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Rear Lights Out But Break Lights Ork


garrick Berberich
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Did you replace the bulbs?

Agree- would be unusual for both bulbs to go out (tail light filament) at the same time but stranger things have happened. I would at least pull 1 of the bulbs and check the juice in the socket . With the parklights on you should have 1 hot contact in the socket. Since the brakes aren't pressed you don't have to worry about the second contact. You already know your brake lights work so if you have no juice with a test light you know you have to look elsewhere. I do a "thump test" on bulbs. Hold the bulb in either hand between your thumb and index finger. Give it about three really good thumps with the "thump" finger on your other hand. When you look at a bulb you can't always see the break in the filament, but after about three good thumps you'll definitely see the broken ends vibrate. Don't worry about breaking the filament in a good bulb, if that breaks the filament, it was going out soon anyway. You can't break the filament in a sound bulb that way. I spent over 30 years doing body work and that saved me a lot of comebacks a week or two after the car went out because I knew if it passed that test, not only was it good but it wasn't going to burn out very soon either.

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I had a similar problem on my 06 Tundra.

Two possible areas.

1. If the wire harness is rubbing on the metal going through a grommet hole, it may have cut through. This was the problem on my 06 Tundra but I doubt is applies here since on my Tundra, the harness exited the cab and ran under the truck to my taillights. The wire started to cut though where it exited the cab. I am thinking the RX wires are all run through the interior.

2. My car start installer told me that the wires for a trailer hitch may corrode over time and cause the short. I would check that wiring if you have a trailer hitch.

Also - not sure if your bumper was ever hit.I had a very slight bumper tap with my 04 ford. Just some scratches. 6 months later my reverse sensors didn't work. Dealer said one sensor near the scratches was damaged. Turned out the wired got pinched with the tap and it took 6 months for the wires to fail due to corrosion.

Hope this helps.

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Brand bew bulbs.I need to get my trunk latch replaced. Could this have anything to do with the wiring in the back.

I have something called a short finder. I uses a power transmitter and a receiver with a probe that you pass along within a few inches of the wiring loom and will pick up a shorted wire or an open circuit. Males it a whole lot easier tracking down problems like that. Probably a little too expensive just to find a problem like that though.

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  • 8 years later...

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