I recently got a 2000 Mercury Villager Estate. Most of it runs fine - AC, interior lights, headlights, etc. Some of the electronics -- radio, windshield wipers, some of the power windows (I don't believe the driver's window has this problem) -- only work when the vehicle is in accessory mode OR at seemingly random intervals when it's driving (all or nothing though - if the radio works, the wipers work). One interesting feature to me (who knows very little about cars) is that the clock display on the radio works when I push the clock button no matter what (maybe it's on its own battery), but will stay on when the electronics are all working - that's how I've been visually noticing when it's working or not.

So far (I've had the car for 2 weeks and driven it lightly) the electronics have worked 4 times that I've noticed, maybe yall can see a pattern:

  1. When I had it parked in the sun all day (about 105 degrees F, UV index 9), I immediately turned it off, startled by the radio, and turned it back on and nothing was working again.
  2. When I had it parked in the sun for about 9 hours, everything worked throughout the whole drive.
  3. When I got out of the store after shopping, it worked the whole drive back (but wasnt working immediately before I got into the store).
  4. Halfway through a drive back from the store; it wasn't working when I left (I specifically checked, as my brother was in the car and I was explaining this problem to him) but I noticed the clock was on halfway through and everything had started working.

I was thinking maybe a loose wire going to the ignition switch, but I have no clue. I don't much care for radio, but the windshield wipers, on the other hand...

Thanks in advance

1 Answer 1


This sounds like a poor or loose connection for the wires from or to the ignition switch or the fuse box.

These are the places where those items will have common points of connection - ignition supply, fuses etc so that is where you need to start looking.

Do note, finding intermittent problems like this can make finding a needle in a haystack easy in comparison... :)

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