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Weird Finding On Rear Wiper/Defroster Not Working Problem


Active member
U.S. Military - Veteran
Aug 22, 2012
Reaction score
Emmett, Idaho
Vehicle Year
Ford Bronco II
Engine Size
2.9L V6
Suspension Style
My credo
19K, 19D, 92Y, 91F
I've owned my 88 B2 for almost 3 years now, since I've owned it the rear wiper and rear defrost have never worked. All along I've suspected a bad wire or wires somewhere, bad fusible link, bad motor and wiring to the defrost grid too. Yesterday I looked up a wiring diagram in the ford manual and found the fuse link which I checked and was good, everything at the rear hatch was dead, no power at all to anything, but the rear washer motor worked all along though. I thought there had to be some more connectors somewhere back there other than the ones that you find when you pull the trim panel off the back hatch. I realized the wires came out through the top of the cab below the hatch area, and it dawned on me to pull the trim piece right inside the rear hatch on roof pillar. I pulled that and found another wiring harness connector and a ground wire/terminal that wasn't attached to anything, and honestly never looks like it was, so I'm not sure at this point if this was something someone added, possibly a replacement rear hatch? I have no idea, but I ran a self tapping screw through the metal and fastened that ground wire up and everything is working now....too bad I didn't do this digging a couple years ago when we had 2 feet of snow and sub-zero temperatures for a month...however I'm including a photo of my finding just in case anyone else has a similar issue. The trim panel I removed at the rear hatch area has 3 screws in it, and seems to be possibly aluminum.

Glad I did a little digging and found the wiring diagram and did a bit of probing to find what was wrong. Can't believe I didn't figure that out sooner but I just expected the worse and really never gave it much more thought afterwards.