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Old 07-24-2019, 05:44 AM   #1
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Unhappy Tail Lights - having issues

Hey 986 lovers, greetings from Guatemala.

I am having an issue with one of my tail lights ( the drivers side ) ( the other one works fine ), only the hazard / stoplight / turn signal work. I cant have the fog light and tail light work. I recently bought a new “bulb holder plate “ thinking it could be some kind of contact issue, but the problem persists. Could it be a fuse issue? Cable issue? Any advice?

Bulbs Working according to picture :

A , B , E

Not working

C , D , F



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Old 07-24-2019, 08:20 AM   #2
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I see no "F" in the picture.

I'm guessing here.

Is your harness connection secure... tight... snug?

Is/are your front side-marker lights illuminated? Replace bulb(s) where applicable.

Have you checked the fuse for the lights? Replace fuse(s) where applicable.

Is bulb "D" good? Replace bulb if applicable.

Report back.
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Old 07-24-2019, 08:57 AM   #3
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Replace fuses A4 and A7 (for a layperson, visual inspection of a fuse tells you nothing about its condition).

If the issue persists, remove the headlight switch and clean the inner contacts (not the connector pins on the back) by spraying electrical contact cleaner into the switch and working the switch knob back and forth.
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Old 07-24-2019, 08:17 PM   #4
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I second the switch recommendation. I replaced mine this spring and all my tail light issues went away
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Old 07-25-2019, 05:28 AM   #5
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Quote:
Originally Posted by particlewave View Post
Replace fuses A4 and A7 (for a layperson, visual inspection of a fuse tells you nothing about its condition).

If the issue persists, remove the headlight switch and clean the inner contacts (not the connector pins on the back) by spraying electrical contact cleaner into the switch and working the switch knob back and forth.
Should I understand that even if the/a fuse looks good... no burnt connecter... that it could be bad? If an electrical problem persists (similar to the OP), and the/a fuse looks good... replace it anyhow?

Any other signs to look for if the/a fuse "looks" good?

Thanks!
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Old 07-25-2019, 10:45 AM   #6
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Starter986 View Post
Should I understand that even if the/a fuse looks good... no burnt connecter... that it could be bad? If an electrical problem persists (similar to the OP), and the/a fuse looks good... replace it anyhow?

Any other signs to look for if the/a fuse "looks" good?

Thanks!
Absolutely. A fuse can be bad, but look completely normal. You can test it with an ohmmeter (anything over 1ohm is bad, good should measure under 0.5ohms), but they’re cheap and it’s easier to just swap it out. If swapping doesn’t solve your issue, the fuse was likely fine.
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Old 07-25-2019, 11:29 AM   #7
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Starter986 View Post
Should I understand that even if the/a fuse looks good... no burnt connecter... that it could be bad? If an electrical problem persists (similar to the OP), and the/a fuse looks good... replace it anyhow?

Any other signs to look for if the/a fuse "looks" good?

Thanks!
You can also check without having to remove the fuses. Use a volt meter or a light probe with one end grounded. You can probe the fuses at the butt end. The butt (plastic) end of the fuses have tiny openings where you can probe each of the blades.




If you have power on both sides, the fuse is good!

Last edited by piper6909; 07-25-2019 at 11:41 AM.
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Old 07-25-2019, 11:41 AM   #8
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Yes and no. A test light is insufficient as you’d need to see the voltage drop from one side to the other to give an idea of resistance. You’d be surprised at how much a small voltage drop (slight increase in resistance) can affect some electronic components.

I just went through this yesterday with my sons friends car. Car wouldn’t fire, we determined that it wasn’t getting enough fuel, then tested power at the fuel pump. It was at 10V. Replaced the good looking fuse with new and it fired right up.

.

Last edited by particlewave; 07-25-2019 at 11:43 AM.
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Old 07-25-2019, 11:49 AM   #9
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Originally Posted by particlewave View Post
Yes and no. A test light is insufficient as you’d need to see the voltage drop from one side to the other to give an idea of resistance. You’d be surprised at how much a small voltage drop (slight increase in resistance) can affect some electronic components.

I just went through this yesterday with my sons friends car. Car wouldn’t fire, we determined that it wasn’t getting enough fuel, then tested power at the fuel pump. It was at 10V. Replaced the good looking fuse with new and it fired right up.

.
Interesting. I thought fuses were either good or blown. I've never had such experience as you did. Unless there was a problem with the contacts. Did you try re-inserting the same fuse?

Either way, good to know!

Last edited by piper6909; 07-25-2019 at 11:51 AM.
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Old 07-25-2019, 11:52 AM   #10
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Thank you for that info. I've no horn and the LEDS in the cubby aren't illuminating. Checked a fuse or two... but will employ your troubleshooting method, and without removing the fuse(s).

Thanks to the both of you.
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Old 07-28-2019, 10:10 PM   #11
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If your headlight switch is feeling a bit low on resistance or not clicking into each detent, may be time to replace it. This is what happens in higher temperature climates, and even being garaged too.

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