Shifter lockout on 2004 Escort inop

Going to be looking at my sisters car later today. She says that with the vehicle started and brake depressed all the way the shifter will not come
out of park. I also listened (via phone) and never heard a shift release solenoid actuate.
Guess I should first ask if this vehicle is equiped with an electronic solenoid or cable actuated release? If electronic, is it wired direct or does it pass through an ECU first. Any info ragarding these along with most-likely cause/correction would give me a head-start and be much appreciated.
Thanks, Ej
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Well, I dug into it already. Found it is solenoid actuated. There are 5 wires coming out of the solenoid. 3 of which go to a visible connector and check out as follows - (y) always hot, (b) always ground, (bl) switched via brake. I hear a slight click at the solenoid but get no extension even though there is no binding of linkage. Manually operated the linkage moves freely. The good ol' "Tap" test does nothing. ;-)
What I'm not sure about are the additional 2 (b) wires leading to the solenoid along with the function of the circuit board that all five wires are attached to on the side of the solenoid. Would hate to replace the solenoid only to find there is actually some other cause related to the 2 onknown wires. Any ideas?
Thanks, Ej

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04 "Escort"????
You aren't in North America, are you?
FWIW, if this is a floor shifter, it could be part of a key removal inhibit circuit... but without accessing the circuit diagrams, it is simply a guess....
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And yes it is a floor shift.
Yea, my problem exactly...no circuit diagram or electrical volume to peruse.
Thanks, Ev

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Terry wrote:

Circuit? Can you show us a picture of the circuit?
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Wish I'd thought about taking a picture of it while I had the center console out. The most I can elaborate right now is that the solenoid (gold 1"x2 1/2" round) has a small black box (1/2'x1"x1 1/2") attached to it with 5 wires coming out of it. There is one each Y, B & BL wire (tests as noted previously) leading to a white 2-pin connector 7" away while the remaining 2 B wires feed derectly into the chassis wiring harness that crosses between the seats.
If you really believe it would help for me to take a picture for visual reference I'll see about getting in there again. Like I noted before, if I just knew what the two additional B wires were for I'd feel more comfortable deeming the solenoid as faulty. It also really surprised me to see a small circuit board integrated in this one.
Btw, it's a 2001 North American Escort. Sorry for that slip-up. ;-)
Thanks, Ev

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Terry wrote:

Okay... three wires leading to a 2-pin connector?
The thing that puzzles me is why there would even be three wires, I'd expect this to be a spring-loaded solenoid that pulls out of the linkage when energized (releasing the shifter) and defaults back to the locked position when power is removed.
The only thing I can guess is that the extra wires are for ignition lockout when you're not in park (since in all other positions, the solenoid must be in the "unlocked" position).
Has some sticky nasty muck like Coke recently been spilled into this area of the vehicle?
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<G> I'm really screwing up my communication skills!
It is 3 wires to a 3 pin connector. And yes you're correct, it is sping loaded returning when not energized. As for the extra wires being for ignition lockout, good thought, but looking at the way it operates the solenoid seems to be in the same resting position with the shifter in any position negating any sensor detection other than during brake application. Activation just momentarily opens a gate for the shifter to pass through after which it returns.
Epiphany time! How about the extra wires being a solenoid lockout? Think about it. When first starting the vehicle the solenoid slams the lockout lever forward allowing the shifter to be moved out of park subsequently returning and effectively turning into a "park" lockout for safety reasons. Once this action has completed you would not want the solenoid activating each time the brake is applied. Maybe the additional wires are signals from some other sensor such as a vss which would only allow solenoid activation when the vehicle is completely stopped. The more I think about this scenario the more it sounds quite plausable. If this is the case the most likely failed culprit would have to be the solenoide itself considering I hear a small click from within the slenoid. I'm assuming that if the extra wires are ment to dissable the solenoid there would be no voltage transfer at all therefore a completely silent solenoid.
Thanks, Ev

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