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Discussion Starter #1 (Edited)
So the cruise control on my 03 SEL hasn't been working since as long as I can remember and I decided to get it fixed. I've searched as many threads and websites I could find about this and I see it's fairly common. I've done the diagnostics and I believe I've nailed it down to the deactivation switch (3 flashes after the test)

The issue I'm having is which is the switch and more frustratingly, how do I remove it?



I believe the one circled in red is the deactivation switch. The one circled in green I know controls the brake lights/transmission lock and it works just fine. My horn works and all my brake lights work. I have not checked the fuses but I believe they are ok since the lights and horn are working.

If it is the one in red, I haven't the slightest clue on how to remove it. I thought it was a clip that you squeeze and remove but it feels like it's been glued onto there. I'm a little nervous to do anything or I might break it, until I get some advice.
 

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The cruise control release switch is definately the one on the top in red. It looks like this.

http://www.rockauto.com/getimage/getimage.php?imagekey=610026&imageurl=http://www.rockauto.com/info/Motorcraft/SW5955-FRO.jpg


To remove and replace it you must first unhook the wiring connector from it, then rotate the switch probably counterclockwise (yes turn the entire switch). If that doesnt work then turn it the other way; it should turn some way. After turning it, hat should release it and then you should be able to pull the switch straight out.
 

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Discussion Starter #4
Can I just remove the switch first and then unplug it? The thing is so stuck on I can't get a good grip and I might screw something up.
 

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The connector looks sort of odd in your picture. Take a good look at it when you get it unplugged.
^+1, it looks like it's been messed with because the top of the connector looks mangled sort of. And you may be able to get the switch out with out taking off the connector. Just be careful not to damage anything so if the wires become taught you may want to try and just twist the switch until you can get a better grip on the connector. Worst case scenario if you can get some wire crimps like this. ImageUploadedByAG Free1368537184.360322.jpg
You can snip the wires off a near were they enter the connector then go to a junk yard and cut the wires off the connector from a junk yard car the same year as yours with maybe an inch and a half of wires sticking off the back of the connector and splice the original wires in your car to the stubs of wires on the connector from the junk yard car.


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Discussion Starter #6
Thanks for the help, I was able to get the switch off first without damaging anything and after I did, it was easy to get a proper grip on the switch plug and remove it. As for the odd look, yes it did look odd but everything seemed fine with the plug.

However I got a little hurried and bought a new switch without first checking to see if the wire was bad and not the switch. Is there anyway to jump the plug to test and see if it is the root of the problem, or can I somehow test the switch by itself?
 

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Yes, to test the wiring you can jump the two pins and then perform the cruise control test to see if it passes. The switch is normally closed with the pedal at rest and opens when the brake is applied.
 

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Discussion Starter #8
Thanks for the replies. I tried to use a multimeter on the plug with the car battery unhooked but I couldn't get a closed circuit sound. The new switch came in yesterday and I decided to try my luck and use it. No dice. So I think I can rule out the switch as the culprit.

You guys did mention that the plug looks suspicious, however my neighbor is an engineer and he says that the wire is too simple to fail and it's more likely a computer related issue. Is there any plausibility in his assumption?
 

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Do your brake lights still work?

Here's the diagram:

http://www.revbase.com/BBBMOTOR/Wd/DownloadPdf?id=38486

It's really a simple circuit. You should have power on the light green/red wire all the time. You should be able to get the switch to close when testing it with a multimeter though. Remember the switch is probably compressed when the brake pedal is released. Test the switch outside of the car. Not sure if you're hooking up the meter the right way to test.

And I disagree with your neighbor friend. It's easy to blame a computer without knowing anything about the system. The Taurus does have a recall for damaged brake switch wiring. It's possible the cruise control module is bad, but you rule out the wiring first.
 

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Discussion Starter #10 (Edited)
Yeah, the boo switch is working fine. All 3 brake lights work, as well as the horn. It's a good possibility though that the connector isn't making good contact. I tested both the old switch and the new one separately from the car and I pushed the plunger and released it while it was hooked up to the multimeter and both worked just fine; pushed in: closed, out: open.

But trying to use the multimeter under the footwell in such a cramped area, it may be possible I didn't get a good contact. I hope it isn't the module though.

And thanks for the diagram, that will really come in handy.

Just double-checking though, I'm right to disconnect the battery when checking for a closed-circuit right? Or else I risk blowing up the multimeter.
 

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Just double-checking though, I'm right to disconnect the battery when checking for a closed-circuit right? Or else I risk blowing up the multimeter.
I'm a little confused how you're doing this. You would want to test the LG/RD power wire with a test light (clipped onto a ground) to make sure you're getting power. To test the other wire for a short to ground you would connect one lead to a know good ground (test it first!) and then touch the other to the TN/OG wire and check for resistance (should be infinite unless you're measuring the ground resistance through the cruise control servo). Make sure the pin sockets in the connector aren't loose from someone jamming DMM probes in them. If they are you'll have to bend them back.
 

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Discussion Starter #12
Problem solved!

Turns out that faulty wiring that was brought up was true. The 2 wires were frayed somehow and was just hanging by the tape that was wrapped around it. After about and hour and a crooked neck later I was able to solder the wires back on and apply a new strip of electrical tape, works perfectly now!

Side question though, the cruise control hasn't been used in years and I was wondering if the actuator would be any less accurate due to non-use. I drove the car about 6 miles on slightly hilly roads and on the moderate hills the speed would stay about maybe 1-2 miles below the desired speed, once it flattened out it stayed right on the mark. This is normal right? Or should the response be more accurate?
 

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Glad you found it. Tell your neighbor it was the wires. ;)

Some speed variation when going up and down hills is normal, especially if the slope of the hills is constantly changing as opposed to having a constant up or down slope.
 

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Hey all!
I was finally able to get my CC fixed! :) Turns out that it was my deactivation switch. This itty bitty part way up by the brake area. It was only 40 dollars from the dealership and I was able to change it myself! Had to put the seat back and all the way down, wheel all the way up, and the brake pedals almost out all the way to have enough room to reach up in there.( I was laying upside down in the drivers seat while doing this. LOL.) I had to get the plug portion off first and then was able to turn to the old switch to get it out. With some effort, I was able to get the new one in and popped into place. I was so worried about breaking it that it took some time before I got the "click" to happen. Also, connecting the plug before popping the plunger part in is a big help! :)
Forgot to take pictures, Sorry!
 
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