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Old 04-08-2014, 09:26 PM   #1
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Signal light mystery and boy do I need help

I know one of you guys can help me as you have a LONG life of experience! When I turn on my signal lights on my truck pulling my 5th wheel it blinks 4 or 5 in the direction I intended, then it switches to the other direction for the same time, then back again and on and on. The truck works just fine when not hooked up. Holy moly, can you help me one of you many geniuses?
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Old 04-08-2014, 09:32 PM   #2
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I am just guessing here........
Maybe it has something to do with resistance in the trailer light circuits. I guessing you have LED lamps in the trailer. Are the truck lamps LED too?
If it's all incandescent just ignore all this.
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Old 04-09-2014, 04:48 AM   #3
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TJREBER, knowing the make/model of your truck will help, and as KIX mentions, knowing if you have LED trailer lighting may help as well.

I know Dodge had a problem back in 08 or so with the multifunction switch having issues and blinking lights in the opposite direction of the indicators on the dash. It is my understanding it was worse with the extra load on the 12volt system when towing.

EDIT: Just did a quick search and found this.. of course, this is only applicable if your tow vehicle is a Dodge :-)

Quote:
NHTSA Action Number : PE08059
NHTSA Recall Campaign Number : N/A

Make/Model/Build Years: DODGE / RAM 2500/3500 2003-2007
Manufacturer : CHRYSLER LLC

Component :
EXTERIOR LIGHTING:TURN SIGNAL
EXTERIOR LIGHTING:TURN SIGNAL:SWITCH

Date Investigation Opened : October 7, 2008

Summary:
ODI HAS CLOSED THIS INVESTIGATION BASED ON A REVIEW OF
THE COMPLAINTS, OTHER FIELD DATA AND TECHNICAL DATA
SUBMITTED BY CHRYSLER TO THE AGENCY. CHRYSLER REPORTS
THAT THE MULTIFUNCTION SWITCH IS HARD WIRED INTO THE
INSTRUMENT CLUSTER (IC) AND THE CLUSTER DECIDES WHICH
DIRECTION HAS BEEN SELECTED BASED ON AN ELECTRICAL SIGNAL
FROM THE MULTIFUNCTION SWITCH. THE IC SENDS A SIGNAL TO
THE VEHICLE'S TOTALLY INTEGRATED POWER MODULE (TIPM) AND
THE TIPM RESPONDS BY CONTROLLING THE VOLTAGE AND FLASH
RATE OF THE EXTERIOR TURN SIGNAL LAMPS AND THE INSTRUMENT
PANEL INDICATOR. CHRYSLER'S TESTING FOUND THAT IMPROPER
LEVELS OF RESISTANCE WITHIN THE MULTIFUNCTION SWITCH MAY
RESULT IN THE IC SELECTING THE WRONG DIRECTION.
COMPLAINANTS SAY THAT WHEN THE TURN SIGNAL IS USED, THE
VEHICLE MAY SIGNAL THE OPPOSITE DIRECTION AND THAT THE
PROBLEM IS OFTEN INTERMITTENT. THIS WOULD BE EVIDENT FROM
THE TURN INDICATOR LAMPS ON THE INSTRUMENT PANEL AS WELL
AS THE EXTERIOR TURN SIGNAL LAMPS. EITHER RIGHT OR LEFT
SIGNALS MAY BE AFFECTED. DEALERS ARE CORRECTING THIS BY
REPLACING MULTIFUNCTION SWITCHES ON THE STEERING
COLUMN.
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Old 04-09-2014, 10:55 AM   #4
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You have described an intermittent ground. Check the ground wires on the tow connector. Both ends.
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Old 04-09-2014, 11:04 AM   #5
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Quote:
Originally Posted by wa8yxm View Post
You have described an intermittent ground. Check the ground wires on the tow connector. Both ends.
AND the grounds in the tail/brake light sockets!...(of both the coach and the toad)
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Old 04-09-2014, 11:10 AM   #6
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Could be you have been supplied with a unit intended for south of the border.

Can you hook up your trailer to another tow vehicle and see whether the fault is still there. Won't fix the problem of course, but may narrow downthe search area.

Your fault doesn't sound intermittent or irregular so can probably rule out any bad grounds or bad connections
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Old 04-09-2014, 11:42 PM   #7
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Quote:
Originally Posted by wa8yxm View Post
You have described an intermittent ground. Check the ground wires on the tow connector. Both ends.
X2 many years auto electric experience
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Old 04-10-2014, 04:57 PM   #8
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Had a similar issue with our Jayco fifth wheel and GMC Sierra - signal right and both sides would flash, signal left and the right side would flash, touch the brakes and nothing would flash. After getting filthy digging into connections that hadn't been disturbed in 12 years I did a little more googling and came up with a suggestion to replace the turn signal flasher. Paid lots of money at the local parts counter, climbed under the dash, and with the magic of plug and play, the problem was solved.
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Old 04-11-2014, 07:48 PM   #9
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To all of you GREAT guys, thank you SO much! The guys with the intermittent ground are the winners. Yup, that did it, I'm not sure about which wire it was but the one about the ground in the taillights is quite possibly it. I have been traveling and out of touch so I apologize but I promise to thank each and everyone of you!

Thank you GREAT guys so much!!
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