Steering Column Lock Light in V8 Automatic


Asked by dkenne Oct 25, 2012 at 08:17 AM about the 2002 Lincoln LS V8 Sport

Question type: General

I have a 2002 LS V8 Sport Package. I recently had electrical issues that caused all kinds of weird stuff
and eventually the car wouldn't crank. I took it to Lincoln and they suspected the battery--changed the
battery and no change. They called Lincoln and were told it was the instrument cluster. I was told that
the instrument cluster wasn't made anymore so they would have to take out my cluster and send it for
repair and then reinstall it. About $800 later, I drove the car home without any trouble.

On the way home I realized that the odometer read 27,000 (I took it in with about 97,000 miles on it).
So, I called the dealership. I really didn't care about the car being about 70,000 miles younger, but
figured it would cause issues when I sold it some day or took it back for e-check. A few days later I
noticed that a light on the instrument cluster is on (see image below). I had never seen the light before,
so Googled it. If I'm correct, it indicates "steering column lock" and I believe it only applies to the
manual transmission LS, which was only the V6.

Anyway, I called the dealership and told them about the light. They had no response. I suggested that
the instrument cluster they installed wasn't my original cluster, but a repaired cluster from a V6. Again,
no answer. They called the place that repaired the cluster and were told that it was the original cluster.
So, I let it go--the car seemed to be driving without any problems and the light comes on sometimes.

Two days ago I was driving the car and it started sputtering, especially during acceleration. It didn't
stall, but ran really rough and very inconsistent acceleration. At the same time, I noticed that the
"steering column lock" light was blinking. I eventually made it home and the next time I drove the car
the light was off and the engine seemed to be running fine again.

I'm going to call the dealership and complain, but wanted to try and get some information before I do.
Can anyone confirm the "steering column lock" light should only be on the V6. Also, any thoughts on
why it would be blinking while the car is running so badly? I have to believe that the cluster they put in
my LS is not the original--weird that in addition to a new light, the mileage was off.

Any thoughts are appreciated.

1 Answer

John Leone

though I can not confirm that it is solely to the v-6 i will state the ignition module was a common issue, (computer that controls the electrics of the ignition, steering lock, and gear shift if the mileage was wrong then it was not the original cluster, and the DEALERSHIP if they did their job correctly would know, as you are REQUIRED BY LAW to document the odometer, part number labeled on the back of the cluster (white sticker), also has to be programmed to the computer of the car, so you my friend have a cluster that wasn't yours, not communicating properly to the car you are trying to drive, and probably wasn't the issue to begin with, I would contact the better business bureau, followed by d.o.t., and insist you are not want reimbursement for their lack of professionalism and failure to diagnose anything correctly. (personally)

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