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Hi all.

For a while, we've had an issue with the headlights sporadically not coming on. The sidelights work fine, but sometimes the main/dipped beam doesn't do squat. I changed the switch for a genuine lucas one, but that's not helped at all, it still does it (except that now the switch occasionally springs back to the sidelight only position, but that's another matter...).

It mostly does it when you're trying to turn them on in the first place, but it sometimes does it while you're driving, which is especially fun when all the lights go out while you're blatting down a little lane.

Whacking the switch area firmly, up under the steering column brings them all back on, and going over all of the switches and connections with a meter reveals nothing. As I say, I've replaced the on/off switch, so could it be the dip switch, or something else?

Any help appreciated, as it's wearing a little thin now.



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Hello, I was just about to start a very similar thread.

My Issue was all lights working fine however occasionally full beam spot lights cutting out, as you say very interesting at high speeds at the dead of night. Simply A loose switch between high beams and headlights.
However I tried to replace the lights today. Put everything back together, and when testing lights.

Side lights work fine,

Head lights not working at all

Full beams work when pulled toward driver, (flashing) but not when put on full beam.

Not sure quite what I've done or what to do next, any help would be appreciated.


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What year is your defender guys? Do they have blade fuses?

If not and have the old glass type, it may be worth upgrading to blade type.

Headlights require alot of current and sometime a poor connection on the fuse is all that is needed to cause problems.

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I had problems with my main beam - would not switch on, but would flash via the dip/main stalk. It turned out to be bent contacts on the dip/main stalk. The contacts are on the left hand side of the column and completely open. Some careful bending with some fine nose pliers and the system worked again.

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After much prodding of the wires, I found that there was a piggy-back connection to a relay for the spot lights on top. The spade connector that the previous numpty owner had used wasn't on right, and was making things spark. This seems to have somehow been affecting the main lights' operation, although I don't get how. New connector - problem solved.

Even managed to fix the new Lucas switch flicking back to the sidelight position - found the connector was wedged up against it... fitted by the current numpty me, so slap on the wrist there.

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May seems to be the month for odd head light issues...

Got my TD5 back from warranty gearbox rebuild and my headlights no go when switching on using the main switch - HOWEVER if I flicked the high/low/flash switch, they would come on. OK - so I didn't look further as had work around.

now a few weeks later, on the way home last night, the deadlights don't work at all - EXCEPT when holding the high/low/flash switch in the "flash" position, luckily I have flood lights so was able to make it home without blinding oncoming drivers - But I need to drive home again in the dark and would like to get this sorted during my lunch break.

I had the steering column covers off and the switches and connections look OK, fuses check OK - where else should I look / check?

sidelights are fine - side/head light switch was replaced last year

2002 TD5 110 S/W

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