Why is my radio on?

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John Zuber

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So I went out into the garage to find my radio playing....but the vehicle is turned off. Before I had a chance to open the door the radio turned off. Went inside the house and got the vehicle key and then validated that the key position is in the "off" position. Turned the key to accessory and the radio came on....turn the key to off and opened the door and radio shut off as normal. Removed the key, closed the door, waited for a few minutes and sure enough the radio came back on for a few seconds and then shut off. I have since manually turned off the radio but I've seen the clock light on as if the vehicle is in accessory mode. Battery charge seems ok. Do I have a bad ignition switch? What's causing this...and is it a fire hazard?

2004 Ford Sport Trac XLT
 
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John Zuber

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Anyone know what relay (fuse box position/number) provides power to assessories for a period of time after the key is turned off? In doing some research that is one possible cause.
 

Evox

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I hate to say it, but it can be a lot of things. My instrument cluster on my 04 went out last year, so I had it serviced. Ford runs a lot of electrical stuff through their instrument cluster, and when they go bad, a lot of strange things can happen. So it could be that. Interior lights will come on and go off; headlights might come on and go off, the radio may turn on for few moments before powering off, the odometer and message center might do the same.

OR, it could be a grounded wire somewhere. The problem with finding an intermittent short is they're intermittent. So as you run through all the fuses, unless it's shorted at the time of that particular circuit check, you won't find it.

You might also check the error codes. Perhaps you'll get lucky.

PS: My cluster is now haunting my truck again. The radio will come on and go off, as will the lights, and it'll beep randomly. So I'm right there with you. The problem is when the truck is running, the gauges function perfectly, so I'm dealing with a short somewhere. I'm considering biting the bullet and taking it to the dealership to diagnose it because I don't want to just through parts at it. Let me know what you find. I'll do the same.
 

Evox

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Here are the fuse box diagrams for the '00-'05 fuse boxes

 

John Zuber

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Thanks for the reply. The fuse box diagram is also in the owners manual. What's essentially happening to my vehicle is that the "delay accessory" is being activated...or "accessory on" is being activated. When that happens, my radio will play...or the clock will be displayed, power windows will operate (if you push the buttons), etc. Probably the interior lights would come on too but thankfully Ford gave us an off switch and I keep them off all the time.
Nonetheless, I pulled fuse #39 (10amp...Delayed accessory) found under the hood, and as a result I have no radio/clock regardless of key position. I plugged it back in this afternoon and have not seen the problem since....but I'm also not constantly watching to see if my clock display comes on either.
In doing some Google searches it seems that a drivers door switch could be a potential fault. However, in my case each individual door does properly activate the "door ajar" signal and they do cut off the delay accessory when opened. Somehow something is either re-activating the delay accessory...or the ignition switch is triggering the accessory function when the switch is off. Since I've seen the problem come and go without moving anything I'm thinking its some sort of relay fault...but fuse #39 and every other fuse associated with audio or accessory is a straight fuse and not a relay.
The other could be a loose ground wire that re-sets the delay accessory function when ground is lost. If I have to, I'll just keep fuse #39 pulled, but I sure wished I knew the exact problem. My guess is that it's a simple problem to fix...either a bad relay, or loose wire, a bad door switch, etc, but the dificulty is finding the exact source.
 

Evox

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Yes, I absolutely hate electrical problems. It's like trying to find a needle in a haystack.
 

EddieS'04

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Just a thought. There is a switch tied to the door latch. That is how the computer knows to turn off the radio and turn on the dome lights when opened. Maybe a sticking switch???Spray some wd40 into the door switch area. Work the door latch with something round, the diameter of the peice on the body, with the door open.
 

John Zuber

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I'll do that, but that doesn't explain as to why the accessory would come on (without any door action) and then revert off....all while the vehicle is just sitting there in the garage. But you are right, there is a integrated switch within each door.
 

Evox

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Mine has been at the Ford Dealership since Monday. I was so completely frustrated; I'm surrendering to the Ford Techs, hoping their expensive diagnostic systems and training can nail it down.

In my case, I think it's the PCM. When I clear all my fault codes and run the truck, I get no ZERO fault codes. Everything drives and operates normally. After shutting the truck down, it goes into haunted mode. First, it beeps, then the odometer on, Then the gauges flutter, then the radio comes on and goes off. The message center displays the message "Check Gauges" because they're all flatlined. The PCM is saying, look at your gauges; sometimes the low fuel message comes on. After this little haunted routine, If I run a new check, it shows fault codes for almost every sensor in the truck.

So, I think the PCM is being energized and then running through its diagnostic routine or attempting to when no other sensors are energized. So it's coming back with all these faults.

But I'm not sure.
 

Evox

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The Dealership found nothing wrong. They couldn't replicate the problem. So, $135 out the door. It's been in the driveway all day and isn't going nuts. The weather has become considerably hotter and drier over the last few weeks. No more cool nights and temperatures during the day have been in the 90s. So I guess it's an intermittent short somewhere and is only replicable under certain conditions, wetter and cooler. I gotta say this is frustrating. I don't consider this one closed. A short that energizes the PCM cluster, radio, and interior lights. But only when the truck is off after a few moments, and only under certain conditions. Like I said when the truck was running there were no symptoms of malfunction in any of the gauges or warning lights.

As much as I like this truck, it's not self-healing.
 

Evox

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Did you figure your problem out?
 

DT Knives

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Mine has been at the Ford Dealership since Monday. I was so completely frustrated; I'm surrendering to the Ford Techs, hoping their expensive diagnostic systems and training can nail it down.

In my case, I think it's the PCM. When I clear all my fault codes and run the truck, I get no ZERO fault codes. Everything drives and operates normally. After shutting the truck down, it goes into haunted mode. First, it beeps, then the odometer on, Then the gauges flutter, then the radio comes on and goes off. The message center displays the message "Check Gauges" because they're all flatlined. The PCM is saying, look at your gauges; sometimes the low fuel message comes on. After this little haunted routine, If I run a new check, it shows fault codes for almost every sensor in the truck.

So, I think the PCM is being energized and then running through its diagnostic routine or attempting to when no other sensors are energized. So it's coming back with all these faults.

But I'm not sure.
I almost have this same problem
 

John Zuber

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The problem seems to have gone away, but I also try to remember to turn the radio off prior to vehicle shut-off. I don't always remember but I haven't seen the problem either.
 

DT Knives

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Well received and installed the new cluster, it did NOT work. New speedo and tac went crazy and ABS light still on. I'm out of ideas.......
 

Todd Z

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JY cluster could be bad, you could have a BCM short or other issue, Need to diagnose.
 

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