Page 1 of 2 12 LastLast
Results 1 to 20 of 33

Thread: trailer light gone bad

  1. #1
    Member Alaska Gray's Avatar
    Join Date
    Apr 2006
    Location
    Anchorage, Alaska, United States
    Posts
    4,925

    Default trailer light gone bad

    Last year at the end of the season I had one light go bad. When I went to replace it this spring I hooked up the light just to make sure I was fixing the right one. Well I found out non of my lights work now. Anyone have a clue to why now all the lights have gone bad?
    Living the Alaskan Dream
    Gary Keller
    Anchorage, AK

  2. #2

    Default lights

    Make sure the ground is good and the fuse in the truck is good and the conection from the truck to the trailer is good. They did not all go bad at once.

  3. #3

    Default lights

    Is it an older trailer? Did you have the trailer one the ball of the receiver or just back up to it and plug it in? First thing I would look at is to make sure there is a complete electrical path. I.E. the ground wire is not connected on the trailer or is corroded.

  4. #4
    Member Alaska Gray's Avatar
    Join Date
    Apr 2006
    Location
    Anchorage, Alaska, United States
    Posts
    4,925

    Default

    I tested the conection on my truck to here the trailer plugs in and it's good. Dewey's said the lights on my trailer have been having seal problems. I'm taking it in friday and they will fix it due to it being a defect. The trailer is a year old.
    Living the Alaskan Dream
    Gary Keller
    Anchorage, AK

  5. #5
    Member AKBighorn's Avatar
    Join Date
    Jul 2006
    Location
    Wasilla
    Posts
    1,244

    Default

    A bad ground is usually the culprit with any trailer light problems. If you only had one bad last fall and now they are all bad it would seem likely that you have a corrosion issue that is causing the problem and not your vehicle. You could quickly check your vehicle with a test light to insure it is still functional but I suspect the trailer wiring/lights. I would pull out all the bulbs and check for corrosion as well as clean them up before reinstalling them. At that point I would use a test light at each light to check them out. Be sure your test light also has a good ground or the test will show incorrect results.

    Sometimes it sure seems like it would be faster and easier to just run a new wiring harness and call it good

  6. #6
    Member AKBighorn's Avatar
    Join Date
    Jul 2006
    Location
    Wasilla
    Posts
    1,244

    Default

    Well it sounds like you found the easiest solution yet.

  7. #7

    Default

    Sometimes it sure seems like it would be faster and easier to just run a new wiring harness and call it good [/quote]

    That is exactly right. I have replaced my harness more than a few times because of corrosion. I mainly use my boat in the saltwater, so it is an ongoing issue. Last year I fought back...mounted a set of LED lights up high so they will hopefully never see the water again.

  8. #8

    Thumbs up

    I had similar experience and after much trouble shooting discovered a winter's worth of rust in the receiver hitch created a bad ground connection between the truck and trailer. After a little wire brush work problem went away.

  9. #9
    New member
    Join Date
    Apr 2006
    Location
    Wasilla
    Posts
    230

    Default Ground wire

    Most people have the misconception that all they need for a ground from vehicle to trailer is the connection at the hitch. This does work, but can be very unreliable...rust...dirt...grease on the ball and coupler.
    I have been building trailers for over 30 years and also own 3 of my own. Have always wired truck for 6-pole connector. This gives you 3 connections for turn signals/tail and marker, one connection for brake hot wire if needed, one connection for ground wire to truck frame, and one left over if you need a hot wire for an accessory such as trailer back up lights or trailer winch.
    On the trailer plug, the set up is the same---making sure that you have that ground wire going to trailer frame.
    This eliminates any grounding problems---which alot of people seem to experience. If you know the ground between truck and trailer is good---it makes it alot easier to trouble shoot any problems.

  10. #10
    Member AKBassking's Avatar
    Join Date
    Oct 2006
    Location
    SE Alaska-Summer Columbia River-Winter
    Posts
    2,007

    Default

    I also had a trailer with no lights. I replaced the entire harness on the trailer. Then My tail lights were not working. After lots of troubleshooting and cus'in, it was the wire harness it self. Back to Wally-World and another new harness took care of it. Last year I invested in a set of LED tail/stop/turn lights. By the end of the season all but one LED was working. This year I installed the good old fashion bulb lights!

    ALASKAN SEA-DUCTION
    1988 M/Y Camargue YachtFisher
    MMSI# 338131469
    Blog: http://alaskanseaduction.blogspot.com/

  11. #11
    Charterboat Operator
    Join Date
    Jan 2007
    Location
    Anchorage AK.
    Posts
    1,057

    Default joinin' the fun

    FRUSTRATING~!!&%^@$#

    Did I mention I hate trailer lights! Why is it we can send a man to the moon, rockets to Mars and yet have a way to make a trailer light last more than a year, if you are lucky! spent 5 hours last night working on mine. 11.7 volts on the meter at the taillight wire, plug the danged thing in and still no light. walked away for about 10 minutes to go beat the dog, came back and the lights are on, unplugged and replugged, no light!!
    VOODOO i'm tellin ya' just VOODOO!!

  12. #12
    Member
    Join Date
    Apr 2006
    Location
    Anchorage
    Posts
    3,246

    Default

    A Voltmeter does not draw any current. You need to use a trailer lamp to test your wireing.
    Sound like a bad ground connection.

  13. #13
    Moderator Daveinthebush's Avatar
    Join Date
    Jul 2003
    Location
    Valdez, Alaska
    Posts
    4,402

    Default

    Quote Originally Posted by POLE BENDER View Post
    FRUSTRATING~!!&%^@$#

    Did I mention I hate trailer lights! Why is it we can send a man to the moon, rockets to Mars and yet have a way to make a trailer light last more than a year, if you are lucky! spent 5 hours last night working on mine. 11.7 volts on the meter at the taillight wire, plug the danged thing in and still no light. walked away for about 10 minutes to go beat the dog, came back and the lights are on, unplugged and replugged, no light!!
    VOODOO i'm tellin ya' just VOODOO!!
    Could be a broken wire. Makes a connection, then not.

    Vietnam - June 70 - Feb. 72
    Cancer from Agent Orange - Aug. 25th 2012
    Cancer Survivor - Dec. 14th 2012

  14. #14
    Charterboat Operator
    Join Date
    Jan 2007
    Location
    Anchorage AK.
    Posts
    1,057

    Default

    test light on the way.
    just thought it was funny, now anyway, that you have power to the wires and then plug in a sealed light and no light!

  15. #15
    Member
    Join Date
    Apr 2006
    Location
    Anchorage
    Posts
    3,246

    Default

    If you are getting a test light that is sold in the stores, they are a low current device and may not work for you.

    If you are in anchorage I could loan you a tester.

  16. #16

    Default Darn Salt Water

    I stopped having lights mounted on the trailer. I take some SOOW cord (rubber extension cord) and make up a connection plug in on one end and the two lights on the other. Marked right and left. They make this same thing in magnetic but darn fiberglass boats any way. So I either use a clamp or a 1x2 board and pin them to the back of the boat.
    I can tow any thing with this set up. AND they never get bunked in salt water to rust out, disconnect from the back of the boat and toss in the bed of the truck, BINGO.
    So if your going to buy a new set of lights some thing to think about.

    Would put money on light sockets are rusted out, even water proof lights leak.

  17. #17
    Charterboat Operator
    Join Date
    Jan 2007
    Location
    Anchorage AK.
    Posts
    1,057

    Default

    Quote Originally Posted by Rutting Moose View Post
    If you are getting a test light that is sold in the stores, they are a low current device and may not work for you.

    If you are in anchorage I could loan you a tester.
    boat still in Anch. have a tester on the way over tonight, thank you for the offer.
    sockets are clean and dry. messed with a cheap test lamp (during lunch ) seem that i am getting power just not enough to power the light properly. total new ground wire,clip and hole from the plu to the trailer, still nothing. got a good idea that am loosing power along the harness.
    34 feet of wire best guess is there has to be a little corosion going on some where in there! still the strangest danged thing I have ever seen!

  18. #18
    Member AKBighorn's Avatar
    Join Date
    Jul 2006
    Location
    Wasilla
    Posts
    1,244

    Default

    Quote Originally Posted by POLE BENDER View Post
    boat still in Anch. have a tester on the way over tonight, thank you for the offer.
    sockets are clean and dry. messed with a cheap test lamp (during lunch ) seem that i am getting power just not enough to power the light properly. total new ground wire,clip and hole from the plu to the trailer, still nothing. got a good idea that am loosing power along the harness.
    34 feet of wire best guess is there has to be a little corosion going on some where in there! still the strangest danged thing I have ever seen!
    This is exactly why I said sometimes its faster and easier to just replace the entire harness and call it good

  19. #19
    Charterboat Operator
    Join Date
    Jan 2007
    Location
    Anchorage AK.
    Posts
    1,057

    Default wires

    AK Bighorn, you is right! pulled new wires last night, wouldnt ya know it
    LIGHTS!!

    BAD part, in pulling new wires one should either tie a knot in the end of the wires bieng pulled or measure VERY carefully. as i found out last night
    34 feet of wire does not completly fill a 35 foot frame, dang the bad luck.

  20. #20
    Member AKBighorn's Avatar
    Join Date
    Jul 2006
    Location
    Wasilla
    Posts
    1,244

    Default

    Quote Originally Posted by POLE BENDER View Post
    AK Bighorn, you is right! pulled new wires last night, wouldnt ya know it
    LIGHTS!!

    BAD part, in pulling new wires one should either tie a knot in the end of the wires bieng pulled or measure VERY carefully. as i found out last night
    34 feet of wire does not completly fill a 35 foot frame, dang the bad luck.
    That is a bummer. If you plan on pulling new wires it might be a good idea to attach a piece of small rope to the end of your existing wiring and remove all the old wires leaving the rope behind. Measure the old stuff and buy the new wiring a little longer than the old. Then use the rope to pull your new wiring. I would not cut your new wires to fit, just stuff the extra inside the frame. This makes it easier to work on them later if you need too. Of course I didn't say that before and hind sight is 20/20

Page 1 of 2 12 LastLast

Bookmarks

Posting Permissions

  • You may not post new threads
  • You may not post replies
  • You may not post attachments
  • You may not edit your posts
  •