and test voltages. Your test light or meter will find any problem along the way.

Troubleshooting takes patience and skill. Some don't have either so they must hire a troubleshooter who can focus. We don't have the car in front of us but you do. All we know is what you report, whether it is fact or not.

Let's start again with a common problem. What voltage is your battery at when you turn things on? Do you have another good battery to swap temporarily? And as said, give your ground wires a shake. Make sure they are not frayed and the ends are tight. Also, make sure your car's body has a solid ground.

scumdog
05-17-2017, 02:38 AM
I will check the voltage tomorrow, the turn signals work good, its the turn indicators on the fenders that freeze up when put in gear with the headlights on and other accessories are on. Or is there something wrong with my turn signals thats causing my indicators to freeze up?

I have a similar issue, indicators blink but when I put my foot on the brake-pedal they just 'pulsate' instead of actually blinking.

Joe Johnston
05-17-2017, 08:59 AM
Agree check the battery voltages when not running, at idle, revved up, lights on, signals on, and when working or not working. This will determine the supply of power in use.

Also check the voltage at the areas jopizz suggested. Then add a long ground wire back to the battery ground terminal to the ground connections of the sequential unit. This will determine the condition to and from the sequential system.

I am a big believer in solid grounds & feel they cause more issues than poor power supply wires. A bad power feed wire will just short out and burn (not good but usually easy to find) or create a broken connection and cause something not to work. Your lights work, sort of, so they are getting power, but perhaps not enough to them or back to the battery.

Also do you have a solid ground from the engine block to the body, and a solid ground from the battery to the body?

tbirdmike63
05-17-2017, 09:43 AM
I just put new battery cables on the car, I have a solid ground from negative to block, I need to check the ground from block to body. I do not have a ground wire going from the battery to the body, didn't have one with the old cables either.

tbirdmike63
05-17-2017, 10:20 AM
When you say body, do you mean frame as the same thing?

Joe Johnston
05-17-2017, 11:12 AM
No - to the sheet metal body. Usually there is a ground strap somewhere on the back of an engine to the firewall. I do not own a Squarebird, so check your wiring diagrams, but Ford used them on 55-57's and 61-63's. This small strap looks flat un-insulated silver woven wire about 3/8" wide and less than a foot long. That said, any suitable gauge wire bolted in place with clean connections will work, just won't look original.

Bullet birds had a terminal in the middle of the ground cable that bolted to the body and continued to the engine block, so check your manuals to see what you should have.

jopizz
05-17-2017, 11:20 AM
When you say body, do you mean frame as the same thing?

Your car should have a ground wire from the back of the engine on the passenger side to a bolt on the blower motor cover.

John

tbirdmike63
05-17-2017, 11:44 AM
I thought about buying one of those ground bonding straps and going from my negative post to the frame ground, do you think that would help, or be a waste since I have the block to frame ground? I should clean that ground wire on the firewall, didn't know about that one, it's probably in bad shape.

jopizz
05-17-2017, 11:53 AM
It never hurts to have extra ground wires. The more the better.

John

tbirdmike63
05-17-2017, 11:54 AM
Good, I will buy 10.......Just kidding!

tbirdmike63
05-17-2017, 06:35 PM
OK, I got some numbers now, car off battery 12.79 Volts, idling kinda high 14.60, revving idle 14.60 no change from idle???, idling lights on, 13.69 revving lights on 14.51, in gear idling 14.57, in gear lights on 12.96 slowly dropped down to 12.63, blinkers on 12.50 slowly dropped to 12.41 then to 12.28

With the lights on idling it idled at 13.26 volts, then I revved it and it went up to 14.42

When the car is idling with nothing on, it was at 14.60 volts then I revved it and no change 14.60, but then I turned the lights on and it dropped down to 13.69, then I revved it and it rose to 14.51

jopizz
05-17-2017, 08:06 PM
As you can see your volts are going way down with everything on and in drive. Since you said that your alternator tested good and you have a new voltage regulator then my guess is that either the belt is not tight enough ( I know you said it's ok) or your car is idling too low. The spec calls for 475-500 rpm in drive but I usually prefer to be closer to 600 rpm. If you don't have a tach to hook up and set the rpm then you're left with doing it by feel. On the driver side of the carburetor is the curb idle adjustment screw. I would turn it in slightly (maybe 1/8 turn) and check your voltages again in drive with the lights and turn signals on. You want to try and get that over 13 volts. You don't want to boost the idle too high or your car will creep too much in drive and will jump when you put it in gear.

John

tbirdmike63
05-17-2017, 08:52 PM
I had my alternator tested at orielys, they tested it on the car, with that fancy device they have, in your opinion is that device reliable, is it better to get the alternator tested off the car?

jopizz
05-17-2017, 09:08 PM
I've never had one tested on the car before so I can't say. I would recheck your belt tension. I assume it's a new belt. You shouldn't have any more than 1/2" deflection if you push down midway between the longest span.

John

tbirdmike63
05-17-2017, 09:09 PM
Also, I bought a braided ground strap and attached it from the negative post to the frame connection. I cannot find the ground wire that goes to the blower motor cover, I don't see any ground wire coming off the back of the motor going to the firewall. Could i be missing a body ground?

tbirdmike63
05-17-2017, 09:50 PM
No, it's not a new belt, and I am only getting 1/2 inch deflection, in order to get that belt off I have to remove 2 other belts, the belt looks to be ok, maybe I will try to make it tighter, get it down to 1/4 inch deflection.

jopizz
05-17-2017, 09:54 PM
If you don't see it then it's not there and it should be. Going from the battery negative post to the body does the same thing. As I said before the more grounds the better.

John

tbirdmike63
05-18-2017, 01:20 PM
Can I use the inner fender well near the battery as a body ground?

Joe Johnston
05-18-2017, 02:08 PM
If this part is bolted to the body "NO" because the bolts could have corroded and would make a poor connection. If this part is welded, probably OK, but to the firewall would be better IMO.

scumdog
05-18-2017, 03:58 PM
No, it's not a new belt, and I am only getting 1/2 inch deflection, in order to get that belt off I have to remove 2 other belts, the belt looks to be ok, maybe I will try to make it tighter, get it down to 1/4 inch deflection.

Personally I would stick with the 1/2" deflection unless it's a really short belt.

A 1/4" deflection on a long belt would mean the belt would have to be very tight and potentially be putting quite a strain on the bearings that the pulleys are attached to.

simplyconnected
05-18-2017, 04:00 PM
All these guys are saying the same thing: Install good grounds. Your car body is fifty years old. Every electrical component is depending on spot welds, from the tail light housings all the way to the battery.

There have been times when I could not find a ground wire under the dash because 'extra wires' simply aren't supplied. So, I have used an UNbroken stranded copper ground wire that starts at the battery and it stretches all the way to the tail lights. Along the way I tap off for important areas like the dash and electric windows, electric seats, convertible top motor, trunk lid, fuel tank, tail light housings AND left provisions for trailer hookup.

Modern cars use a lot of plastic so all the wire harnesses include ground wires. If you notice, none of the modern cars ever have brake lights that dance back and forth at a stop light. Classic cars do because lamp power cannot find a path back to the battery through the car body.

If your car body has poor grounds, current will take the path of least resistance back to the battery. That could include your powertrain bearings. Arcing bearings will pit and fail very early.

Want to ground to the body at the battery? Do it. Add more grounds as well. Ever see a car with one or more dim headlights? Yep, poor grounds. Grounds are so easy to fix and when done properly, all of a sudden motors start running faster, like power windows, seats, heater, etc. - Dave

jopizz
05-18-2017, 04:04 PM
the belt looks to be ok, maybe I will try to make it tighter, get it down to 1/4 inch deflection.

Don't go by looks when it comes to a belt. If you don't know the age of it replace it. Once it becomes glazed or cracked it's worthless. Loosening the compressor and power steering pump isn't that difficult. Belts are cheap. Replace all three at the same time.

John

tbirdmike63
05-18-2017, 11:43 PM
I think I might have to put on new belts. I ran a ground wire from the battery all the way back to the trunk to the ground for the rear turn signal unit, still no change, then I got to the underside of the fenders and cleaned off the grounds to the turn signal indicators. the left one worked good, but the right one still froze up when the lights were turned on while the car was in gear. I turned my idle up real high and still no effect on the turn indicator. Then I ran a ground wire from the battery to the grounding point on the right turn indicator, still no change, I can't help but think the alternator is just not putting out enough power, maybe I should get a 70 amp alternator, its not too much power to cause any problems (i hope), but being 25 amps more then the stock alternator it might make a real difference....any thoughts?