Turn signals and emergency flasher not working and will not start

Tiny
GRAMPAS5150
  • MEMBER
  • 2003 SATURN ION
  • 4 CYL
  • 2WD
  • AUTOMATIC
  • 268,000 MILES
All turn signals work except left rear. New bulbs have been put in. The signal indicator flashes one time when I turn on the left turn signal and that's it. The right side works perfect. Emergency flashers don't work at all. I don't think the button even clicks. Also the car has started fine. I start it every two days or so. This morning it was completely dead looks to be a new battery. Just bought it from someone else. Any ideals as to any of my problems?
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Thursday, May 21st, 2020 AT 6:15 PM

10 Replies

Tiny
JACOBANDNICKOLAS
  • EXPERT
Hi,

Does the left front signal turn on or do anything? I'm asking because the power supply to the left rear signal is provided by the body control module. So, to start I need you to check for power to the yellow wire on the left rear signal bulb.

I attached two pics. The first is the body control module showing how power is distributed. The second is at the light itself (rear) showing the yellow wire I'm referring to.

Do this and let me know what you find.

Joe
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Thursday, May 21st, 2020 AT 8:18 PM
Tiny
GRAMPAS5150
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Joe, after I wrote the earlier question I went and rechecked the turn signals and found that out of the four blinkers only the front left one is working. The blinker indicator on the dash the left one flashes just once when lever is pushed down and when lever is pushed down for the right side the indicator light flashes normal even though the outside lights don't work.
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Friday, May 22nd, 2020 AT 3:28 AM
Tiny
JACOBANDNICKOLAS
  • EXPERT
Hi,

If you are sure the bulbs are good, chances are it is either the switch or the logic module in the body control module. Ugh! I miss the old days. LOL

Listen, here is what I suggest to save us from replacing parts that are good. What really needs done is to have the computer scanned for what are called (B) codes. That will scan the body control module and see if it is the switch or the module itself. I hate to ask you to do that, but like I mentioned, I don't want to replace good parts.

If you could have that done, let me know what codes are found.

Let me know.
Joe
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Friday, May 22nd, 2020 AT 7:26 PM
Tiny
GRAMPAS5150
  • MEMBER
Does it take a special computer or can a place like AutoZone do or will a code reader work?
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Friday, May 22nd, 2020 AT 8:13 PM
Tiny
JACOBANDNICKOLAS
  • EXPERT
Hi:
Chances are Auto Zone won't have a scan tool that can read body control module codes. You could ask or at least let them try.

Let me know if you have other questions.

Joe
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Saturday, May 23rd, 2020 AT 10:41 PM
Tiny
GRAMPAS5150
  • MEMBER
Another question for you. About every two days ill go out to start the car and it will just click.I can hook up jumpers to it and it fires right up. And will so for two days and then it does it again. This the second time in a row that it had done this.I dont know much about the car since I just bought it. As far as I know there is no light on anywhere and I start it every day. It only clicks once when I turn the key. Doesnt even make a noise as if it was trying to turn over. And it doesnt make the several clicking noises om use to when the battery is dead. Any ideals?
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Sunday, May 24th, 2020 AT 11:40 AM
Tiny
JACOBANDNICKOLAS
  • EXPERT
Hi:
Okay, the most common cause of what you described is a loose or corroded battery terminal and is really easy to fix. Take a look through this link:

https://www.2carpros.com/articles/everything-goes-dead-when-engine-is-cranked

If that isn't helpful, then do this. Keeping in mind the battery or the alternator can be failing, we need to check one thing at a time. What I want you to do is when the car is running, take it to a parts store and ask them to load test the battery. That way we will know if the battery is just weak. In most cases, they will do it free of charge hoping to sell you a battery.

If you can't take it, here is a link that explains how to load test one at home.

https://www.2carpros.com/articles/car-battery-load-test

Next, if the battery passes, either have them test the alternator at the same time or you can do it yourself. All you need is a multi meter or volt meter. Here is a link that shows how it's done.

https://www.2carpros.com/articles/how-to-check-a-car-alternator

When you check the alternator output, with the engine off, battery voltage should be around 12v. With the engine running, it should be near 14v on the meter.

If everything checks good, we will need to check for a voltage draw, but I'm not going to overwhelm you with that at this point.

Do this and let me know what you find. If possible, let me know the voltages you find if you do it yourself.

I will watch for your reply.

Take care,
Joe
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Sunday, May 24th, 2020 AT 7:53 PM
Tiny
GRAMPAS5150
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Ok I will see about getting both tested but just to make that its not the starter getting stuck or going out. Remember when a battery would fail you would get a bunch of clicks or starter would drag when the key is turned. There is only one click when the key is turned
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Sunday, May 24th, 2020 AT 8:12 PM
Tiny
JACOBANDNICKOLAS
  • EXPERT
Hi:
If the battery is good and you get one click, it is either the starter itself or a weak connection. Keep in mind, the starter places the heaviest load on the electrical system in the car. If there is a weak, loose, or corroded connection, usually you will get one click and then connection is temporarily lost. Since it starts right up when you jump start it, the first thing I would check are the terminals on the battery. Make sure there is nothing loose or corroded. I say that because when you attach jumper cables, the clamp on the cable can be allowing the terminal to tighten on the battery post and make the connection.

Please feel free to let me know if you have other questions. Also, I don't feel the starter is bad simply because it works properly when jump started. Even though there are two batteries, they still only supply 12v.

Let me know if I can help.

Joe
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+1
Sunday, May 24th, 2020 AT 8:49 PM
Tiny
GRAMPAS5150
  • MEMBER
Joe, just wanted you to know I will do what you recommend, it may take me a few days ir longer because im waiting on paperwork from DMV so the car will be legal to drive. So dont forget about me and visa versa. Bring back the old days!
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Monday, May 25th, 2020 AT 7:43 AM

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