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Lights Out???


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Help, Defender 110 TD5, 2001

I was doing a good deed and helping a mate get his newly acquired caravan home. Did all the checks before setting off with van in tow, indicators, side lights, brake lights....all OK.

We set off, all ok and but as it started to get a little darker on the motorway i switched on headlights.....they worked for a while and then I noticed the dash light were out....oh and so were the side lights and headlights. Main beam only worked on flash mode and would not stay on when switch via the stick.

Exited the motorway ASAP.....check fuses all seem ok, checked relay by switching the radio relay for lights relay, no joy.

Anyone out there got any ideas?

Malc

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May be the switch, but mosr likely the header. Its a multiple connector. There are several in the wiring system. The one you need (if on a Defender) is tucked into the wiring behind the fuse box up to the area where the rear wash/wipe and lighter socket are. If you go in form the top, look for a blue plastic thing at the end of a ribbon cable. There are several fo them. Just wiggle it till it works. It will be poor connections. You might, if you're lucky, get the lights to come on by hitting the area immediately above the fuse box.

Go on, you know you want to.

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Was the caravan still attached (electrically)? Was there any change if you unplugged the caravan electrics? What year defender?

Cheers

Peter

The caravan was attached electrically when all failed, when I pulled over I disconnect caravan and tried lights on vehicle but no joy, still did not work. We did have a problem with caravan indicators initially one of them did not work so I was driving before the problem with only one working.

When trying to fix lights after failure, I took off cover and managed to get the indicator working on the caravan so I could use hazards....drove home on hazards and holding main beam on manually....blinding all in front of me :-(

It's a 2001 100 TD5

Malc

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Out of my comfort zone then I'm afraid! I'm a 1990 Defender man with very simple electrics! If the flash is working, it's obviously not the feed to the headlights, but as you've lost offside AND nearside side, tail and headlights, it must be common (although offside and nearside are usually fused independently).

I would have a look at the main wiring and trace it back from whatever feeds the headlights. In the Disco (1995) I have a fusebox under the bonnet with the large value fuses for the feeds and the lower value fuses in the car - is the later Defender done a similar way?

Cheers

Peter

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Malc,

I have a feeling that the steering column light switch is faulty - all the current flows through the switch to the lights and burns out the contacts. Flash still works because it bypasses the switch. Happened on my 2002 TD5 110 as well.

Derrick

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The side light, head lights go throught the same switch, It sounds like it's the switch to me, what you could do it remove the muti plug to the switch and if you have a continuity tester? (something with a low voltage battery and a buzzer or wee light), you can see if the switch is working properly.

You want one of these Linky

Edited by Maverik
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I don't know if you just get unlucky or the trailer has unusually high resistance and heats up the contacts.

Once you know why and how, it's an easy fix in the future.

Cut the wires off the switch and join them by twisting. Bingo, lights on.

Instant (get you home) fix.

I carry a spare 'cos I don't trust it anymore!

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Looks like I'll be picking a new switch stalk up tomorrow from Keith Gott, just down the road.

On second thoughts if these things melt regularly would I be better off putting in a simple toggle/rocker switch ? Has anyone out there done this as an alternative? Any recommendations?

Thanks for the advice everyone.

Malc

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The usual fix is to use the feeds from the switch to trigger relays, which then power the lights via fused supplies from the battery/fusebox.

Do you know if this is documented anywhere? probably need the idiots guide :-)

Malc

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Well, I don't know about it being documented anywhere, but this is what I would do:

  1. Add a new wire (of the same colour) from the relevant fusebox terminal to a handy location in the engine bay.
  2. Mount a relay in said location.
  3. Attach the new wire to the feed terminal of the relay.
  4. Find the wire coming from the switch into the engine bay, and re-direct this to the on terminal of the relay.
  5. The other side of this wire should still lead to the headlamp, attach this to the output terminal of the relay.
  6. Attach the last terminal of the relay to ground.

So you should end up with something like this (simplified circuit):

post-10578-025257500 1282769980_thumb.png

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Well, I don't know about it being documented anywhere, but this is what I would do:

  1. Add a new wire (of the same colour) from the relevant fusebox terminal to a handy location in the engine bay.
  2. Mount a relay in said location.
  3. Attach the new wire to the feed terminal of the relay.
  4. Find the wire coming from the switch into the engine bay, and re-direct this to the on terminal of the relay.
  5. The other side of this wire should still lead to the headlamp, attach this to the output terminal of the relay.
  6. Attach the last terminal of the relay to ground.

So you should end up with something like this (simplified circuit):

post-10578-025257500 1282769980_thumb.png

All sorted, went for the straight swap of the switch......will put the relay on list(long) of "things to do".

Once again thanks to all for advice.

Malc

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