Dismiss Notice

Welcome To CK5!

Registering is free and easy! Hope to see you on the forums soon.

Score a FREE t-shirt and membership sticker when you sign up for a Premium Membership and choose the recurring plan.

help me with my wiring on my lights.

Discussion in 'The Garage' started by colbystephens, Apr 5, 2006.

  1. colbystephens

    colbystephens 1 ton status GMOTM Winner

    Joined:
    Feb 24, 2005
    Posts:
    10,924
    Likes Received:
    20
    Location:
    Oregon
    ok, so this is wierd (regarding my 83 k5). all of my lights work except all three in the rear passenger side light fixture. i just replaced all three lights, and they don't come on. i don't know if they ever worked b/c this is the first time i've had it on the road since i bought it. could this be a fuse issue?

    i don't know if this is a related issue, but my right turn blinker only works when the headlights are off. strange. the right turn indicator light on the dash does not work at all (then again, none of my dash lights work except for my glow plug, water in fuel and right turn signal indicator lights).

    essentially, what i want to work for sure right now, and all i really care about, is getting the rear tail lights to work and the blinker to always work, whether the headlights are on or not. any ideas?
     
  2. dyeager535

    dyeager535 1 ton status Premium Member

    Joined:
    Dec 13, 2000
    Posts:
    26,980
    Likes Received:
    189
    Location:
    Roy WA
    I'd check the grounds. As I recall, there is one at the front to the core support for each side, and there is one for each taillight "bucket" in the rear. I think the rear one is bolted to the body, as rusty as these trucks get, the grounds are usually a problem area.

    Also make doubly sure that every bulb matches what is in the same position on the side that does work. With nothing working, it shouldn't be just a bulb issue though. However, that will make it difficult to diagnose if that is an additional problem. It happens quite regularly when talking lighting issues.

    Use a voltmeter to make sure that voltage is present on the same wires on both sides. If it is, then it has to be a ground issue. IE, turn on the headlights, with both taillight buckets removed, check for voltage on the wires on the "dead" side, that have voltage on the "good" side of the truck.
     
  3. colbystephens

    colbystephens 1 ton status GMOTM Winner

    Joined:
    Feb 24, 2005
    Posts:
    10,924
    Likes Received:
    20
    Location:
    Oregon
    cool - now do you have any tips for the 2 rusted screws w/ stripped heads which hold the passenger side bucket in? ;)
     
  4. dyeager535

    dyeager535 1 ton status Premium Member

    Joined:
    Dec 13, 2000
    Posts:
    26,980
    Likes Received:
    189
    Location:
    Roy WA
    Are those torx or are they phillips?

    A couple of things: when dealing with screws, make sure you get the right size driver! :) The buckets make this hard, but if it were a metal to metal application, I'd tell you to take a hammer, and hit the back of the screwdriver as you lightly apply twisting force to it. I'd be willing to bet this method would break your taillight lenses though. :(

    If you can get them out, and they aren't torx, spend some time at a wrecking yard with a T15 torx driver, and replace all the flat or phillips screws with the stainless torx screws the later trucks use. I thought my '83 was torx as well, but maybe not? I know thats all I have on my current truck.

    Edit: thinking thinking thinking...I suppose the three options if they just won't come off, and barring any other suggestions for your exact problem, start with some sort of penetrating oil and wait a bit to see if it helps, then all I can think of to do is the hammer/screwdriver trick, expecting the lenses/buckets to break, or if you've got a welder, and can get it in there close enough, tack a piece of metal to the screw head that you can twist with a pair of vise grips, and hope that either the screw twists out, or the head breaks off, allowing you to get the bucket out. Still might ruin the lens, but with a mig, you might be able to get just enough precision to not hurt the lens so much as to make it unusable. As I recall, those screws are kind of countersunk in the plastic though. (maybe not on one side?)

    Also, I believe those use the spring metal nuts that clip in place. If you break that loose and the screw just spins, I think you are in the same boat. :(

    Read 3 on the tree's post below. Easier on your lenses. :)
     
    Last edited: Apr 5, 2006
  5. HarryH3

    HarryH3 1 ton status Author

    Joined:
    May 31, 2000
    Posts:
    10,384
    Likes Received:
    2
    Location:
    Georgetown, TX
    Also take a look under the truck. The wiring harness to the rear lights has two plugs; one under each tail light, that connects to each short tail light harness.
     
  6. dyeager535

    dyeager535 1 ton status Premium Member

    Joined:
    Dec 13, 2000
    Posts:
    26,980
    Likes Received:
    189
    Location:
    Roy WA
    Good point, piss poor trailer wiring is a big issue. :)
     
  7. 3 on the tree

    3 on the tree 1/2 ton status

    Joined:
    Oct 16, 2004
    Posts:
    3,970
    Likes Received:
    0
    Location:
    gunnison colorado
    What I have had to do in the past. Carefully, drill the heads of the screws off, pull the lenses off. Then use visegrips to grab the shank of the screw. A little liquid wrench, turn in and out a little at a time, and they usually come out.
     
  8. HarryH3

    HarryH3 1 ton status Author

    Joined:
    May 31, 2000
    Posts:
    10,384
    Likes Received:
    2
    Location:
    Georgetown, TX
    Especially when someone has "installed" trailer wiring using those ScotchLock type connectors that pierce the insulation. I've seen the internal wire corroded several inches in each direction from moisture wicking. :mad: Those things were never intended for use in wet places.
     
  9. dyeager535

    dyeager535 1 ton status Premium Member

    Joined:
    Dec 13, 2000
    Posts:
    26,980
    Likes Received:
    189
    Location:
    Roy WA
    Especially when you can go and buy a plug-in trailer wiring harness for about $15 from any auto parts store. (at least for the later weather pack ones, not sure about the flat connectors we are talking about)
     
  10. colbystephens

    colbystephens 1 ton status GMOTM Winner

    Joined:
    Feb 24, 2005
    Posts:
    10,924
    Likes Received:
    20
    Location:
    Oregon
    well, we'll wait on discussing my trailer wiring for now. :D however, thanks for the good info on the tail lights. i'll have to give that a try. anyone got any ideas on why the blinker stops working when the lights are on? (see original post) and, i guess while we're at it - any ideas as to why my dash lights don't work? thanks all.
     
  11. dyeager535

    dyeager535 1 ton status Premium Member

    Joined:
    Dec 13, 2000
    Posts:
    26,980
    Likes Received:
    189
    Location:
    Roy WA
    Well I'm assuming you mean the *left* turn signal indicator works, because you say the right does and does not work as I read the first post. :)

    This goes back to the way the cluster is wired up. If none of the other lights work, then it is likely the indicator issue is tied into that. burned out bulbs, bad connections, and so on are all possible causes.

    Typically if you have a bad bulb in one location, on one side, that signal indicator in the dash will act funny...stay on, blink dimly, fast, etc, to indicate you have SOME problem on that side. To not have a light at all leads me to believe you've got a cluster problem as well.
     
  12. colbystephens

    colbystephens 1 ton status GMOTM Winner

    Joined:
    Feb 24, 2005
    Posts:
    10,924
    Likes Received:
    20
    Location:
    Oregon
    oh yeah, i forgot about how the in-dash blinker will act up when there's lights out.

    i'll try and make it a little more clear. my right turn signal works (front and marker lights only b/c the whole right rear side doesn't work), but when i turn the headlights on it no longer works. any ideas?
     
  13. dyeager535

    dyeager535 1 ton status Premium Member

    Joined:
    Dec 13, 2000
    Posts:
    26,980
    Likes Received:
    189
    Location:
    Roy WA
    Do a thorough check of the wiring at the front and rear at the lights, paying attention for problems with the connectors and the wires.

    If there is trailer wiring, remove that crap and start troubleshooting without it, because there is nothing more frustrating than trying to solve a problem that wouldn't exist without the add-on wiring. These are the exact same sorts of problems you see on trailers ALL the time, and if you don't eliminate that from the truck taillight wiring, chances are you'll chase this problem forever. Make it easy on yourself, get it back to the basics, see if that fixes the problem, and take it from there.

    I'm just glad I wired my truck up myself, trailer wiring is an absolute nightmare if added on any way other than with the type that goes between the two stock connectors.
     
  14. colbystephens

    colbystephens 1 ton status GMOTM Winner

    Joined:
    Feb 24, 2005
    Posts:
    10,924
    Likes Received:
    20
    Location:
    Oregon
    any thoughts about the headlights/right turn signal issue?
     
  15. dyeager535

    dyeager535 1 ton status Premium Member

    Joined:
    Dec 13, 2000
    Posts:
    26,980
    Likes Received:
    189
    Location:
    Roy WA
    Connections. Ground for that portion, bare wires, etc. First thing I'd look for.

    Can't recall if the rear being messed up will affect the fronts. I tend to think it might.
     

Share This Page