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You are watching: 1998 lincoln mark viii air suspension problems


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One end of the car falls to the groundThis is indicative of a leak on the falling end of the vehicle. A sudden drop while driving is typically a catastrophic failure (blow out) and rare unless something happened like hitting a curb, pothole, or other car.You may also experience a sudden drop while driving over rough roads, or when you flex the suspension a great deal at speed. This is because the cracks/leaks in the bags have been exposed when the air spring is compressed beyond the normal height.Typically the air spring deflates over time (while parked at work, overnight, etc.) This is a slow leak that should be fixed promptly. Failing to fix the leaking bag will result in your compressor running excessively to keep the air bag(s) inflated, and will cause it to overheat and fail prematurely. See the section below on a detailed leak test procedure.You get a check suspension light but the air bags are not deflated, or you get a check suspension light at speed on the freeway.This is because air can’t get out. The system adds air to compensate for loads and to lift the car to driving height. When it wants to remove air (load removed, lower ride hight on highway), it vents. The vent solenoid valve on the compressor frequently rusts closed due to moisture in the system (THIS IS WHY YOU MUST FIX LEAKS PROMPTLY) caused by leaking bags or atmospheric conditions. The air compressor is located in a tray in the right front fender of the car. You can remove/replace it by either removing the bumper cover and working in front of the tire, or you can remove it by removing the splash shield and working in with the tire.This can also be caused by stuck vent solenoids at the air bags. These can be tested by removing them and applying 12 volts to the contacts. An audible click should be noted when applying and removing voltage - the absence of this indicates a faulty vent solenoid.Check air ride light 90 seconds after key on.The compressor will turn off after 90 seconds of continuous operation to prevent overheating. It will not run any longer as a fail safe. This is usually indicative of a leak in the system, but could also be a worn out compressor that is not creating enough pressure to inflate the air bags. To search for leaks, use soapy water on all the air line connections (one at each wheel, four in the compressor) while the compressor is running. This is usually also accompanied by lower than normal ride heights or recent system service.Check suspension light comes on immediately with key on; compressor does not run.

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This is usually a power/electrical issue. Quickly rule out the compressor relay by swapping it with the ABS relay, found in the driver"s fender. If this solves the problem, you need a new relay. Also check the fuse. The compressor can function while increasingly drawing more and more power to overcome imminent internal failure, until it reaches the fuse limit. When that happens, you need a new compressor.How can I test the Air Ride Function?You can run an automated test sequence on the air ride system. If the testing hits a fault, it just stops at that point. The operator monitoring the KNOWN testing sequence is what identifies the fault.Hold the suspension test connector with the open end of the plug facing you. The top row of terminals (from left to right) are pins 1, 2, 3, 4. The bottom row are 5 and 6.The wire color for pin 2 is W/LB. Turn the key on, close the door, connect the test light from pin 2 to battery ground, and let the fun begin!You can also use an OBD-I test scanner:1. Turn ignition on2. Unplug test plug (found near the air cleaner box)3. Plug in reader4. Flip switch to TEST5. Tests run automaticallyHere is the order of testing:LF solenoid clicked open/closeRF solenoid clicked open/closeRear solenoids clicked open/closeCompressor vent valve clicksCompressor runs for a few seconds then shuts offThen the system does a height sensor test:Compressor turns on, front valves open, and the front of car should rise. Front valves will click closed, rear valves will click open then the same thing happens for the rear.Compressor turns off and all valves are closed.Front solenoids clicked & front lowersRear solenoids clicked & rear lowersIf you have access to the Rotunda Super Star II OBD-I tester, you can perform pinpoint air suspension diagnostics. See the section below for details on this process as well as how to retrieve air suspension trouble codes to aid in your diagnostics.
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