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Old 04-09-2014, 02:42 PM   #1
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Blinking lights; interior and backlight in dashboard buttons

Hi all,
I'm new to this forum and I’m currently struggling with an electrical problem that I hope someone can give some advices to.

I have just got a 2000 mod. 9.3 2l manual with 422 000 km on the meter, practically for free. Previous owner had the car from new and did all service at a local garage.

Car basically ok, only one problem with the ignition-switch cylinder that would not "pop" up in off position, so I had to remember to switch radio etc. off manually.

Car worked good for some months, but one day it would not start. Starter turned ok but no sign of firing at all.

I charged battery for some days, no change. Checked for spark on plugs; Ok.

Read on the forum about electrical issues and pulled and checked all fuses in fuse-panel (inside car). All ok.

Without testing to start it after refitting all fuses, I gave it a burst of start-gas and then it started without issues.

However with one difference; All interior light + backlight in buttons was blinking regularly with a steady frequency (one time per second).

I shot the engine off and started to pull fuses and found that when pulling fuse 35 (15 A), (DICE, TWICE, MAIN INSR., INTERIOR LIGHT), the blinking stopped and the light went out. Turned ignition fully off and inserted the fuse again.
For a short period all was normal (light come on when opening a door etc.), then it was back again with blinking (further; when switching on windscreen wiper it will not go off again).

Car drives and works ok except for this.

Having one warning for a broken head-light, I change this to see if that has any effect. No change.

Assumed the computer controlling the interior light/wipers etc. was receiving some conflicting signals from the ignition-switch that did not "pop-up", I went ahead and pulled out the central-console with ignition-switch, gearshift and all, and repaired that part.

Assembling all, now with an ignition switch that works as intended; still blinking.

Checking and cleaning all "big" fuses close to the battery; no change.

Checking fuses in fuse box in engine compartment, and find fuse 13 (APC) blown. Replacing this; no change.

Questions;
1. Anyone familiar with the same symptoms that know what cases this and how to fix it?

2. The blown APC fuse (13); What is APC? I read about APC (and BPC?) but as far as I understood that was related to Turbo engines. Mine is a non-turbo 2.0 l.

I really hope some could point me in the right direction here!

Best regards
Jebe
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Old 04-09-2014, 10:23 PM   #2
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I've never seen that happen, and unfortunately most of us on this forum are in the US and we didn't get the non turbo 9-3's, so not sure what the differences are with that model. Completely wild guess but maybe a rusty ground going to the TWICE module or something like that. I think all the interior lights are powered by DICE.
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Old 04-09-2014, 10:32 PM   #3
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So wait, did you replace the ignition switch or "repair" it?

Maybe DICE got a little fried with the bad ignition switch.
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Old 04-10-2014, 12:26 AM   #4
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Hi again, thanks for the input!

I see that I forgot to tell that my Radio is also with an error; It stays on for 15-20 seconds and then goes off showing a message "RADIO LOCKED"

DrewP; Do you know where the TWICE module are located (or are there severeal?). Also, you first mentioned rusty ground on TWICE and then said that interial-lights are powered by DICE.. Do you belive I have an issue with both moudules?

srp; I repaired the mechanical cylinder-lock (disassabeled and cleaned). I did not touch the electrical switch-module as I belive that is OK.

One more observation; The frequency of the blinking interior-light and back-light of the buttons (i.e. seat-heat switch) is the same as for the warning light. I mean that when I activate the warning-light, the "left-right turn arrows" in the dash (+ outside) starts blinking in the same frequency.

If I can find whether it is the DICE or TWICE module that are in charge of the interior light and the whiper, and where it is located, it would be of great help.
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Old 04-10-2014, 09:18 AM   #5
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Try unplugging the hazard light switch.

If it blinks with the emergency hazard lights it sounds more like something is feeding back into the lights. TWICE is under the driver's seat (I don't know where the ground lug for it is tho), it's in charge of the turn signals, hazards, parking and brake lamps.

DICE is up under the dash above the pedals, and is in charge of the interior lighting stuff. The brightness of the bulbs in the dash is controlled over a network so that the brightness of all the bulbs can be changed at once with the dimmer, and is how the Night Panel feature works.

If it's not the hazard switch, then I'd start unplugging the dash modules one at a time since they all talk to the bus and can cause weird things to happen. Unplug the radio head unit, and the SID. Since your 9-3 is a non-turbo model you probably have the manual climate control unit instead of the automatic one, so that can't be causing it.

If it's not something simple like that you'd best invest in the electrical systems manual for your 9-3. They come up online here on eBay from time to time in printed form, or you can buy the CD of the factory service manual - it's called SAAB WIS, for Workshop Information System.


***********************


Are you a native Norwegian? My wife went to folkehøgskole outside Bergen before starting university here (she's American, and grew up here and everything, but has been speaking Norwegian since she was 8 or 9). We have travelled to Norway and Sweden a few times and I love it there. Some of the most beautiful places I've ever seen.

I only ask because your English is so excellent, but I've also never met a Norwegian who didn't speak English better than many Americans do...
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Old 04-10-2014, 11:53 AM   #6
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I had some strange things happen when my dimmer start to go bad, but it was mostly back lighting related.
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