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Old 05-06-2010, 09:25 AM   #1
Ravenmike
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Default 2004 Vue Door Switch / Lock Issue

Hi everyone,

My 04 Vue just starting having problems with the door locks.

Just in the last few days, when driving, the interior light will pop on for a sec, then go out...when it goes out you can hear the locks engage. It does it very randomly and there is no specific condition I can pin point to when it does occur.
Since it is acting like a door is being opened, I am thinking that the cause is one or more of the door switches (The switch that opens when a door is opened...the one that controls the interior lights coming on). The door locks themselves work just fine. I also had an incident where the car was parked with the alarm set, and the alarm sounded...like someone had opened the door. Like other posters, I think this started after I washed the car...

Does anyone have any troubleshooting tips to figure out which switch is the bad one?

Thanks.

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Old 05-06-2010, 03:14 PM   #2
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Default Re: 2004 Vue Door Switch / Lock Issue

Quote:
Originally Posted by Ravenmike View Post
Hi everyone,

My 04 Vue just starting having problems with the door locks.

Just in the last few days, when driving, the interior light will pop on for a sec, then go out...when it goes out you can hear the locks engage. It does it very randomly and there is no specific condition I can pin point to when it does occur.
Since it is acting like a door is being opened, I am thinking that the cause is one or more of the door switches (The switch that opens when a door is opened...the one that controls the interior lights coming on). The door locks themselves work just fine. I also had an incident where the car was parked with the alarm set, and the alarm sounded...like someone had opened the door. Like other posters, I think this started after I washed the car...

Does anyone have any troubleshooting tips to figure out which switch is the bad one?

Thanks.
Many folks believe symptoms similar to yours are early indications the body control module (BCM) is not healthy.

You can view a schematic of the relationship between the door jamb switches and the BCM in post # 4 of following thread - DR LOCKS SCHEM # 1(rules prevent re-post of same diagram):

http://saturnfans3.saturnfans.com/~s...d.php?t=135480

You'll note each of the four jamb switches and the lift-gate ajar switch are normally open when door is closed - but each will provide a path to ground for BCM when the door is open. (Turns on interior lights, sets off alarm, etc).

As a practical matter I can see where one of the switches could be borderline, and could intermittently route a ground to one of the three BCM inputs.

I'd think one way to isolate the bad switch is to cycle each many times to see if you can get one to change to unwanted state.

I do believe my first action would be to disconnect battery ground cable for several minutes (make sure your radio security is not enabled). Then reconnect to perform a mini-boot of the BCM module.

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Old 05-06-2010, 06:47 PM   #3
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Default Re: 2004 Vue Door Switch / Lock Issue

That is how things started when my BCM went. If you notice any other electrical gremlins get ready to dish out about $500

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Old 05-06-2010, 09:37 PM   #4
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Default Re: 2004 Vue Door Switch / Lock Issue

Well...I tried the battery disconnect, and it seemed to help for a while, but then the problem returned (although not as frequently as before). I drive 60 miles one way to work so I have ample time to test the condition.
I have since removed the light bulbs in the map lights (since there is no other way to shut them off), and set the interior light switch off as well...this to prevent the interior light from blinding me at night, and to prevent the battery from running down.

I found another post about disabling the auto-lock, but the procedure was for disabling the auto-unlock when the car is placed into park. (I find that a bit annoying so I switched it back)

For now, I think I will wait and see what happens...especially if everyone is on the same assumption that the BCM is the culprit. The switches, while relatively cheap look difficult to get to and replace. (especially the rear door which look to be mounted in the center post with the seat belt tensioner.

As for other electrical "gremlins" what things should I be on the look out for? If it is just the locks, I might be able to live with that (until the locks themselves give out)...but I want to be sure nothing catastriphic will happen.

Does anyone else have a suggestion or idea?

Thanks for the advice so far. It is very much appreciated. I nursed my last Saturn (96 SC2) to 280,000 miles before I had to throw in the towel...the Vue seems to be a whole different world.

Cheers.

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Old 05-06-2010, 11:13 PM   #5
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Default Re: 2004 Vue Door Switch / Lock Issue

The BCM does a little of everything. Locks, alarm, door triggers, exterior lights, horn, and some engine related functions are handled by the BCM. There's no way of telling, but it seems like when one thing goes bad in the BCM, more is likely to follow.

By chance, are you from a northern state? I think there is a correlation between the temperature and BCM failures.

The front door switches are easy to replace. Those side panels snap off. But I doubt they're bad.

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Old 05-07-2010, 04:38 PM   #6
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Default Re: 2004 Vue Door Switch / Lock Issue

Quote:
Originally Posted by Ravenmike View Post
Well...I tried the battery disconnect, and it seemed to help for a while, but then the problem returned (although not as frequently as before). I drive 60 miles one way to work so I have ample time to test the condition.
I have since removed the light bulbs in the map lights (since there is no other way to shut them off), and set the interior light switch off as well...this to prevent the interior light from blinding me at night, and to prevent the battery from running down.

I found another post about disabling the auto-lock, but the procedure was for disabling the auto-unlock when the car is placed into park. (I find that a bit annoying so I switched it back)

For now, I think I will wait and see what happens...especially if everyone is on the same assumption that the BCM is the culprit. The switches, while relatively cheap look difficult to get to and replace. (especially the rear door which look to be mounted in the center post with the seat belt tensioner.

As for other electrical "gremlins" what things should I be on the look out for? If it is just the locks, I might be able to live with that (until the locks themselves give out)...but I want to be sure nothing catastriphic will happen.

Does anyone else have a suggestion or idea?

Thanks for the advice so far. It is very much appreciated. I nursed my last Saturn (96 SC2) to 280,000 miles before I had to throw in the towel...the Vue seems to be a whole different world.

Cheers.
The alarm going off for no reason is one of the begining signs. Also the cruise control will ot work if the BCM fails. If the BCM fails when the security system is engaged you will not be able to start the car. If the gauges fail intermittently that is a sign the BCM is going

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Old 03-02-2011, 09:15 PM   #7
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Default Re: 2004 Vue Door Switch / Lock Issue

I just had exactly this same issue with my 2007, however found and solved the problem.

Conditions: Cold weather (-8 degC to be precise.)
First noticed while driving, cabin lights would pop on, door locks would open/close.
Then sometimes lights would stay on, and drivers lock would not lock.
Then, middle of the night (while getting cold) alarm would start going.


Turns out, the drivers door closed switch (the pin sticking out the side of the dash) was getting a bit worn. When the car gets really cold, things shrink to the point of the switch being marginal.
BCM would think while driving that the door was being opened. Of course, the door won't lock, if the key is still in the ignition, and would stay unlocked. Not until the door was closed, and the car was in motion, would it lock again.
Same thing happened at night while the car was slowly freezing. The geometry of the door became marginal with the switch. the door switch opened and the alarm was triggered.

Fix: Put some padding under the hard plastic on the door panel. This makes it stick out a bit further, and push the pin further.

Problem solved.

Test procedure: When in faulty state, car off, try to lock the car with the FOB. If it goes into delayed lock mode (as in door open) open a door, press and hold the pin switch with finger. If it locks, there's the problem. If not, try another door.

I hope this helps someone, before having to replace a BCM!

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Old 03-02-2011, 09:36 PM   #8
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Default Re: 2004 Vue Door Switch / Lock Issue

NathanD ... you posted really good data. Its scary a flaky door switch could provide symptoms so similar to a failing BCM.

Your episode provides a good example for doing a little common-sense troubleshooting before breaking out the checkbook.

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Old 03-19-2012, 10:55 AM   #9
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Default Re: 2004 Vue Door Switch / Lock Issue

I have a 2005 Saturn Vue and had the same issue. I pulled the panel that held the switch and removed the passenger side door switch. My vehicle would have trouble in cold weather just as described above. Since I have removed the switch everything has been fine. I am currently looking to find a replacement switch for it. I like the post about adding padding to the switch contact location on the door and might try that.
Thanks NathanD.

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Old 03-19-2012, 01:15 PM   #10
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Default Re: 2004 Vue Door Switch / Lock Issue

Quote:
Originally Posted by Marmitag View Post
I have a 2005 Saturn Vue and had the same issue. I pulled the panel that held the switch and removed the passenger side door switch. My vehicle would have trouble in cold weather just as described above. Since I have removed the switch everything has been fine. I am currently looking to find a replacement switch for it. I like the post about adding padding to the switch contact location on the door and might try that.
Thanks NathanD.
http://www.partstrain.com/store/?N=0...or+lock+switch

Hope this helps.

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Old 03-19-2012, 01:44 PM   #11
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Default Re: 2004 Vue Door Switch / Lock Issue

I was thinking he needed the door-jamb switch ... one of these?

http://www.rockauto.com/catalog/x,ca...,parttype,4360

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Old 01-15-2013, 12:07 PM   #12
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Default Re: 2004 Vue Door Switch / Lock Issue

Had the same problem with my 2006 Vue. Passenger side front door closed switch bad. Replaced it. Problem solved.

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Old 01-15-2013, 01:25 PM   #13
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Default Re: 2004 Vue Door Switch / Lock Issue

Switches are pretty simple devices but I guess something mechanical can go wrong with them and then they won't work. Usually I would think they would fail open but I had a light switch weld itself 'on' once.

Could failing wire insulation cause this as well?

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Old 02-15-2015, 02:21 PM   #14
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Default Re: 2004 Vue Door Switch / Lock Issue

My wife had this same issue. When it gets extremely cold outside, the alarm might go off for no reason, the power locks go on and off and the dome light comes on.

I replaced the door switch on the side of dash and nothing happened. We were still having the same issue. When the symptoms were occurring, we would just pull out on the passenger side door panel handle and the symptoms would stop. I noticed the plastic door panel on the passenger side door is what actually pushed the button on the door switch. I think due to expansion and contraction, the door contracted just enough that the it was not pushing the switch in far enough. I got piece of weather stripping cut off about 1/2 and put on the door panel. This seemed to have pushed the switch in a little farther and problem seems to be solved.

Good luck hope this helps

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