Tail lights not working

Tiny
JOHN1EYE
  • MEMBER
  • 2001 FORD EXPLORER
  • 6 CYL
  • 2WD
  • AUTOMATIC
  • 130,000 MILES
Left rear brake light and turn signal not working. Have changed bulb, socket and checked fuse on dash by drivers door.
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Friday, May 27th, 2011 AT 12:30 AM

23 Replies

Tiny
JDL
  • EXPERT
Did you use a voltage tester at the applicable fuse and stop lamp circuit? Does the highmount brake light work? For the lower brake lites, the stop and turn use the same bulb filament, just not at the same time. The lower brake lights are wired through the turn signal switch. In the diagram, the brown wire is for tail lamps, the other color is for stop and turn voltage. Black is ground.

Here is a guide that will help

https://www.2carpros.com/articles/no-tail-lights-exterior-running-lights-tail-lights-out

Check out the diagrams (Below) see where you are losing power/ground. Please let us know what happens.

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Friday, May 27th, 2011 AT 12:53 AM
Tiny
AMANDA STAFFORD
  • MEMBER
Thanks for this post I found that the socket was bad once I replaced it the lights worked perfect. I love this site.
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Tuesday, November 27th, 2018 AT 11:49 AM
Tiny
PROXMIRE13
  • MEMBER
  • 2002 FORD EXPLORER
  • V8
  • 4WD
  • AUTOMATIC
  • 165,000 MILES
My driver's side tail light will not work. I repalced the bulb twice. I tried the new bulb in the passenger side and the bulb worked, so it's not the bulbs. I tried the outlet the bulb plugs into on the drivers side on the passenger side and it works. So I checked the fuses under the sterring wheel, ALL OF THEM. No bad ones. I did not check any under the hood. The turn signal and brake light works on the drivers side but not the regular tail light. I don't get it. Please help.
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Tuesday, November 27th, 2018 AT 11:50 AM (Merged)
Tiny
JACOBANDNICKOLAS
  • EXPERT
Have you checked for power to the socket with a test lights? The socket itself may be bad and not making a connection. THe brake and signal light work from a different circuit and element. As far as under the hood, check the fuses, but I don't think there are seperate circuits for the left and right driving light.
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Tuesday, November 27th, 2018 AT 11:50 AM (Merged)
Tiny
PROXMIRE13
  • MEMBER
I have not checked with test lights, but I did do a voltmeter test on the drivers and passengers side. I have 14v on the passenger side and 2 v on the drivers side. I switched the socket to the passenger side and it worked fine. So what do I do now? I did check all the fuses under the hood.I didn't see any issues.
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Tuesday, November 27th, 2018 AT 11:50 AM (Merged)
Tiny
EXPLORER2003
  • MEMBER
Funny I have the exact same problem. My Rear drivers side running light will not come on with the headlight switch turned on. The brake lights work fine, turn signals work fine regardless of whether headlights/running lights are on. I have changed bulbs and sockets and no change. Also, there is a common ground and two supplys to the socket. The supply voltage to the brake / turn signal is 11.64 volts to ground pin (with no alternator running) and the supply for the running light is a volt lower approximately 10.49v. This looks like a loose or broken wire somewhere. I am thinking difference of potential but no current flow which is possible. Was thinking of splicing in the trailer hot for running light since the common ground cannot be the issue?
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Tuesday, November 27th, 2018 AT 11:50 AM (Merged)
Tiny
PROXMIRE13
  • MEMBER
Yeah I was trying to avoid splicing anything, but it looks like I'm going to have to back track the wires to see where the issue is. Sounds not fun.
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Tuesday, November 27th, 2018 AT 11:50 AM (Merged)
Tiny
PROXMIRE13
  • MEMBER
I never did find the issue, I back tracked the wires to behind the drivers seat and then gave up. I spliced in a wire form the brown wire on the passenger side taillight, and feed a new line to the brown on the drivers side tail light and spliced it in. Not what I wanted to do. But I'm not riping my car apart.
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+1
Tuesday, November 27th, 2018 AT 11:50 AM (Merged)
Tiny
BOB22858
  • MEMBER
  • 1998 FORD EXPLORER
  • 120,000 MILES
Turn signals, backup, flashers, brake lights all work, but no parking or tail lights.I've replaced bulbs, and light switch. The lights come on automatically at night, but sometimes lights will go out for a few seconds
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Tuesday, November 27th, 2018 AT 11:50 AM (Merged)
Tiny
SATURNTECH9
  • EXPERT
If the parking lights are inop have you checked to see if the parking lights fuse is blown and made sure you have power to both sides of the fuse?
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Tuesday, November 27th, 2018 AT 11:50 AM (Merged)
Tiny
BOB22858
  • MEMBER
All fuses are good.
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Tuesday, November 27th, 2018 AT 11:50 AM (Merged)
Tiny
SATURNTECH9
  • EXPERT
Alright so both sides of the parking lights fuse has power to it?Also do you have a multimeter to do some testing?
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Tuesday, November 27th, 2018 AT 11:50 AM (Merged)
Tiny
BOB22858
  • MEMBER
I found the problem myself.
It was a bad parking lamp relay.
Thanks for the suggestions though.
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Tuesday, November 27th, 2018 AT 11:50 AM (Merged)
Tiny
SATURNTECH9
  • EXPERT
Your welcome glad to hear you got all figured out.
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Tuesday, November 27th, 2018 AT 11:51 AM (Merged)
Tiny
MMAA238
  • MEMBER
  • 1998 FORD EXPLORER
  • 0.5L
  • 6 CYL
  • 2WD
  • AUTOMATIC
  • 137,600 MILES
I just bought a 1998 ford explorer xlt 2w drive. It does have a savage title, they had to replace the driver side top panel and the driver side door has a dent. Also the windshield is crack on the driver side in the corner. All the lights work in front, signals, headlights, and running lights.
Now all the lights in the rear don't work. Turn signal, brake lights nothing works. Do you think you may know what the problem is?

Thank you
Margie
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Tuesday, November 27th, 2018 AT 11:51 AM (Merged)
Tiny
HMAC300
  • EXPERT
Check all the fuses in pic then have a local pro look at it for shorts in wiring or if taillights are getting power. Having a salvage title could be anything wrong like a harness cut etc.
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Tuesday, November 27th, 2018 AT 11:51 AM (Merged)
Tiny
MAJOH47
  • MEMBER
  • 1997 FORD EXPLORER
  • 6 CYL
  • 4WD
  • AUTOMATIC
  • 300,000 MILES
Tail lights are not working
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Tuesday, November 27th, 2018 AT 11:51 AM (Merged)
Tiny
JACOBANDNICKOLAS
  • EXPERT
Do any of the tail lights work?
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Tuesday, November 27th, 2018 AT 11:51 AM (Merged)
Tiny
MAJOH47
  • MEMBER
All light work fine just the tail light
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Tuesday, November 27th, 2018 AT 11:51 AM (Merged)
Tiny
CHRISTIANC.
  • MEMBER
  • 2001 FORD EXPLORER
  • 4 CYL
  • 2WD
  • AUTOMATIC
  • 94,000 MILES
On my Sport Trac The Brake Lamp and the Turn Signal Light on the driver side rear do not operate. The Run Lamp does work. I replaced it with new bulbs over and over again and no improvement. All other lamps front and passenger rear do work. I checked with a light tester and no current in the socket. Pierced the wires near the socket, same thing no current. Checked fuses in Cabin and Engine Compartment. What could this be.
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Tuesday, November 27th, 2018 AT 11:51 AM (Merged)

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