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Can a bad dash ground affect the headlights?
Posted by: playerpage ()
Date: August 23, 2022 10:36PM

I am still having the tach issue, most likely due to a bad ground, but tonight my lights wouldn't work on the drive home, then once I got to the garage, surprise! They're on again.

Is that also dash ground related, or am I perhaps in need of another new headlight switch? My original one went bad a couple of years ago, and I replaced it with a "Chinese take-out" version. (That's code for a reproduction part. eye rolling smiley )

Eric C. Player
Fargo, North Dakota
MEMBER: CORSA National, Central Coast CORSA, South Coast CORSA, Vintage CORSA, Sfba CORSA, and Great Plains Corvair Club.
THEN: 1965 Monza 110, Canary Yellow - 1965 Corsa 180 Turbo, Red - 1966 Monza 110, Purple - 1967 Monza 140, Red - 1966 500 110, Black; nicknamed "Shadow" - 1965 Monza 110, Camaro Yellow; nicknamed "Silver"
NOW: 1966 Corsa 180 Turbo, Blue; nicknamed "Bluvair"
---------------------------------------
"He cautioned me not to take notes. It would not have helped if I had, as he would start a paragraph with, 'It is therefore obvious. . .'
and go on from there to matters which may have been obvious to him and God but to no one else."
-- Robert A. Heinlein, character of Daniel B. Davis, 'The Door Into Summer.'

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Re: Can a bad dash ground affect the headlights?
Posted by: junkman ()
Date: August 24, 2022 01:54AM

You need to properly diagnose the problem and the first place to look would be to see if you have power at the headlamp dimmer switch. The power flows from the switch to the dimmer switch, which then sends it to either the low beams or the high beams. You will find that there are 3 terminals on the dimmer switch. One is the power in, and the other 2 are power out to low or high beams. Each time you depress the switch, it moves to the other wire headed out to the headlights. If you find the switch is bad, then buy a NOS switch or a known good one. The Chinese reproduction electrical parts are junk.

---------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------
Woodstock CT... Located on the Connecticut / Massachusetts border, approximately 6 miles from the center of Southbridge MA. About 45 minutes from Hartford CT. 1 1/2 hours West of Boston MA. Woodstock CT to Los Angeles CA 2,937.1 miles. 1 Mile as the crow flies to Big Bird's nest.

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Re: Can a bad dash ground affect the headlights?
Posted by: cnicol ()
Date: August 24, 2022 04:56AM

No, the dash ground does not have any effect on the operation of the actual headlights. The only headlight-system parts that could be affected by the dash ground would be the high beam indicator and instrument illumination lamps.

Craig N. Coeur d'Alene ID.
66 Black Monza 4dr, 4.2L V8 49k
61 Seamist Jade Rampside 140 PG
65 Canadian Monza 4dr 110/PG 40k
66 Sprint Corsa convt - First car! Re-purchased 43 years later
2+2 gnatsuM 5691

+17 Tons of parts

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Re: Can a bad dash ground affect the headlights?
Posted by: Wagon Master ()
Date: August 24, 2022 05:18AM

Not wanting to pull one off the shelf and check, but wouldn't the dimmer switch always be going to one output terminal and then every time it is depressed it goes to both and back to single then back to both?

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Re: Can a bad dash ground affect the headlights?
Posted by: Frank DuVal ()
Date: August 24, 2022 09:19AM

Yes, until it gets worn/dry lube then it gets in the dim/high/nothing/dim/nothing/high operation!winking smiley

It is a SPDT snap switch. Not supposed to be momentary operation, but dry lube and worn contacts can do that.

Frank DuVal

Fredericksburg, VA

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Re: Can a bad dash ground affect the headlights?
Posted by: RexJohnson ()
Date: August 24, 2022 10:12AM

The dimmer switch goes to one out put terminal or the other. High is high beam only it is not a combination of high and low. That is why the low/high bulbs have 3 terminals.

RJ tools
Salem,Oregon

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Re: Can a bad dash ground affect the headlights?
Posted by: playerpage ()
Date: August 24, 2022 12:19PM

Not the floor switch, I was wondering about the dash headlight dimmer/pull-switch.

I wasn't getting any front lights at ALL, but the rear lights were fine, going on and off when the switch was pulled. When the front lights WERE on, the floor switch for brights worked fine.

The dimming function, where one turns on and off, up and down, the dashboard lights, is fine.

Eric C. Player
Fargo, North Dakota
MEMBER: CORSA National, Central Coast CORSA, South Coast CORSA, Vintage CORSA, Sfba CORSA, and Great Plains Corvair Club.
THEN: 1965 Monza 110, Canary Yellow - 1965 Corsa 180 Turbo, Red - 1966 Monza 110, Purple - 1967 Monza 140, Red - 1966 500 110, Black; nicknamed "Shadow" - 1965 Monza 110, Camaro Yellow; nicknamed "Silver"
NOW: 1966 Corsa 180 Turbo, Blue; nicknamed "Bluvair"
---------------------------------------
"He cautioned me not to take notes. It would not have helped if I had, as he would start a paragraph with, 'It is therefore obvious. . .'
and go on from there to matters which may have been obvious to him and God but to no one else."
-- Robert A. Heinlein, character of Daniel B. Davis, 'The Door Into Summer.'



Edited 1 time(s). Last edit at 08/24/2022 12:21PM by playerpage.

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Re: Can a bad dash ground affect the headlights?
Posted by: RexJohnson ()
Date: August 24, 2022 12:24PM

The floor switch is still the easiest place to start. Just pull back the carpet and probe with a test light. If no power is found then you are back to the headlight switch. It is the easiest place to get the most information for the problem that you are having. I always try to start at the easiest point and then go from there.

RJ tools
Salem,Oregon

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Re: Can a bad dash ground affect the headlights?
Posted by: playerpage ()
Date: August 24, 2022 12:25PM

thumbs up

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Re: Can a bad dash ground affect the headlights?
Posted by: JimBrandberg ()
Date: August 24, 2022 07:30PM

O/T but back in the day my brother's TR-4 would have the headlights shut off at random times. Quite the eye opener when you're hurtling down a rural lane in the middle of the night.

Jim Brandberg
Isanti, MN
CorvairRepair.com



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Re: Can a bad dash ground affect the headlights?
Posted by: DOUG WARD ()
Date: August 24, 2022 08:45PM

TR-4's had the biggest problem there could have been. The electrical components were made by Lucas." the Prince of darkness ". Our Corvairs don't have that problem & are usually much easier to trouble shoot.
Good hunting Eric.

Doug Ward
Orange, Calif.
65 Corsa 180, 64 Monza convertible, 61 Lakewood, 61 Monza


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