Chevy Nova Forum banner

1 - 1 of 1 Posts

6,711 Posts
Discussion Starter · #1 · (Edited)
On my 68, I'm slowly changing parts that I know are not original or even original/authentic looking and this week I wanted to replace the combination horn relay/key buzzer.

I looked around and found a reproduction that has the stamped cover lid that, from what I've seen, looks correct and is authentic looking. Who knows if it's 100% accurate but all I know the one that was on the car was a replacement. I had also looked around and found used ones but I've been burned before and sometimes even the seller's don't know if they work so I say, let's buy new, so I do, even though it's a reproduction. It's probably not 100% correct BUT it's better that what's on the car now.

Anyway, I order the relay/buzzer and get it within 2 days. Cool. I then open the box and the plastic packaging is open and the stamped cover lid is not attached to the base. One of the crimp tabs is partially bent over and the other looks like it's never been bent over at all. I think, OK, maybe this one got through quality control and they missed it. No big deal. I then think, well this will be nice as I can rotate the the stamped cover on the base to where now if someone looks at it in the engine compartment, they can easily read it instead of it possibly being upside down. I've been to many shows and looked at many cars and it's the little details like this that make for a better presentation.

So now I wait until I can put the new one on and I take the old one off, put the new one in, reconnect the battery and check my work. I hit the horn button and the horn makes noise. Just like it should. I then leave the driver's door open and insert the key but get no key buzzer sound. I wiggle the key around and nothing. I then say, maybe I knocked a wire loose or off, or maybe it's corrosion on the original connector. Everything is as it should be so I try it again. Still no buzz. I then get out my meter and check the activation wire from the harness to activate the buzzer and it's as it should be. 0.016 ohms resistance to ground. I take the key out and the resistance goes to infinity, put the key back in and it holds at 0.016 ohms. I then wiggle the connection on the new relay and tap on the housing but still no buzz. Now I'm getting aggravated so I remove the new one, put the old one back in and the horn honks and the buzzer sounds. Dang, defective new reproduction part. Figures.

Since it's one thing to send it back, get another and hopefully IT will work but I wanted to know why THIS one didn't work. I take off the cover to expose the electronics inside and it all looks good. I then layout how it's wired thinking maybe something got changed along the way and compare it to a diagram I have on the factory horn relay/key buzzer and the problem then stares me right in the face. There are a set of contacts for the key buzzer that are to be in a normally closed position but on the new reproduction the key buzzer contacts are in a normally open position AND that's the problem.

I see no way to adjust this easily so I decide that this one is going back and before I put the new one on, it will get visually inspected AND electrically inspected before I remove the old one once again.

Well today I take the relay/buzzer to work to power it up on the test bench and just like in the car and the horn portion works but the buzzer portion does not. I think, what the heck, I'm going to see if I can fix it. If I break it, who cares, it's broke already and should be replaced.

I look it over thinking what this might do, what that might do and so on just thinking my way through it and then I decide, time to get out the pliers and do some bending. I bend an already bent part on the relay to where it opens up the horn contact points more but then also closes the buzzer contacts together. I then power it up and it works like it should. The horn portion makes connection and the buzzer portion also works.

I was worried about where I bent the relay arm further thinking maybe when the buzzer is sounding it might make the horn honk so I then power it up and when the buzzer is sounding, I still see daylight between the horn contacts. Perfect.

I get home and crimp the lid back on. Take the old one off, put the new one on and test the horn. It works. I then open the door and stick the key in the ignition and get the key buzzer portion to work. Success.

Anyway, below is a link to the pictures of the reproducton horn relay/key buzzer that is on the car now. When I did a search for information on the horn relay/key buzzer there was not a lot to be found out about the assembly so hopefully anyone that comes across this can get the original horn relay/key buzzer system to work as designed.

The horn relay I purchased from D&R Classics in Illinois does not really state anything about it being a combination horn relay/key buzzer but this one was. They offered two part numbers with the clear plastic base. One without the stamped cover lid and another with the stamped cover lid. The part numbers are E20015-R for the plain lid and E20015D for the stamped lid.

If you are still reading this is do like I always suggest about checking things before they get installed. You wouldn't think something as basic as a horn relay/key buzzer would have issues but this one did. I got caught on this one not testing it before hand and got stung but luckily I was able to tweak what I got and now have it working properly.


Pictures and Links:[email protected]/sets/72157653574631828

Video of Operation (Horn Relay and Buzzer Section)

1 - 1 of 1 Posts