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docjohn

Handbrake/brake Fluid Warning Light, Escort Estate

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Last week my handbrake warning lamp started flashing whilst I was driving and now it is permanently on whether the handbrake is on or off. The brake fluid level is fine. My car is a year 2000, Escort Estate. The problem must be electrical and I've utilised the wiring diagram in the Haynes Manual.

If I remove the three pin connector to the brake fluid reservoir cap, there's naturally no lamp illumination because the wire from the warning lamp is isolated. On the wiring diagram it is shown as coming from a grey rectangle marked central fusebox via a black/yellow lead. There is twelve volts at the connector.

If I replace the cap connector and remove the connector at the handbrake switch, the lamp is permanently illuminated whether the handbrake is on or off. I guess then that the circuit is accidentally earthed somewhere between the brake fluid cap and the handbrake switch. (Unless both switches are faulty, which would be much too coincidental.)

On the wiring diagram, wires from the brake fluid cap and handbrake switch (both violet/orange) meet at connectors on the grey rectangle. If I could separate one or other, I can test for which wire is faulty.

But where exactly IS this connection? All I can see is a vast combination cable going into the bulkhead from the battery area of the engine bay!

(If it's going to be a mammoth job removing the fusebox and associated paraphrenlia, I'll just disconnect the fluid cap connector and forget about the problem.)

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Ha, you're absolutely right, Dan! I've just been down and checked with the circuit tester; the pin the yellow/black lead (12 volts) feeds into the cap connector is shorted to the pin for the black earth wire. How could I have missed that? So, does the sensor unscrew out of the cap or must I get a whole new reservoir cap assembly? (There's no description in Haynes and I don't want to force anything, seeing as the plastic reservoir is so delicately attached to the master cylinder!)

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