93 Taurus - Trouble With Dash Lights After Heater Core

Got my 93 Taurus out of the shop last week for a heater core replacement ($536).
First night drive, the only light on the dash was the digital clock. No
instrument lights, no switch illumination.
In the dark, I mistook the auto head lamp slider for the dash light control. Next day I found the dash light wheel adjuster and set the lights to full.
Next night, they worked fine. Third night drive, nothing. Moving the adjustment wheel had no effect, with the exception of turning on the dome light one the "click" was reached.
So my question is, besides the panel / dash dimmer control switch, is there another another wiring harness connector that is a likely culprit? And if so where is it and does anything have to be disassembled to reach it?
I'd rather not put the car back in the shop, if I can fix the shop's goof myself.
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Tony Sivori

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wrote:

Just wondering, have you checked the fuse yet?
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Tim J. wrote:

I haven't checked anything yet. I have no garage and the wind chill in my location is 8 degrees. Sunday will be a balmy 39 degrees, I intend to check it out then.
I will be checking the fuse, although the intermittent nature of the problem, plus the dome lights working from the instrument panel illumination adjustment switch, make me think the fuse is not especially likely.
Are the dome lights and instrument panel on different fuses?
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wrote:

Usually yes. In fact virtually ALWAYS. Dome lights are USUALLY on the tail light fuse, but often fused separately as well (either fuse will put them out)
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wrote:

Unless the fuse is now blown, which means there's an intermittent short which took out the fuse after you got the car back. In my book, the presence of a blown fuse is grounds for having the shop make it right. It sounds like they may have nicked a wire somewhere when they reinstalled the dashboard and it may have grounded out during car movement. If the fuse isn't blown, then I'd first be looking at connectors.

Almost always.
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Tim J. wrote:.

Follow up, for anyone who may care. I checked the fuse and it looked good to me.
So I returned it to the shop. He did stand behind his work. He had the car a week, and fixed it at no charge.
I asked what the problem was, he said his mechanic said it was a blown fuse.
Who knows, maybe I checked the wrong one.
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Tony Sivori
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wrote:

Most cars have some inline fuses. Not all are in the fuse block. But thanks for letting us know the outcome. Glad it worked out for you.
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Hasn't been an inline fuse in an American market car for well over 30 years. There are, however, SEVERAL fuse panels in most cars - and dash lights are often double fused. The power for the dash light circuit is usually tapped from the park/tail light circuit (and switched by the headlight/park-light/tail light switch) - and then refused at a lower current value for the dash light circuit - in part so any short in the dash lights does NOT take the tail lights out - and so the driver can tell immediately id the tail lights are "on" by the state of the panel lights.
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On Sat, 28 Jan 2012 23:29:48 -0500, snipped-for-privacy@snyder.on.ca wrote:

I have a 97 Crown Vic and an Isuzu P'up that would disagree with that statement.
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Does the Isuzu qualify as an American car?
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Andrew Chaplin
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On Sun, 29 Jan 2012 12:34:52 +0000 (UTC), Andrew Chaplin

It certainly qualifies as "an American market car." It's a Chevy Luv with a different label on it.
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No, a Chevy LUV is an Izuzu P'up with a different label on it. And it most fefinitely is NOT a CAR.
The only Crown Vics I've seen with inline fuses are limo conversions or cruiser/taxi-cab units with non-factory add-on stuff.
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On Sun, 29 Jan 2012 12:34:52 +0000 (UTC), Andrew Chaplin

Regardless, it is/was an "american market" vehicle - although not a CAR. Trucks - particularly small manufacturer stuff (read add-ball_ like an Isuzu -) COULD still be doing stuff the way Noah did it on the ark.
I know some over-the-road transports still had hidden in-line fuses, particularly on "custom" rigs.
Coach-built limosines did too - some of those peices of crap are so badly converted they should be outllawed.
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Not factory installed. If you have aftermarket equipment, such as stereos, or remote starters all bets are off.
There are "fusible links" in the wiring harnesses on some, but no "inline fuses"
If you can show me on a factory wiring diagram I'll admit I'm wrong -. Or point me to a photo showing it and identifying it.
Haven't seen one since the seventies in a factory harness, and I did a LOT of auto-electric work.
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