Mechanics

, HEADLIGHTS WILL NOT TURN OFF (FIXED)

1993 Pontiac Grand Am

I have a '93 Grand Am that has a strange headlight malfunction. They will NOT turn off. If the battery is hooked up, they stay on, ALL the time. Just the headlights. All the other lights only come on if you turn on the parking lights, or all the way to the headlight position. Key doesn't have to be on either. This malfunction didn't occur until after I had the engine out of the car and put it back in. I have been over it with a fine toothed comb. I cannot find the cause of this problem. I also found this same problem and answer posted on this same forum.


" Question: 1992 Pontiac Grand Am 4 cyl mileage: 78000. I walked out on 1 Jan and found the headlights on. Got the keys to start engine fearing dead battery, the car started right up. The lights were not on the night before. Turned off car, removed key, light switch off, headlights stayed on. Hit high beam, headlights went off, high beams came on. Pulled out headlight control unit from fuse panel, headlights stayed on. Unplugged each light individually and in high beam/headlight pair, thinking it might be a short, lights stayed on. Had to unplug lights to get them off.

Answer: If we did not know better, we would suspect the Y2K bug. Without actually “seeing” your vehicle, it is difficult to diagnose the problem. We are guessing at some damage done to the headlight wiring causing a short between a power wire and the headlight wire.&Quot;

This leads me to believe that this is a common occurrance with this particular model car. Hope someone has the answer. Thanks.
Avatar
Mechanic116
February 27, 2006.



I have discovered the cause of this problem and have fixed it. This problem occurs when a tiny piece of plastic that insulates part of the printed circuit inside the headlight switch breaks off and allows the high/low beam contactor to short out. The result is the headlights on, all the time. I took pictures which I will post later. I cleaned the circuit board and fixed it with some epoxy. The switch itself is part of the turn signal/hazzard/headlight switch assembly which is sold as one piece. They can be bought for anywhere from about $66 to about $115, depending on the manufacturer. The headlight section is attached to the assembly with 4 small torx bit screws. Once unscrewed, it comes apart easily. The shorted out area will be obvious, due to burning indications.

Tiny
Mechanic116
Mar 3, 2006.
On another note regarding this, I personally know of at least 3 grand ams of this same similar model (same type of headlight switch) that have caught on fire and burned up completely. Since I have discovered this and witnessed the affects of the short, I am certain that those cars caught fire and burned as a result of a shorted out headlight switch. I wonder if there has been a recall or safety alert about this?

Tiny
Mechanic116
Mar 3, 2006.
Dang u really had to look around to find that. Thanks for posting it. I'm going to see if we can get a special forum here for recalls and safety alerts. Maybe this site can help speed up time on recalls.
Thnks and keep up the good work
Jess S.

Tiny
Jpam
Mar 4, 2006.