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1995-2002 Range Rover P38A
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Discussion Starter #1
I haven't found a thread that combines all these issues; perhaps others have similar collected problems.

Over eighteen months ago both my key fobs stopped working. I didn't try to fix the issue; having been locked out once with the 'engine disabled' message; I'm happy the immobiliser and alarm circuitry are dormant. Only a specific, agressively self-hating flagellant would attempt to steal a P38. I think it's because, as the fob or receiver system failed when it was unlocked, I am using the car permanently in the non-immobilised, non-alarmed state. No problem so far, except for two, possibly-related issues:

1) I can lock the car with just the blade from outside and then start the car through the open window with the same blade so it's not immobilised. I'm fine with that, but shouldn't locking the car with the key immobilise the car and set the alarm? That's what the manual says. Something must have stopped working. What I don't want to do is start poking around and inadvertently 'fix' this issue, thus re-activating the immobiliser with all the potential problems that may create. The question is then: how did this happen and how can I retain this status?

2) I have the random central locking isue: out of nowhere the central locking opens and closes, usually reverting to a working state. I can open the driver's door and start the car but not open the other doors or open the hatch; the doors won't open from either inside or outside the car; I think they're super-locked. The question is then what causes the random central locking behaviour and is it a good idea to snip the orange/pink wires inside the door to disable the super-locking? There are posts on this under 'disable super lock'. Searches seem to indicate this is one of the door locks but as I said in (1) I don't want to fix that and find it re-activates the immobiliser. Once I've found the issue with the random locking I plan to fit an after-market remote central locking kit that just activates the central locking via an actuator solenoid.

Thanks to all in advance!
 

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You have a failed microswitch in the drivers door latch, and another one that is failing causing the random dancing locks. Ignoring it gives a far greater chance of it locking itself than replacing the faulty latch and having it work as it should. See the sticky on testing latches and replace the faulty one before it really locks you out. Once it does with a failed microswitch you will not be able to enter the EKA.
 
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Disabling superlock is easy, but must be done on all 4 doors. There's two motors inside the locks. Big one does the lock-unlock, and the small one drives the super lock mechanism, which disconnects linkages from the locking mechanism.

Step 1: Make sure all doors are not super locked.
Step 2: Disconnect wiring that drives the super lock motor.

This way the car cannot super lock !! Note: super lock & immobiliser are separate functions, i.e. if immobiliser is disabled, then super lock will not normally prevent starting through an open window.

Random lock-unlock is failing microswitches, so replace them before you get issues.
 

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1995-2002 Range Rover P38A
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Discussion Starter #4
Thanks for the replies, Richard and PWood.

Those door latches are expensive.

Which specific part inside the latch is usually the part that fails, and is it practical to repair the latches rather than replace them?

Is it the tiny microswitches themselves or the wiring or solder joints inside that small circuit board within the latch that are likely to be the failure point? I can't find too much out about these considering they seem to be regular fail point. On my Subaru Outback, all four actuators failed after ten years.

Thanks again.
 

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In my case it was the micro switch that was engaged by a lever for the door locks. The micro switches are like small buttons with a rubber cover. Once the rubber cover fails and tears off the micro switch is done. You can’t but just this part, you have to buy the entire latch. If cost is a concern get a used latch, take it apart and inspect the microswitches. Use Marty’s micro switch test in the sticky thread to help with this.

Research from the forms indicate the motors sometimes fails but I don’t have any experience with it.
 

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Discussion Starter #6
Today I was taking a 90 YO out for lunch so I removed the passenger's door card and just unplugged the plug to the lock so he wouldn't get super locked inside.

Now I will follow that truth table to test all the latches and make the necessary repairs but what I'm really interested in doing is permanently preventing the immobiliser system from ever being activated, so it can't wake up one day and strand me; I just want to operate the central locking from an after market remote kit OR the key in the door. Does anyone know how to do this?

With the usual thanks in advance.
 

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I may have a solution for you. I have installed a 3rd party remote onto my P38.

It unlocks and locks the doors.

What you need to understand is it is a workaround for the not having the factory fob. It will NOT take the vehicle out of "engine disable" mode if this happens. You still will need the EKA code for this. If you do not have the EKA code I do not recommend you doing this.

The 3rd party remote has a control box that fits inside the door. It sends an electronic signal to the sill lock motor to go up or down. When you are using this fob you are tricking the BeCM to think someone from inside has locked the doors by pushing down the sill lock. It will lock all the locks.

Because it locks the doors by the sill lock it does not turn on the alarm. Meaning the side turn lights don't flash and the red light on the dash does not turn on. I don't know if it does not turn on the immobilizer but since the immobilizer is part of the alarm system and it is not turned on when the car is locked from the inside I think it does not turn on the immobilizer. Again, this is my theory and I could be wrong.

I installed this last May and it has worked. I did have an issue with it this past November but that was because of my installation. The 3rd party remote's control box needs power and has to be grounded. I had spliced into separate wires going into the door outstation for this. My soldering was not exactly professional and it started what I believe arcing. This gave the BeCM some funky signals and I had to use the EKA code to take it out of engine disable mode. I later ran the power all the way to the battery and then ran the ground to the body and all is good now.

The 3rd party fobs are very cheap on ebay. I got mine for around $10

Also, I you already have the door card off it's really not to hard to take the superlock out of the latch. Taking apart the latch the first time is a little scary but once you study it and see out it fits together it's not that bad.

PM me if you want more info.
 

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Oh how we all have to deal with these issues, great to read we are not alone.

My 2001 4 litre machine has the common non working fobs, and had the highly erratic operating door locking and unlocking.

I replaced the drivers door (RHD down in Australia) and had the clip which connects the button arm to key actuated arm dissintergrate. I did not have time to get a spare so I pulled the rod through the hole in the key arm and tied it in place with fine wire around the arm and wrapped into the groove in the rod on the arm. It continues to work ok, but I have a hidden string to pop up the button for internal acces still in place. Yes I know this will activate the alarm, but I can pop the bonnet etc to deal with any issues the rod falls off.... hopefully.

This seems to be working fine, and I am sure the alarm is on and immobilised by key locking.

I like the idea of the new fob and reciever over riding the original, however does the original reciever not also send a signal to BECM ? I will need to look into this more before I take the risk.

Other than my last point of just musing, I am not finding any downside on key locking- assuming I have overcome the weak spot on the connection clip. Am I wishful thinking ?
 

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I haven't found a thread that combines all these issues; perhaps others have similar collected problems.

Over eighteen months ago both my key fobs stopped working. I didn't try to fix the issue; having been locked out once with the 'engine disabled' message; I'm happy the immobiliser and alarm circuitry are dormant. Only a specific, agressively self-hating flagellant would attempt to steal a P38. I think it's because, as the fob or receiver system failed when it was unlocked, I am using the car permanently in the non-immobilised, non-alarmed state. No problem so far, except for two, possibly-related issues:

1) I can lock the car with just the blade from outside and then start the car through the open window with the same blade so it's not immobilised. I'm fine with that, but shouldn't locking the car with the key immobilise the car and set the alarm? That's what the manual says. Something must have stopped working. What I don't want to do is start poking around and inadvertently 'fix' this issue, thus re-activating the immobiliser with all the potential problems that may create. The question is then: how did this happen and how can I retain this status?

2) I have the random central locking isue: out of nowhere the central locking opens and closes, usually reverting to a working state. I can open the driver's door and start the car but not open the other doors or open the hatch; the doors won't open from either inside or outside the car; I think they're super-locked. The question is then what causes the random central locking behaviour and is it a good idea to snip the orange/pink wires inside the door to disable the super-locking? There are posts on this under 'disable super lock'. Searches seem to indicate this is one of the door locks but as I said in (1) I don't want to fix that and find it re-activates the immobiliser. Once I've found the issue with the random locking I plan to fit an after-market remote central locking kit that just activates the central locking via an actuator solenoid.

Thanks to all in advance!

OK,
First: What year, and engine type...Bosch or Gems.
You are in luck for the type of owner you seem to be if you have a Gems set up as you can buy a Mobi-Lize from a bloke down there which will eliminate immobilization permanently. THERE IS NO WAY KNOWN to totally defeat the alarm and immobilizer system.
So far, you have simply been very very lucky, but you are playing with a hand grenade sans pin...... Just a matter of time and it will lock down, lock you out, immobilise, and with duff microswitches, you will be stuck.

If you have a Bosch, Fix the latches, fix the fobs, sync them, and be a happy chappie!
NO way to defeat the Bosch immobiliser.
Cheers!
 

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"I like the idea of the new fob and reciever over riding the original, however does the original reciever not also send a signal to BECM ? I will need to look into this more before I take the risk.

Other than my last point of just musing, I am not finding any downside on key locking- assuming I have overcome the weak spot on the connection clip. Am I wishful thinking ?"


Very wishful....You have a Bosch, most likely, so yes, the BECM is very much involved. With bad latch switches as well, it is a matter of time till something plays up.

Search, you will find an truly exhaustive thread on after market door lock install....It has all been done before.......But, in my opinion, not worth the trouble. If the existing system is cared for, it will not let you down,
 

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Discussion Starter #11
Thanks to Bolt and everyone.

After the fobs stopped working, I removed one of the blades and welded it to a one dollar coin. That's my key. You owners in the USA can't do THAT, can you? I've had that key for nearly two years.

How can that key can start the car without the fob? Mine's a 2000 Bosch (I thought I had that in my signature by the way) which has passive immobilisation which seems to require the key, so I don't know how it manages to work. But it has been for two years.

Is it logical to think that the fobs stopped working because the door microswitches failed?

This weekend I will trace the faults with the door locks; I've bought microswitches already in case I can repair them myself. If that fails I'll buy new or refurbished latches.

Both my fobs seem to work, in that the red LEDs light as they should. Now I hope they will work on the car after I solve the lock issue.

Tom
 

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Have you tried to sync the fobs?
They probably stopped working when you last changed the battery, or it went flat.....Removing power from BECM will do it every time.

The fobs in late models do a sync procedure when you start the car. There is an extra coil in the ignition lock barrel for this.....
This does not effect the immobiliser at all. (and it does not to seem to work all the time)
To sync: close all doors, insert key with fob with good batteries into door lock. Lock door, and hold in lock position whilst pressing lock button for a few seconds. Now unlock, and whilst holding in this position press button for unlock and hold for a few seconds.
if the fob is good, and the switch involved is ok, you should now have a working fob.
If not, proceed with switch repair.
 

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Discussion Starter #13
Well it was 40 degrees all weekend here, so I went surfing down the coast.

That's what normal people do; I actually worked on my car. I know no-one will believe that.

Here's the status and what I've learned from everyone in this community so far. A massive thanks for everyone's input.

1) The driver's lock had two failed microswitches. I will order a new MGF lock.
2) The fob is really just a convenience, but one I want to have.
3) My passive synching on the barrel to the fob is not working but that seems like a common fault.
4) I can't synch the key in the lock using Bolt's method because the microswitches in the lock are faulty.
5) The lock needs to work in order to be able to enter the EKA. Once fixed, can the EKA proceedure be tested on a functioning, non-immobilised car?
6) I cut the white, key switch wire on the driver's side lock. The dancing, random lock/unlock has stopped. If I never lock it with either the key or the fob, then I'm not vulnerable to the 'engine disabled' message resulting from the locked car.
7) I'm still very vulnerable to lockout for other reasons: a flat battery etc. If I can't fix the fobs or receiver, I can always use the EKA proceedure to get in, presuming it works with the new lock.

Eight) I can still fit an after-market actuator, fitted to one of the front door sill buttons, giving me my preferred option of making the car think it's been locked from the inside, and not immobilsed or alarmed.
 

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Discussion Starter #14
Thanks to all.

I still haven't fitted my new MGF lock; to order and fit this is now my highest priority so I can test and enter the EKA if needed and try to synch both my fobs. The synch proceedure did not work as the key micro switch is faulty; I cut the white wire in the meantime so it wouldn't lock me out. The random dancing locks stopped too. I'll report back.

But in the meantime I went ahead and fitted my third party remote; it works perfectly; it operates the motor inside the driver's door (RHD) which in turn operates all the other doors. The theory is to be able to lock the car when needed but not alarm or immobilise it. The strange thing is I cut the pink wire to the super lock on each door but the super locking is still working on the other three doors. How can that be? When I operate the central locking from the driver's door, the other three doors super lock. When I operate the central locking from the passenger's door, the back doors super lock. Have I missed something really obvious?

Thanks from Tom
 

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Have you worked out what superlock is? It isn't normal locking, it is a secondary motor in each latch that prevents the door from being unlocked by anything other than the locking motor. So it will only superlock wqhen you tell it to (by giving two presses on the fob or turning the key to lock twice in quick succession) and there is a 15 second delay between locking and superlock kicking in. So if you want to superlock (and I always do, have done every time I've locked it in the 8 years I've owned it and never had a problem), you press the fob lock button twice, it locks immediately, give 3 flashes of the indicator (not just one for normal locking) and 15 seconds later you hear the superlock motors engage. I'd have got the system working correctly as intended before confusing the system with an third party add ons.
 

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Discussion Starter #16
Thanks Richard, Bolt and Ken.

I'm closing in on this problem; I'm about to replace my door locks then try to synchronise the fobs.

I can't find out if this is normal operation, or a fault: When the central locking is engaged with either of the front sill locks, I can't open either of the rear doors from either the inside or the outside, or unlock them with the sill button. There's no reference to this in the manual. Is this normal operation? It doesn't make sense, from a security point of view, that the doors should be deadlocked. I cut the wires to the superlock motors on both rear doors but that doesn't mean that they're not engaging somehow, mechanically.

Thanks!
 

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Discussion Starter #17
Thanks Richard, Bolt and Ken.

I'm closing in on this problem; I'm about to replace my door locks then try to synchronise the fobs.

I can't find out if this is normal operation, or a fault: When the central locking is engaged with either of the front sill locks, I can't open either of the rear doors from either the inside or the outside, or unlock them with the sill button. There's no reference to this in the manual. Is this normal operation? It doesn't make sense, from a security point of view, that the doors should be deadlocked. I cut the wires to the superlock motors on both rear doors but that doesn't mean that they're not engaging somehow, mechanically.

Thanks!
 

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I've only just skim read this as I'm away working at the moment, but a few little things...

As you have an AU vehicle, then chances are the passive immobiliser is turned off - this will mean that you should be able to lock/unlock the vehicle and start it any time without needing the remote/EKA to get it running. The only exception I can think of to this would be if you lock with the remote, and then unlock with the key in the door (assuming you get a working remote once the door latch is replaced) as this would normally then just unlock the drivers door and you would need the EKA to unlock the rest of the doors and allow the vehicle to be started.

With passive immobilisation being disabled - this also deactivates the coil around the ignition, and turns off the friendly syncing of the key - so this HAS to be done with the key in the drivers door, using the latch/microswitches (again once the latch is replaced, hopefully this will work for you). I could go into a long detail about how the system works, but nobody these days actually seems interested in it - they just want to know the quickest way to turn as much off as possible - so I won't waste my time on that!

Superlocking - where abouts have you cut the wire? in the final short loom at the latch, or before this in the vehicle loom? If the superlock motors have the wires cut then unless the latches themselves have been damaged, then it should be physically impossible for the door to superlock. The way the superlocking works is that there is a spring loaded pawl which holds against the locking lever in the latch. When the latch is triggered to lock, this pawl catches on the locking lever to stop it from moving all the way to the superlocked position straight away. To superlock, BOTH the Superlocking and Central Locking motors are activated - the Superlocking motor moves the pawl against the spring action to then allow the Central Locking motor to move the locking lever into the superlocked position. When unlocking, the central locking motor moves the loving lever all the way back to unlocked - and as it does, the superlocking pawl springs back, to again prevent unwanted superlocking.

So the only way that your latches could be superlocking still is 1) the wrong wire has been cut and the superlocking motor is still working or 2) something physically is wrong in the latch. I've rebuilt probably 50+ latches and seen maybe 3 or 4 where the plastic peg that the superlock pawl sits on has snapped off and the pawl has come loose (usually during disassembly) which would then mean that the latch would run all the way to superlock every time. I've never seen one of the springs snap, or a latch to 'jump' to superlock by itself - and it seems odd that BOTH of your rears are still doing it.

I've actually just had a look in the electrical manual, and in the door looms for the rear doors on the later vehicles the PINK wire is actually for the Central Locking motors - NOT the Superlocking motor. The PINK wire in the pigtail loom from the latch to the door wiring is the superlock motor, but in the door loom the Orange/Pink wire is the Superlocking motor wire - which would explain why your doors are still superlocked.

A quick wiring guide (it's all in the RAVE electrical manual except the wire colours for the latches, which are in my door latch test document)
Latch wires (from about 1997 onwards):
Pink: Superlock Motor
Green: Motor Common
Purple: Central Locking Motor
Black: Microswitch Common
Blue: Door Ajar Switch (all doors)
Red: Central Locking Switch (front doors only)
White: Key Switch (drivers door only)

Vehicle wiring loom colours (from the '99 onwards ETM)
Rear doors:
Orange/Pink: Superlocking Motor
Orange: Motor Common
Pink: Central Locking Motor
Black: Microswitch Common
Purple/White: Door Ajar Switch

Front doors (from latch to outstation):
Orange/Pink: Superlocking Motor
Pink/Black: Motor Common
Orange/Black: Central Locking Motor
Black: Microswitch Common
Purple/White: Door Ajar Switch
Green/Red: Central Locking Switch
Blue/Red: Key Switch

Hopefully this helps...

Marty
 

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On YouTube there is a Norwegian fellow with a channel called “Work on P38“ . One of his videos shows how all the latch bits work. He also has videos on his Ford Excursion which confused me at first.
 
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