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Old 09-07-2012, 09:49 AM
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Clutch Safety Switch Fix (pics)

I have been battling a problem for a while now , recently it seems like I have had to push my clutch in harder and harder to get the engine to start. I am guessing it is a problem with the neutral safety switch , but before I just start replacing parts I thought I would ask if there is anyway to test to see if it is bad. Also, Can anybody give me an idea of where it is located under the dash, pictures would be a plus.

** EDIT ** Changed thread name
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Old 09-07-2012, 10:12 AM
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It's not a neutral safety switch, that's an automatic, but a clutch safety switch. This thread has a very good picture ...

http://www.ford-trucks.com/forums/11...t-problem.html
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Old 09-07-2012, 10:25 AM
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Yep, sorry, I sometimes use the two terms interchangeably, I should stop doing that. It looks like a good thread, lemme follow up on my rig and see if that's my problem. Thanks, Jim.
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Old 09-07-2012, 12:59 PM
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Ok, thought I would add a little to the repair of this problem from the link above. When pressing in the clutch pedal, there is a rod attached to the top of it that travels horizontally over the brake and accelerator then drops down to the Clutch Safety Switch which is located behind and above the accelerator pedal. The eye of the piston for the CSS pairs up with a rod from that crossover and is held in place by a plastic finger ring which over time dries and cracks and craps out.

As you can see here

Click the image to open in full size.

Because it craps out, it allows movement within the union, and like in my case, severly grooves both the eye of the piston and the connecting rod.

As you can see here

Click the image to open in full size.

I'm no Ford engineer, but that seems like a bad thing to me. So, to fix this (picking up from madpogue ) I went out and grabbed a 7/16" drill bit depth collar and an axle push nut. I was going to drill out the axle push nut to sleeve the rod and add a little reinforcing, but it was slightly too big to fit into the eye of the piston rod, I am certain that a 3/8" will work and I plan to use one when I have a chance to get one.

Click the image to open in full size.

After pulling the union apart, it becomes more apparent of just how jacked up it got.

Click the image to open in full size.

I put it back together and temporarily slipped a nylon tube over the rod to tighten up the union, then capped it off with the depth collar to hold it all in place.

As you can see here

Click the image to open in full size.

I now do not have to try and push the clutch in past the floor board to get the switch to actuate, as there is no traveling of the rod within the eye of the piston rod. I'm sure when I put a better sleeve in there that I won't ever have to worry about it again.

As you can see here

Click the image to open in full size.


So, many thanks to you Jim for the link (I probably should have done a forum search first, but hey, I'M LAZY) and thanks to madpogue for the idea. Reps to both.
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Old 09-07-2012, 05:53 PM
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I would just fix it with the heim joint that many of us here have been using for years. Pretty easy to install and really makes the pedal feel better.

FORD Clutch Rod End PERMANENT Repair powerstroke too. | eBay
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Old 09-07-2012, 06:53 PM
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i just ordered that joint today was well as new pedal box bushings, mine are slopped out!

hopefully the install is not to hard
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Old 09-07-2012, 07:34 PM
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I also go in and bypass the clutch safety switch on all my trucks. Get's rid of the problem of not being able to start the truck in this situation if it should ever occur and a lot of times I start my truck and leave it idle and it's easier to reach in and hit the key to start it. Just don't be stupid and make sure you pull it out of gear before hitting the key.
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Old 09-07-2012, 07:55 PM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by strokin'_tatsch View Post
I also go in and bypass the clutch safety switch on all my trucks. Get's rid of the problem of not being able to start the truck in this situation if it should ever occur and a lot of times I start my truck and leave it idle and it's easier to reach in and hit the key to start it. Just don't be stupid and make sure you pull it out of gear before hitting the key.
I did that to my wife's 96. She forgot about that last part once. We lost a whiskey barrel that had been cut in half and turned into a flower pot and almost lost part of the front porch before she was able to stop it. She does better with an auto.
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Old 09-07-2012, 09:00 PM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by thebig350 View Post
Because it craps out, it allows movement within the union, and like in my case, severly grooves both the eye of the piston and the connecting rod.

As you can see here

Click the image to open in full size.
HO-LEEEE CR@P, That's some serious damage to the eyelet. Hopefully, for most folks, they'll notice the slop long before it gets that bad. In the cases of both our trucks, the bushing was shot, but we were putting in new hydraulics, with new pushrods, anyway, so all it needed was the drill stop collar.

I'm kind of a cheerleader for the stop collar fix, 'cuz it's cheap and easy. But if you've got eyelet damage that's THAT bad ^^^^, that would be a good case for the above-mentioned Heim joint fix. You could always opt to replace the pushrod, but if you're removing the pushrod or the whole master, you may as well go the Heim joint route.

Quote:
Originally Posted by strokin'_tatsch View Post
I also go in and bypass the clutch safety switch on all my trucks. Get's rid of the problem of not being able to start the truck in this situation if it should ever occur
The starting problem is just a symptom, though. The real issue, when you've got THAT ^^^^ much slop, is that it doesn't completely disengage the clutch. You still want firm connection at the eyelet, good pedal box bushings, good lever arm position, good hydraulics, etc.

I've bypassed the switch on all my passenger cars, and have actually used the "feature" a couple times (when I've had stall-no-restart episodes, I've been able to "push" the car to a safe spot by cranking the starter). But I keep the switch operative on the PSDs, just 'cuz, y'know, they kinda weigh, like, 7000-ish lb, and all....
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Old 09-08-2012, 10:39 AM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by duggyb View Post
i just ordered that joint today was well as new pedal box bushings, mine are slopped out!

hopefully the install is not to hard

Looks like I'll be ordering one too! They have an install video on the ebay page. I went and copied the link to paste here...
http://www.youtube.com/watch?feature=player_embedded&v=6C75oQNNows

All the best!
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Old 09-22-2012, 01:40 PM
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I like the heim joint fix, but the directions suck. I just did mine last night. However... now my truck won't crank and I'm assuming it's because the clutch safety switch is being a jackwagon. If I was off say one tooth on getting the swing arm back on the splines would it not allow the clutch to fully disengage? I don't think so but figured I'd ask anyway. Is there a way to repair the safety switch or should I just unplug the POS and forget about it?
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Old 09-22-2012, 02:06 PM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by superduty4x4 View Post
If I was off say one tooth on getting the swing arm back on the splines would it not allow the clutch to fully disengage?
Yup, that swing arm needs to be "clocked" correctly, both to fully disengage the clutch and to fully push the switch to allow starting.
Quote:
Is there a way to repair the safety switch or should I just unplug the POS and forget about it?
If you unplug it, you have to jumper it to get it to start, AND you MUST remember that it'll start in gear with the clutch engaged, and esp. think about this if other people drive the truck. You'll also need to jumper the other two terminals to get the cruise to engage. But the switch probably isn't broken; the inop switch is usually just a sign of an issue with the actuation (bushing, swing-arm, pedal box bushings, etc.).
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Old 09-23-2012, 11:50 AM
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i understand what he did with the shaft collar. but where did he put the silver piece?
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Old 09-23-2012, 11:53 AM
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I drilled out the axle push nut to use as a collar for the rod. It needed to be reinforced because of the grooving. This is a good temp fix, but if you have the time and skill to do it, I would say to order the heim joint and fix it right.
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Old 09-23-2012, 05:53 PM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by madpogue View Post
Yup, that swing arm needs to be "clocked" correctly, both to fully disengage the clutch and to fully push the switch to allow starting.
If you unplug it, you have to jumper it to get it to start, AND you MUST remember that it'll start in gear with the clutch engaged, and esp. think about this if other people drive the truck. You'll also need to jumper the other two terminals to get the cruise to engage. But the switch probably isn't broken; the inop switch is usually just a sign of an issue with the actuation (bushing, swing-arm, pedal box bushings, etc.).
^^yep^^

And if you just want to test the switch for kicks then put the trans in neutral. Reach under there and pull it on the pushrod to simulate the pedal being all the way down. Reach up w the other hand and turn the key. It should crank then you know the switch is good.

If you want to jumper it really easily you can use the jumper from Whitey if you still have that. Then it will start and cruise will function normally.
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Old 09-23-2012, 05:53 PM
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