Taillights quit working

Electrical & Ignition

  1. lemondana

    lemondana New Member

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    On my 71 Polara, the taillights quit working last fall. Brake lights and turn signals still work. I haven't had a chance to get into it yet, hopefully this weekend. Any ideas. Any help would be appreciated. Thanks!
     
  2. detmatt

    detmatt Old Man with a Hat FCBO Gold Member

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    If this were a ‘67 Imp I would blame the headlight switch.
     
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  3. mr. fix it

    mr. fix it Old Man with a Hat

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    "sounds like the turn signal switch is failing if fuses don't provide an easy solution."

    DOH'!!! I read it wrong...:BangHead:

    Not the turn signal switch. do what Matt is telling you....
     
    Last edited: May 17, 2019
  4. rkrochen

    rkrochen Active Member

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    I would start at the fuses but it is likely the headlight switch. Get a wiring diagram and trace back the wires. Could also be the bulkhead connection.
     
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  5. traintech55

    traintech55 Senior Member

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    The wiring for the rear of the car DOES NOT go through the bulkhead connector. It runs down the left side of the vehicle to the trunk under the carpeting.
     
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  6. lemondana

    lemondana New Member

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    Thanks for the ideas, I'll get back on here when I figure it out.
     
  7. mr. fix it

    mr. fix it Old Man with a Hat

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    it could be both bulbs as well...
     
  8. rkrochen

    rkrochen Active Member

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    Now that you mention it you are probably correct however that is the reason we use a wiring diagram. Sorry for misleading you a bit.
     
  9. Mr C

    Mr C Senior Member

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    Could be a lot of things...corrosion on light housings leading to bad grounds, loose/ bad connections in wire harness, bad headlight switch. You need an FSM, and patience...lots of patience. You'll run it down.
     
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  10. 65sporty

    65sporty Old Man with a Hat

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    The parking lights in front work? Only the tail lights are out? Check a wiring diagram and see if the wire is the same for both running lights, if it is there must be a connector or a wiring issue to the rear.
     
  11. detmatt

    detmatt Old Man with a Hat FCBO Gold Member

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    It’s the switch, just wiggle it and if that doesn’t work have it rebuilt. My .02.
     
  12. 65Fury440

    65Fury440 Senior Member FCBO Gold Member

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    Oh I went rounds with my car over brake lights.
    Rock Auto sold sold NOS, emphasis on old, kept getting bad switches. The brake lights were only drawing a couple amps, just crappy components that came in really old boxes.
    Might as well get familiar with the FSM
    MyMopar - Mopar Forums & Information - Service Manuals
     
  13. lemondana

    lemondana New Member

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    Thanks for all of the replies. It ended up being just the fuse for now. Now to figure out why the fuse blew and if it will happen again.
     
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  14. Gerald Morris

    Gerald Morris Well-Known Member

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    Fair chance its the fuse BOX! My fuse box has a loose connection to the circuit, and ever so often I loose tail lights and instrument lights too. Mind you, I believe a 71 might have a little bit more circuitry than my '66, but not too much. Loose elements in 50 yr old switches, load centers and such devil these cars....
     
  15. jct

    jct Senior Member FCBO Gold Member

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    Gremlinelectricql8-1.jpg
     
  16. old_phart

    old_phart New Member

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    remember, the cigarette lighter is on the same 20A. circuit, if it keepd blowing fuses, pull the lighter to see if that helps.
     
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  17. John Reddie

    John Reddie New Member

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    Where just the tail lights were affected and the fuse was blown, I would check inside the trunk and lid for a possible intermittent short circuit. I had that problem once on one of '67 Furys. Good luck to you.
    John
     
  18. polara71

    polara71 Old Man with a Hat FCBO Gold Member

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    I think it's time for you to sell...
     
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  19. lemondana

    lemondana New Member

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    "polara71" When the time comes you will be the first one on my list.
    Getting it ready for the roughly 1000 mile trip we take every year, It's called Tour Nebraska. The first year we took it, this old guy with a very nice 55 Chevy, came up and told me we had the coolest car on the Tour. I think they had about 400 cars that year. Again, you are first on the list!
     
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  20. lemondana

    lemondana New Member

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    Thanks to all for all the info again!