2001 Mazda 626 Headlight goes off and on while driving

Tiny
YOGIMAN
  • MEMBER
  • 2001 MAZDA 626
:cry:
I recently bought a 2001 Mazda 626 automatic.
Nothing happened to the headlights for three months and last week while I was driving the headlights went off for few seconds on highway and then came back on.
It happened four times so far. It does that for few seconds and comes back on by itself. All the interior lights are on during that time as well as parking lights.
The headlight turn on and off switch doesn't matter when it goes off like that.
The guy where I bought the car replaced the headlight relay but it still does that. What could be the problem?
It is very frustrating and dangerous.

Few other problems with this car:
Electrical:
Cruise control doesn't work, trunk release doesn't work, high beam is not very high.

Mechanical:
Car runs fine but when I stop at red light and then move, it hesitates for portion of a second (like it is slipping gears) and then moves.

But the most important is to fix headlight so it won't go off while driving.
Thank you for any advice.
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Tuesday, January 2nd, 2007 AT 10:56 AM

9 Replies

Tiny
BRUCE HUNT
  • EXPERT
You haven't said whether the headlight itself was replaced. A filament can be broken and yet still work. The filament can open the circuit and then close it and light. Thought. After that I would inspect the wiring for a short.

Hesitation, you make it sound like it is transmission related but it could be engine. I think you should narrow that down. You need to be checking fuses and relays on this vehicle. Even a bad relay on the lights could cause it even though the previous owner replaced it. Check other relays etc. This might solve the other problems you have.
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Tuesday, January 2nd, 2007 AT 11:39 AM
Tiny
YOGIMAN
  • MEMBER
Thank you for reply Bruce.
I don't know if the headlight was replaced or not (no way to find that out).
It only happened 4 times so far in 3 weeks. Headlight goes off for around 5-10 secs and comes back by itself.
I was driving smoothly on a highway, no bumps or curves. All other relays were also replaced.
I can take it to Walmart to replace the bulbs if that helps.

About the hesitation, I feel it is grinding something (I hear 3 or 4 times grinding fast with some sound ghudd. Ghuddd. Ghudddd.) For a split second then only the car moves when moving from stop.
I appreciate your suggestions.
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Tuesday, January 2nd, 2007 AT 1:09 PM
Tiny
BRUCE HUNT
  • EXPERT
Is that hesitation only when it is put from park to drive or do you feel it after coming to a stop while still in drive? Does it do it in reverse?
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Tuesday, January 2nd, 2007 AT 2:04 PM
Tiny
YOGIMAN
  • MEMBER
Hi Bruce,
I don't feel that hesitation that much when driving from parking. Usually I don't even notice it.
But it is very obvious when stopping at red lights and then moving while still in drive.
At some stops it is very obvious and other times its very little. If the vehicle is rolling slowly, it doesn't hesitate at all.
Reverse is fine and smooth.
Thank you for help
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Tuesday, January 2nd, 2007 AT 2:31 PM
Tiny
COSMO
  • MEMBER
HEllo,

A common problem on 626's was the combination/headlight switch itself. They would cut in and out. Try wiggling the headlight switch in the "on" position to see if you can duplicate the issue.

As for the grinding gears. I take it this car is a 4cyl automatic. If it is. This sounds like the beginning of a 1-2 planetary gear failure OR 1-2 clutch band failure. Both kinda common. I would take it to a professional and have it checked. If it needs to be rebuilt, it would be better to have it done now while there are still SOME good parts left in the transmission.

Cosmo. Mazda TEch
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Tuesday, January 2nd, 2007 AT 9:38 PM
Tiny
YOGIMAN
  • MEMBER
Thank you Cosmo.
Will take it for a diagnosis.
For now, I installed a fog light just in case so that at least others will see the car when headlight goes off while driving.
Also will replace headlight bulbs soon.
Wiggling headlight switch doesn't recreate the situation.
I think it is something under the hood.
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Thursday, January 4th, 2007 AT 12:34 PM
Tiny
YOGIMAN
  • MEMBER
Yesterday it happened again,
while driving on the highway, lights went off.
I noticed that not only headlights, but also interior dashboard lights were also off.
What can be the reason?
Thank you for any ideas.
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Wednesday, January 10th, 2007 AT 10:27 AM
Tiny
COSMO
  • MEMBER
I am still leaning towards that combination/light switch

Cosmo. Mazda TEch
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Wednesday, January 10th, 2007 AT 4:31 PM
Tiny
YOGIMAN
  • MEMBER
Thank you Cosmo.
Could a short in wiring cause that problem?

I noticed that lights came on while playing with glove box. But I can not recreate that again.
I think I have no choice than paying for diagnosis and then fix. :-(
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Wednesday, January 10th, 2007 AT 11:28 PM

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