Headlights go on and off as you are driving

  • FWD
  • 60,000 MILES
I've had this car for a few months now. It was garage kept and driven very sparingly just around town. It's in excellent shape, no rust. Interior is pristine and engine and engine compartment are clean. But I've run into one problem lately. When I drive at night and use the lights, they seem to stay on for a little while and then go off and I would pull over and fuss with the switch and they would go on for a few more minutes and then I would have to repeat. The car doesn't stall or anything like that. It's just the lights and I am desperate to fix them so I can go to work and get home safely. Also, it started out with a long lapse between the going off and it was easier to get them back on by fussing with the switch. Now it's super frequent and I can't always get them back on. Help me please!
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have the same problem?
Thursday, September 8th, 2016 AT 12:39 PM

1 Reply

Sounds like something that happened to my Jeep months ago!

Since 1981 I've always had a Jeep CJ

Several times the same thing happened over the years.

The floor dimmer switch has 3 (male) spades into it, the wiring harness to it had 3 females. Seems that when the females get corroded (dampness in Jeep from time to time) or they get a little loose at the connection they get hot!

The plastic connector melts a little and now one of the females is now "loose" and can now wiggle back from it's male mate

The OFF/ ON trick is from the barely getting contact the heat and on my Jeeps, this triggered the circuit breaker to turn on and off.

Yep, you don't have a floor dimmer!

Last time this happened to me, I was dead set on the dimmer!


Fooled Me!

Turns out the same problem was now occurring at the Head light switch connector.

Being that this is one of my babies, I did not try to clean up the switch and repair, as this switch is 40 years old and Mr. Jeep deserves a new one!

I replaced the switch, and the (MY) repair was:

Chopping off the bad female from the wire, crimping on a new one, sorta crunching out the hole in the plastic connector (now distorted from heat) where the wire was originally (the other wires in the connector were fine)

In the end, I plugged in the connector like it was originally

Then I plugged in the "Repaired Wire" back into it's original position thru the original hole in the plastic connector that I had to crunch back out.

Some auto parts stores have the whole connector pigtail which you can cut and butt splice all of the wires back into. Make splices tight, you don't want them to heat up either!

Return with good news!

The Medic
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Thursday, September 8th, 2016 AT 2:03 PM

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