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Old 01-31-2010, 02:35 PM   #1
rickame
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shifter stuck in park, interlock solenoid?

Hi...new here so hope ok to post here or someone tell me where to if not...My auto trans shifter on 2002 focus wagon is often (but not always) stuck in park. For the past few days, I've been using the emergency release by pushing a screw driver in the slot so I can get the car out of park. Have been reading around and seems may be interlock solenoid related...The brake lights work so not related to that...I've read one posting here that says it could just be stuck dirty, another saying there could be a blown fuse, another says you may just unplug the solenoid and wonder if that will work and can be done, another 'ghetto' fix saying to remove spring on the switch and fill with silicone or smothing to keep it down...don't really care if the shifter can come out of park without pressing the brake...I've also read that one may need to replace the whole shifter assembly for 300 to 700 dollars...Can someone describe what steps to take to see what needs to be done...and if there may be a quick fix (clean, fuse, unplug, etc.) or if can replace just the solenoid or need to replace the whole assembly (and if so how to and parts to get). Sorry for so many questions here...but help if you can, meanwhile I keep a screwdriver handy...Rick


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Old 01-31-2010, 02:56 PM   #2
tczx3
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The shift solenoid is contained within the gearshift lever unit. Not sure if the solenoid itself is a serviceable component if faulty. Not likely a fuse as it wouldn't be a come and go problem. Could be faulty solenoid or faulty contacts in gear position switch. Would need 12v test light or volt meter to diagnose. Power comes into shift solenoid via green/white wire, passes through solenoid, through PARK contact in drive selector and then to ground via black wire. Any issues with 12v to solenoid or ground from solenoid, as well as faulty solenoid could cause issue. I have a complete shifter assy if you need one. Not sure if you could modify shifter to eliminate lock-out.
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Old 01-31-2010, 08:12 PM   #3
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thanks much...wonder too if you can replace solenoid vs whole assembly...since it seems such a waste (and costly) to replace the whole thing for a solenoid...how much for assembly in any case:)?..I read about a 'ghetto' fix removing spring under release button and silicone or supergluing it down...For now I just did a 'modified ghetto fix' with a small metal bar inserted to hold the release button firmly down...works for now;)
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Old 02-01-2010, 06:30 AM   #4
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I doubt that the shift solenoid is your problem. I believe that the brake shift interlock actuator/solenoid is the one that's keeping your shifter in the park position. And I assume that you've been sticking that screw driver in that small hole for a long long time now.

Here's your guide:

Remove the floor console.

Disconnect the Overdrive (O/D) switch electrical connector.

Remove the shift interlock actuator.
Remove the bolt.
Pull off the knob.
Pull out of the push rod.
Installation

Install the shift interlock actuator.
Install the push rod.
Position the knob.
Install the bolt.

Connect the O/D switch electrical connector.
Install the floor console.


I hope this helps.
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Old 10-25-2011, 03:58 PM   #5
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I have been having the same issue, intermittently my key will not fully turn to off and release. I've tried the cylinder, lube, shift cable, etc. but this week I have been driving around with the center console removed and everytime the key has gotten stuck I unplug the gear shifter harness and rotate the key to acc then off and it has worked everytime. When I plug it back in I hear the solenoid in the key cylinder click, and the door chime is constant. I think I'm just going to put a switch on the one signal wire and just call it a day.
Although I may get ambitious and disassemble the shifter to find the root cause, we'll see how the weather is.
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Old 07-10-2013, 08:29 AM   #6
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I know this is an old post, but I'm having the same problem in my 2005 zx3.
Will check the fuses first. I will let you know what I find.
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Old 07-10-2013, 09:39 PM   #7
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Yes, you can easily defeat the brake/shift interlock. On bottom of shifter assembly. I have several Fords and don't care for that feature, one solenoid I broke the arm off of and the other I removed it entirely.

When it starts messing up out of the blue, often a clue battery is going bad.............
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Old 07-11-2013, 09:36 AM   #8
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There is a little silver button on the solenoid underneath where the override hole is. I ended up pulling the spring out from underneath and duct taping the button down. No problems and once I figured it out, I could do the whole job again in about 20 minutes or so.

I replaced the battery on the car last year, so that shouldn't be a problem.
Thanks for your input.
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