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Discussion Starter #1
my 85 ram long box reg cab 4X4 has a few more problems left to fix. im having trouble finding the cause of why my brake lights wont turn on at all and my reverse light on the drivers side stays on constantly. the running lights stay on like they should but also none of my turn signals throughout the whole truck work at all..... im kind of lost on where to find the cause of all of this. this is my project truck but im definately lost on this one.
thanks for any ideas anyone has!
-Nathan 01-
 

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AirFuelEddie
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First did you replace the bulbs recently? wash the truck prior to a freeze? If not then Nate get yourself a 1.99 test light,(the one with a bulb in it), a cheap compass if you have one if not dont worry,(The compass will move when placed next to a shorted wire, cheap easy way to tell), and let us know if you have any power to the bulb socket at the rear of the truck. It sounds like you have a short to ground somewhere.
 

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Does the truck have a trailer wiring harness on it? If wierd wrong, that's a major pain is the bumbum! Also, a new bulb, or a "bad" bulb can cause major pain. Sometimes new bulbs don't make proper contact with the old socket, especially if there is a lot of old crusty grease in the socket. If possible, change any or all signal sockets that look crappy. Also, check to make sure the ground wire from the battery is attached properly to the motor, and the front rad support.

Had this problem before: the 13 wire harness that leads to the rear of the truck actually rotted in half! Check the condition of the wires running to the rear of the truck, especially at all connections and older "farm job" connections.

A compass, you say!
 

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AirFuelEddie
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Yep, a small compass will change readings,(the arrow will move), when placed next to a shorted wire. The magnetic field collapsing causes the movement of the arrow. Magnetism is pretty slick eh!
 

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Cool! The first day of the year, and I've already learned something new!
 

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i believe on those they get their ground from the mounting screws to the bed . so be sure to clean the back of the tailamp off and make sure those lil' nuts and mounting tabs are clean.
 

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Each socket has it's own ground wire, so no grounding through houseing or bolts. All the wiring, including the grounds, comes from the front of the truck. The reason I mention changing the pigtails, is that the contacts may hve sunken into the plastic of the socket, and are not making proper contact. Check the bulkhead connector ( on the firewall for corrosion too. The brake "switch" is located right above the brake pedal, may need adjusting.
 

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do the both back up lights come on when put in reverse?
 

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Discussion Starter #10
hey thanks for all of the info guys! i love this site. everyone is really helpful. ive never heard of the compass trick but im on my way to go try all of this out tonight. ive been out of town for a couple of weeks. so thanks for the replies i'll get back to all of ya on how it goes. and also my hazard lights dont do anything at all to any lights on the truck. this truck has been wired and rewired in ways that would scare an average mechanic to death!
-Nathan 01-
 
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