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Old 04-03-2014, 08:10 AM   #1
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headlights aren't turning on

2002 boxster. parking lights go on, but they the headlamps don't get any brighter when you turn the switch to the full on position.

is it the switch, or something easier like a fuse?
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Old 04-03-2014, 08:30 AM   #2
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hmmm... i assumed the daylight running bulbs were the same as the regular headlamps, and that the problem was not the bulbs, but from reading other threads, it sounds like there are 3 distinct bulbs -- daylight running, regular, and high beam (not to mention the fog lights).

both regular lamps are out, so it sounds like it could be the bulbs, the switch, or the fuse.

aside from finding the fuse and checking it (where?), is there a trick to tracing the problem to the switch vs. bulb? i read something about maybe the lights coming on during ignition independent of the switch, meaning that would test the bulbs?
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Old 04-03-2014, 08:53 AM   #3
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You can pull the bulbs for a visual inspection or take a headlight out and check the voltage at the connector, but my guess would be the switch

Check the bulbs and maybe even the voltage at the connector, and if all looks good, you probably need a new switch.
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Old 04-03-2014, 09:00 AM   #4
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When I first replaced my halo headlights with litronics they did not turn on everytime. Replacing the switch solved it, and it is pretty easy to replace.

I first took out the switch and sprayed the inside with electrical contact cleaner and ran the switch through the different positions, and that made it better, but I had already ordered the new switch and when it came in I replaced it. if they don't come on at all, this might be a stopgap measure.

Pelican Technical Article: Boxster Headlamp Switch Replacement - 986 / 987
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Old 04-03-2014, 09:30 AM   #5
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check the switch.

I had a similar problem. All the lights except for the head lights worked, even the high beams worked.

I pulled the switch (takes about 10 min tops) and sprayed it with electrical contact cleaner. Spray the cleaner into the shaft and work the switch in all positions.

That did the trick for me. It may be a temporary fix and probably will need to replace the switch at some point. The run around $125 online

There are DIY links around that show you how to remove the switch
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Old 04-03-2014, 10:24 AM   #6
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I believe it is most likely the headlight switch too, and have done several on these cars in the past.
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Old 04-03-2014, 04:38 PM   #7
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There are 3 bulbs- a 5 watt marker, driving and a high beam.
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Old 04-03-2014, 06:36 PM   #8
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here is a DIY link to replace the switch
Mine also had a shaft nut that had to be removed. I used a pair of plyers

Replace Lights Switch
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Old 04-04-2014, 09:29 PM   #9
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can you get a replacement bulb at pep boys or does it need to be ordered online somewhere?
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Old 04-04-2014, 09:32 PM   #10
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The headlight bulb is an H7 55 watt bulb. Any auto parts store will have them.
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Old 04-05-2014, 11:12 AM   #11
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Quote:
Originally Posted by drjoe View Post
can you get a replacement bulb at pep boys or does it need to be ordered online somewhere?
just wondering, do you have litronics (HID) or halogens?
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Old 04-05-2014, 11:59 AM   #12
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thatl be the switch as they often fail
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Old 04-06-2014, 07:13 AM   #13
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Quote:
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just wondering, do you have litronics (HID) or halogens?
not sure. i will try to take a look and figure things out today.
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Old 04-06-2014, 10:06 AM   #14
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I have a brand new, unused, genuine Porsche switch if you end up needing one.
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Old 04-06-2014, 01:47 PM   #15
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HID's have a 2" or so, dia. glass sphere covering the bulb. Are you familiar with a voltmeter?
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Old 04-06-2014, 02:06 PM   #16
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HID's have a 2" or so, dia. glass sphere covering the bulb. Are you familiar with a voltmeter?
i believe that i have the standard bulbs. here's a picture. i am reasonably adept with a voltmeter, but i don't see how i could reach the connectors since the plug for the headlight assembly requires that the entire housing is in place.

the filament in the L bulb is definitely broken. the R looks intact, but i am going to pick up 2 bulbs, replace both and see what happens.

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Old 04-06-2014, 07:03 PM   #17
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ha! after all that, it was just the bulbs. thanks everyone.
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Old 04-06-2014, 07:29 PM   #18
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Glad it worked out.
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Old 04-07-2014, 08:57 AM   #19
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Good, good and halogen type. If you ever encounter similar problems again you can just insert the prongs into the plug ends and one to ground to check for voltage.
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Last edited by woodsman; 04-07-2014 at 08:59 AM.
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