tail light and turn signal problems on my 1990 2500

Discussion in 'Chevy Truck Forum' started by saiga brett, Jan 25, 2014.

  1. saiga brett

    saiga brett New Member

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    I am having problems with my tail lights and turn signals. My tail lights, break lights and reverse lights are not coming on. Also, when I turn my headlights on my turn signals stop working. Does anybody have any ideas? Electrical stuff is not my strong suit, any help or suggestions would be much appreciated.
     
  2. chevychase

    chevychase Semi-Admin
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    Bad ground at rear of truck at frame black wire...



    [​IMG]
     
  3. chevychase

    chevychase Semi-Admin
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    oops other half diagram
    [​IMG]
     
  4. chevychase

    chevychase Semi-Admin
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    Sorry should of explained some...your other lights not working..no ground....when you turn headlights on.... headlights are stealing a weak ground from the turn signals "pur se". If that does not work check fuses ..stop fuse .not brake it is for anti lock brake and park/lps..turn bu
    [​IMG]
     
  5. cjpayne

    cjpayne Senior Member

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    I think this might be the ground that CC is referring too. Drivers side rear frame rail, behind the rear bumper. This is on a '94 Suburban. If this ground is bad, it will drive tailights and trailer lights nuts.

    3.jpg
     
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  6. Boudin

    Boudin Forum Moderator

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    Electrical problems can easily be the type to cause headaches (and cussing). I was told a long time ago that most of your mysterious electrical problems are 90% of the time cause by the ground. This is, of course, checking the straight forward stuff like bulbs, fuses, etc. Electrical diagrams like what Chevychase can help a great deal when you get to looking at the wiring and making sense of it. A multimeter is ideal here, but a test light and/or continuity tester can help you out here.

    I will say that the 88-98 model tail lights are known to have their circuit boards go bad and will cause bulbs to not function even though they are still good....but given all three of your bulbs don't work....I highly suspect grounds as the issue. Replacing the circuit boards of your taillights is the last thing you would do here and only after you have successfully determined all the other probable causes as not being the case. If you don't, and buy them in a "throw parts at it" attempt....you will still have non-working taillights and be out some cash.

    If you don't have any testing equipment like multimeters, test lights, or continuity testers....don't fret. Just find the ground wire that everyone who has replied so far has mentioned....unbolt the sheet metal screw holding it to the truck....take some steel wool....a wire brush....etc and clean both the screw and the area around the hole it goes into. Reattach it and check to see if they work now. Always clean your grounds to make sure. They can certainly save you a lot of time and money and are well worth the effort.

    Let us know how it works for you and if it solved your issue or not.
     
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  7. saiga brett

    saiga brett New Member

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    thank you all for your help and suggestions. it was more than i hoped for. i have aftermarket LED tail lights that i got with the truck but they were not installed, would these be better to use?
     
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  8. jkeaton

    jkeaton Full Member

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    LED tails require load resisters for the signals to work correctly (unless they are built in already) and it wont solve your bad ground problem.
     
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  9. saiga brett

    saiga brett New Member

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    it was a broken ground wire at the rear bumper. Spliced it back together and everything worked again. Thank you so much for your knowledge and time.
     
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  10. saiga brett

    saiga brett New Member

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    if they come with factory plugs, do they still require load resistore or would they be built in?
     

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