What could cause us to continuously blow the Ignition fuse on a 2003 Ford Explorer when turning the key on?


Asked by Mar 10, 2014 at 02:32 PM about the 2003 Ford Explorer

Question type: Maintenance & Repair

We have a 2003 Ford Explorer. About two months ago, our car wouldnt start. It would
turn over but then nothing. Finally figured out it was a blown ignition fuse. Replaced it
and everything was fine until today. This morning, we started the car to warm up before
taking the kids to school and when we got in to leave- it wasn't running. Check and it
was the ignition fuse again. Every time we replace the fuse- it blows again- even when
just turning the key on.  We've went through 6 fuses- checked for any loose wires, other
blown fuses, etc. What could be causing this? Can you give us any help to try to figure
out how to correct this issue or get it to start??

6 Answers


If the fuse is now blowing immediately when you turn the ignition key it is a sign of a short in the system. It could have been a loose or frayed wire previously that has just gone completely bad. You'll need a wiring diagram to begin checking.

5 out of 5 people think this is helpful.
Best Answer

A lot of systems operate only when the key is in the "on" position. You may want to try removing all the fuses that operate things like windows, radio, turn signals, anything you can think of, then switch the key to on and see if the fuse blows. If it doesn't, then replace one by one to narrow the problem down.

1 out of 1 people think this is helpful.

This started a few months back when I washed the car- and did the undercarriage wash- this is when the fuse blew the first time- and the car shut off- was while sitting in a car wash. Do you think the wash did something to it? Or does this give you a better idea on where we should start- or what we could try to fix?

2 out of 2 people think this is helpful.

I would suspect the under car wash may have supplied water to a wire already damaged and shorted it out. Check the connections at the starter, it is the lowest electrical component to the ground. But I do not believe it is a starter problem as, according to your post, the fuse blows as soon as the key is turned to the "on" position. Question: After the fuse blows, with the key in the "on" position, do all the other electrical gizmos - bells and whistles - operate as expected?


Not knowing your level of automotive tinkering, try this first. Remove and completely clean the battery cables, leave them off. On the firewall there may be a solenoid. Remove each wire, one and a time, clean - remove coorosion, and replace. Trace the wire to the starter checking for breaks, burn marks, etc. Remove each wire from the starter and check for damage, clean and replace. You are experiencing a direct short. Probably a damaged wire. You could also have a problem with your ECM or one of your coil packs - these things are better left to a service person for diagnosis.

1 out of 1 people think this is helpful.

I googled the problem and took some time to read. Found most common answer was an o2 sensor wire fried from the exhaust. Jacked up the car and looked at them- first was fine-but the second had exposed wires and was against the drive shaft. Removed the sensor- replaced the fuse, and it immediately started up ! :)Thanks for all your time you took to answer us, we appreciate it :)

6 out of 6 people think this is helpful.

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