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Discussion Starter · #1 ·
The other day the 5 year old battery in my 900 drained over night. So without any hesitation, I figured I'd replace it, given its age. After giving it some thought, though, I was concerned that maybe there was a short in my electrical system. Once I installed it, I checked for any shorts in the system right at the battery. I found no readings on my multimeter to be concerned about.

Thinking I had the problem solved with a new battery, I decided to get in the car and test the accessories and make sure everything worked. When I did, I found I couldn't move the key to the accessories position. Having turned nothing on, I then noticed that my headlights were on with the key in the off position. Even more alarming, was a constant buzzing coming from under the relay/fuse cover. After a moment, I isolated it to the big orange headlight relay. Which made sense of course.

Once I removed it, I found I could move the key to accessories, the buzzing stopped and everything was fine (except I couldn't use my headlights, obviously). I couldn't find a lot of information on the relays for the C900 causing this sort of anomaly, but I figured I'd have a look-see anyway. After I popped the cover on my relay, I found what I thought was a pretty innocuous sight (please excuse the crappy cell phone pics):

http://imageshack.us/photo/my-images/593/0607020003.jpg/

http://imageshack.us/photo/my-images/818/0607020004.jpg/

Sorry, try as I might, I couldn't get the camera to focus. : / Any input as to whether I'm on the right track, or if I can actually fix the relay, would be appreciated, thanks!
 

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This very very common on the 9000, but the common symptoms is lights which don't work at all!

Mine stopped working on my 9000 and the cure is to either replace it from a scrappy etc or to give it a go resoldering all the solder, usually breaks in solder which upsets it
The pic doesn't seem to show any obvious burnouts but if the components all look ok then there's no harm done to try and get it going again

http://www.saab9000.com/procedures/electrical/headlamp_relay.php
 

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Discussion Starter · #4 ·
Are you saying that you think a relay interfered with your turning the key?
I'm sort of compelled to say that, even if I don't think it's necessarily possible. :confused: Based on the fact that I couldn't turn the key while the relay was in, drawing power, and freed up as normal once the relay was removed. I tested this multiple times, so I would think it's no coincidence. Suffice it to say, I'm puzzled on that point.
 

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Discussion Starter · #5 ·
Well, I guess it's a non-issue for now. After getting some feed back (thanks Bob) and checking some more resources, I managed to fix the relay. I'm still getting a replacement since I don't trust it on a long term basis, but it's cool that I can use my headlights until I get my spare. ;ol;
 

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my headlights would come on by themselves, and drain my battery. I re-soldered a bunch of the connections on the relay, a fix i found on a website. The re-soldered relay only worked for a couple days. I since purchased a used relay, and my problems went away.
 

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Discussion Starter · #7 ·
I'm in the same boat, too. My relay crapped out on me again, so I've ordered a used part. Based on what you're saying, that ought to do the trick.
 

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Discussion Starter · #8 ·
Well, I replaced the headlight relay with a known good part. Same symptoms as before, so now I have to drive my 900 without the headlight relay. Day time driving only. :x I'm at a loss as to what could be causing my problem, it's exhibiting the same symptoms as before. When I had the switch on off, it had the headlights on bright, the parking lights were still parking lights and the on position was, well, on. What a pain.
 

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Discussion Starter · #10 ·
ignition switch worn out inside and parts shorting
I'm guessing it doesn't really matter how the ignition switch action feels? Mine feels pretty good, but it is a possibility. Has this happened before with 900s or is it an educated guess? :cheesy: Interestingly, I was testing my cooling fan the other day and was shorting the spade connectors and noticed that that causes a small amount of sparking or arcing around the cooling fan relay. Could that be related?
 

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educated guess re your problem, never had it but if some bit broke but did'nt feel any difference it could be shorting, but it seems like you have a definate short somewhere just pull each fused as others have suggested in the past an see if anything is drawing power whilst car is 'switched' off

Once had a VW estate(1980yr) and with headlights heater etc all on, and it actually melted the ignition switch so suddenly everything went off, so just left the lights on, and I had to hold the ignition switch in the run position to get home
 

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Discussion Starter · #12 ·
Thanks to everyone for the input on this. My more mechanically inclined friend went over the whole electrical works with me and helped me solve the problem. Apparently, the previous owner had sprayed powdered graphite in the turn signal switch, causing an electrical short that affected the lights. There was a good bit of chasing done, but once the problem was found, we cleaned the signal switch and everything was fine again. D*** graphite powder... :evil:
 
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