Skip the auto shop - Our mechanics make house calls

Q: Heater control system will not power up even though there is power to it

asked by on

The whole thing started with a penny in a lighter and I'm not sure if this was just a coincidence or not but I lost all interior lights,alternator,Battery,rear wiper motor. mileage meter and temp outside control and my whole heater system including Heater Power Radio and Cd player. Had a bad power surge in interior lights which I just found fuse and unplugged but still nothing working on the rest replaced Alternator and Battery and also got a second hand Heater Control Unit from Junk yard with no success

My car has 177317 miles.
My car has an automatic transmission.

A: Hi and thanks for contacting Your Mechanic....

Hi and thanks for contacting Your Mechanic. When the penny was in the cigarette lighter, the penny act as a conductor and shorted out the circuit. The cigarette lighter is either powered all the time or powered when the ignition switch is on, but either way, the cigarette lighter is tied through the ignition switch. Check the fuse box for power to it and ground. If the fuse box has power and a ground, then the ignition switch burned from the short in the cigarette lighter. This would explain that phenomenon light issue and all of the electronics failing in your vehicle. Check all of the wiring to the ignition switch and the main power to the switch. If there is power to the switch but no power coming out of it when the key is in and turned to ACC or ON positions, then the switch needs replaced. If the switch is working fine, then the fuse box has a short in it and it needs replaced. If you need further assistance troubleshooting your massive electrical outage in your vehicle, then seek out a technician, such as one from Your Mechanic, that can assist you.

Was this answer helpful?

Need advice from certified mechanic? Get help now!

Over 1000 mechanics are ready to answer your question.
The statements expressed above are only for informational purposes and should be independently verified. Please see our terms of service for more details

Ask a Mechanic
(100% Free)

Have a car question? Get free advice from our top-rated mechanics.

Ask A Mechanic
Over 10,000 questions answered!

Get an instant quote for your car

Our certified mechanics come to you ・Backed by 12-month, 12,000-mile guarantee・Save up to 30%

Get a quote

What others are asking

Q: I cannot find the neutral safety switch. Where is it?

The neutral safety switch on this transmission is called a transmission range sensor. The sensor is located on the right front of the transmission looking from the front of the vehicle. The connector should have an 8 pin connector on...

Q: Car goes into reverse, but not drive

Hi. There are a few things to check before condemning the transmission. Check the fluid level. The shifter linkage, and for trouble codes. There are not any electronics involved in reverse. If all that is ok, most likely it will...

Q: Car vibrates in idle and trouble accelerating after stopped

Hi there, thanks for writing in about your 2003 Subaru Baja. There are dozens of potential causes for the symptoms you are having. It could be an engine performance problem, such as a bad sensor. It could also be a...

Related articles

How to Renew Your Car Registration in Oklahoma(DELETED)
Having your car registered with the Oklahoma Tax Commission is an important part of driving legally in this state. You will need to do this within 30 days of moving to Oklahoma...
P0052 OBD-II Trouble Code: HO2S Heater Control Circuit High (Bank 2 Sensor 1)
P0052 code definition HO2S Heater Control Circuit High (Bank 2 Sensor 1) What the P0052 code means This code is seen when the Engine Control Module (ECM) tries to control the...
P2103 OBD-II Trouble Code: Throttle Actuator Control Motor Circuit High
P2103 means there is a fault with the throttle actuator control motor circuit, likely due to a defective electrical component or part.