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Headlights turn off blinkers
Posted by: peanshe ()
Date: April 04, 2013 06:23PM

66 Corsa here:

It all started after noticing the front passenger turn signal would not work at all. That lead to replacing the blinker switch and the clacker along with the front wiring harness. The replacement blinker switch from Clark's didn't even fit. Wasn't the same thing at all, so buyer beware.

Turned out the old switch was fine, both the old and new one did the same thing (the new one could be hooked up, but not installed...too big).

The problem now is that whenever the headlights or parking lights are on the blinkers do not work. They all work when the lights are off, but none work when they are on. I disconnected the front wiring harness and tested the current coming out of the main harness and it did the same thing. About 6 volts with the lights off and a constant, non blinking, 6 volts with the lights on. Also the indicators in the dashboard stay on and the clicker does not click with the lights on.

Could the problem be the headlight switch? That is about all I can come up with now since the front harness is OK and the blinker switch is OK.

I would like to figure this out before putting the steering wheel back on, but I am pretty confident there is no issue with the blinker switch. I can tell putting the wheel back on and getting the horn to work again will be confusing and no fun so I don't really want to do it twice. smiling smiley

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Re: Headlights turn off blinkers
Posted by: MattNall ()
Date: April 04, 2013 07:29PM

Bad Grounds! Clean all of them up front... headlights and turn / part housings.

MODERATOR
Sea Mountain, between Charleston Harbor and Coos Bay! SW Oregon Coast
Click HERE for My Website...Click HERE for My TechPages!
..............................110-PG.................................................Webered-Turbo

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Re: Headlights turn off blinkers
Date: April 04, 2013 07:31PM

Usually related to a poor or non-existent ground.
Check the ground on the dash panel that attaches the instrument cluster to the frame via a screw on the bottom edge.
Check the ground on the headlights mounting plate to the body.
Same for the park/turn light assemblies


Dan Davis ~ Pierce County, WA ~ CORSA Western Director + Corvairs NW + North Cascades Corvairs + Corvanatics
1966 Corsa Turbo coupe ~ ~ 1966 Corsa 140 Coupe ~ ~ 1965 Monza 140/4 Convertible Sierra Tan/Fawn ~ 1964 Monza Spyder Convertible ~ 1960 Monza Ermine White/Red PG ++ ~ 1965 Monza 140/4 CoupeEvening Orchid w/ ivory/black interior ~ 1962 Monza Wagon 102/4 ~ 1963 Rampside/Scamper ~ 1963 Red/Greenbrier ~ 1969 Ultra Van #468

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Re: Headlights turn off blinkers
Posted by: Marco_a_p ()
Date: April 05, 2013 09:32AM

Bad ground for sure.....
But I'm thinking the ground problem is wide spread... I just cant figure out how the power would back flow through the head lights....the two ciruts are not connected..... and the low voltage reading would seem to confirm a wide spread ground issue..

Do you have ground straps on your engine tin to the body of the car?

Marco
A 2nd Gen Monza Wagon, a 2nd Gen GB 8door, a 2nd Gen (61's were 1st Gen) R/s and a 62nd Gen Turbo coupe..

Hanging out with the scorpions, king snakes, road runners, coyotes and quails In the southern desert of the silver state
Mesquite NV 89024

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Re: Headlights turn off blinkers
Posted by: cnicol ()
Date: April 05, 2013 09:43AM

Likely the tail light grounds.

Headlights (and therefore tail lights) OFF: Blinker lights ground through next best thing: Tail light circuit (through tail filament to ground)

Headlights (and tail lights) ON: Grounding through tail filament not available (tail light at 12V). Without a grounding path (regular or through OFF tailight) blinker doesn't light and not enough load to operate the flasher.

Craig N. Coeur d'Alene ID.
66 Black Monza 4dr, 4.2L V8 49k
61 Seamist Jade Rampside 140 PG
60 Monza coupe (sold, sniff sniff)
66 Sprint Corsa convt - First car! Re-purchased 43 years later
2+2 gnatsuM 5691

+17 Tons of parts

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Re: Headlights turn off blinkers
Posted by: acardon ()
Date: April 05, 2013 10:59AM

Quote

The problem now is that whenever the headlights or parking lights are on the blinkers do not work. They all work when the lights are off, but none work when they are on. I disconnected the front wiring harness and tested the current coming out of the main harness and it did the same thing. About 6 volts with the lights off and a constant, non blinking, 6 volts with the lights on. Also the indicators in the dashboard stay on and the clicker does not click with the lights on.

The indicators are connected to the front turn signals, so the front parking lights have a bad ground. The fronts are grounding through the indicators and park light filements.
You should have about 12 volts, not 6 volts.

The Trunk Belongs in Front, Ask Any Elephant
Caution: Images in This Mirror May be Waterpumpers
Don
NTCA....DFW,TEXAS
66 Monza 1 owner

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Re: Headlights turn off blinkers
Posted by: anthonypmarcello ()
Date: April 05, 2013 03:23PM

Hi guys
I also have a so called ground problem with my rear brake and turn signals on the drive side only. I'm told that it is a ground problem where do I check for a good ground
Thanks
Tony

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Re: Headlights turn off blinkers
Posted by: acardon ()
Date: April 05, 2013 05:33PM

Tony, what year model?

The Trunk Belongs in Front, Ask Any Elephant
Caution: Images in This Mirror May be Waterpumpers
Don
NTCA....DFW,TEXAS
66 Monza 1 owner

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Re: Headlights turn off blinkers
Posted by: 66vairman ()
Date: April 06, 2013 09:09AM

You said "The replacement blinker switch from Clark's didn't even fit. Wasn't the same thing at all, so buyer beware."

I'm surprised the switch from Clark's was incorrect. You do know that GM used several different turn signal switches in Corvairs depending on the manufacturing year and then there are the telescopic steering columns that are also different. All explained in Clark's catalog. Clark's catalog also has pictures of the different switches so you can compare yours to make sure you order the correct one.

Did someone change the steering mast/wheel in your car?

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Re: Headlights turn off blinkers
Posted by: anthonypmarcello ()
Date: April 06, 2013 09:52AM

my car is a 66 corsa 140
does it make a difference?

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Re: Headlights turn off blinkers
Posted by: acardon ()
Date: April 06, 2013 10:11AM

Tony, yes, the sockets are different on early models.
The metal tabs can get corroded, bent, or broken off the plastic socket so it does not ground to the metal housing that it plugs into, OR the housing may not make good contact with the body due to too much paint, loose screws, or corrosing.



The Trunk Belongs in Front, Ask Any Elephant
Caution: Images in This Mirror May be Waterpumpers
Don
NTCA....DFW,TEXAS
66 Monza 1 owner

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Re: Headlights turn off blinkers
Posted by: peanshe ()
Date: April 06, 2013 01:21PM

I am halfway there. The driver side now works as it should and the passenger side still has a problem. I have a hunch what the issue there is, like all you said, a bad ground in the rear taillight.

The clarks part was c862, switch for 65-66 cars without a telescoping wheel. That is what I have. Not too upset about it. Clark's is a great company overall and it turned out I didn't need the part anyway.

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Re: Headlights turn off blinkers
Posted by: peanshe ()
Date: April 09, 2013 05:13PM

Dumb question:
In the photo acardon posted of the plastic socket. Is the metal ring with the clips supposed to touch the sides of the bulb? As it is now all that ring does is hold the socket in place. It does not ground to anything since it is only touching the plastic part of the socket. The other tail light is all metal, probably the original one, so I can't really compare the two...well all metal...probably is supposed to work as a ground I guess. smiling smiley

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Re: Headlights turn off blinkers
Posted by: MattNall ()
Date: April 09, 2013 05:15PM

Yes.. the PINS on the bulb's base make the connection and hold the bulb in place.

MODERATOR
Sea Mountain, between Charleston Harbor and Coos Bay! SW Oregon Coast
Click HERE for My Website...Click HERE for My TechPages!
..............................110-PG.................................................Webered-Turbo

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Re: Headlights turn off blinkers
Posted by: RobertC ()
Date: April 09, 2013 07:35PM

peanshe Wrote:
-------------------------------------------------------
> Dumb question:
> In the photo acardon posted of the plastic socket.
> Is the metal ring with the clips supposed to
> touch the sides of the bulb? As it is now all
> that ring does is hold the socket in place. It
> does not ground to anything since it is only
> touching the plastic part of the socket. The
> other tail light is all metal, probably the
> original one, so I can't really compare the
> two...well all metal...probably is supposed to
> work as a ground I guess. smiling smiley


Confused... taillight socket all metal??? At least in 1965, the stock taillight bulb holders were black plastic - like the pic above. but black. Any wire splices? I vaguely recall seeing metal replacement GM bulb holders years ago.

I believe the ground is made by the "folded over" metal tabs in the pic above.

One thing you might check -- Is the base / contact of the bulb making contact with the metal contact in the base of the socket? I think there is a spring under the metal contact. It has been years since I "played" / replaced a taillight socket.

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Re: Vair body bulb sockets..
Posted by: MattNall ()
Date: April 09, 2013 07:40PM

Robert...

There's the brass socket with guides cut in for the 2 pins...staggered for 2 element bulbs.... identical for single elements [ back ups]

The wire /wires come thru the back.. a micarta disc insulates and separates the contact [s that touch the solder "buttons" on the base of the bulb.

MODERATOR
Sea Mountain, between Charleston Harbor and Coos Bay! SW Oregon Coast
Click HERE for My Website...Click HERE for My TechPages!
..............................110-PG.................................................Webered-Turbo

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Re: Headlights turn off blinkers
Posted by: cnicol ()
Date: April 09, 2013 07:57PM

All good info above but just to be clear...

In reality, there are three "wires" to each bulb.

Obviously, two go in the bottom of the socket. One for the brighter filament (Stop, Turn) and the other for the dim filament (Taillight)

The third "wire" (ground) is through the folded metal wings that hold the socket to the body. Those wings MUST hold the socket securely to the lamp reflector-housing and where the wings land on the housing MUST be clean metal or it won't conduct electricity.

If the ground system isn't working, all kinds of weird things start happening. (Like the headlights will stop the blinkers-hahaha)

Craig N. Coeur d'Alene ID.
66 Black Monza 4dr, 4.2L V8 49k
61 Seamist Jade Rampside 140 PG
60 Monza coupe (sold, sniff sniff)
66 Sprint Corsa convt - First car! Re-purchased 43 years later
2+2 gnatsuM 5691

+17 Tons of parts

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Re: Headlights turn off blinkers
Posted by: peanshe ()
Date: April 15, 2013 05:49PM

Just a followup. Got everything working great. All I had to do was get a ground wire to the front two sockets. Fixed all my problems. So pretty much what cnicol and others said!

Before I had a ground going from the ground (purple) wires which caused all sorts of weird things to happen (tach jumping around, blinkers going nuts, wires jumping, etc.).

The cheap autozone replacement rear plastic socket doesn't hold the bulb very well, but that shouldn't be a big deal to fix.

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Re: Headlights turn off blinkers
Posted by: MattNall ()
Date: April 15, 2013 06:10PM

You are learning... Electrical problem are hard to find... but easy to fix...


Mechanical... just the opposite!

MODERATOR
Sea Mountain, between Charleston Harbor and Coos Bay! SW Oregon Coast
Click HERE for My Website...Click HERE for My TechPages!
..............................110-PG.................................................Webered-Turbo

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Re: Headlights turn off blinkers
Posted by: 66vairman ()
Date: April 15, 2013 06:12PM

At one time the FLAPS carried a socket that would fit the Corvair and actually had a third ground wire to attach to the chassis. I've lost track of the part number. Anybody know of the part number?

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