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Old 11-01-2012, 03:40 PM   #1
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Electrical System/gauge cluster jumping...im going nuts!!

Posted a few weeks ago about installing an alternator into my ZX3.

Symptoms leading to alternator replacement: Electrical groaning sound coming from gauge cluster/dash when stopping. Fuel gauge, temp, RPM would go nuts. Interior light would flicker as if losing voltage. Battery light comes on. Start driving, electrical sound (sounds like alternator whine in a stereo when accelerating) keeps going, then stops... all returns to normal... until you stop again.

Went to Autozone, bought a lifetime warranty alternator, installed it. Thought I was all done.

2 hours later, the battery light comes on, and the gauges start jumping around at idle and around 2500 rpms. Great.

I commute 80 miles a day and do NOT need this. Took the car to Ford. Autozone alternator was DEAD. Not charging. So, paid for a FORD alternator, per suggestions I read here about others having bad luck with reman'd alternators.

2 weeks later, im driving, and it happens again!! Stopped at a light, the electrical sound comes back, the lights dim and flicker, headlights flicker as well. Took it back to Ford, recorded the gauges on my phone, and showed it to them. They couldn't do anything because they can't replicate the problem.

I picked the car up yesterday and drove it the first 40 miles to my clinical site, and it happened. On the way home, it happened again.

So far on the forum, my searches have said to check plugs and wires, coil, grounds, plug on alternator, HARNESS going to alternator.

Ford checked the plug to the alternator and said it was fine, as they knew about that.

I tried to find a list of all the ground locations so I could clean/check them, but haven't found a complete list of the locations. I also heard of a ground mod, and would like info on that.

The guy tried telling me to replace the cluster, but i fail to see how the cluster is making ALL of the lights (head lights, dome light, etc...) flicker in sync. This makes me think it's in the charging system.

What happens at 88mph? You get a speeding ticket
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Old 11-01-2012, 04:17 PM   #2
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There is a grounding point under the airbox. Did you check that one?
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Old 11-01-2012, 04:27 PM   #3
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Moved to "General Technical Chat".
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