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Old 12-06-2011, 08:05 AM   #1
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Tail light help needed

I've been struggling trying to figure out these tail lights. As you can see in the pic below, the driver's side is significantly brighter than the passenger side. At first, I thought it was the bulbs, so I swapped in brand new bulbs to both sides at the same time. This is what I am dealing with...




I am wondering though if it is the driver's side that is causing the issue and not so much the passenger side.
I have a fast blinker on the driver's side that I cannot trace to a solution. I am wondering if something is going on with that driver's side housing that is causing the fast blink and causing it to be so bright.

The passenger side does seem abnormally dim though, so I have no idea here.

I have cleaned all the bulb socket/terminals.

Any thoughts?

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Old 12-06-2011, 08:10 AM   #2
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Check the harness on the drivers side. If I recall correctly the passenger side is hooked in with the main harness on the drivers side. Pull the connections apart and check for corrosion.

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Old 12-06-2011, 08:11 AM   #3
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Also check and make sure there is a solid ground on that passenger side...
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Old 12-06-2011, 08:13 AM   #4
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And if you're confused about a ground wire, your tail lights are grounded through the bolts that hold the housing to the tub.
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Old 12-06-2011, 09:11 AM   #5
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it's most likely a ground problem. i've had the same problem, only reversed...passenger side brighter than the drivers side. mine came and went at random, swapped bulbs, did everything I could think of....until I pulled the lights off and cleaned everything with a wire brush, including the bolts & inside of the tub, and used big fat stainless fender washers & nuts w/ anti-seize on the inside of the tub after stripping out the holes. IIRC the bolts serve as one of the grounds, and those connections get corroded.
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Old 12-06-2011, 09:17 AM   #6
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Yeah I learned the same thing too when I had the same problem. If the ground on one light isn't good it will try to go through the reverse light backwards, and because the reverse lights share the same wire it will travel to the other reverse light and ground. If you look really closely I bet you'll see both reverse light are very faintly lit.
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Old 12-06-2011, 09:20 AM   #7
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Thanks guys. I really didn't want to have to post about something as silly as stock tail lights, but I am dang tired of messing with this.

I have cleaned all the bulb terminals, but did not check the ground points/screws. I will do that next and see what I come up with.

I will be going to LEDs in the rear, but I am holding off on those until I get the corner armor so the holes are exactly in the correct place.
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Old 12-06-2011, 11:34 AM   #8
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If you do, don't forget load resistors so they'll flash normally.
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Old 12-06-2011, 06:27 PM   #9
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Mr Mac
If you do, don't forget load resistors so they'll flash normally.
Screw that... Just mod the flasher relay as done on Stu Olson's site.

Did you verify all lights work? If you have a light out on a side you may have a burned out bulb.

Commonly missed is the side marker in front.
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Old 12-06-2011, 06:57 PM   #10
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All good suggestions, and here's another. Pop the lens back off the drivers side and see if both filaments are lit, instead of just one. It could be the power wires for the park and turn signal/brake lamp are touching and you are getting both filaments lighting up instead of just the park lamp one.

Would also explain the rapid flashing on the turn signal.
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Old 12-08-2011, 01:12 PM   #11
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Screw that... Just mod the flasher relay as done on Stu Olson's site.

Did you verify all lights work? If you have a light out on a side you may have a burned out bulb.

Commonly missed is the side marker in front.
The LED capable flasher unit...
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Old 12-08-2011, 02:40 PM   #12
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Quote:
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All good suggestions, and here's another. Pop the lens back off the drivers side and see if both filaments are lit, instead of just one. It could be the power wires for the park and turn signal/brake lamp are touching and you are getting both filaments lighting up instead of just the park lamp one.

Would also explain the rapid flashing on the turn signal.
Assuming these are 1157 variety bulbs? try turning the bulb 180 degrees and inserting the bulb as some of these bulbs have to be inserted in a particular orientation. as stated above if both filaments are lit the bulb may just be inserted 180 degrees out of sinc if that makes sense.
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Old 12-08-2011, 05:24 PM   #13
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I am having this problem with my driver side front marker/signal lamp. Except in my case, the light is unusually dim and, based on process of elimination, I am pretty sure the wiring to the housing is corroded or the whole housing is going bad.

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