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  #1  
Old February 12th, 2012, 03:05 PM
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Running Lights / Interior Lights Short

So I push the headlight switch to the running light position and the fuse immediately blows, no interior dash lights or running lights. The only thing I recently touched in the circuit were the front running lights and I just double checked those. Sadly, I haven't driven at night in months, so it could be a number a things. Obviously a short somewhere, but has anyone had a similar issue and found the culprit?
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  #2  
Old February 12th, 2012, 03:18 PM
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You've probably double checked this, but did you alter the wiring to the driving lights?

Early on I experienced mysterious blowing fuses due to me wiring my new driving lights in reverse (since the bulb base body-grounds through the mounting screws.)
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Old February 12th, 2012, 03:29 PM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by sonoronos
You've probably double checked this, but did you alter the wiring to the driving lights?

Early on I experienced mysterious blowing fuses due to me wiring my new driving lights in reverse (since the bulb base body-grounds through the mounting screws.)
To double check that I removed them from the circuit - still no good.
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  #4  
Old February 13th, 2012, 03:19 PM
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I have been restoring my D90 dash and in the process removing every elec device cut-in the PO could find. I found the postive and ground wires to an added relay on the fuse block to have the insurltion literally melted off. It had been arcing to the body behind the fuse panel and had rust spots on the bulkhead in that area.

My PO likely kept upping the fuse size till it held. In any event it is possible if you ever got shorted it compromised those wires. I'd at least look behind the fuse panel. Best of luck.

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Old February 13th, 2012, 03:28 PM
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Thanks. I've tracked down the last time I knew the lights worked, at that was a few weeks ago after I installed new LED lights (not part of the shorted system). Since then, I stripped the truck down for paint and only removed the front parking lights from the circuit in question and nothing else was touched, so I am a bit perplexed on what the issue is. But I will take your advice and check behind the fuse panel.
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Old February 13th, 2012, 03:33 PM
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Did one of the bullet connectors come loose and is now touching ground?
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Old February 13th, 2012, 05:56 PM
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Ugh, this is killing me. I've checked everything in the circuit. I put in a 25 amp fuse just to check and it held for about a minute while I checked for smoke and hot wires, but no dice.

Could it be the switch? What about the relay? Is there a relay in that circuit? When I did have the circuit up and running on the 25 amp fuse I noticed the taillights were not illuminated.

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Old February 13th, 2012, 09:59 PM
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Did you check the tow socket and harness, and/or any relays etc in that area? Otherwise I pull the lamps and look for continuity to ground in the hot side. You can work your way around and through the harness from there until you find it. Just follow the grounds and you will find it. I once found a shorted temp sender causing a blown fuse every time the turn signals were operated. That was on an old Ford Ranger.

------ Follow up post added February 13th, 2012 10:06 PM ------

Wait, didn't you just take the roof off? Did the dome light wiring get pinched maybe?
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  #9  
Old February 14th, 2012, 10:29 AM
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For troubleshooting, try replacing the fuse with a self resetting relay....much faster, safer & cheaper than replacing the fuses continuously. When you push the switch to the first position (running lights) you should have the dash lights, LP lights, the 4 side lights, the 2 front lights and 2 tail lights illuminated. How many of these are coming on? What year is your Defender? All of the Defenders I have worked on have the left & right side running lights fused separately. Is your whole system on a single fuse? Do you have trailer wiring?
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Old February 14th, 2012, 10:36 AM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Roadsiderob View Post
For troubleshooting, try replacing the fuse with a self resetting relay....much faster, safer & cheaper than replacing the fuses continuously. When you push the switch to the first position (running lights) you should have the dash lights, LP lights, the 4 side lights, the 2 front lights and 2 tail lights illuminated. How many of these are coming on? What year is your Defender? All of the Defenders I have worked on have the left & right side running lights fused separately. Is your whole system on a single fuse? Do you have trailer wiring?

It's an "83 110." My truck is a bit of a frankenstein, but I do have the newer style bulkhead with modern fusebox. It appears the dash lights and running lights are on the same circuit. I don't have side lights. I do have trailer wiring. When I get the fuse to hold for about a minute, I had dash lights and one front running light, but no rear lights or one front running light.
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  #11  
Old February 15th, 2012, 10:16 AM
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I'd start by disconnecting the trailer wiring and then removing the non working light assemblies one at a time and see when & if the fuse stops blowing. If it still blows, start inspecting the wiring. My bet is on the front light. The old lights with the white bases that screw down have one mounting screw grounding the socket to the body as well as a separate ground wire. My bet is the wiring is reversed.
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  #12  
Old February 15th, 2012, 10:59 AM
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Did you replace the parking lights...there is a ground in that circuit and my electrics are so wonky right now that if my drivers front parking light does not have ground...nothing works...I think the mounting screw causes a ground to the tab on the fixture...

Again...by lights are really wonky right now and need some help also...so this may not help.
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  #13  
Old February 15th, 2012, 11:01 AM
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Didn't replace the front running lights and put the wires back where they were supposed to go.

I did remove them again from the circuit to see if wires were reversed and the fuse still pops.
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Old February 15th, 2012, 12:51 PM
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At this point the most effective thing you can do may be to find the point downstream of the fuse where the individual circuits branch out and isolate them one by one to find the offending circuit. You could even fuse them individually if you wanted. If you only have one fuse for all the lights, your wiring may not be factory standard, as all that I've seen are normally fused separately right & left. You might also inspect the points where the wiring harness enters & leaves the frame for chafing as well as the back corners of the truck where the main harness joins the taillight harness. The front harnesses generally run inside the wings in clips...check for chafing there as well as where the harness may run or be pinched by the roll cage. Good Hunting!
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Old February 15th, 2012, 05:35 PM
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Made a little progress on this. As I disconnected the lighting harness connectors on the firewall in the engine bay I noticed they were HEAVILY corroded, to the point that some connections even crumbled and broke. With all connections apart the fuse does not trip, so I'll install new connectors one by one until it trips. Sigh....
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Old February 16th, 2012, 11:27 AM
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Okay, so now I am to the point where I have traced the fault to what appears to be the rear light harness. At the firewall connection there is a red wire with black stripe that disappears into the rear harness. That connection has two red wires that tie into it coming from the cab.

I don't have a wiring diagram at work, but anyone know what this wire actually goes to?
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Old February 16th, 2012, 12:07 PM
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Based on wiring diagrams posted, it appears this fault is, fingers crossed, traced to the rear number plate light.

It's funny that after tearing everything in the circuit apart you forget the most obvious culprit.
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  #18  
Old February 16th, 2012, 12:22 PM
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I purchased 1985 110 about 4 years ago. You may want to check all your wire connections.There was alot of corrosion build up in my wiring harness. The bullet connectors had a green corrosion that caused all kinds of issues from systems not working, blown fuses and over heated wires. I took the time and pulled all the connection apart and cleaned the connectons with a dremmel wire brush. I then put electrical anticorrosion compound on the connections. That has worked good so far everything fuctions as it should.
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Old February 16th, 2012, 12:28 PM
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Yeah, everything had been working just fine, out of sight, out of mind. The good news is that this short helped me discover some corroded connectors. Several are too far gone to save, so I've started replacing those.
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Old February 16th, 2012, 12:31 PM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Wolf Fabrication View Post
Yeah, everything had been working just fine, out of sight, out of mind. The good news is that this short helped me discover some corroded connectors. Several are too far gone to save, so I've started replacing those.
Replacing them with anything special or just new bullet connectors?
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