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Old 09-20-2011, 02:35 PM   #1
j3st3r
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Car died on highway, all dash lights come on (- - - -) odometer.

I was recently on the highway coming home, when all of a sudden I felt the tranny kick down, all my instruments went down, and all my dash lights come on. I can still use my power windows and locks, but the odometer reads: (- - - - -).
My car is a 2005 ZX4

Here's why:
I recently replaced my alternator, and on the dash theres is this chrome tube (looks like a/c) and there is a black regulator looking thing, with 2 rubber tubes going to it, and 2 wires going from it to the fuse box. Well I forgot to put that back on the dash, it fell on the header and shorted the wires out on it.

What I need:
I need to figure out what that thing is, and possibly if it blew out the ECU fuse. My car is parked at O'reilys at the moment, so I cant look at it now, but is there something big wrong with my car? Or do I just have to fix that black thingy, and replace a fuse?


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Old 09-20-2011, 04:11 PM   #2
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I had something similar happen recently. I shorted a different wire (A wire that I disturbed a year earlier and didn't tuck away properly, and it waited until we were 200 miles from home to wear through the insulation), but the result was the same. Car died and I had the ------ on the odometer. I found the shorted wire, repaired it, and replaced the ECU fuse and I was good to go. This was in the parking lot of a nasty seedy hotel at 9PM in the 100 degree temp and high humidity... no fun!

Replace the thing that fell and the fuse, I bet you'll be fine.
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Old 09-20-2011, 04:16 PM   #3
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Looking at a picture:



I'm not seeing anything "Chrome" like you're describing.
If you could point out the part I'm sure we could help better.

Also, "dash" as you're saying most all of us would call the 'firewall'.
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Old 09-20-2011, 04:27 PM   #4
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Quote:
Originally Posted by j3st3r View Post
do I just have to fix that black thingy, and replace a fuse?
As said above- yes.

We need to go over some terminology as well. The dashboard is the plastic thing that you sit behind in the car. The firewall is the metal on the back side of the dash between the dash and the engine. That's where your mystery box is mounted I assume since exhaust doesn't run through the dash.

You should repair that because it's broken. As a quick fix to get you going- since I have no idea what this component is from your description- you should carefully tape up your wiring- each taped separately, re-install the box, secure the wiring with ties so it won't fall out, and then find the blown fuse. Once you find it- grab your owner's manual- look up the description of that fuse in the owner's manual so you'll at least have some sort of idea of what that part is. Don't be surprised if there are multiple devices on that same circuit. You can at least narrow down your search. Once the wiring is temporarily repaired, and the fuse replaced with the same size fuse- you should be back on the road.

Afterwards you can figure out what you need to replace if anything. You might simply need to tape and wire loom those wires to prevent shorting in the future. If so, then use Scotch 33 or 88 black electrical tape- it costs $5+ per roll at hardware stores. That's what we use in the industrial world, and I have used it many times under the hood of a car. It's the only tape that will survive there. If the wires are small, then instead of wrapping you can simply lay the tape on the wire, and fold it over so that you have adhesive on adhesive. Do it 2x, and that will be good for longer than you might think.

Shrink wrap is best, but you have to cut wires to properly use it. I wouldn't cut anything if I didn't have to.
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Old 09-22-2011, 12:19 PM   #5
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Looking at iminhell's picture, its the black regulator looking thing directly to the right of the power steering reservoir. I did get the car running, after securing that thing to the firewall, and taping it. The fuse #9 (in the power distribution box) is the one that blew, and there are several circuits running through that one fuse, including the ECU. I spent $5 on that fuse and fixed it, and just incase I bought an extra.

Thanks for your help everyone.
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Old 09-22-2011, 06:42 PM   #6
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That's the evaporative emissions purge valve.
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Old 07-03-2013, 12:03 PM   #7
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Dashes on Odometer

I have the same "dashes" in odometer, however I didn't short anything out because I haven't tampered with any wires. Mechanic said it was battery cables, I've replaced those and alternator. I've checked fuses, but I haven't checked relays?
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