rear brake lights

After I start my windstar in park it will not let me shift it into drive. I also just found out that none of the rear light are working. I understand that there is a sensor,relay? for this problem. Where is it?
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windstarmom wrote:

There is a switch that is closed when you press on the brake pedal. This is to prevent one from accidentally putting the truck in gear and the truck moving, for example, if you would accidentally bump the gear shift or a kid is playing in the truck.
The switch also allows the transmission to come out of drive. Most likely, you have a bad switch or the wires to the switch are loose.
Jeff

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do you happen to know where this swithch might be?
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Thanks for everyone that replied to my delema. Bought a brake light switch for $13 and had my dealership put it in($47) and that was not the problem. It did fix the shifting problem but come to find out it was the wire harnes that was the problem for the brake lights. Total cost was $97. Not too bad considering they wanted almost $100 just to trouble shoot my electrical. Thanks again for everyones input.
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"windstarmom" wrote:
Thanks tor everyone who replied. I bought a brake light switch ($13) and had my dealership put it in($47). It fixed the shifting problem but the wire harness was the problem for the brake lights. Total cost was $97. Not too bad considering they wanted $100 just to trouble shoot my electrical. Thanks again for everyones input. ______________________________________________
And thanks to you for reporting back on your results. It encourages the posters here to know the time they took and the advice they gave has helped someone.
Rodan.
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On Wed, 06 Feb 2008 12:43:22 -0600, "windstarmom"

It is most likely the brake light switch. It is located on the brake pedal inside the car up where the pushrod to the master cylinder attaches. It is rather simple to install. It is held in place with a clothspin type clip. You will need something like a long nosed pliers to remove/install it. Once the clip is removed, remove the pivot pin for the brake pushrod and the switch can be pulled out. It has a wire harness attached with regular locks. A new switch sells for about $30 at the dealer. An experienced tech can replace it in under 10 minutes. This is a pretty common problem on most late model Ford products. There are several revisions to the replacement to improve it's reliability and durability.
BTW, you can get your car out of park by turning the ignition to the first unlocked position. Move the transmission to nuetral where you can start the engine - while holding the brake, of course. Next time you put it in park, you will have to do this again to get it out of park until you replace the brake light switch.
Lugnut
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i would check you fuses first. the shift interlock is controlled by the brake lights, and they are fused. if you blow a fuse neither will work
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On Wed, 6 Feb 2008 17:07:02 -0500, "Tom"

I would hope that would be one of the first things they would have checked. Also, it wouldn't be the first time that all of the brake lamps were burned out in which case the same thing will happen. I'm betting that the cruise control is also on the fritz. I have seen the fuse blown on more than one of them because of a failed switch. That can make you scratch your head after you replace a switch and nothing happens. (did you replace a good switch?) The usual problem is the less-then-acceptable quality of the switch design and/or components. It never ceases to amaze me how few people ever bother to check thier lights - and it is so simple to get your flashlight out every now and again to see if your headlights are working!
Cheers Lugnut
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Just a word... current practice is that the BOO switch is actually two switches in one... with two separate fusesd supplies. The brake lights can still work.. but the shift interlock might not.
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On Thu, 07 Feb 2008 06:31:23 GMT, "Jim Warman"

Thanks, Jim I haven't been into any of the very late models to see that. Thinking about it, I don't know if it would be an improvement or not. It is not a serious problem if you can't get it out of park but, driving without brake lights may present a real safety problem. I guess what I am saying is that a failed brake light switch would not be as apparent to a driver as a problem in the absence of something else that is a PITA to him/her. I have driven many years without a shift interlock and without incident because I learned to drive 48 years ago with my foot on the brake before I put anything into gear. My biggest problem nowadays is getting my brain in gear before engaging any other function.
Thanks for the tip
Lugnut
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I can see a very real need for many (if not all) of the current crop of safety devices.... Common sense isn't on holiday - it quit and ran away with the circus....
From another venue (and this is a paraphrase).... "The low tire warning light came on on my 08 truck... Do they think we are such idiots that we can't check our tires occasionally?"... Seeing that this non-idiot had the light come on, I gather that he didn't check his tire pressures....
And that is only the tip of the iceberg.... every time they make something idjit proof, they make better idjits...
Can the shift interlock be a PITA when something malfunctions when we least need it to? You bet... FWIW, most new vehicles are offering some method of manual overide... but not all of them are convenient.
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I would start with checking the bulbs.

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