1980 Volvo DL: horn, windshield wipers and radio all going dead simultaneously

Hello,
My 1980 240DL developed a strange electrical problem. The horn, radio and windshield wipers periodically go dead, all at the same time (and
sometime they come back on). So I think it must be some loose contact at a point that effects all three of those devices (perhaps more that, I haven't noticed yet). No fuse is blown, as far as I can see, and the problem is intermittend.
Does anyone out there know where to look for a common point of connection of those three devices (horn, windshield wipers, radio)?
Thanks for any clues.
Wolfgang, Santa Barbara, California
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Clean the ends of the fuses, they oxidize and give an intermittant connection.
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This would be a potential cause if they are all on the same fuse (completely unfamiliar with Volvo electrics, so I don't know what is on which fuse). Another candidate is a common tie to the chassis ground for all three devices. Ground terminal points oxidize and can become intermittent, especially when they age over 23 years... Heck after only 12 years our oldest car, a 1991 Golf is experience grounding problems in numerous places (our 10 year old Volvo is faring MUCH better in this regard... well actually, it's doing better in every area).
Try to locate a screw terminal protruding from the chassis where these devices get their grounding from, this would definately cause a problem if there was a bad connection, as it would cause an open circuit (the equivilant of turning a lightswitch off in say, a bedroom, it kills all the lights on that switch, that is what a bad ground can do).

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A very common problem with these is the ignition switch when it goes dead next time try to gently wriggle the ignition switch towards the ignition position making sure not to go into the start section, if it comes good then its the switch. Of course check the fuses first like the other guys suggested a good place to start.
Joe

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I have the exact same problem on my 1980 244DL, and this happened once in a while. I found the problem was my windshield was leaking, and therefore water made the fuseholders oxidize. I think it was one of the fuses on top, maybe the second fuse from the top? I used to just wriggle it, and twist it around a little bit every time it happened while I was driving. Try wash the fuseholder with CRC-R (anti-oxidation spray) or something similar.
- Jan Rune Bjorkelo -
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