1994 Toyota Camry Electrical Short in Tailight Circuit (inc

  • 4 CYL
  • FWD
  • 230,000 MILES
The car recently developed a short in the tailight electrical circuit.

In the fuse panel on the left side of the dashboard I found a blown 15 amp fuse in the tailight circuit which also included the dash illumination.

My Son drives the car and one evening he said the dash lights would not work.

I investigated and found the blown fuse. I installed another fuse, but as soon as the lights are turned on the fuse blows, direct short somewhere.

I had recently replaced the stereo, so checked everything there and all is OK stereo works and has power when the key is on.

The other power cable (full time for clock in stereo) is however dead as it is part of the tailight circuit.

I have power at the fuse point when the lights are on. So somewhere there is a short.

I have also looked at the cigarette lighter, the light on the lighter and the light on the ashtray and have disassembled both tailights and can find no exposed wires of burned areas.

I guess I will look inside the dash next.

Any suggestions you have on where to look or what may be causing the problem would be appreciated.

I am at a loss as to how to trace the circuit and find the short.
Do you
have the same problem?
Wednesday, February 20th, 2008 AT 3:27 PM

1 Reply


I have the "feeling" that the problem its on the stereo wiring, there is a "dimmer controlled wire (+) " on most radios that "dim" the lights of the radio, you could use for something else because when the lights are off that wire reads like ground (every light bulb its grounded as a closed circuit). And probably it is connected to the radio as a ground and actually the frame its conducting the "(-)" to that wire and making a short circuit.
Do a test disconnecting the radio replace the fuse and check if blows again.

Let us know!

Good luck!
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Wednesday, February 20th, 2008 AT 6:50 PM

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