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Old 04-28-2016, 11:57 PM   #1
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Please help

I recently purchased a 2000 Mustang 3.8L for a sweet deal. The previous owners were swapping and rebuilding parts that no other '00 V6 in my area has. I noticed in the first week that I would get a slight shock when exiting the driver's side, but thought that I'd get to it at a later date. A couple of weeks later, I had to remove the aftermarket alarm because it was intermittently locking the starter system out. I had never done anything with a car alarm before, so I only removed the control box. Then, I had no issues for the last couple of months until last week. I replaced the reverse light bulbs as they had both gone out. That night, I found that I didn't have instrument lights or rear taillights, (but the highway patrolman let me off with a warning). I replaced the blown fuse under the hood and it immediately blew. I began to look at a possible short and decided to start at the reverse lights, because only 1 worked since replacing them both. I couldn't find anything there. I checked all of the fuses under the hood in the fuse box and under the driver's side dash panel. All tested good. I then noticed someone had spoken about the headlight switch on a forum, so I replaced that. When I tried to turn the engine over, there was a loud "POP!" So I exited quickly to try and catch whatever had caused the noise, but couldn't see any indications as to what had popped, but I smelled "electrical fire smoke" right as I stood up. I then found that the previous owners had switched out only the driver's side headlight, (instead of upgrading them both), and one of the 3 wires that connect to it was completely bare. I thought that I had found the problem and that I was well on my way to driving again. This was not the case. Now, when I turn the ignition, the instrument panel, headlights, brake lights, the passenger side reverse light, radio and seatbelt/door ajar chime all work perfectly but there is no crank. A volunteer said that they could hear the starter solenoid click as I turned the ignition too. I have done continuity testing on the starting system, but am waiting on a friend to help me with the rest. Finally, after borrowing a digital multimeter from Ace Hardware (for free instead of the $150 Auto Zapp was trying to charge) I noticed that that the voltage drops 0.3ish when the ignition is in the "ON" position. My question is, where do I go from here?

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Old 04-29-2016, 09:11 AM   #2
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Sorry to hear you having issues. I've always felt there is nothing as aggravating and futile as chasing electrical grimlins.

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Old 04-29-2016, 11:14 AM   #3
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So true

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Old 04-30-2016, 07:15 AM   #4
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Check your grounds. Make sure they are clean and secured.

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Old 05-23-2016, 11:34 PM   #5
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I second that, sounds like you have a bad ground or a grounded wire on the positive wire. Happens all the time and can explode you battery, also check to see if the battery isn't switched around like + to - wire and - to +wire

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Old 05-23-2016, 11:40 PM   #6
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I have since found 4 shorts. One was on the starter to battery white/pink wire. I still can't get it started. I've now replaced the ignition switch, the clutch pedal ignition lock switch, wiring, fuse box, and the headlight switch. The voltage regulator is my next stop. Unfortunately, this is my only car, so I have to wait from paycheck to paycheck until I find a solution. On a good note, popping the clutch works and it feels like a dream once the engine is running.

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Old 05-24-2016, 02:51 AM   #7
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Quote:
Originally Posted by jhiggins325 View Post
I have since found 4 shorts. One was on the starter to battery white/pink wire. I still can't get it started. I've now replaced the ignition switch, the clutch pedal ignition lock switch, wiring, fuse box, and the headlight switch. The voltage regulator is my next stop. Unfortunately, this is my only car, so I have to wait from paycheck to paycheck until I find a solution. On a good note, popping the clutch works and it feels like a dream once the engine is running.

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The positive is in knowing the engine runs.

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Old 05-24-2016, 03:03 AM   #8
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Old 05-24-2016, 03:31 AM   #9
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Yikes, so much for this being a sweet deal. I would strongly suggest purchasing a GOOD factory wiring manual for this year Mustang. Avoid the cheap aftermarket repair manuals, as their wiring schematics will not be complete. The Ford factory wiring manuals provide all the wiring, color codes, and connector test locations; this is a must when tracking down a wiring gremlin.
Check eBay for a good used one.
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Old 05-24-2016, 04:18 AM   #10
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will do

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