High Beam Headlights not working.

Tiny
BMARGO81
  • MEMBER
  • 2002 CHEVROLET CAVALIER
Electrical problem 4 cyl Two Wheel Drive Manual 107000 miles

When I switch from my low beam head lights to the high beams the head lights go completely out. The High beam light on the dash lights up, but no high beams. When I switch back to the low beams they work fine. When I start the car up and leave the day time running lights on they flash on and off about 15 times and then the service light goes on on my dash. So my daytime running lamps and normal headlights stopped working. My high beams work fine. I have already replaced my DRL relay, cleaned and hard wired the grounds under the battery box, and cleaned and hardwired the junction box that normally gets corroded under the battery box (even though it wasn't that bad). So when I start the car, everything is the way is supposed to be. But when I disengage the parking brake, My drl relay clicks, my DRL flickers on and than stays off, my DRL symbol on dash flickers on than stays off, then the service engine light turns on. My regular headlights still dont work, but high beams work. Also, both bulbs have been replaced with brand new ones. What might still be the problem? Im scratching my head on this one.
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Friday, April 3rd, 2009 AT 5:05 PM

26 Replies

Tiny
KEN
  • ADMIN
Hello,

It sounds like you have a a headlight control switch that is out. Here are the headlight wiring diagrams so you can see how the system works.

Test for power output of the switch to confirm the failure.

https://www.2carpros.com/articles/how-to-use-a-test-light-circuit-tester

Check out the diagrams (Below)

Please let us know if you need anything else to get the problem fixed.

Cheers, Ken
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Saturday, April 4th, 2009 AT 8:06 AM
Tiny
RPJOVINGO
  • MEMBER
I am dealing with this same issue. Had to remove the tube leading from air filter to intake box. There is a mullinex connector kinda laying over the trans. It isn't making a good connection there. I used two zip ties to bring it together. Was working and it started doing it agian. Tightened the zip ties more. Good to go working fine now, no problems.
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Thursday, February 22nd, 2018 AT 1:06 PM (Merged)
Tiny
MIKE4206996
  • MEMBER
  • 2002 CHEVROLET CAVALIER
  • 4 CYL
  • 2WD
  • MANUAL
  • 138,000 MILES
When I start my 2002 chevy cavalier all the dash lights come on and gauges work like they should but when I start to drive the car all the dash lights remain to stay on all of my gauges drop down to zero and my headlights start to flicker. And every now and then the battery just gets drained out. I have tried unhooking battery then hooking it back. Checked dash cluster fuses they are fine. Check alternator to make sure it was charging battery. Nothing fixed the problem any other suggestions to fix it?
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Thursday, February 22nd, 2018 AT 1:06 PM (Merged)
Tiny
CARADIODOC
  • EXPERT
Forget the fuses because this is an intermittent problem that doesn't act up all the time. A blown fuse won't work sometimes.

Lets start with the two most common symptoms, the drained battery and the flickering head lights. GM has had a real common problem with their generators that were redesigned for the 1987 model year. Due to their design, they develop huge voltage spikes that can destroy the internal diodes and voltage regulator, and can interfere with computer sensor signals.

Normally you can do the first half of testing the charging system by measuring the battery voltage with an inexpensive digital voltmeter. It must be between 13.75 and 14.75 volts with the engine running. With GM's systems though that is not sufficient. When one of the six diodes fails, all you'll be able to get is exactly one third of the generator's design value for current, but battery voltage will usually still be okay. 30 amps from the common 90 amp generator is not sufficient to meet the needs of the electrical system under all conditions. The battery will have to make up the difference until it slowly runs down.

Also with one bad diode, one phase of the three-phase output will be lost, and that results in very high "ripple" voltage. The second half of the tests requires a professional load tester. Those will measure full-load output current and ripple voltage. Those two tests will identify a bad diode. You can't do that any other way except to draw conclusions from the symptoms you have. If it is determined the generator needs to be replaced, you must replace the battery at the same time unless it is less than about two years old. The battery is the key component in damping and absorbing those harmful voltage spikes, but it loses its ability to do that as it ages and the lead flakes off the plates.

The dash problem might be related to a charging system problem too because the instrument cluster is no longer the simple and reliable set of gauges and lights it used to be. It's now a very complicated and unreliable computer module, and as such, it is susceptible to those voltage spikes.
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Thursday, February 22nd, 2018 AT 1:06 PM (Merged)
Tiny
AZAMORA619
  • MEMBER
  • 2002 CHEVROLET CAVALIER
  • 2.2L
  • 4 CYL
  • FWD
  • AUTOMATIC
  • 125,000 MILES
I have a 2002 cavalier with a 2.2L engine, car had been parked for a month and yesterday when trying to turn on the headlights, they did no come on. Neither low or high beam. Checked all the fuses and relays and noting. Also when I push the headlight switch lever towards the driver to change from low beam to high beam it unlocks the driver door only. What could be the issue? Is it a bad BCM? Or what else could it be.
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Thursday, February 22nd, 2018 AT 1:06 PM (Merged)
Tiny
CADIEMAN
  • MEMBER
Does the car start properly
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Thursday, February 22nd, 2018 AT 1:06 PM (Merged)
Tiny
AZAMORA619
  • MEMBER
Yes the car starts properly.
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Thursday, February 22nd, 2018 AT 1:06 PM (Merged)
Tiny
CADIEMAN
  • MEMBER
SORRY FOR THE DELAY. USE A TEST LIGHT TO CHECK FOR POWER AT THE HEADLAMP SOCKETS. IF POWER IS THEIR REPLACE THE BULBS. IF NOT REMOVE THE LOWER DASH PANEL AND CHECK FOR POWER AT THE DIMMER SWITCH. IT'S ON THE LOWER PART OF THE STEERING COL. YOU WILL SEE A ROD GOING TO IT MOVE WHEN YOU TRY TO DIM THE LIGHTS.3 WIRES GO TO IT.1 HAS POWER GOING TO IT WHEN YOU TURN THE LIGHTS ON. THEN CHECK TO SEE IF THE POWER GOES TO THE OTHER 2 WIRES WHILE YOU OPERATE THE DIMMER SWITCH, START HERE
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Thursday, February 22nd, 2018 AT 1:06 PM (Merged)
Tiny
AZAMORA619
  • MEMBER
I have checked for power at the headlamp socket and there is power. I changed bulbs with new ones and still have no lights. So what else should I check. Also why is the headlamp switch unlocking the driver door, when ever the headlight switch is pressed towards driver to change from low beam to high beams?
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Thursday, February 22nd, 2018 AT 1:06 PM (Merged)
Tiny
CADIEMAN
  • MEMBER
Now u will need to ck. The ground. Hook the test light to the positive post on the battery. Then u need to push into the black wire at the socket. The test light should light.
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Thursday, February 22nd, 2018 AT 1:06 PM (Merged)
Tiny
CSPERLAZZA
  • MEMBER
  • 2002 CHEVROLET CAVALIER
  • 175,000 MILES
02 chevy cavalier z24 2.4l automaticMy DRL and my low beams will not work, but my high beams will. I have replaced the relay switch and replaced the bulbs still not luck any suggestions?
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Thursday, February 22nd, 2018 AT 1:06 PM (Merged)
Tiny
DOCFIXIT
  • EXPERT
Suspect faulty multi-function switch
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Thursday, February 22nd, 2018 AT 1:06 PM (Merged)
Tiny
CSPERLAZZA
  • MEMBER
I went and bought a new multi-function switch. I am now able to turn the high beams off but I still have no drl or low beams. Any other suggestions?
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Thursday, February 22nd, 2018 AT 1:06 PM (Merged)
Tiny
DOCFIXIT
  • EXPERT
Check splice connector 102 under battery tray known problem due to corrison will interupt ground for LOW and DRL
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Thursday, February 22nd, 2018 AT 1:06 PM (Merged)
Tiny
CSPERLAZZA
  • MEMBER
  • 2002 CHEVROLET CAVALIER
  • 175,000 MILES
I have low beams but my drl will not work and only the passenger side high beam will come on. At first I had no drl and no low beams only high beams worked. It seems that its the pink wire on the driver side that causing the problem but I am unsure of a soultion on how to fix this pink wire since it works on the passenger side. Please help been trying to fix this problem since wed!
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Thursday, February 22nd, 2018 AT 1:06 PM (Merged)
Tiny
CJ MEDEVAC
  • EXPERT
I'M SORRY I CANNOT BE MORE HELP. IMMA JEEP CJ KINDA GUY MOSTLY

MAYBE THIS DIAGRAM WITH HELP YOU. IT'S FROM "MITCHELL I", AND IT'S EZ TO READ

IF YOU CANNOT SEE IT WELL---TELL ME

I CAN INITIATE A WAY TO GET YOU THE ORIGINAL DOWNLOAD WITHOUT YOU BLURTING OUT YOUR EMAIL ADDRESS IN OPEN FORUM!

HERE IT IS

THE MEDIC
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Thursday, February 22nd, 2018 AT 1:06 PM (Merged)
Tiny
DSANDERS1111
  • MEMBER
  • 2002 CHEVROLET CAVALIER
Electrical problem
2002 Chevy Cavalier 4 cyl Front Wheel Drive Automatic

For some reason, I can't get my radio to come on, the exterior headlamps don't work, nor any other item inside the car. I changed all the fuses, but I still have the same problem. I would appreciate if someone could tell me what the problem might be. Thanks!
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Thursday, February 22nd, 2018 AT 1:06 PM (Merged)
Tiny
BLUELIGHTNIN6
  • EXPERT
Does engine start good? Test charging system.
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Thursday, February 22nd, 2018 AT 1:06 PM (Merged)
Tiny
DSANDERS1111
  • MEMBER
Yes, the engine starts good. The door locks work and the turn signal. But the horn don't work, the gages on the panel don't work, the lights inside the car, nor the exterior headlamps work. I was wondering about the car sensors. What do you think?
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Thursday, February 22nd, 2018 AT 1:06 PM (Merged)
Tiny
BLUELIGHTNIN6
  • EXPERT
Not a sensor, all related to wiring at or near the headlight switch on steering column though. Will need to pop open steering column to inspect the wiring to see if something is damaged or loose.
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Thursday, February 22nd, 2018 AT 1:06 PM (Merged)

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