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Thread: Interior Lights And Door Locks Are Possessed!

  1. #1

    Icon928 Interior Lights And Door Locks Are Possessed!

    My JGC is equipped with Automatic Door Locks Ė from the owners manual, ďdoor locks will lock automatically if the vehicle speed is above 15 mph and all doors are closedĒ.

    Iím driving down the road at about 45 mph, the door locks locked way long ago, and all of a sudden, I hear the door locks lock again, and the interior lights go on. It sounds exactly as if it had just reached the 15 mph and was locking the doors. Then, the lights go out and then they flash on again, at the same time I hear the door locks attempting to lock again (they are already locked). This cycle happens about three times, and then the interior lights stay on. Each time the doors attempt to lock and the interior lights go on or off, I hear a clicking Ė to me, it sounds like a relay, but Iím guessing. So Iím driving down the road with the interior lights on.

    I start manually pressing the power lock and unlock button on the driverís side door in an attempt to get the interior lights out. No joy. I use the key fob (remote) in an attempt to do the same thing. Still no joy Ė lights on.

    I get to my destination, get out of the car, and use the power lock button to lock all the doors and close the doors. The interior lights are still on. I use the remote, locking, unlocking, rinse and repeat. The interior lights are still on. After about 30 seconds, with the vehicle parked and locked, the interior lights go out.

    This was yesterday, and itís been doing this off and on business intermittently.

    So now Iím wondering where the relationship between the interior lights and the door locks is Ė is it a relay that they have in common? Iím reading the owners manual and thereís no indication of a fuse or relay that ties the two together, but there must be one. Thereís no mention of this feature (automatic lock @ 15 mph) in the FSM Ė at least that I can find. I have the wiring diagrams and still cannot find a link between the two.

    Okay, last piece of information and I may be stretching it here; a ďwhile agoĒ, I started having problems with Overdrive. The check engine light came on and threw a P0783 code. This code primarily points to the governor/solenoid in the transmission, but basically indicates that thereís a problem with the circuit, and the OD circuit doesnít think that the driveshaft is at the proper rpm to shift into OD. So in other words, Iím driving down the road, and after the transmission fluid warms up, I stop shifting into overdrive, and am basically driving in 4th. Iíve been watching the tachometer and itís as predicable as sunrise. Itís a problem Iíll get to when I get the b*lls to drop the transmission pan and try to replace the governor/solenoid assembly.

    The only reason I bring up this last point is because they both seem to be related to vehicle speed. So Iím wondering if there may be sensor (VSS, Transmission Speed Sensor, etc.) that may be the root of both problems.

    Any thoughts? Where should my efforts be focused? Iíd have to have to just remove the interior lights fuse and leave them off, and Iím not capable of pulling off a door panel to search for a broken wire. So any hints would be greatly appreciated.
    1998 Grand Cherokee Laredo, 4.0 L (242) SMPI I6 "Power Tech", Automatic w/ Electronic OD, 164K miles

  2. #2


    mine does the same thing. My driver side door does not latch properly, so the door switch randomly releases, and the Jeep thinks the door opens...when the switch is pushed and the Jeep thinks the door is closed, it locks the doors. My temporary fix was to disconnect the door switch until i fix the latch. So before you go looking for relays and pulling door panels apart, make sure the door switches are functioning properly.


  3. #3


    Thanks for the advice. By the term "door switches", are you referring to the push button switch that gets depressed when the door closes? Also, when it happens to you, do the interior lights flick on and off at the same time?
    1998 Grand Cherokee Laredo, 4.0 L (242) SMPI I6 "Power Tech", Automatic w/ Electronic OD, 164K miles

  4. #4


    yes, and yes. the lights would come on, and flicker...sometimes stay on, and the doors would lock and unlock. exactly as you describe.

  5. #5


    Very cool. Thank you. Interestingly enough, when I got the car (in Feb) the interior lights wouldn't go on when the door opened. It turns out that the switch was sticking in the "door closed" position. I used a little WD40 on it and it worked like normal. I'll look into it as it happens.

    Thanks again.
    1998 Grand Cherokee Laredo, 4.0 L (242) SMPI I6 "Power Tech", Automatic w/ Electronic OD, 164K miles

  6. #6


    I had similar issues and mine turned out to be the driver's side door switch too. I replaced it and it took care of the problems. The factory manual calls them "door ajar switches" and they are $12.95 at the dealership,

  7. #7


    That's awesome! Thanks for letting me know what they're called. Now I can find them in the FSM.
    1998 Grand Cherokee Laredo, 4.0 L (242) SMPI I6 "Power Tech", Automatic w/ Electronic OD, 164K miles

  8. #8


    I seem to be having a similar issue. I just changed my low beams and since then my car has intermittently not dimmed the lights when the car locks like it used to and when this happens the controls on my door for the windows/lock won't work as well. I initially though it could have been a bad wire to the driver door but the other doors windows will not roll down as well (ALL three others). The unlock still works on the passenger side though. Until I find a fix I have just turned off the internal lights in the car. The aforementioned door ajar switch seemed like a possibility but that would be at each door and the windows should still work. I am willing to change the door ajar switch to see if that fixes the internal lights but is there a model number or place where I can get it online? I have a 2002 Jeep Grand Cherokee Laredo. Any suggestions? Thank you.


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