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Old 04-27-2013, 01:28 PM   #11
Kodyston
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My 2003 ZX3 also has the problem with flickering headlights and gauge cluster. It seems to do it when i'm pressing the brakes coming to a stop at a light. Even pushing in the clutch at a stop will make it do it, and when I turn on the heater and when a fan kicks on and off under the hood. It has done this since I got it over a year ago. My diodes burnt out about 8 months ago in my alternator and I took it to a place where all they do is rebuild alternators and starters and they fixed it for $55. (Better than buying a refurb.) It stopped doing it for a while but it has started flickering again since then. Maybe 1 or 2 diodes are burnt out again? Causing strain on the others and maybe that's why it flickers? Not sure but I do know that all of my cables seem to be tight and in decent shape. Just do what Mike said and let me know because I would like to fix it also.

And my brakes used to kind of grind a little when I was going around 5 or 10 in town. I got used to it. But since then I've replaced the brakes and rotors and it has stopped. My rotors were pretty warped. Maybe that is your problem ElementCo27.
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Old 04-27-2013, 01:43 PM   #12
ElementCo27
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My 2003 ZX3 also has the problem with flickering headlights and gauge cluster. It seems to do it when i'm pressing the brakes coming to a stop at a light. Even pushing in the clutch at a stop will make it do it, and when I turn on the heater and when a fan kicks on and off under the hood. It has done this since I got it over a year ago. My diodes burnt out about 8 months ago in my alternator and I took it to a place where all they do is rebuild alternators and starters and they fixed it for $55. (Better than buying a refurb.) It stopped doing it for a while but it has started flickering again since then. Maybe 1 or 2 diodes are burnt out again? Causing strain on the others and maybe that's why it flickers? Not sure but I do know that all of my cables seem to be tight and in decent shape. Just do what Mike said and let me know because I would like to fix it also.

And my brakes used to kind of grind a little when I was going around 5 or 10 in town. I got used to it. But since then I've replaced the brakes and rotors and it has stopped. My rotors were pretty warped. Maybe that is your problem ElementCo27.
Yeah the brakes I fixed a little while after I posted on here. The rotors were also pretty warped and I also had a broken stabilizer arm on the drivers side which I also replaced. After that I've loved my car besides the whole flickering lights thing. As I said before, I'm going to get a replacement switch to see if that fixes the problem. Hopefully it does and I can solve this nightmare of an issue haha.
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Old 04-28-2013, 06:57 PM   #13
Kodyston
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Yeah the brakes I fixed a little while after I posted on here. The rotors were also pretty warped and I also had a broken stabilizer arm on the drivers side which I also replaced. After that I've loved my car besides the whole flickering lights thing. As I said before, I'm going to get a replacement switch to see if that fixes the problem. Hopefully it does and I can solve this nightmare of an issue haha.
lol Thats good. Good thing you checked that out. It could've caused you to have an accident or something. And if you do figure it out and if that's what fixes it, let me know because I'd really like to fix mine too. Maybe you could post some pics and make a how-to or something, and post what parts are needed and whatnot.
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Old 04-30-2013, 05:25 PM   #14
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Ok, so I come back with some new information. Good news and bad news.

Good news first: I went to a nearby junkyard and pulled a headlight switch out of a similar year Focus ZX3. I thought, in comparison to what I saw online, that this would be expensive. Turns out it was only $15. You can tell how excited I am.

Bad news: I installed the headlight switch (which was actually quite easy, so eventually I will create a video on how friggin easy this was), but sadly it did not fix my issue. So, if anyone else is having the issue and needs a headlight switch, I'll sell it for $15 OBO!...lol.

So, to sum everything up, this is not a headlight switch issue, unless by some chance I got ANOTHER bad switch, which would suck. I also noticed that the lights do not flicker when the engine isn't on. I didn't notice this so much until today. I also noticed that the negative clamp on the battery is a little more open than the positive clamp. I know that's not a good explanation, but I will try to get pictures soon.

Sorry that I didn't bring a complete fix today guys.
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Old 04-30-2013, 09:14 PM   #15
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Alright everyone, I return with a video! This video shows how to replace the headlight switch if you figure to try it yourself. I made this so please be gentle with criticism haha. Please let me know how I did and I'll try to make more of these with other parts.

https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=eBlxFAA_VlY
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Old 04-30-2013, 11:11 PM   #16
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My local ford dealer had my car for 5 days. They drove the car around town each day and the problem did not occur. They checked the alternator pigtail (wiggle test) and it checked out OK. I drove the car today without any problems. Perhaps the alternator pigtail wiggle test corrected a bad connection. Or, perhaps the car has an intermittent alternator or computer problem. If the problem happens again, they offered to install an engine electrical recorder on the car that should pinpoint the problem. I will keep you informed. Thanks for your help and info.


This has been a great car for me until now. However, if this problem can't be solved, I will be trading it in.
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Old 05-01-2013, 01:28 AM   #17
Kodyston
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I'd say it's the alternator and/or the pigtail from the alternator. It has to be... right?
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Old 05-02-2013, 11:05 PM   #18
ElementCo27
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I'd say it's the alternator and/or the pigtail from the alternator. It has to be... right?
That's the only other thing I can think of. Just not what i wanted to have to do since that seems difficult to get to, which means I have to pay some clown at a shop to do it.
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Old 05-03-2013, 02:11 AM   #19
Kodyston
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That's the only other thing I can think of. Just not what i wanted to have to do since that seems difficult to get to, which means I have to pay some clown at a shop to do it.
I'd rather have a clown mess it up so they will have to fix it if they messed it up than if you did it and it would be all on you. lol
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