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Instrument and taillights out. Need help


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I know this has been gone over and beaten into the ground, but I've tried pretty much everything I've gotten on search, and I'm still blowing the 10a fuse for instrument panel lights. Checked bulbs- one was shonky. Replaced it. Checked the plug under the bed. Checked and cleaned taillight ground. Pulled out radio wiring which looked like it was done by a monkey and made sure nothing was grounding there. Pulled out trailer wiring which was done by the same monkey and checked connections, making sure nothing was grounding. Replaced a license plate bulb which was bad. Tried a 15a fuse. Tried pulling the cluster but couldn't get the speedo cable off to pull it out far enough to check the connections and bulbs.

 

I've got all lights except taillights and instrument panel. However, the brights and indicators lights on the cluster work fine.

 

:???: Help?

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Have you checked the front marker light sockets yet? IIRC, they are usually the cause...

 

Also, in an effort to find the short, start isolating portions of the circuit. For example, unplug the rear harness, and turn on the lights. If it doesn't blow, you know the problem is in the rear harness. If it blows, you know that you need to start closer to the switch.

 

Rob

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The driver's side socket was brand new. I replaced the pass side socket. It had been replaced in the past with another stock one but it looked terrible. I got the replacement part I found on here and wired it up. However, instead of a black, grey, and blue, I found a black, brownish, and blue but only on the pass side. The drivers side was black, grey blue.

 

I wired the pass side like the driver's was. Black>black, Red>grey (brown on pass side), White>blue. However, now the pass side turn signals come on but do not blink and it blows fuses still. Here are the pics of the front socket wiring. Maybe I got it wrong.

 

Pass side:

 

Driver's side:

 

 

I dug into the rear taillight wiring and what did I find?

 

 

I'm no wiring expert, but that looks horrendous. The connections wer covered in duct tape. Eck!

 

Here's the other side. Similar story:

 

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The last two pictures show what is a normal factory splice (small barrel-shaped metal ring holding three wires together) and they were commonly covered with duct tape from the factory.

 

In order to see if the front plugs were wired correctly you may want to get a FSM on electrical...there are several that have been scanned and inserted into threads posted in the forum, however - Rob's idea is the quickest: If you are not sure about the front harness, unplug it at the left front inner fender and then put new fuse in. If is doesn't blow then you know were the short is.

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Ok. I unplugged the rear harness and popped a fuse in, turned the lights on and wham, no fuse blown. But now neither turn signal works. I assume that's because the rear turn signals aren't plugged in.

 

I pulled the entire taillight harness out and am currently tracing each wire to see where she goes. Should the taillight bulb holders be packed with yellowish gummy material (which I am assuming is some sort of OEM dialectric sturf)?? It looks nasty and my instincts tell me to clean it out.... Thanks for the help!

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Well, after all day chasing the stupid gremlin, it was just the auxiliary license plate light wire being plugged into the ground that's right next to it. I think I did that. Boy, I really love wasting an entire day. I feel sheepish. Oh well, I rewired a bunch of stuff that needed rewiring...

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