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1982-2000 C/K Truck & SUV Chassis & Drivetrain Discussion Forum for the 1982-2000 GM Pickup Trucks and SUVs, and their Transmissions & Drivetrains, cab, chassis, electrical systems and a lot more.

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  #1  
Old 10-09-2010, 08:32 AM
GMC3500HD GMC3500HD is offline
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Default No wiper power, no radio, no blower (heat/cool)

Hi all,
I have a 1996 GMC 3500 HD w/ 85000 miles on it.
Suddenly and simultaneously my windshield wiper won't turn on, my radio stopped working and no air is blowing from my vents. Checked all the fuses both on the left side of the dashboard and under the hood and all are fine. Checked for 12V at all the terminals and have it. At this point I'm assuming a relay has crapped out because of all 3 failing at the same time. No voltage to the windshield wiper blower or fuse terminal for these three components. Does anyone know which/where the relay is found? What else could it be? Thanks much in advance....
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Old 10-10-2010, 08:49 AM
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Sounds more like a ground problem to me.
Try running a secondary ground to the wiper motor mount attatched with vise grips and touch the other end of the wire to battery ground and observe the results.(wipers should be turned on)
If the wipers run,then you found out you have a bad ground.Check all of the ground points on the back passenger side of the engine intake bolts as well as the body to engine and frame to engine grounds found back there.
Also don't forget about both ends of the battery ground cables.
Perhaps I am missunderstanding your post,when you say you have voltage at all the fuse terminals,then no voltage at the fuse terminals I get confused.
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Old 10-11-2010, 06:30 AM
GMC3500HD GMC3500HD is offline
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Quote:
Originally Posted by racer55 View Post
Sounds more like a ground problem to me.
Try running a secondary ground to the wiper motor mount attatched with vise grips and touch the other end of the wire to battery ground and observe the results.(wipers should be turned on)
If the wipers run,then you found out you have a bad ground.Check all of the ground points on the back passenger side of the engine intake bolts as well as the body to engine and frame to engine grounds found back there.
Also don't forget about both ends of the battery ground cables.
Perhaps I am missunderstanding your post,when you say you have voltage at all the fuse terminals,then no voltage at the fuse terminals I get confused.
Racer, thanks for you reply.
I have voltage at the fuse terminals leading to all the accessories and lighting that work, and only those that have ceased to operate, i.e., the radio, blower fan, and the wipers, have no voltage at their corresponding fuses. When I pulled the relay associated with the the working components, the fuses had no power. When replaced, power was restored. Ergo, given no power at the fuses for the non-working components, my amateur brain surmised that it must be a bad relay. The fuses are fine, and offer no abnormal resistance (though I replaced with new anyway). However, none of the relays except those under the hood are labeled, and I have no wiring diagram. There are a two relays under the steering column which checked out fine. Perhaps I was overly optimistic? A ground issue seems like a hornets nest of fun, but I appreciate your pointing me in the right direction.

One interesting thing happens. When I press the dial on the radio--which would normally turn it on--the digital time appears before fading out after a few seconds. Does anyone know why would this happen? Also what exactly is the purpose of the "radio battery", which does have an energized fuse associated with it?
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Old 10-11-2010, 07:08 AM
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As far as I know the radio battery is to power the keep alive memory in the radio.
With your new description or clearer description if you will,I would say that there is a problem with the accessory circuit in the ignition switch.
Do you get any power at the items if you turn the key backwards to the accessory position rather than to the run position?
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Old 10-11-2010, 08:15 AM
GMC3500HD GMC3500HD is offline
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Incidentally, about a week ago, the ignition key got stuck in the "on" position, and would not turn back to off. Removing the 50A ignition fuse under the hood turned off the engine. Until recently repaired, to turn on the engine I would have to replace the fuse and turn the key forward to "start" (it turned forward fine to "start", not backwards). A locksmith fixed the key issue. Unfortunately I don't know the nature of the repair.

A word on this matter. My brother was using the truck at the time. That morning he turned the key on to energize the glow plugs, then turned it to start when the "wait to start" light went out.

He says that when he did, it felt like the ignition cylinder spun "too far", as if it slipped past "start". It fell back to "on" and he went about driving to his call. Upon arriving at the customer's house, he was unable to turn the ignition key off, and pulled the fuse under the hood. He replaced it after finishing the call and until it was repaired a week ago, that how he got around. When a locksmith finally addressed it a week later, I assumed it was a tumbler issue that he repaired. I have yet to get his bill to see the invoice, and he's in Brazil until November .

What is meant by addressing the "linkage" with respect to the ignition key? Might this be related to the power issue with the mentioned accessories? And finally, could pulling the fuse each time the truck needed to be started and stopped have affected the circuitry for the radio/wiper/H&AC?

Thanks in advance. Great site...
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Old 10-11-2010, 08:33 AM
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Sounds like there's a good chance the real problem is the ignition switch, not the lock. AFAIK, all the functions you have issues with are powered by the accessory terminals in the switch. There is no relay. If the switch has failed mechanically that could explain the "key" issues as well.
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Old 10-12-2010, 01:03 PM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by JohnC View Post
Sounds like there's a good chance the real problem is the ignition switch, not the lock. AFAIK, all the functions you have issues with are powered by the accessory terminals in the switch. There is no relay. If the switch has failed mechanically that could explain the "key" issues as well.
Thanks John, that what it was. With the steering wheel collar off, I was able to remove the control box under the key. When I did so, the radio, wiper and blower came on. What would this be? If I replaced the control box into the plastic socket under the key, all would shut off again. Is there a diagram as to the internals that you know of? Is there a way to bypass the ignition so that these will work until the lock cylinder is fixed or replaced?
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Old 10-12-2010, 04:42 PM
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Control box?

Got a camera?

I still doubt if the lock or key is the problem.
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Old 10-12-2010, 05:09 PM
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Think the OP is reffering to the ignition switch,the actual switch is under the column the key and cylinder are just the mechanism that activate the switch.
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Old 10-13-2010, 08:04 AM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by racer55 View Post
Think the OP is reffering to the ignition switch,
Right. Problem is the switch, not the lock.
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Current oil burners: MB 350SDL, Kubota 7510
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Gone but not forgotten: '87 F350 7.3, '93 C2500 6.5, '95 K2500 6.5, '06 K2500HD 6.6
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Old 10-15-2010, 11:16 AM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by JohnC View Post
Right. Problem is the switch, not the lock.
You are correct, the problem is the ignition switch. Actually, it's not the ignition switch itself but the plastic tab in the steering column below the key (turns in unison with the key above). This little piece of plastic has broken off. What is it called? I can't seem to source it, though it's easy to find the lock cylinder and ignition switch at autozone. The plastic tab (actuator?) inside the column however, is proving difficult to locate a replacement for. Probably would help if I knew what it was call, or a part of. Thanks in advance all...
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Old 10-15-2010, 12:26 PM
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Cylinder rack?
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Old 10-15-2010, 12:51 PM
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Originally Posted by racer55 View Post
Cylinder rack?
I appreciate your patience with my idiocy with respect to vocabulary. I'm an HVAC contractor. I googled "cylinder rack" to no avail. Just to be clear, what I'm calling the "ignition switch" is the module below the key on the steering column, has 9 or so spade terminals on it's lower hemisphere, and has a male fitting off the side of it which plugs into the steering column. At this point it receives a small plastic tab (about 3/8'' long and 5/16'' wide) inside the female connection point on the steering column. This is the little critter that has broken off. The rest of this important part is inside the steering column. This plastic tab turns in unison with the key above and spins the ignition switch. Without it communicating with the ignition switch in this matter, the key turns freely. Hope this clears up my initial description. Thanks again in advance...
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Old 10-15-2010, 02:01 PM
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I did understand and "cylinder rack" maybe should have read"ignition cylinder rack" for your search puproses.
does anything on this page look helpfull:
http://stolenandrecovered.com/parts2/rack.php
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Old 10-17-2010, 12:39 PM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by GMC3500HD View Post
I appreciate your patience with my idiocy with respect to vocabulary. I'm an HVAC contractor. I googled "cylinder rack" to no avail. Just to be clear, what I'm calling the "ignition switch" is the module below the key on the steering column, has 9 or so spade terminals on it's lower hemisphere, and has a male fitting off the side of it which plugs into the steering column. At this point it receives a small plastic tab (about 3/8'' long and 5/16'' wide) inside the female connection point on the steering column. This is the little critter that has broken off. The rest of this important part is inside the steering column. This plastic tab turns in unison with the key above and spins the ignition switch. Without it communicating with the ignition switch in this matter, the key turns freely. Hope this clears up my initial description. Thanks again in advance...
Is this the part ?
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File Type: jpg ign1.jpg (13.9 KB, 36 views)
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Old 10-17-2010, 10:04 PM
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Bingo!
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  #17  
Old 05-20-2020, 08:32 PM
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Default Replaced 50 Amp Ignition2 circuit breaker

Had a 1995 C1500 with the same problem. Found that the 50 amp Ignition2 circuit breaker under the hood was blown. Replacing it restored wipers, AC, and radio.
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