Crown Victoria Front Turn Signals-- How are they supposed to work? | FordForumsOnline.com
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Crown Victoria Front Turn Signals-- How are they supposed to work?

Discussion in 'Ford Crown Victoria' started by John O'Flaherty, Aug 6, 2019.

  1. John O'Flaherty

    John O'Flaherty Member

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    I've uploaded two videos to my YouTube channel describing this very thing as I ask my question. Pardon the rambling, unedited, raw nature of the videos. I wasn't going for cinematic beauty here... I simply needed a platform with which to illustrate my question.

    Basically, I want to know if outer markers are supposed to blink along with the inner ones, or stay dim and solid? I have a feeling those may have more flexibility and usefulness than we see here. Might the wired police strobs have disabled and prevented the outer ambers from blinking?

    I really wish I could see a Civilian 2011 Crown Vic LX side by side, so I can see how the non-police version's front turn signals are supposed to work. If anyone can help answer my question, I would be most appreciative.

    First video is of the 2011 Crown Vic itself, the 2nd video is of a 2007 Honda Civic-- just to illustrate how I WISH the Crown Vic would work-- by having turn signals on the wrap-around portion, so that traffic to the side of me can see my turn signals as well.

    Yes... I know a Honda isn't a Ford... it's just a point of comparison, just to show you how I wish things were, and/or to illustrate how if it is supposed to be doing that on the Ford... it isn't... and how do I fix that problem... if it is indeed a problem? (If it's normal... then I have my answer, and the answer is I do nothing).

    Thanks,

    -- John O'Flaherty (B3Burner)

    2011 Ford Crown Vic


    2007 Honda Civic LX
  2. Action

    Action Moderator Staff Member Respected Member

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    Federal standards require
    White head lights at least two
    An amber side marker lamp that can be seen from the side. And be reflective. From the front is OK but must be seen from the side when the head lamps are on
    And an amber blinking light in the front. (Red in the rear for US standards and amber in the rear for international standards) The turn signal can do double duty as a parking lamp.

    For your CV the outside lamps are just marker lamps that come on when the head light switch is in park or head lamp on. This will only have two wires and a small bulb.
    The next is the head lights Since this lamp is both low and high beam the bulb will have 3 wires.
    The inboard is turn signals and park lamps. Will have a lager bulb the size of a 1157 and have 3 wires.

    Form what I saw (I did not watch the whole vid) the operation was normal.

    >>>>>>>>>>>Action
  3. John O'Flaherty

    John O'Flaherty Member

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    Action, Fair enough... that's all I needed to know. Thanks. About the only thing I might do is replace that driver side white side marker bulb with an amber one (like on the passenger side)... so that the two lights match in color in both sides.
  4. John O'Flaherty

    John O'Flaherty Member

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    Action,

    This was the Holy Grail of YouTube videos that I was looking for! This guy managed to accomplish the impossible, and do exactly what I want to do. Only problem is, I don't know what he did... because he didn't explain it too well. Maybe you can interpret what he said he did with the "pins"? I totally don't get what me means by pins. Pins on the connector at the headend of the wire?



    There is one other golden video that someone else did with the alternate flashing between inner and outer ambers on a Crown Vic... but I can't find it. If I do manage to find it, I'll share it, so that you or anyone else can see what it is I'm trying to accomplish, and if you can understand what it is I need to do to make this happen.

    To me, it is unconscionable in the 21st century that any automaker could be allowed to build a car that DOESN'T have front turn signals that can be seen from the side. Everyone in the world is so haplessly concerned about emissions and fuel economy... yet they manage to let something important like this, slip through the cracks.
  5. Action

    Action Moderator Staff Member Respected Member

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    "To me, it is unconscionable in the 21st century that any automaker could be allowed to build a car that DOESN'T have front turn signals that can be seen from the side. "

    Because the regulation only states it has to be visible from the front.

    I believe the mod of the pins was to disconnect the marker lamp and run the hot feed wire from the turn signal bulb to the marker lamp. In this process the marker lamp would no longer function as a marker lamp because it only has one filament. So it can only do one function. Whereas the turn signal lamp has two filaments (I think or can easily be modified to a 1157 bulb with two filaments)

    The smaller bulb in the marker lamp would need a second lamp or a mod to get a two element bulb into that housing.

    >>>>>>>>>>>>>Action
  6. Action

    Action Moderator Staff Member Respected Member

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    There isn't any wiring diagrams for CV of that era on the internet that I could find or I would post one. And I don't have a EVTM.

    However it is a matter of moving wires or adding wires and it would be fairly easy to do. With one frustration, just like adding LEDs changing lights in the turn signal circuit has the potential of causing flashing issues. A flasher operates based on heat produced in a circuit. Add more lights the circuit draws more and the flash rate can change.

    And adding lights in general (LED or other wise) to a vehicle that has a lamp out feature becomes problematic for the same reason. The circuit draws a different amount of current so the sensor for a lamp burn out gets confused and may indicate a lamp burned out when it fact it is not.

    >>>>>>>>>>>>Action
  7. DesertXL

    DesertXL Active Member Respected Member

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    Hi guys,

    Actually this is a simple one if I may chime in. U.S. cars from the 70's and 80's have been long doing this. I am not sure why your Crown Vic doesn't. My '73 Caprice Classic is no exception, heck I think my '94 Grand Marquis even does this. In order to get the smaller wattage side marker lamp to flash with the turn signal bulb in front and still function as a side marker lamp with running lamps is do the following:

    Instead of the side marker lamp being directly grounded, connect the ground wire from the side marker lamp to the high wattage turn signal filament of the front bulb for that side.

    Do that to both sides.

    Done. It's that simple. :)

    Here's how it works for those interested in a boring explanation. When you just power the running lamps and or headlamps the side marker lamp grounds through the high wattage turn signal filament in the front. Since the side marker is a low wattage filament, it lights and the turn signal will not. When you have the running lamps/and or headlamps on and you use your turn signal, as the front high wattage turn signal bulb gets +12 volts to light up from the flasher the side marker effectively loses ground and goes out. What you get is an alternating flasher effect between the front and side marker with the running and or headlamps on.

    With the running and or headlamps off and you use the turn signal, power from the high wattage turn signal filament is applied to the low wattage side marker lamp and the side marker lamp now tries to ground through all the running lamps. Since all the running lamps combined have a much lower resistance the smaller high resistance (low wattage) side marker bulb flashes in sequence with the front high wattage turn signal bulb.

    Did I do a good job trying to explain that or......o_O

    Cheers

    ;)

    p.s. As Action stated substituting LED bulbs may not cause the above feature to work correctly or at all. The above is guaranteed to work for incandescent bulbs.
    Last edited: Aug 6, 2019
    Action likes this.
  8. John O'Flaherty

    John O'Flaherty Member

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    Dessert XL... Don't know how to quote your text, but you did an excellent job. I've never been that good at understanding electrical terms. What exactly does ground mean, and how is that different than negative or positive? Or is negative another name for the word "ground"?
    Are there little sockets you plug these various wires into when you want to change how they're configured? Or does it involve splicing wire, cutting, attaching back together with tape... or whatever it is you're supposed to do?

    As for LED's... I don't ever plan on using those on my car. Too confusing to me... and a trip down the rabbit hole into a digital Alice in Wonderland (or should I say, "Malice in Blunderland")... that I really don't care to mess with.
  9. John O'Flaherty

    John O'Flaherty Member

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    Action, thanks for your reply in post #6. Darn it! I wish I remembered how to put quote text from a replier in my own reply. Used to know how to do that like 15 years ago... but I have long since forgotten how to do all that fancy, internet forum stuff.
  10. DesertXL

    DesertXL Active Member Respected Member

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    Hello John O'Flaherty,

    Thank you for the kind words. To answer your query yuppers ground is usually synonymous for negative as the cars body (and chassis in the Crown Vic's case) is connected to the negative of the battery.

    As for sockets and wires, I am not familiar with the 2011 Crown Vic. We have a 1994 and a 2004 Grand Marquis and probably Ford changed quite a few things between 2004 and 2011. Your easiest course of action would be cutting and splicing wires if you do not have the factory service manuals for the car to locate the harness connectors and perhaps make the modifications there instead.

    Withcidentally, I was curious about even my 1994 Grand Marquis and had a look, the side marker does not flash. Our 2004 has the turn signal bulb right on the corner and you can see it very clearly from the front or side. However our 79 Dodge Power Wagon front side marker lamps are wired to flash with the turn signals.

    Cheers
  11. DesertXL

    DesertXL Active Member Respected Member

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    P.S. all you have to do is hit reply (lower right hand corner) of a persons posting and it will automatically quote them. Just type your reply after the auto quoting feature.

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