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Thread: Reverse lights not working

  1. #1
    Supporting Member Turbo Mopar Contributor supercrackerbox's Avatar
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    Reverse lights not working

    '89 Daytona ES- Here's what I know:

    Tail lights all work except the back up lights. Lighting harness has a good ground. I've confirmed continuity from the reverse switch on the transmission (violet/black wire) through the engine harness and all the way to the back.

    The fuse is good, however I'm not reading any power to the #2 fuse cavity. Of all the options that fuse feeds in addition to the back up lights, this car only has the rear defrost (checking that next). Where I'm lost is all the places the B1 (white wire) goes so I can start tracing that. I'm working with an '88 manual, but so far everything has lined up. Basically I'm hoping someone has had and solved this problem or has suggestions of where to go next before I start tearing out half the dash.

  2. #2
    Supporting Member II Turbo Mopar Contributor
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    Re: Reverse lights not working

    Is the reverse switch actually *working*? You said you have continuity, but that only means there's connection. Also, what is the resistance reading? It's possible to have continuity, but still have a bad connection...I learned that the hard way. Also, what about the sockets themselves?

  3. #3
    Supporting Member Turbo Mopar Contributor supercrackerbox's Avatar
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    Re: Reverse lights not working

    Sockets are all really nice and clean. I used a pair of 6v lantern batteries and confirmed that the lights do actually come on with power applied to the harness. Resistance reading has been about 0.04-0.06 ohms on my meter. The black 8-way connector under the hood is super greasy but I had a similar ohm reading when I back-probed the two sides of the connector. I do plan to disassemble and clean the connector and wiring regardless.

    As for the switch, I'm not sure how to test it; I've never actually worked on an automatic car before. Think maybe I should try to find another switch to swap in?

  4. #4
    Rhymes with tortoise. Turbo Mopar Staff cordes's Avatar
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    Re: Reverse lights not working

    My guess is there is no continuity in anything other than reverse. I would check it when in park, then in reverse. For extra piece of mind before throwing parts at it, you can check the whole sweep to make sure it's not an adjustment issue somehow.

  5. #5
    Supporting Member Turbo Mopar Contributor supercrackerbox's Avatar
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    Re: Reverse lights not working

    Well I played around with it a bit more. After turning the key to power, I moved the shifter to neutral and then to reverse. The lights came on for about ten seconds and then suddenly went out. The fuse is still good. But I haven't been able to get them to come on again after that.

  6. #6
    Supporting Member II Turbo Mopar Contributor 85lebaront2's Avatar
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    Re: Reverse lights not working

    Suggestion, remove the connector from the switch and jumper the connections on the plug, this takes the switch out of the picture. If the lights work then it is either a bad connection at the switch or the switch is bad.

    If they do not come on for this test, first check the feed into the switch (white wire) if it still has power then the fun begins. The violet/black stripe wire goes through the bulkhead connector, then to the left side 25 way connector in the end of the dash. From there it runs down the left side under the sill plate. In the rear, under the rear lighting access cover is another plug a black 4 pin one, any corrosion in it will cause problems. Basically as you follow the VT/BK wire through the various connections one is probably going to be either corroded or loose.
    "growing old is inevitable, growing up is optional"
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  7. #7
    Supporting Member Turbo Mopar Contributor supercrackerbox's Avatar
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    Re: Reverse lights not working

    Cool, will do. I picked up another switch today just in case but I'll follow those lines. I believe the car had a high end stereo in it at some point because when I pulled back the sail panels to do the tail lights I found that it was lined with Dynamat- the name brand stuff even. The left sill plate only has a couple screws left in it, so I planned on checking to see if they lined the floor too. I just hope if it is lined they didn't put it over the wiring.

  8. #8
    Supporting Member Turbo Mopar Contributor supercrackerbox's Avatar
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    Re: Reverse lights not working

    Okay so I tested the new switch on the bench and got continuity between the two outer pins, which the old one did not do. I also jumped the pinouts in the plug, and the lights worked as they should. Plugged in the new switch and all is well. Thanks for all the help guys.

  9. #9
    Supporting Member II Turbo Mopar Contributor
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    Re: Reverse lights not working

    So what do I win for being right!? :P

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