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How to fix the wipers working from the heater switch issue
Sympton: Wiper stalk control does nothing. Wipers come on when heater fan switch is switched on full.
It sounds bizarre but it is quite simple. The Hayne's wiring diagram shows a nice direct connection from the wiper motor to earth. But in fact the earth wire goes via the wiper motor plug into the wiring hireness and actually gets earthed in places you don't want to go (down by your right foot - no really!)
Of course this is stupid, and since the wiring is pretty flaky on Renaults anyway this earth will fail. Then you get the bizarre situation with the heater switch providing an indirect route to earth for the wiper motor.
HOW TO FIX IT:
A WARNING: WHEN YOU CONNECT THE EARTH WIRE THE WIPER MOTOR WILL ALMOST CERTAINLY RUN THROUGH ONE CYCLE AUTOMATICALLY. IT CAN DAMAGE YOUR FINGERS/HAND VERY BADLY. DO NOT GET YOUR FINGERS IN THE MECHANISM. ALWAYS CONNECT THE WIRE TO THE MOTOR END FIRST.
You need to take off the plastic panel that runs just below the windscreen over the battery compartment. There is just one screw which looks fancy but in fact takes a straight blade. It is labelled 'To access battery remove this screw only'. So remove it. Ease off the 'clip' (really just an overlap of plastic where this section meets the other section in the middle) then pull the wiper blade back and you will be able to wiggle the panel out. (There are clips underneath to hold it to the windshield which give way to a gentle pull, then slide the panel to the right about half an inch to release the clips (again built into the moulding) at the far left.
Are you following this OK?
Then the thing in the middle with the link bars connected to it is the wiper moter (actually the motor is fixed underneath with 3 screws). There is no electrical earth from the motor panel because it is mounted on rubber bushes. But conveniently there is a hole in the motor bracket, and there is a bracket on the bodywork nearby, also with a hole in it. Both holes take 6m bolts, so bolt a 4 inch length of minimum 20 amp wire between them using crimped spade or round connectors (your motor shop will probably do this for you). Check that the screw and wire will clear the crank driving the blades. (SEE CAUTION ABOVE ABOUT FINGERS). Panel back - reverse order to taking it off. Job done.
IF YOU ARE STUCK ON THE ROAD: you can just reach the wiper motor bracket from the battery compartment, and with a bit of fiddling you can feel the hole I'm talking about in the motor bracket. Bare at least 2 inches from a 12" length of 20 Amp wire, fiddle it though the hole, and then twist it round the bracket. Twist the other end round the battery earth.
KEEP FINGERS CLEAR BECAUSE THE MOTOR WILL START WHEN YOU COMPLETE THE CONNECTION.
Don't worry about the original earth. The fix you have just fitted is the best solution and if I were you I wouldn't venture behind that panel down by you right foot until you have to....
Last edited by vz4rys; 30th April 2008 at 05:08 PM.