Headlights stopped working - Defender Source
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  #1  
Old September 24th, 2012, 02:30 PM
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Ian Anderson
1985 110 RHD V8 "Buster"
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Headlights stopped working

Hi Folks,

I have a RHD 1985 110 V8 and a couple of weeks ago both headlamps quit working at the same time. I've tried the usual things:

1. Replaced the headlight switch in the steering column
2. Checked the fuses (and even replaced them all, just in case)
3. Jiggled all the wiring connections I can find in the wings and back to the fire wall


No luck. Headlamps refuse the come on. Sidelights work fine. Headlamps even come on in High Beam / Intermittent, but not in Highbeam / Constant.

Any suggestions on what to check next would be greatly appreciated.

Cheers

Ian
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  #2  
Old September 24th, 2012, 02:39 PM
Naplm00
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Matthew
1983 110 200tdi 3 door soft top
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Sounds like a bad ground at the headlights or a poor power feed from the fuse box.

Do you have voltage at the fuse box for all 4 circuits? If you have nice clean voltage there and at the headlamp switch, you prob have a bad ground up at the lights
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  #3  
Old September 24th, 2012, 02:44 PM
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Ian Anderson
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"Do you have voltage at the fuse box for all 4 circuits?"

I'm not great at electrics. I did put a voltmeter across all the fuses in the fuse box and didn't see any voltage across the four headlight fuses (low/left, low/right and high/left, high/right when in permanent high mode). Guessing that means I have "poor power feed"? What do I need to do to trace that down? Un-mount the fuse panel from the bulkhead and check the back for loose connections?

Thanks for the quick response!

Cheers

Ian
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  #4  
Old September 24th, 2012, 03:06 PM
Naplm00
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Matthew
1983 110 200tdi 3 door soft top
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Depends on how your truck was wired but you should have voltage +12V at the headlamp fuse terminals.

you should put the red lead on the fuse terminal and the black lead on a good bare metal ground, if you see voltage you are good. Check both sides of the fuses on all 4 circuits.

No voltage here = you have an issue with the feeds, you can trace them back inside the harness...but

expect a mess in there
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  #5  
Old September 24th, 2012, 03:14 PM
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Scott
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Did you put a new headlight switch in or a used on? Try seeing if you and play with the switch, to see if you can turn the lights on outside of their normal positions. My switch fried years ago, but I can still turn the light on, outside of their normal positions.

Try jumpering the wires in the switch to see if they come on. Double check all the grounds, and make sure everything is tight. Maybe try and run a temporary ground to the headlights, just to see if that solves the problem.
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  #6  
Old September 24th, 2012, 03:25 PM
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Ian Anderson
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Thanks Mathew and Scott - the switch was a new one. I'll try testing the voltage at the fuses again.

Cheers

Ian
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  #7  
Old September 25th, 2012, 09:30 PM
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Ian Anderson
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Tried putting the voltmeter from either side of the fuses back to a ground and got nothing from either side of the 4 headlamp circuits (except if I pulled the stalk back for Full/intermittent - full beam came on then and of course the circuit was drawing about 12.5V).

So does this indicate a problem on the engine side of the fuse box or between the fuse box and the steering column?

All the grounds seem secure, but I haven;t had a chance to try putting a temporary ground on the headlights themselves. Is that still worth a try?

If not - anyone know a good auto-electrican with Rover experience in the Atlanta area :-)

Cheers

Ian
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  #8  
Old September 25th, 2012, 09:46 PM
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Scott
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Ian, if you need an auto-electrician, go see Luke at "The Shop" in Norcross. 678-352-4900
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  #9  
Old September 25th, 2012, 09:50 PM
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Jason Lavender
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Galpin had this exact same issue...replaced the headlight switch - didn't fix it. Replaced the dip/dim switch and it worked. Did you try that?
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  #10  
Old September 25th, 2012, 10:15 PM
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Found it:
http://www.defendersource.com/forum/...ad.php?t=37820
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  #11  
Old September 25th, 2012, 10:58 PM
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Ian Anderson
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"Replaced the dip/dim switch and it worked."

I'd intended to buy both switches from RovahFarm but I cheaped out and just got the main light switch. GuessI'll do a bti more checking tomorrow with the voltmeter and will probably enf up ordering the dip/dim switch after all.

If that fails then yes, it's back to The Shop (they are only a couple of miles from where I work)

------ Follow up post added September 25th, 2012 11:00 PM ------

...and once it *is* working I'll be installing a new harness with relays!
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  #12  
Old October 2nd, 2012, 05:22 PM
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Ian Anderson
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Dip/dim switch arrived today and I plugged it into the harness. Yup - headlights seem to work now

Now I just have to figure out how to get the darn steering wheel off. I've removed the big nut in the center that goes onto the steering shaft but the wheel doesn't want to budge. It's an after-market Mountney wheel and (presumably) boss adapter the PO fitted. Is there any sort of trick top getting these things off or should it just be a case of removing the center nut and then wailing on it with a hammer until it comes off the splines?

Cheers

Ian
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  #13  
Old October 2nd, 2012, 05:48 PM
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Chris Murphy
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The aforementioned "wailing with a hammer" will probably be required.

It's highly recommended that you put the center nut back at least partially on before doing this, otherwise, when the wheel gives it will fly off and give you a bloody nose. Many here can attest.
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  #14  
Old October 2nd, 2012, 07:35 PM
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Or use a proper puller ....
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  #15  
Old October 3rd, 2012, 12:00 AM
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Michael White
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What evilfiji said - a two arm gear puller should do the trick. The steering wheel doesn't have holes for bolts to be threaded into like my old CJ did.
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  #16  
Old October 3rd, 2012, 11:54 AM
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Ian Anderson
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To use a two-arm puller I'm going to have to take the steering wheel apart down to the bare boss - correct? Even then it dosn't seem like one's going to fit around the boss - it's about 4" in diameter and 3" deep.
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  #17  
Old October 15th, 2012, 11:27 AM
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Ian Anderson
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Just in case it helps someone else - the problem did turn out to be the dip/dim/turn signal switch, not the main headlight switch. Replaced that and everything is working correctly again. Now I need to install the loom with relays I built to hopefully prevent it burning out again.

To remove the steering wheel I did have to dismantle the boss. A Mountney steering wheel *should* simply slip off the splines on the steering column with the nut removed. But if it's stuck like mine was the boss is a two piece affair. Reach behind the boss and you'll find four counter-sunk Allen-head bolts (4mm Allen hex in my case). Remove those and the outer boss (with steering wheel still attached) will slide off the inner boss (the bit with the splines). The inner boss has a narrow enough diameter to get a cheap three-arm bearing puller onto it and came off with very little additional effort.

Cheers

Ian
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  #18  
Old November 29th, 2012, 06:26 PM
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Terry
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Hi
To remove the steering once you have removed the lock nut.
Sit firmly in your seat, hold the steering wheel at 9.15 and pull right left right left till the spline lets go. Allways works for me.
Tel
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