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fencepost
10-05-2007, 01:51 AM
'04 3500 intermittent wipers sometimes don't come on, sometimes quit after running awhile, and if left on may start later. Any suggestions where to start looking? A relay, switch, contact/connector possible suspects? Sounds like replacing everything may not be a cure...also no warranty.
I also need to "adjust" my turn signal flashers occasionally.

stp57
02-04-2008, 06:07 PM
I've been having the same problem with my 2006, 2500. I had the module replaced 2 months ago & it's going out again. I will get it serviced before my warranty is up (only 3K miles left) & I hope it fixes the problem for good?
Steve

guisar
02-04-2008, 06:32 PM
Same problem here- 2004. Have any of you been able to find a sure way to replicate the problem? I am planning to bring in under warranty but would like to avoid "could not duplicate" as a response. I've tried turning intermittent mode on and off a few times, switching modes, etc but have not been able to pin down a sequence which reliably (?) causes failure.

SprintED
02-04-2008, 07:40 PM
I have had the switch replaced twice under warranty in my 2005. The problem came back each time and I have lived with it for the past 1.5 years. Now that it is off warranty, I have no intention of coughing up the estimated $600 for a new switch plus labor.

the only current issue with mine it that the push to wash feature works intermittently...and I can live with that.

However one of my replacements was because the wiper just would occasionally not come for no reason...same issue with the whole "dealer could not replicate" thing...took several trips to dealer to prove that I was not dreaming.

Ed

sikwan
02-04-2008, 08:00 PM
Mine is a 2006 and I haven't had a problem with mine yet. Have you guys looked elsewhere other than the switch?

SprintED
02-04-2008, 09:25 PM
Seek,

1) Dealer (knows everything right??:lol:) diagnosed my failures while under warranty...since I was not paying I did not argue or ask questions.

2) Dont have time to chase down annoying quirks...need to save my time for the bigger problems when they arise.

3) Would not know where to start since my understanding of even simple electronics is limited at best....dont even own voltmeter, ammeter etc...:idunno:

4) Since the issue is intermittent...I have made the assumption it will be something terribly complicated and not easy to spot (like a fuse or broken wire would be)

5) Huge fear of taking apart complex items and that upon reassembly something will go wrong and I will go from minor quirk to a completely busted signal switch where nothing works.


Sorry to wimp out...but time & Sprinter knowledge are two things I am woefully short of.

Ed

Altered Sprinter
02-04-2008, 11:04 PM
ED
Thinking on all your woes and problems sorry.
Question: When you had your van fitted out for chair lift, and acc's etc.. how much wiring was cut into the existing electronics, or was the wiring direct from batt to ign via alt?
My thought is you may be having voltage drop outs under load with multiple electrics running at once.
Richard

05highroof
02-05-2008, 12:13 AM
The intermittent wipers on my 2005 have a mind of their own also.

SprintED
02-05-2008, 12:14 AM
HI Richard,

The way I have been going thru headlights, tail light and this issue with the wiper switch had me wondering the same thing for a while now.

Power to lift is always off when driving and is the only power acc that has been installed on the van...everything else is stock. Lift is wired direct to battery with cable going all the way to the back. On/Off switch located inside rear door. Lift works regardless of ignition position etc...

HOWEVER....had dealer intall trailer hitch and wiring prior to me taking delivery...would be more suspicious of screw up from this.

Lift provider/installer knew all about the funky MB multiplex wiring and had done several Sprinter Handibus conversions/installs prior to mine. Guys at dealership just looked at me blankly when I warned them about the wiring. Found out later that the dealership did not even install the hitch and wiring...they farmed it out to an auto/truck accessories place...YIKES!

Have had dealership check for unusual draws, shorts etc... Asked Upscale to do same...nothing was found.

Ed

kendall69
02-05-2008, 12:18 AM
As soon as it rains her in the Desert, I'll let you know how mine are - it may be a few years:smirk:

Altered Sprinter
02-05-2008, 05:34 AM
Thanks Ed just a thought.
Cheers,Richard.

Higgybaby
02-18-2008, 07:19 PM
Same problem with my 2006 2500.

Wow, that's a lot of folks with the same gripe. Do any of you have anymore updates?

The only way I've been able to get the wipers going again is to physcially advance the wiper blade by hand and even this method is getting less reliable. Once they're going, they stay on. It seems like its either the start-up load or the resistence from a dirty windshield that causes the failure. I figured it might be a contact or something within the motor but I guess it could be a switch as well.

I was planning on simply swapping out the motor as access to it is easy but the dealer wanted around $400 (!!!) for the part (apparently you must buy the whole assembly) so I'm considering dumping this off with the warranty folks. I'd almost rather pull out my own teeth than go thru that nightmare but since I just paid $100 for 1 set of front brake pads and was quoted around $600 for shocks (that last about 10k), I thought I'd better harden my resolve in "working" with the dealership.

I guess I'm a little worried since those that have gone down the "factory service" road still haven't had the issue fixed.

I wonder what's involved with opening an issue like this with Dodge?

Any thoughts from you guys would be great.

Mike

HMR TYM
12-01-2008, 11:36 PM
Did anyone figure this out? One of mine vans (04 -3500) has a intermittent wiper problem, if i push the spray in at the same time i pull up on my wiper arm to the slow position the intermittent will work again, until i turn the van off.

did someone come up with an easy fix or is this just a 'live with it' kind of thang?

stp57
12-02-2008, 12:08 AM
After the dealer replaced the module, then a month later they replaced whatever is connected to the control arm & it was ok after that. It was under warranty at the time & I would not have wanted to pay for those parts, I'm sure.
Steve

gtholden
12-02-2008, 03:13 AM
stp57, which module are you referring too? the relay, the motor, etc.? thanks...I've got the same thing going on...

stp57
12-02-2008, 12:22 PM
gtholden,
I'm sure that it was the wiper relay. This is a write-up from my service disc. The drawing wouldn't copy, but it has 5 prongs & looks pretty small. Read down at the very bottom & they discuss other possible faulty parts:

A wiper relay is standard equipment on all models.
The wiper relay (or intermittent wipe relay) is
located in a dedicated receptacle on the bottom left of
the fuse block on the underside of the steering column
(Fig. 33). The wiper relay is a conventional
International Standards Organization (ISO) micro
relay. Relays conforming to the ISO specifications
have common physical dimensions, current capacities,
terminal patterns, and terminal functions. The
relay is contained within a small, rectangular,
molded plastic housing. The relay is connected to all
of the required inputs and outputs through the
instrument panel wire harness connector by five
male spade-type terminals that extend from the bottom
of the relay base. The ISO designation for each
terminal is molded into the base adjacent to the terminal.
The ISO terminal designations are as follows:
30 (Common Feed) - This terminal is connected
to the movable contact point of the relay.
85 (Coil Ground) - This terminal is connected
to the ground feed side of the relay control coil.
86 (Coil Battery) - This terminal is connected
to the battery feed side of the relay control coil.
87 (Normally Open) - This terminal is connected
to the normally open fixed contact point of the
relay.
87A (Normally Closed) - This terminal is connected
to the normally closed fixed contact point of
the relay.
The wiper relay cannot be adjusted or repaired. If
the relay is damaged or faulty, it must be replaced.
OPERATION
The wiper relay (or intermittent wipe relay) is an
electromechanical switch that uses a low current
input from the intermittent wipe logic circuitry
within the fuse block underneath the steering column
to control a high current output to the low speed
brush of the wiper motor. The movable common feed
contact point is held against the fixed normally
closed contact point by spring pressure. When the
relay coil is energized, an electromagnetic field is
produced by the coil windings. This electromagnetic
field draws the movable relay contact point away
from the fixed normally closed contact point, and
holds it against the fixed normally open contact
point. When the relay coil is de-energized, spring
pressure returns the movable contact point back
against the fixed normally closed contact point. A
resistor or diode is connected in parallel with the
relay coil in the relay, and helps to dissipate voltage
spikes and electromagnetic interference that can be
generated as the electromagnetic field of the relay
coil collapses.
The wiper relay terminals are connected to the
vehicle electrical system through a connector receptacle
in the fuse block. The inputs and outputs of the
wiper relay include:
The common feed terminal (30) provides an output
to the wiper motor low speed brush through the
wiper control circuitry of the multi-function switch on
the steering column. When the wiper relay is de-energized,
the common feed terminal is connected to
the input of the relay normally closed terminal (87).
When the wiper relay is energized, the common feed
terminal is connected to the input of the relay normally
open terminal (87A).
The coil ground terminal (85) is connected to
battery current through a fused ignition switch output
circuit whenever the ignition switch is in the On
position.
The coil battery terminal (86) is connected to the
relay control output of the wiper, turn signals and
engine start control module within the fuse block
through the wiper relay control circuit. This electronic
circuitry controls the ground path for this circuit
internally to energize or de-energize the wiper
relay control coil based upon its programming and
inputs from the wiper and washer control circuitry of
the multi-function switch, the wiper motor park
switch, and the ignition switch.
The normally open terminal (87) is connected to
the output of the wiper motor park switch through
the wiper motor park switch sense circuit. This circuit
can carry either battery current (wipers are not
in park position) or ground (wipers are in park position),
depending upon the status of the wiper park
switch.
WIPERS INOPERATIVE IN
INTERMITTENT POSITION
AND NO WIPE AFTER
WASH FEATURE
1. Faulty wiper relay. 1. Test and replace the wiper relay as required.
2. Faulty multi-function switch. 2. Test and replace the multi-function
switch as required.
3. Faulty intermittent wipe logic circuit.
3. Replace the steering column fuse block
as required.

gtholden
12-02-2008, 01:28 PM
stp57,
thanks for this great post! that is what I read in my service manual and is what I thought initially. Thanks for confirming...
Tommy

Greg_M
09-29-2009, 12:37 PM
Has anyone tracked down what is causing this? There has to be some electrical part that is causing all of these problems. I replaced the relay and the intermittent wipers worked fine for a little while (only a few rains) and then they went back to working when they felt like it. Now they almost never work anymore. Others have had different parts replaced and had it work for a little while only to fail again.

guisar
09-30-2009, 12:25 AM
I've got a 2004- same problem. I just had it "fixed" again but of course it wasn't actually fixed so I'll be driving the 1.5hrs back to them to ask them to take another look at it and likely be driving the 4.5 hours involved in leaving the van there overnight. However, I believe, without having done the replacement, that the problem lies in the steering column fuse block which supposedly holds the delay logic. I'd done trace and there is no power showing up at the wipers when they don't work and everything else in my wiper chain has been replaced at least once.

sprintguy
09-30-2009, 11:17 PM
I've got a 2004- same problem. I just had it "fixed" again but of course it wasn't actually fixed so I'll be driving the 1.5hrs back to them to ask them to take another look at it and likely be driving the 4.5 hours involved in leaving the van there overnight. However, I believe, without having done the replacement, that the problem lies in the steering column fuse block which supposedly holds the delay logic. I'd done trace and there is no power showing up at the wipers when they don't work and everything else in my wiper chain has been replaced at least once.

Well, I believe that the problem might be in the block now too. After I replaced the multifunction switch all was working. (I tried at least 20 times to make sure they worked ) Let me explain how I diagnosed it, I have a test switch and that also worked. Please bring it back... Now I know it has been a on going thing, convey as much info to the writer as you can (or talk directly to me)

Carl

Greg_M
09-30-2009, 11:47 PM
I wonder if it's a loose or bad connection in the block.

Example:
I have a 2004 Prius. They have had problems with the display going bad and it costs big $$$ to replace it. Over on Prius Chat there was one guy that took it apart and traced it down to a bad solder joint on the board inside of the display. He then checked other "bad" displays and they all had the same bad solder joint. He was able to fix them.

Since this seems like a common problem and many people have replaced different parts but the problem comes back, then I suspect that it could be a bad connection or bad wire. It could be that it grounds out which shorts out a part or it breaks connection.

Greg_M
10-01-2009, 12:01 AM
I replaced my wiper relay earlier in the summer. Shortly after replacing it my intermittent wipers started acting up again. A little bit latter they went out and have only worked once since July.

I just went out to the van and tried the intermittent wipers several times with no luck. I then tried to pull out the relay so that I could reset it in its socket. It's a bear to try and get it out so I just pushed it back in (after getting it part way out) and wiggled it a little. Turned the ignition on and the intermittent wipers started right up. Turned them off and on several times and they worked every time.

Looks like a bad or loose connection or wire in the block. Vibration must make it break connection.

guisar
10-02-2009, 11:18 PM
Just to be clear I was in NO WAY trying to call you out Carl- I was very pleased when I picked up the van, ran the scanguage and it came up clean. Plus the wipers did work at first, until it started to rain on the way home which is the typical failure mechanism. This was the first time (of the four that it's been to another dealer's shop) that the van worked coming out the shop. I was in fact afraid to bring the van to the dealer and was previously waiting fofr the warranty to run out before fixing the glow plugs myself so as to avoid the dreaded "plugs are stuck in the block and we'll have to replace the engine at your expense" call that I would have expected from the previous dealer who worked on it. I'll bring it back out next week as I have to move some stuff for the house this weekend and we all know how the Sprinters are indespensible for those sorts of tasks

manny
10-03-2009, 12:16 AM
My sprinter has had this problem from the day i picked it up and the dealer has tried to fix it about 3 times I got so pissed off that i traced the fault myself. I found that the block connector under the steering column was not sitting flush, so i used a zip tie to hold both blocks tight and fixed the problem so much for dealer knowhow here in australia

Greg_M
10-03-2009, 01:57 AM
My sprinter has had this problem from the day i picked it up and the dealer has tried to fix it about 3 times I got so pissed off that i traced the fault myself. I found that the block connector under the steering column was not sitting flush, so i used a zip tie to hold both blocks tight and fixed the problem so much for dealer knowhow here in australia

Would it be possible to get a picture? I'm quite sure that what you described will also "fix" my problem.

GEARS
10-04-2009, 05:57 PM
Oh this was an easy fix for my 2005....:smirk:

:shifty: I just pound on the steering wheel once or twice and it works! :smirk:

It only takes a good bang straight down on the steering wheel at the 3 o'clock location.

dg55117
12-16-2009, 03:27 PM
During my recent trip- I noticed my intermittent wipers don't work anymore!! As well as when I push the washer - the wipers don't go either- they just spray washer fluid in the while down on the windshield. I have to manually turn on the wipers while pressing the washer. Any ideas? These must be related through the intermittent wiper relay?

Greg_M
12-16-2009, 03:42 PM
During my recent trip- I noticed my intermittent wipers don't work anymore!! As well as when I push the washer - the wipers don't go either- they just spray washer fluid in the while down on the windshield. I have to manually turn on the wipers while pressing the washer. Any ideas? These must be related through the intermittent wiper relay?

I found that mine is something loose in the fuse block. I have the cover off and when my intermittent wipers don't work I just reach down and push up on the relay with a slight wiggle and then poof, they start working again. One day I'll get around to changing the block but for now a little wiggle does the trick.

GEARS
12-17-2009, 03:00 AM
I just pound the wheel @ 3 o'clock and it works everytime. :cheers:

It's kinda fun to fix something with a punch :smirk:

stp57
12-17-2009, 03:33 AM
I hope it never sets the airbag off?
Steve

I just pound the wheel @ 3 o'clock and it works everytime. :cheers:

It's kinda fun to fix something with a punch :smirk:

GEARS
12-20-2009, 08:35 PM
not a chance of that ever happening.:lol:

gtholden
01-23-2010, 07:39 PM
So this is worth 30 min of your time if you (like me) have had issues with your intermittent wipers working intermittently. As posted previously, it seems like I have tried everything to fix this issue (i.e. replacing the relay, replacing the wiper motor, etc.). All seem to fix the problem initially, but the gremlins come back after about a month of driving.

So today, I decided to reread posts, break out the manual and try and see what was happening. I found that when the wipers didn't work, I could slap the fuse panel, the switch and the area in front of the hazard lights switch and they would come on. So I took off the shroud and looked for lose wires...nothing on top, so I decided to remove the fuse block...all you need is a big flat head to remove the plastic screw and the front panel drops off. Then take a phillips head #2 and remove the two screws at the top of the shroud. Then take a 10mm deep socket ratchet to remove the nut at the base of the shroud. Then you can take off the grey plastic shroud to get to the fuse block.

I again took my 10mm deep socket to take out the bolt at the top of the fuse block. The nut is held in place by plastic (poor design) and of course the plastic was stripped, so I took the smallest flat head screw driver I had to slot it in to hold the nut while I loosened the bolt. Once the bolt was out, the top of the fuse block came down. There I saw a bunch of 'male' pins/plugs that fit into the fuse block. The screw holding that in place was completely loose. This screw also helps holds the housing in place for the wiper and turn signal switches. I took the screw out and threw some lock tight on it, then cranked it down (with the phillips #2 screwdriver). I put everything back together (tightening the ground and other screws I had access too). Cranked up the van and the wipers work perfectly and even turn on with the washer function. Time will tell if this works, but I can already feel the tightness of the switches due to tightening the screw.

Sorry I didn't snap pictures, I didn't think of it until after things were back together, but this is really straightforward, even for me:) From getting my tools out to putting them back in their place, it took me 30 min. I'll keep you posted on how it works later.
Good luck and I hope this helps.

gtholden
01-24-2010, 11:17 PM
scratch the above post...back to square one! ugh! I hate electrical gremlins! the intermittent wipers are working intermittently again.:idunno:

Aqua Puttana
01-25-2010, 12:00 AM
scratch the above post...back to square one! ugh! I hate electrical gremlins! the intermittent wipers are working intermittently again.:idunno:
FWIW. Intermittent problems of any system are the worst. You never know if the last thing you did really worked.

There have been posts about the fuse holding clips and relay clips getting loose and becoming a problem (those relays were actually related to the turn signals, not wipers, but...). Doktor A has on many occasions warned against using the "fuse multipliers" because they are known to cause problems. Maybe it would be worth doing a search to try to find the symptoms for loose fuse clips? Could be your problem, but maybe not... Sorry I can't be more help. Thanks for the information. AP/vic

PS - If you remove your fuse block again please take pictures and do a Write-up. I expect I'll be removing my fuse/relay block some time in the future when ignoring my turn signal problems finally stops working for me.

A cold solder joint was repaired. Post #15 for the FB #1 soldered jumper final successful repair.
https://sprinter-source.com/forum/showthread.php?p=374375#post374375

Dickknapp found a similar repair worked for his intermittent (unintentional... not designed) wiper problem. (Post #45 lower down.)

gtholden
01-25-2010, 12:34 AM
AP,
I think you are on to something about the spring clips. I"ll try and find that post again. I talked to the mechanic who usually works on my van and he said the fuse block would eventually loosen up and need to be replaced and I'm hoping he is referring to the spring clips...That's the only thing left I can think of. It is weird, when I was driving tonight, just the slight tap of the steering wheel or directly over the switch for the wipers seems to get them working. You can hear the clicking trying to get them to move, but until you tap, nothing. At least they work in regular and fast. But it is just annoying not knowing what is the cause. I'll definitely have my camera ready next time.
Thanks for the encouragement.
TH

gtholden
03-08-2010, 12:47 AM
So I dug into this a little further last weekend...about an hour's worth of my time following these directions exactly...thanks sikwan!
http://sprinter-source.com/forum/showthread.php?t=4245

I took my needle nose pliers and tightened all the prongs where fuses and relays connect to. Put it all back and haven't had a problem since. I've tried the wash/wipe and intermittent wiper and it all works fine. I think the issue might have been the loose spring clamps on the relay. When I put my ear down to the relay at the bottom of the fuse panel I can hear it click each time. Although I didn't see anything obviously loose, I'm guessing the connections became loose over time and the squeezing of the spring clamps together made a better connection. I'll keep everybody posted, but for now, that hour of time I spent saved me $120 for the fuse block and then however much they would have charged at the dealership to install. It wasn't difficult and I'd do it again.
Hope this helps.

303Z
02-07-2011, 10:10 PM
So I dug into this a little further last weekend...about an hour's worth of my time following these directions exactly...thanks sikwan!
http://sprinter-source.com/forum/showthread.php?t=4245

I took my needle nose pliers and tightened all the prongs where fuses and relays connect to. Put it all back and haven't had a problem since. I've tried the wash/wipe and intermittent wiper and it all works fine. I think the issue might have been the loose spring clamps on the relay. When I put my ear down to the relay at the bottom of the fuse panel I can hear it click each time. Although I didn't see anything obviously loose, I'm guessing the connections became loose over time and the squeezing of the spring clamps together made a better connection. I'll keep everybody posted, but for now, that hour of time I spent saved me $120 for the fuse block and then however much they would have charged at the dealership to install. It wasn't difficult and I'd do it again.
Hope this helps.

So, did this actually fix the intermittent wiper issue? Mine has the same issue, and though I've been living with it for a couple of years, it'd be great to fix it.

Aqua Puttana
02-08-2011, 01:58 AM
I can't speak for his wipers, but removing the Fuse Block #1 (under the steering column), tightening the slide contacts, and re-installing repaired my intermittent turn signal issues.

That fuse block plugs into the bottom of the turn signal/wiper module on the steering column so it is well worth trying.

Here's some notes I made. There's more info if you do a search from the blue bar above. Good luck. vic


http://sprinter-source.com/forum/showpost.php?p=110945&postcount=9

gtholden
02-12-2011, 01:15 AM
So sorry, but I've been off the forum for a while. I ended up tightening the clips and again, that worked briefly. I ended up replacing the entire fuse block. It cost around $127 with tax and was an easy fix (even for me!). I put in a new wide threaded wood screw in place of the brass nut/bolt and screwed the wide thread wood screw right into the plastic at the top of the fuse block. That sucker is rock solid now and my wipers have had no problems ever since. It took about 30 minutes to make this fix. easy and worth it!

vsilinin
04-26-2011, 09:48 PM
HI Richard,

The way I have been going thru headlights, tail light and this issue with the wiper switch had me wondering the same thing for a while now.

Power to lift is always off when driving and is the only power acc that has been installed on the van...everything else is stock. Lift is wired direct to battery with cable going all the way to the back. On/Off switch located inside rear door. Lift works regardless of ignition position etc...

HOWEVER....had dealer intall trailer hitch and wiring prior to me taking delivery...would be more suspicious of screw up from this.

Lift provider/installer knew all about the funky MB multiplex wiring and had done several Sprinter Handibus conversions/installs prior to mine. Guys at dealership just looked at me blankly when I warned them about the wiring. Found out later that the dealership did not even install the hitch and wiring...they farmed it out to an auto/truck accessories place...YIKES!

Have had dealership check for unusual draws, shorts etc... Asked Upscale to do same...nothing was found.

Ed
Regarding the headlights burning out. I found that when I bought the cheapest lights on the market, they lasted me about 2 years. Went back to a more expensive set...burned out in about 3 months.

RF1
12-31-2015, 06:25 PM
This may help in tracing a T1N windshield wiper problem between the motor and the combination switch. The attachment shows the voltages at the connector in the engine compartment for the wiper motor. This is the connector that is about 6 inches from and connected to the wiper motor. The voltages can be read with the battery on. The motor does not need to be running

If Intermittent, Lo, Hi, or Wash range do not work then check the voltages at this connector. If any of these voltages are missing or significantly less (more than 2v) then the problem is most likely in the turn signal - wiper combination switch. The switch arms in these combination switches are unfortunately made of plastic and therefore likely to fail with no repair option. This test takes about 5 minutes and is easy to do if trying to catch an intermittent problem. The Intermittent (as selected with the wiper switch) reading will only show for less than a second, and the Wash reading should be the same as the Intermittent.

The wiper relay (under the steering wheel at the bottom of the fuse box) is also easy to check
as it can be swapped with the identical one that is seated next to it.

Greg_M
12-31-2015, 06:52 PM
I replaced the fuse box on the steering wheel and both my intermittent wipers and turn signals work perfect now. It was an easy fix.

wmoss7
07-26-2016, 02:31 AM
My 2006 Sprinter 3500 (Winnebago View) has had the intermittent wiper problem since we purchased it used (9,700 mi) in 2013. Mine started as a intermittent-intermittent wipers, some days it worked, other days it didn't work, if I left the wiper switch in the intermittent position it would work for a while and quit for a while, this went on for the first two years of Spring, Summer and early Fall use during 2013, and 2014, during mid Summer 2015 they were mostly non-operative. Sometimes if I reached down under the steering wheel fuse panel and grabbed the steering column and pulled on it they would go back to working and then not working. This Summer 2016 they are non-operative. I've read all the post I could locate about this issue on many and it seems there are three basic areas that most everyone on the posts says causes this problem, 1- Wiper relay (located, bottom of steering column fuse panel) 2- Steering column multi-function switch attached to the wiper lever, 3- Steering column fuse panel block, (This is where the intermittent wiper logic circuit is located and may have failed. Your suppose to test and replace whichever one of the item has failed.
The post on 12/2/2008 by "stp57" gave me the most information with the best logic to follow, so I decided to start the elimination process of location which of the 3 possible fixes would solve my problem wiper issue.
I started by removing the steering panel fuse cover, once removed I decided to turn on the ignition and the intermittent wiper position on the wipe control lever...nothing happened...I was going to remove the wiper relay and when I touched it the wipers made one pass and then quit...I waited but they did not repeat...I wiggled the relay...they made one pass and again and quit, but if I pushed the relay to one side or the other and held it there the wipers would continue operating, once I let go of the relay they would quit. While I'm pretty knowledgeable I'm not an electronic expert but common since would say the above three common problem area were not what was causing my issue, as the relay, intermittent wiper switch and the intermittent wiper logic circuit had to be working. It seems more like a contact or loose connection somewhere. The easy fix would to find something to hold the wiper relay in the position that kept them working, but that would only be a band-aid repair and not tell me what was really causing the problem, like a loose connection or something broken.
MAKE SURE BATTERY IS DISCONNECTED BEFORE WORKING WITH THE ELECTRICAL SYSTEM
Next I decided to remove the steering column fuse panel located below the steering wheel, SORRY didn't think about taking pictures, not to worry, it's not difficult and all the wires with the exception of the main 12v feed are attached with connectors and they will only fit in one location.
Start by removing gray plastic surround cover below the steering wheel, the one the fuse cover attaches to, it's held on by two Phillips head screws on the top and one 10mm shoulder nut that is at the bottom center ( it's on a long stud), once the fasteners are removed carefully pull down the panel and away from the wiper control lever and turn light switch arm. Careful, there's a square metal washer held in place by the plastic where the cover fit over the stud (10mm nut area) it can fall out if you're not watching, then Murphy's Law will take over
Next the fuse panel board is held in place by another 10mm shoulder nut that is on the same stud as the last 10mm shoulder nut was on, this holds the bottom of the fuse panel. The top of the fuse panel block is held in place by lots of small spade connectors the just push into place at the top most portion of the fuse panel, carefully hold on the side of the fuse panel block and wiggle it in and out gently wile pull it out.
Once it's loose you'll see four (4) wire connectors located on the back side, mine had no retainers and just pulled out, not easily, but with some firm pressure they came out. Last is the red 12v power feed to the fuse panel (10mm) remove it and the fuse board should be free.
Next I remove the three relays, their held in place by little plastic fingers. you can mark the relays as to their location...I think their all the same (but not totally sure). If you look closely you'll see the little plastic fingers are all attached to a top plastic cap that fits over the end of the fuse board, this can be removed if careful by prying the small retainer tabs out a little bit at a time using a small slotted screwdriver blade, don't pry too far or they will break. I had no trouble, and the cap came off with ease. Just look it over carefully and you'll see how the cap is held on and the little nubs that hold it in place and where to insert the screwdriver and pry.
Once the cap was removed my focus was on the brass prongs that held the wiper relay in place, I don't know how to explain their shape...but if you take the wiper relay and insert it into the prongs you'll see how the connection is made.
When I inserted my relay into the prongs it seemed to be a loose fit...when I removed the relay I noticed the prongs didn't leave any big marks on the connection tabs on my relay, even though these prongs have little pointy things to make the contact, I thought there should have been marks showing on the relay's metal tabs.
My fix was to take some 1000 grit wet/dry sandpaper, 600 grit would work, (I just had some 1000 available), just make sure it's thin paper like wet/dry and not too heavy of a grit... fold the sandpaper in two and insert the paper between the prongs while holding the prongs together with some needle-nose pliers...sand the pointy things down just a very small amount so they would have more contact with the relay tabs. Don't get greedy, just e little should help. Next using my needle-nose I squeezed the prongs together while making sure they did not come out of alignment with each other. Careful, they will bend easily and don't squeeze so tight there is no space left, but you want a good solid snug fit. While I was in there it was easy to do the same to the other relay prongs.
I reinstalled the plastic end cap, attached the red 12v power lead and four wire connectors and then installed the fuse block back into its position...CAREFUL with the wires and pushing the small electrical tabs on top of the fuse block back into place. and don't forget the 10mm nut the holds the bottom of the fuse block in place. Once it was installed I took the relays and using the 1000 grit I carefully took the shine off the tabs on the relays and installed them, reconnected the battery for the test. THE INTERMITTENT WORK AGAIN...I put my garden hose on fine mist and let them operate for 20 minutes...they didn't miss a beat.
Last, replace the lower gray fuse block surround cover...don't forget the second 10mm nut that shares the same stud as the fuse block nut, careful around the turn indicator and wipe lever, make sure the piece is in the proper location before installing the Phillips screws. Replace the fuse cover.
I'm happy to say my intermittent wipers have been working as if nothing had ever been wrong for some time now.
NOTE:
My issue may not be what is keeping you intermittent wipers from working, yours very well may be one of the three problems mentioned at the beginning of the post...BUT this it simple, it doesn't cost anything so it is worth a try. GOOD LUCK and hope this will help someone.

MercedesGenIn
07-26-2016, 12:02 PM
For reference.
http://www.mercedes.gen.in/unsual-intermittent-power-problems-mercedes-sprinter/
May help to add to the thread.
S

dickknapp
03-14-2017, 06:41 PM
I finally addressed my intermittent wiper issue. My intermittent wipers only work for a short while each time I start using them. I knew that if I slapped the cover on fuse block 1 underneath the steering wheel, it would work again briefly. So I finally pulled out FB#1 after reading this and other posts. The FB looked good with no corrosion. Aqua Putanna (Vic) has a good write-up on taking apart and evaluating this fuseblock in a thread on turn signal intermittent repair. Using his excellent write-up, I determined that the gaps on the prongs which hold the three relays were mostly fine with one that was maybe .005' looser than the rest. Reluctant to take the FB apart further, I figured I would regap and see if that worked. But, knowing that others have suffered from cold solder joints, I peered, where I could, at the printed circuit board that is mostly hidden by the plastic case. Danged if the only exposed joint on the wiper relay wasn't a cold solder joint! So I took the FB apart (not nearly as hard or intimidating as I thought) and discovered this was the only obvious cold solder joint - could actually flex the board up away from the pin)! So I used desoldering braid to remove most of the solder at this joint and re-soldered it. Likely I could have resoldered without this step, but I figured I was in there, so might as well do as well as I could. Then I touched up about 3 other joints that were slightly questionable, and re-assembled after regapping the one set of prongs. Time will tell how this repair worked, but I am quite encouraged. I am so thankful to this forum for info on this and other problems. I know I would not have dived into this without the knowledge shared here.

Attached Pics show the cold solder joint - this one was very obvious.

Dick

treehouselab
06-17-2017, 09:22 PM
Using dickknapp's post, I disassembled my fuse box to inspect the solder joints. They all looked good, even under a magnifying glass, and tested good with an Ohm meter. But the joint he indicated showed zero continuity when the PCB was flexed by pushing near the joint with my finger. I resoldered the joint and re-assembled. An elaborate task, but the wipers now work.

This is a great forum. :thumbup:

ashe350
04-07-2018, 08:00 PM
The easy fix would to find something to hold the wiper relay in the position that kept them working, but that would only be a band-aid repair and not tell me what was really causing the problem, like a loose connection or something broken.

wmoss7, I went for the easy fix on my 2005 (Winnebago View). Pushing lightly against side of Wiper Relay was consistently restoring intermittent wiper function. (Relay at bottom left side of fuse panel below steering column)

So I wedged a 2 1/2 inch piece of rectangular rubber eraser between the relay and side of the fuse block. Intermittent Wipers working again. Band-aid repair held up well on a four-day trip including quite a few miles on rough gravel.

Stay tuned.