Running lights not working

Tiny
MODYTODAY
  • MEMBER
  • 1999 DODGE DAKOTA
  • 17,500 MILES
I have replaced tail light bulbs. What is the fuse # for 1999 dodge dakota tail lights and where is it located? I have no tail lights.
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Monday, December 5th, 2011 AT 9:58 PM

43 Replies

Tiny
WRENCHTECH
  • EXPERT
Fuse #14 (15amp) under the dash. Here is a guide to help you test for power and the fuse location below with the wiring diagrams so you can see how the system works.

https://www.2carpros.com/articles/how-to-check-a-car-fuse

Check out the diagrams (Below). Please let us know what you find. We are interested to see what it is.
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Monday, December 5th, 2011 AT 10:37 PM
Tiny
SHANNON_PRIV
  • MEMBER
I had this problem and found the connection at the switch to be bad, thanks for this post fixed my truck!
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Monday, December 5th, 2011 AT 10:38 PM
Tiny
MODYTODAY
  • MEMBER
  • 1999 DODGE DAKOTA
  • 17,500 MILES
I have a 1999 Dodge Dakota with no tail lights. I have replaced both bulbs and checked the fuse and it is ok. What else can I check maybe a relay. If so what # and what is it labeled?
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Wednesday, January 2nd, 2019 AT 1:15 PM (Merged)
Tiny
JACOBANDNICKOLAS
  • EXPERT
Check to see if there is power to the light sockets. Many times the socket itself will go bad. Also, check the wiring under the bed for damage or bad grounds.
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Wednesday, January 2nd, 2019 AT 1:15 PM (Merged)
Tiny
MODYTODAY
  • MEMBER
I found the problem. The wiring harness was loose on the back of the switch.
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Wednesday, January 2nd, 2019 AT 1:15 PM (Merged)
Tiny
JACOBANDNICKOLAS
  • EXPERT
That will do it. Glad you found it.
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Wednesday, January 2nd, 2019 AT 1:15 PM (Merged)
Tiny
PHIL SIZEMORE
  • MEMBER
  • 1998 DODGE DAKOTA
  • 199,000 MILES
I have changed bulbs an small fuses don't know wat else could be hopefully you can help me don't have back up lights turn signals work brake lights work license plate lights don't work wat else do I need to do chaged the fuses in the fuse box in the cab and under hood small ones only its a dodge Dakota 4x4 98 model um that's about it
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Wednesday, January 2nd, 2019 AT 1:15 PM (Merged)
Tiny
WRENCHTECH
  • EXPERT
The tag lights and back up lights are on entirely different circuits so the only way they can be connected is if there is a problem with the harness going to the rear. The tag lights are on the same circuit as the tail lights so if they work, the problem is in the wiring or tag light sockets.
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Wednesday, January 2nd, 2019 AT 1:15 PM (Merged)
Tiny
MOUSEY425
  • MEMBER
  • 1993 DODGE DAKOTA
  • V8
  • 2WD
  • AUTOMATIC
  • 300,000 MILES
In my truck I have headlight but no tail light, dashlight and front parking lights are out trun singles work ok. I have checked fuse all ok and replace the headlight switch but still no not working pls help
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Wednesday, January 2nd, 2019 AT 1:16 PM (Merged)
Tiny
JACOBANDNICKOLAS
  • EXPERT
Wow! I thought I had a lot of miles on mine at 221K. I hope it last that long.

As far as the electrical, have you checked fuses under the hood? Have you checked for any disconnected wires under the dash? Finally, have you checked the high beam switch on the column?
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Wednesday, January 2nd, 2019 AT 1:16 PM (Merged)
Tiny
JDL
  • EXPERT
Did you check voltage to and from the headlamp switch? The black wire with yellow tracer carries voltage for tail-lamps. Use a voltage tester on the wire, head lamp switch on. If no voltage, check the feed wire to the headlamp switch for tail lamps, above in the diagram.


http://www.2carpros.com/forum/automotive_pictures/170934_dakota_headlamp_switch_2.jpg

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Wednesday, January 2nd, 2019 AT 1:16 PM (Merged)
Tiny
GOLIASTRO
  • MEMBER
  • 1996 DODGE DAKOTA
  • 6 CYL
  • 2WD
  • AUTOMATIC
The rear lights have power when tested, but are not working. Is the ground wire the problem, and where is the ground wire located?
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Wednesday, January 2nd, 2019 AT 1:16 PM (Merged)
Tiny
JACOBANDNICKOLAS
  • EXPERT
If you are getting power using a seperate test light, it could be a bad ground or the socket may be worn and the light itself isn't making a good contact inside. Check that.
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Wednesday, January 2nd, 2019 AT 1:16 PM (Merged)
Tiny
DSPENCEREDDMFG@HOTMAIL.CO
  • MEMBER
  • 1999 DODGE DAKOTA
  • V8
  • 4WD
  • AUTOMATIC
  • 98,000 MILES
Please advise the proper way to take taillight lens (cover) off in order to change bulb. Thx Don Spencer
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Wednesday, January 2nd, 2019 AT 1:16 PM (Merged)
Tiny
JEEPFAN
  • MEMBER
I believe on your truck you lower the tailgate and look where the gate shuts and the screws go into the side of the light
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Wednesday, January 2nd, 2019 AT 1:16 PM (Merged)
Tiny
BUCK211
  • MEMBER
  • 1990 DODGE DAKOTA
  • 3.9L
  • V6
  • 2WD
  • AUTOMATIC
  • 220,225 MILES
Recently had tail lights an dash lights go out. Found burnt wiring from previous owner. Replaced or repaired all bad wires. Now head/brake lights, front/rear turn signal work. However tail lights and front side signals do not. Not a blown fuse or bulb. Checked those. Have replaced every burnt wire an made proper connections according to Haynes manual. My headlights also now turn on with the first pull of switch, any ideas where I may have went wrong or better color wire d gram from headlight switch to fuse box?
Thank you for reading this, any and all help or information is appreciated.

Rob W
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Wednesday, January 2nd, 2019 AT 1:16 PM (Merged)
Tiny
CARADIODOC
  • EXPERT
Sounds like you switched some wires, but given the recent history, it is also possible some wires are still melted together. Because of the unusual situation, I recommend going right to the head light switch connector and jumping various wires together so we can see what works properly and what doesn't.

To start, remove the head light switch and unplug its connector. Use a jumper wire or stretched-out paper clip and connect the red wire to the light green wire. Be careful with the colors because there is also a light green with black tracer. You want the light green with no tracer. The head lights should turn on and the dimmer switch should work properly. Be sure the high-beam indicator turns on full brightness when the high beams are on. The tail lights, running lights, and dash lights should not be on. If everything is correct so far, remove that jumper wire.

Next, jump the pink to the black/yellow. The tail lights and running lights should turn on. The dash lights should not turn on, but if the ignition switch is on, the radio's display should go very dim. Check the flash-to-pass function with the dimmer switch. No head lights or other lights should turn on.

Where were the burned wires and how did you repair them? Were any switch terminals overheated? Where there overheated terminals in a connector?
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Wednesday, January 2nd, 2019 AT 1:16 PM (Merged)
Tiny
BUCK211
  • MEMBER
To Cardiodoc:

Thank you for replying, the burnt wires were from headlight switch. They were pink and black/Yellow. Pink wire burnt from switch to fuse box. Then the black/Yellow burnt from switch to where it connects with harness at firewall, an from there to radio. The headlight switch also burnt out at the spots where those wires connected to it. All wires and connections were replaced with same exact wires from harness from parts truck. Headlight switch also replaced. Fuses checked, bulbs checked. Good.
Was curious if you could tell me how I may have the headlights hooked up to come on with first pull of switch? Also, thank you for the information on trying the jump wire. Will be trying after work tomorrow. Will update ASAP.
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Wednesday, January 2nd, 2019 AT 1:16 PM (Merged)
Tiny
BUCK211
  • MEMBER
Pictures are of headlight switch and connector. I do not know if that helps or not. Again, any and all Information appreciated.
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Wednesday, January 2nd, 2019 AT 1:16 PM (Merged)
Tiny
CARADIODOC
  • EXPERT
I can see by the first photo this was not caused by the switch. Any time you have a mechanical connection, meaning the contacts inside the switch, and the terminals in the plug that mate to the terminals in the switch, anything less than a perfect connection causes a little resistance, and current flowing through a resistance generates heat. That heat expands the terminals to create more resistance, and that makes more heat. When that starts with a pitted or arced contact in the switch, the heat migrates out to the terminals and makes them black. It also overheats the first four inches of those wires, but not to the point of melting the insulation. That part of the wire will just become real hard, and solder will not adhere to it, so that four inches must be replaced.

The additional clue is the total length of the wires has melted insulation. That means something on that line was shorted to ground. One real good suspect is if the truck has an aftermarket radio. The tail light circuit goes to the original radio to tell the display to dim at night. A different wire from the dash lights also goes to the radio to tell the display how much to dim. The clinker is there is no ground wire in the connectors for the radio. The ground is made through the braided strap bolted to the back of the radio. When people install an aftermarket radio, they often use an ohm meter to figure out which is the ground wire, and they mistakenly find the black/yellow because the meter reads through the tail light bulbs, then to ground. The same thing can happen with the orange wire at the radio, but that one goes through a fuse first, so it would just blow that dash light fuse. (Between the fuse and head light switch, that is a tan wire).

There is a 20-amp fuse in the pink supply wire, but if it did not blow, that means there was enough current flowing to overheat the wire eventually, but less than 20 amps. That is unless someone put in a larger fuse. If the black/yellow wire was used for the ground for an aftermarket radio, that circuit would have gone to ground through the radio's metal case, then through the outer shield on the antenna cable, and to ground through the base of the antenna into the fender. That is a dandy ground for shielding out interference, but it is a terrible ground for current flow. That could explain why not enough current flowed to blow the fuse.

Check fuse number five and be sure it is a 20-amp. If someone stuffed a larger one in there, and a proper 20-amp blows, that is a good thing. I have a trick for working with that.

Let me know what you find after jumping those two wire pairs. Be careful when you do that. If something is shorted, ten to fifteen amps through a stretched-out paper clip will turn it red-hot. It is best to not be holding onto it for very long that way.
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Wednesday, January 2nd, 2019 AT 1:16 PM (Merged)

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