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  #1  
Old January 13th, 2004, 11:39 PM
artm
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Arthur Maravelis
97 SW
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no lights

Well, here's my problem:

1. driving fine, lights go out and I need to jiggle switch to get them on

2. fine for 20 minutes then these go out
- headlights: low and high (continuous)
- dash illumination
- parking, side lights

3. Positions 2 and 3 on the switch act like position 1.

4. turn signals and high beam (flash) still work

It's too dark and cold to do anything tonight. Sounds like the switch.

If so anyone know where it's cheapest? I just had a heart attack at the $300+ charge for it on DAP's site.

Dare I ask if anyone's rigged a cheaper alternative???
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  #2  
Old January 13th, 2004, 11:46 PM
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Phillip
1995 SW #487/500
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www.roversdownsouth.com first place I would try. then to rovers north.
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  #3  
Old January 14th, 2004, 09:36 AM
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Mike Hippert
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You did not say it so I am going to, did you check the fuses and the relays? They are allot cheaper to replace then the switch. The steering column comes apart real easy (at least on mine) there are 2 or 4 screws that hold it together and then the top and bottom should separate so you can get to the switch wires to check it. I wish I new of a cheap place to get the switch as the horn button on mine just stopped working.
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  #4  
Old January 14th, 2004, 10:24 AM
artm
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Arthur Maravelis
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I will check the obvious today.

I'm looking at the electrical diagram and it looks like the faulty switch may be the toggle switch (S100) - not the one with the horn button.

Also, the fact that the flash high beam works suggests that the relay (R123) may be it: the wire going to the flash switch comes from the relay. Also, the relay is providing the ground for the rest of the stuff that's not working. I pray it's that!

Does this seem logical?

Can I swap one of the other relays for the suspect one to test it? Which one?
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  #5  
Old January 14th, 2004, 12:11 PM
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Jim Cheney
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Here's what I did

I had a similar problem a while back, and I fixed my lightsin only a half hour with my soldering iron. The symptoms were as you describe. R&Ring the switch would have solved it too, because the switch was clearly bad when I inspected it - and fixing it solved all the problems. I didnt replace the switch because I needed to use the D90 in the dark the following morning, and the fix has worked so well that I havent had to mess with it since.

If you decide to attempt a fix, its pretty simple. Removing the
switch is easy, just drop the bottom cover off of the steering
column and the switch slides out - you can unplug it from the
harness a few inches back. I was pleased to discover the switch is very old-tech. It is simply a 3 position contact where the first
position is off, the second position is parking lights, and the 3rd
position (headlights) connects positions 2 & 3 so both headlights
and parking lights are on.

The switch consists of a pot metal bracket holding a piece of
plastic with the contacts molded in. My plastic had melted for
some reason so that the contact for pos 3 had recessed itself and was unable to contact the lever arm of the switch. The plastic melting had also caused it to break connection with the pos 2 contact. I put a drop of solder on the pos 3 contact to allow it to contact the switch arm, and then made a solder connection between the pos 2 & 3 contacts on top of the switch. I simultaneously used the heat from the soldering iron to melt and re-form the plastic back into a non-deformed shape. After making sure everything was secure, I put it all back in - it worked great, and continues to.

I looked into buying circuit parts from radio shack, but nothing
was suitable. Plus I didnt want to hack into my now-functional
switch simply for the sake of science. If anyone has a dead switch I'd like to buy it so that I can experiement with it.
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  #6  
Old January 14th, 2004, 02:21 PM
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Dave Lucas
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My vote is the headlight switch is bad.

I had this happen about 6 months ago and experience the exact same symptoms as you, when I removed the steering surround and looked at the bottom of the switch I noticed that the metal contact melted through the plastic that it was mounted in.

You will still want to check the fuses and stuff first, but I bet it is the switch.

The part is expensive but easy to swap, it only took about 20 min and the lights were back

I think I still have the old switch lying around somewhere, I will see if I can take a picture of it when I get home tonight.
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  #7  
Old January 14th, 2004, 05:49 PM
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Jim Cheney
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Dave- If you dont want that old switch, can I buy it off you?
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  #8  
Old January 14th, 2004, 06:16 PM
artm
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Arthur Maravelis
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Dave,

Looks like I have your problem. I've taken the switch out. Here's what I see:

2 out of 3 contacts on the brown wire are depressed into the plastic. There appears to be some melting but not substantial.

I'd like to replace the contacts and see if I can get it to work but I need headlights before then so I'm giving in for a replacement.
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  #9  
Old January 14th, 2004, 07:37 PM
artm
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Arthur Maravelis
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Can anyone confirm that the light switch for a '94-95 (PRC3430) looks the same as one for a '97 (AMR6104)? I realize the connectors are different. Problem is I can't get the correct one tomorrow but can get the older one. I can splice the wires into my connectors no problem as long as it fits in the mounting hole. Plus it's $40 cheaper!
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  #10  
Old January 14th, 2004, 08:01 PM
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Jim Cheney
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Same problem I had.

I cant confirm the similarity, but you can simply jumper the connections at the plug. If you want, just cut the wires on the old switch, connect them as appropriate to get the lights to come on, and just yank the plug when you want the lights off. Its a kludge but it will work.
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