No Headlights - Team Camaro Tech
Electrical & Wiring Troubleshooting electrical.

 
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post #1 of 15 (permalink) Old Jul 15th, 03, 02:02 AM Thread Starter
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Just upgraded a 69 RS with tach and gauge pod. I installed the dash back on the car, struggled for some time getting the headlight switch back in the dash.

Started car, everything works great, turn headlight knob interior lights come on gauges included, pull knob headlight doors open, but headlights do not light up!

Any suggestions on what to look for? There is a metal bracket which goes between the dash carrier and the headlight switch, if this is not lined up right could this be the problem? It has a ground wire, however, the interior lights work so would think the ground is OK. ANY SUGGESTIONS WOULD BE APPRICIATED! THANKS
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post #2 of 15 (permalink) Old Jul 15th, 03, 03:32 AM
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Good description of the problem with a lot of detail. It helps.
The headlight switch has 2 12 volt power inputs. Everything you have working is powered by the orange wire. The headlights are the only thing powered by the red wire on a separate contact inside the switch.
The input power for the headlights on the switch is the red wire.
The output power to the floor dimmer switch/headlights is the blue wire.
Since the dash was where you were at last, suspect that the problem is around the headlight switch. Perhaps one of the contacts (red or blue) is loose where it crimps into the connector.
If you want to look at some others places before you pull the switch loose maybe:
Check the headlight sockets for 12 volts to ground with the lights on. Guessing it’s not there.
May want to look for 12 volts on the floor dimmer switch. Again guessing it’s not there.
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post #3 of 15 (permalink) Old Jul 15th, 03, 03:50 AM Thread Starter
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Thanks John, [img]graemlins/thumbsup.gif[/img]

That will give me a starting point to look. Time to pull out the tester, will be a great help knowing which color wire to be tracing.

It was just fustrating taking more than an hour to get that switch in, I just walked away.

I'm sure there isn't, but are there any fuses besides the ones in the fuse panel? I was hoping not to have to deal with that switch, It's almost impossible to get at once installed.
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post #4 of 15 (permalink) Old Jul 15th, 03, 03:53 AM Thread Starter
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John, just a thought! Is it possible that while re-doing the fuse panel for the new wiring harness that I disconected that red wire which powers the headlights? Does that red wire power anything else?
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post #5 of 15 (permalink) Old Jul 15th, 03, 07:26 AM
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The red wire powers everything on the inside of the car. Anything’s possible but normally if the interior, of the car has power, the red wire has power. The red wire is protected by fusible links under the hood, not by fuses. The headlights are protected by a circuit breaker that is built into the headlight switch. Not really acting like the circuit breaker because it’s not trying to reset. Acts more like a bad crimp joint on the headlight switch socket. That is, lights are dead.
Figured it was a pain to get up around the switch. That’s why I suggested you check for power downstream from the switch first. May get lucky and it’s something easier.
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post #6 of 15 (permalink) Old Jul 15th, 03, 12:40 PM
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Keep in mind that high current circuits like head lights don't need much resistance to appear open. It can really be confusing to troubleshoot. Connections can appear to have power one moment and none the next. In other words, little things like corrostion or a loose terminal can cause the problem, so look closely.

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post #7 of 15 (permalink) Old Jul 16th, 03, 02:37 AM Thread Starter
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OK I checked at the headlights with the switch on and have no power there, Obvious. I pulled the connector from the light switch and the wires are tight and connected well. In fact the wiring harness in the car is only 5 or 6 years old. I have power at the red wire at the connector.

What now? Bad switch? Could I have damaged it?
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post #8 of 15 (permalink) Old Jul 16th, 03, 04:12 AM
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Take the switch apart, it comes apart easily, you might need to clean it up inside.

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post #9 of 15 (permalink) Old Jul 16th, 03, 04:17 AM Thread Starter
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OK, I did not know it would come apart. I will give that a try tonight.

When you take it apart is there anything to be careful about such as springs that may come flying out?
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post #10 of 15 (permalink) Old Jul 16th, 03, 05:41 AM
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Check for power on the switch blue wire with the switch plugged in? Otherwise you won't be sure if the problem is further down the circuit.
Red is the input, blue is the output to the dimmer switch on the floor.
They do come apart but I don't play with them. They are not that expensive from the chain auto parts house and I've found almost new ones at the junkyard for $2.00.
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post #11 of 15 (permalink) Old Jul 16th, 03, 07:36 AM Thread Starter
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Checking the blue wire is first on my list tonight. Did not have time last night.

The switch in an RS car also has vacuum line attachements. I'm not sure if I could find a switch at a local parts place or a junkyard.
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post #12 of 15 (permalink) Old Jul 16th, 03, 08:45 AM
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IF you end up pulling that switch out, I hated that part too, when reinstalling it, glue on the vac hoses with about 6" of hose and then a small diameter metal tube to connect back to the hoses that go to the headlights. When one of those leak at the switch its impossible to work on without pulling the whole thing. With this modification,the hoses will never pull from the switch and you can pull the hoses apart at the tube 'cut in area' and never have to mess with the hoses on the switch back up under the dash again. Also, that bracket behind the dash grounds along with the wires. Check all your grounds again as well. Ive been using the star washers with the nuts when grounding things to make sure of contact with good metal.
Follow John's recommendations, he and dnult have helped me with my elec. issues and always came thru.

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post #13 of 15 (permalink) Old Jul 16th, 03, 09:16 AM
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definately before digging into the dash, make sure it's not the floor dimmer. if this is bad or has a bad connection, you will have exactly the problem you describe, everything but headlights. i know it seems to easy, but sometimes thats the way it works. when i bought my camaro, it had the same problem you describe, and the owners even had a shop try to figure it out to no avail. i bought it, replaced the floor dimmer because it was easiest, and they have worked ever since. since the switch was a mother to put in, it could be that, but i'd check power at the dimmer at least before digging into it further, good luck!

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post #14 of 15 (permalink) Old Jul 16th, 03, 10:23 AM Thread Starter
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First thing when I get home will be checking the dimmer switch. I guess the dimmer switch is the one you were talking about John be easing to find and replace. [img]graemlins/clonk.gif[/img]

Hopefully I will have some good news tommorrow!
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post #15 of 15 (permalink) Old Jul 17th, 03, 12:22 AM Thread Starter
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THEY WORK!!!!!!! [img]graemlins/thumbsup.gif[/img]

Thanks everyone who helped! Just as you said John the problem was at the high beam switch. The plug was loose from all the pulling I did on the fuse panel.


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