CarTalk.com Blogs Car Info Our Show Deals Mechanics Files Vehicle Donation

1988 Crown Victoria Turn Signals Blink Too Slow

My turn signal lights both blink slowly. The left one blinks especially slower than the right one. To describe how bad it is, the left one tends to blink in such a way that it’ll come on and stay one for about 2 whole seconds before turning off then staying on again as one “blink.”

This problem started occurring when I started using the heater in the car because it’s starting to get cold. When the heater is on, the blinking is ever so slow. When it’s off, the blinking is still slow, but a bit faster. It’s not just the heater that causes a slowdown. It’s also when I have my headlights on vs headlights off that causes a difference in blinking speed.

Another thing i noticed when it comes to the speed of each blink is that if I have the heater on and I’m pressing the gas, the blinking is still slow, but faster than if the car is idling.

Another thing i noted is that a new noise is coming from under the hood. it’s like a continuous buzzing noise.

I would just like some pointers on what the problem could be so that I spend my money wisely on repairing this issue.
Thanks

You need to have the battery/charging system tested.

Tester

1 Like

May be the flasher unit is going bad.

From your description of the trouble it does sound like your charging system is having a problem, like @Tester suggested. If there is no problem with the charging system or battery then you need to check the power buss wiring for a bad connection. This would be a good time to clean your battery connections to make sure they aren’t a problem and also check the alternator belt tension. You should have at least 14 volts at the battery while the engine is running around 1,500 RPM and there is a good load on the electrical system.

Provided the flasher relay is working correctly, the blinker speed is proportional to the battery/charging system voltage and inversely proportional to the circuits resistance. So slow blinking could be caused by low voltage or high resistance. For high resistance the first suspects would be the blinker switch, corrosion at the lamp sockets, and corrosion at the light socket ground to chassis connection. In your case, for a 1988, I expect you have a little bit of both problems, low voltage and high resistance. If you feel lucky you could try replacing the flasher relay.

Thanks guys! Turns out it was the alternator. The old one was the orginal and was the culrpit to the buzzing noise. I got it replaced and now the turn signals are back up to speed and blink at the same rate.

Thank you for replying with the solution.