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Old 04-26-2014, 04:56 AM   #1
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Tail lights inoperative

Red tail lights and rear side marker lights won't come on with head light switch. Tech spent an hour and half unsuccessful trying to find cause. Anybody have experience with this problem? Thanks.

Jack H
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Old 04-26-2014, 06:02 AM   #2
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I am surprised the tech could not find the cause in an hour. This is relatively easy to troubleshoot. I have not had this specific problem, however I have had to trace wires many times to determine routing and connectivity.

I suspect a faulty ground or a broken or corroded wire connection. But it is a remote possibility the bulbs are blown. (unlikely all would be blown but possible or perhaps the clearance light and tail light problems are not a single source cause. Again not likely but indeed possible.)

I would first determine if the problem was with the bulb(s), the hot lead or a bad ground. Look for corrosion in the sockets and wires at the receptical. Measure the hot lead voltage against a know and proven ground, or just put a known ground lead to the ground side of the socket and see if the tail light comes on after determining the bulb is good. (However if the signal and brake lights work, one would assume a good ground was at the tail light assembly. Not necessarily so for the clearance lights.)

If those simple tests do not bear fruit, a more indepth look at the wire routing is required. I have a signal tracer just like the telephone techs use and these are excellent for tracing wire routing. I suggest you get one and connect the signal transmitter to one of the lights that will not light and the ground side on the socket (after proving the ground is good) and then take the probe and trace the wire route until the audio sound drops off. This will indicate the general area where connectivity is broken.

Good luck, hope I was helpful.
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Old 04-26-2014, 09:18 AM   #3
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Thank you for the good ideas.
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Old 04-26-2014, 09:55 AM   #4
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Just might be the fuse if you haven't already checked it. There is a small chassis fuse box, apx 5'h x 5'w 3'deep located under the hood towards driver side. It is behind the large 12'w x 10' h control panel. It's a black plastic box with with a pull/snap off cover. Kinda hard to see. Are your turn signals and brake lights working. Probably not.

On the cover there is a fuse chart that will show you tail lights. As I remember it just a 3 amp. I've had a couple blow so I went to a little bigger 5 amp. As I recall. Hope this helps.

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Old 04-26-2014, 11:36 AM   #5
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Fresh air.

Only one tail light was not working per the OP. I suspect the tail light fuse would be for both lights. Just guessing.
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Old 04-26-2014, 11:50 AM   #6
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Libero View Post
Fresh air.

Only one tail light was not working per the OP. I suspect the tail light fuse would be for both lights. Just guessing.
Thank,s, your right. I missed that. Cause I don.t read two good no more, doncha no?

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Old 04-26-2014, 12:50 PM   #7
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Quote:
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Thank,s, your right. I missed that. Cause I don.t read two good no more, doncha no?

Pat
Doggonnit Libero, I reread that post again and still I read "lights". Maybe I do read OK. I take back my last post. Your turn to reread.


OP wrote:
"Red tail lights and rear side marker lights won't come on with head light switch."

Pat
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Old 04-26-2014, 02:50 PM   #8
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Quote:
Originally Posted by FreshAir View Post
Doggonnit Libero, I reread that post again and still I read "lights". Maybe I do read OK. I take back my last post. Your turn to reread.

OP wrote:
"Red tail lights and rear side marker lights won't come on with head light switch."

Pat
Pat you are 100% correct -my misread. Thanks and Sorry. Was reading on my phone. And indeed a tail light fuse could cause the tail light problem per your suggestion, and the right marker lights, well may or may not be related to a blown fuse.
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