2007 Town Car Brake Light Switch Issue

CWHusker

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Hello, all. I'm new here and have tried searching for this issue some so I apologize if it's covered somewhere and I missed it. I noticed while driving at night that the brake lights will disengage as soon as I start to release the brake pedal as opposed to when it has been fully released. This results in some flickering of the brake lights as I modulate the brake pedal as I'm slowing down. I replaced the switch thinking maybe the contacts were just worn, but the issue remains. As long as I'm actively pressing down on the pedal and engaging the switch (which you can hear click) the lights stay on so it's clearly not an electrical issue. Upon further inspection I noticed the switch is allowed to pivot on its mount. I'm assuming this is because the pedals are adjustable and it helps alleviate wear on the switch wires as the switch travels with the brake pedal. I have also noticed what appears to be this same issue on other Ford vehicles of the era that have adjustable pedals (Crown Vic, Grand Marquis, even an F-150) while out driving. Their lights will flicker on and off as they're coming to a stop. The only video I have found on this was a guy with an F-150 and he crudely taped the switch in place so it would no longer pivot on its mount. The switch mounts to the brake pedal and the switch itself is engaged my the brake booster "rod"(?). Could it be a booster issue and it's not pushing back hard enough on the switch effectively riding it all the way back to full disengagement? I'm having a hard time thinking of any other reasons why this would be other than it's just "normal" operation. Let me know if anyone else has noticed this issue and if it's just a "normal" thing for these cars. Thank you, guys! I've typed switch so many times it's starting to lose meaning haha.....switch.
 

raiderfan247365

Active member
133
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Western Oregon
Hey buddy, I have an 09 and just the other day noticed my brake lights act in a similar fashion. My lights go off slightly before I lift my foot fully off the brake pedal, cannot confirm if this is "normal" but I definitely have a similar experience to yours.
 
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G-259581

Hey! It's weird and I have noticed other cars on the road that appear to have the same issue. Hopefully someone know more about it to help others like us find a solution. Thanks for the reply!
 

CWHusker

Member
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It's a real bummer no one else has had this problem and found a solution. I have seen 2 Town Cars and 2 Crown Vics all displaying what seems to be the same thing since I originally posted this!
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CWHusker

Member
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LOL read the OP...I replaced the switch.
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CWHusker

Member
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I'm certain it's not the switch as it was replaced and as long as I engage it, I can hear it click and the lights will stay on. As I said in my original post, it's the way the switch is mounted in our cars since the pedals are adjustable. Normal cars have a hard mounted switch that is activated as soon as the pedal moves away from it. Ours is actually mounted to the brake pedal arm and moves with the pedal. It's the brake booster plunger that actually activates the switch itself. I'm thinking it may be a booster issue or vacuum leak somewhere that's causing the plunger to not ride the switch back with the pedal. So, I was just hoping someone else had the issue and had found a solution. Nogmin, there is a separate switch (cruise control release switch) that cancels the cruise control.
 

Nongmin

Active member
105
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Charlotte, NC
I'm aware that there are two switches down there, brake light and cruise. My F-150 has adjustable pedals, so I'll take a look at it, just out of curiosity, to check the setup and compare the two. I only noticed the CHMSL light, at the top of the back window, acting unusual during dark hours. Unlike your car, I hear nothing when I press on the brake, no switch, no plunger rod, etc. noise. Very quiet.

Is your situation causing a drivability problem or is this just a "nuisance" issue? Mine does what you described in your initial post, but with no noise. Road noise and the radio usually covers up any oddball sounds. My brake light goes off before I fully remove my foot from the pedal. And, when anticipating an upcoming stop, I cover the brake pedal lightly with my foot in advance, but until I make an effort to push down to stop, the lights don't come on. Maybe this is the way it was designed? When I hear a noise, my first stop is usually the WD-40 can, to see if the old girl just needs a little spritz to loosen things up. I wish I had more suggestions to offer. Good luck, hope you find the cause. :unsure:
 

CWHusker

Member
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Thanks, Nongmin. The noise I'm describing is the actual switch clicking when it's being engaged, so not a problem. I was just using that to convey that the switch itself is working as it should and there are no other electrical problems. Also, this is definitely more of a nuisance issue than anything else. One of those things that is annoying me because if it's designed this way and that's just the way it is, then that's just dumb...haha. I tend to modulate the pedal as I'm slowing to make the ride as smooth as possible and not come to an uncomfortable abrupt stop so the lights are constantly flickering on and off until I'm actually applying full pressure to the pedal. I am concerned it may get me stopped by the police if they notice my lights flickering and think they may not be operating properly. Ultimately, that would also be a nuisance as I'm not a criminal and have nothing to worry about. :p I'll have to see if I can get a video and some pictures to show this in more detail. Thanks again for taking the time to write up a detailed response!
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G-843937

I have a 2011 Crown Vic Police Interceptor with adjustable pedals and have the same issue! I thought I was the only one who noticed. I just replaced the brake light switch (before reading this thread), and it did not help. Based on this thread and others, it seems that's just the way it works if you have adjustable pedals. To me it is a safety issue. I could be sitting a stop light or stop sign without brakes lights because my foot is slightly lifted off the pedal. I always have to be conscious of my braking to ensure my brake lights are on when I want them to be; it's quite annoying.

Looking forward to see if anyone has a fix for this...
 

crownvicjosh

New member
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I have a 2011 Crown Vic Police Interceptor with adjustable pedals and have the same issue! I thought I was the only one who noticed! I just replaced the brake light switch (before reading this thread), and it did not help. Based on this thread and others, it seems that's just the way it works if you have adjustable pedals. To me it is a safety issue. I could be sitting a stop light or stop sign without brakes lights because my foot is slightly lifted off the pedal. I always have to be conscious of my braking to ensure my brake lights are on when I want them to be; it's quite annoying.

Looking forward to see if anyone has a fix for this...
 

CWHusker

Member
47
8
8
Funny that it seems no one else is experiencing this when I see other Ford cars of the era doing it all the time on the road. Heck, I just saw an F-150 like 10 minutes ago with brake lights flickering at a stop light. I guess people just don't notice or care. I'm going to see if I can talk to an old tech at one of the Ford dealers around here. I myself am a factory certified motorcycle mechanic, but still can't really figure what could be wrong other than something with the booster or a vacuum leak. I'll make sure to keep you posted if I come up with anything. Thanks for the reply.
 

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