Mechanics

INTERIOR AND TAIL LIGHTS

1994 Buick Century

Electrical problem
1994 Buick Century 6 cyl

Approximately 100k miles on this 94 buick century. When the headlights are turned on, the rear tail lights will not. Also, the interior lights that illuminate the speedometer, etc will not come on. Additionally when the signal stalk is turned to make a right hand turn, the signal light turns on solid. Both the front and rear signals will light up solid for the right turn. Hazards work fine, as does the left turn. I've checked all fuses in the glove box and they all look fine. Suggestions?
Avatar
Purplegrog
January 14, 2009.



Did you find a tail lamp fuse? The circuit for that fuse, should be hot all the time. You can use a testlite on the fuse, there is usually a bare spot over each fuse leg, where you can check for voltage without removing the fuse. You can check the circuit by removing the fuse, but, only one leg will be hot, if you leave the fuse plugged in, both legs should be hot.

You may have only the one fuse box, I'm not sure, the owners manual should show the location of all fuse boxes.

I can give you more info, but, I need to know about that fuse circuit.

JDL
Jan 14, 2009.
I believe I found the tail lamp fuse, but unfortunately the fuse prevents me from accessing it with a volt meter. If I pull the fuse and put the probes from the voltmeter in, then hit the brake, the voltmeter shows a solid ~12 volts.

Tiny
Purplegrog
Jan 14, 2009.
I took a photo with the camera on my cell phone. sorry for the lack of detail; I couldn't get my actual camera to focus that close


http://www.2carpros.com/forum/automotive_pictures/301701_IMG00053_1.jpg


Tiny
Purplegrog
Jan 14, 2009.
Another bit that may or may not be helpful is the fact that while the headlights do turn on, the front running lights do not

Tiny
Purplegrog
Jan 14, 2009.
Hi, in your first post, you talked about tail-lites. The tail-lites are activated by the headlamp switch. The brake lites are activated by the brake switch, when you hit the brake pedal. They are controlled by different fuse circuits.

Right now, I'm not sure if your having trouble with the tail- lites or brake lites? Sometimes when there are multiple problems, you can pick one circuit and troubleshoot.

JDL
Jan 14, 2009.
Good point. The problem is with the tail light, front running lights and interior lights. As far as I can tell the brake lights work

Tiny
Purplegrog
Jan 14, 2009.
I looked at your picture, if there is a fuse that says( tail), that should be it. You can pull the fuse and use the meter in series on the circuit terminals, voltage setting. With everything turned off, if that circuit went to ground, the meter would show system voltage. It shouldn't show that with everything turned off.

You could use chassic ground for your meter, the positive lead on the circuit leg, one at a time, see if anything is hot?

JDL
Jan 14, 2009.
Ok, so I believe I've fixed the running lights problem, but the turn signal problem remains. For the running lights, I took apart the switch for the headlights/running lights, and discovered the rocker from the switch wasn't pressing down the electrical contacts far enough to make a connection. Ultimately I need to replace the switch, but for now a plastic shim placed between the rocker and the exterior wall of the switch seems to be doing the trick. As for the turn signal, that problem remains. Any suggestions on that?

Tiny
Purplegrog
Jan 14, 2009.
I'd probably look at the turn signal switch. You probably have an air-bag in the steering wheel, because of the safety issue and forum rules. I can't talk about the air-bag.

JDL
Jan 14, 2009.
I'm not sure what I did, but the turn signal issue seems to have fixed itself. I took the tail light assembly off and I guess the jarring motion fixed a short or a loose connection because now it's working. Thanks again for your assistance.

Tiny
Purplegrog
Jan 14, 2009.
Page 1 of 2