Question about 1994 GMC Safari

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Lose power to half of the systems

My 1994 Safari Van turns over but would not start. Headlights and radio would not turn on but heater fan worked fine. Set for a couple of days and started fine with everything working. Checked connections at starter and fuse block...OK.

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  • kevinsvcr Jan 25, 2009

    I seem to have the same problems as you. Mine is 1995 Chevy Astro van that turns over but won't start. Headlights, driving lights, interior lights and radio don't work. I didn't test the heater fan or brake lights. As it was failing I was able to get it started for a few seconds with rough idle and noticed the driving lights weren't on, the radio was pulsing off and on, and I could hear relays clicking under the dash.

    Another post mentioned that the cranshaft sensor could be bad-- but what does this has to do with the lights and radio not working and the clicking relays? Yet another post mentioned that these vehicles need a fully charged battery, but my battery must be charged up full because the starter cranks over easily.

  • macinnes1 Jan 26, 2009

    I did locate the problem. It was the fusible link connection on the fuseblock main plug. I keyed in on the fusible link because I had that same problem on a 1965 Impala SS. Just had to locate where it was connected at. Thanks for the input.



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My solution turned out to be a fusible link behind the battery. Cost me $55 for a tow and another $75 to track down the problem. I wonder if yours is a loose connection on the same line as the fusible link. Or maybe yours has a circuit breaker. My question is, why did the fusible link go in the first place, and what caused the relays to click off and on--maybe the computer got confused?

Posted on Jan 26, 2009


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I had the same problem in my 1994 safari. I thought it mite have been the resistor form other peoples comments. I removed it and tested it. The resistor was fine. The heater fan relay was bad, but I was able to repair it myself. If you remove it and inspect it there should be two contacts that need to make a good connection in order for it to work properly. When the fan is on high there is a little electro magnet that pulls the contact up and engages the fan motor to full speed. When it is not on high the lower part of the contact rests on the lower half of the relay flap. if there is not a clean connection at this location you are not sending signal to the resistor which controls the other three fan speed settings. Inspect this connection and if possible clean the contacts with emery cloth and make sure that the contacts are making a good connection. This should do the trick to make the lower speeds work if the resistor is still good. If this is too much brain damage try replacing the relay first and see what happens, if you are still getting the same result then the resistor or the fan switch is bad.

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1994 gmc safari

Hi there,

When you say you 'lose instrument panel', does that mean instrument panel lighting or the gauges go dead?

When you flip off the headlights, does the instrument panel come back? If it does, forget the fuse box.

If it's the instrument lighting, I'd be looking at headlight switch itself. In Safari's, the headlight switch and panel dimmer switch reside in one assembly. Coincidence? I think not.

I recommend replacing the switch. You can find one at a salvage yard for $5.00.

When you do the replacement, inspect the plugs and wiring attached to the old one for anything suspicious (loose wires, frayed insulation, bare wire, charred wire, etc.)

Let me know how it turns out.
Good luck,

If this works out for you, please take a sec and rate my solution.


Jul 09, 2008 | 1994 GMC Safari

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