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TD5 Indicator woes - please help


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The MOT on my 2004 TD5 defender has expirered, and I'm slowly making my way through the list of things to fix before I take it in for a test, but I'm a bit stuck with some trouble I'm having with my indicators.

1. The drivers side wing (side) indicator doesn't work. I've checked with my multimeter and it's not getting any voltage at the bulb holder.

2. Sometimes, when other lights are turned on, the drivers side front indicator blinks 2-3 times, then turns of for a random amount of time, then starts working again. It does this over and over.

3. For a little while, I have found that when I fire it up for the first time that day, the indicators don't work until I turn the hazards on and off. It will then work for the rest of the day even if I turn everything off for a few hours. (not sure if this would have been fixed by the new hazard switch, as I replaced it a couple of hours ago)

I have tried replacing the side indicators with LED ones incase it was a dead bulb (before testing with my multimeter, doh), and have also replaced the hazard switch as I've heard that could fix some issues.

 

I'm a total novice, so any advice is appreciated. I figure I may as well take a stab at fixing it before taking it to a garage while I already have the dash dismantled.

A friend has told me "it's probably a dodgy ground" but I'm not sure where to look?

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  • 2 weeks later...

Hi, when your fault finding try to substitute with its standard fitment, a filiment bulb will illuminate any way around whereas most led lamps are polarised.

get a simple 12volt bulb style tester with a sharp tip you can poke through the insulation of the cable your testing, a dvm is great but your just checking for voltage not how much is present.

it does sound like a bad ground, you will need to trace the cables back to each joint, if the wing indicator is dead there is a break in its cable as it is spliced to the front indicator.
try running a cable direct to the -ve of the bulb connector from the battery to prove the ground issue.

take a look at the top of the bulkhead inside the engine bay and you should find and earth point it is a stud or bolt that has a number of black wires attached, on the 300 tdi this was one of the lighting grounds.

also get hold of the wiring diagram it will show you what colour wire you are looking for.

have fun.

 

 

Edited by Gren_T
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Both sets of front lights have a earth point behind the headlight, the plain black wires (earth) are bolted to the vertical front end of the inner wing, there should be a 4 way bullet connector there, maybe it needs replacing & the terminals on ends of the wires need cleaning back to bright metal, 

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31 minutes ago, western said:

Both sets of front lights have a earth point behind the headlight, the plain black wires (earth) are bolted to the vertical front end of the inner wing, there should be a 4 way bullet connector there, maybe it needs replacing & the terminals on ends of the wires need cleaning back to bright metal, 

This is exactly what I think your problem is. You should be able to see this point looking in under the bonnet towards the side repeater, you wont see the repeater itself as the inner wing is in the way but you should see two wires coming from there. Disconnect them and make sure the connections are clean and also trace these wires to the earth point Western mentions and clean that too.

 

If the forward facing indicator is working next to the headlight you can't have much of an issue

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  • 2 weeks later...

Just incase someone finds this in google results, and wonders what fixed it;
The front drivers indicator was a bad bulb holder, i realised when i hit it while it was off, the light would start flashing normally suggesting there was a dodgy connection there somewhere. Replaced it and everything was fine
The drivers wing indicator was a weird one. When I took out the front indicator, i found an extra side indicator hidden behind there wrapped in masking tape, I guess from when it was re-sprayed. Pulled it through to the wing, plugged it into the led side indicator, and it worked. No idea why i have a second not-working connector but ah well.
The problem where the indicators wouldn't work until i turned the hazards on and off was likely fixed by replacing the hazard switch but who knows.. I also changed the relay so i can't really say which one fixed it. It's a good job someone suggested to replace that relay because the previous owner fitted an LED indicator relay which meant they were way too dull

Edited by SonOfPear
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