Dumb Trailer Light Question - UPDATE...

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Dumb Trailer Light Question - UPDATE...

Postby cdowden03 » Sun Oct 29, 2006 7:29 pm

Looking for a little guidance on a trailer light problem. I changed out the lights on the trailer for new ones and it appears as thought I bought two LEFT tail lights since both of them have a clear underside where the light reflects downward to the license plate.

Ok, here is the dumb question part. Is there such thing as "Left Tail Lights" and "Right Tail Lights"?? I tried wiring everything and it has been nothing but a pain....

My only guess is that it has something to do with me purchasing two "left" tail lights?

OK... now for the guidance part of this...

Am I anywhere close or is everyone laughing at me because a tail light is a tail light is a tail light.

Help! Thanks everyone!
Last edited by cdowden03 on Sun Jun 10, 2007 1:50 pm, edited 1 time in total.
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Postby doogie494 » Sun Oct 29, 2006 7:40 pm

A taillight should be a taillight. As long as its wired the same way it should be fine. what problems are you having?
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Postby cdowden03 » Sun Oct 29, 2006 7:46 pm

Multiple problems... when I turn on the left hand turn signal, both tail lights 'flash'. When I turn on the Right hand turn signal, neither tail light flashes.

I have no running lights. When I connect both tail lights, the lights work, but they are very very dim. When I work with just one light the light is very bright, just like it should be...

I'm not an electrical genius, so it is pretty frustrating...

Thanks for your help....
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Postby doogie494 » Sun Oct 29, 2006 7:48 pm

ok does it have a flat four setup and has it been wired before?
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Postby doogie494 » Sun Oct 29, 2006 7:56 pm

as far as them being dim, do you have the trailer on your hitch? if not then its not grounded well and thats why. as far as the wires go, if its a flat four setup then Green=right,yellow=Left, Brown=tail/park,white=ground.
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Postby FEATHERBUSTER » Sun Oct 29, 2006 8:57 pm

it definately sounds lke a grounding issue :thumbsup:
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Postby cdowden03 » Sat Nov 04, 2006 1:17 pm

Well, I am NOT having any fun with this trailer light thing at all. I feel that I know more about it now, but my results are the same.

I purchased a two tail light KIT which including all the yellow, brown, green, and white wires with it.

I took both tail lights off and replaced them, took the wiring out and replaced it. I connected everything together Yellow to yellow; white is grounded on the trailer tongue; brown to brown; green to green.

It looks fairly simple, but when I hook everything up, I get no lights. I've taken the time to connect this to two individual trucks now and I get the same result.

My last thought before I go take it to a trailer shop is to ask if there are any fuses involved? Maybe I blew a fuse. This is tooo simple, but I can't figure this one out.... :pissed: :pissed:
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Postby Boomn4x4 » Sat Nov 04, 2006 1:33 pm

FEATHERBUSTER wrote:it definately sounds lke a grounding issue :thumbsup:


:withstupid: Definatly sounds like a grounding issue. Make sure you have the trailer hooked up. If the lights are grouned to the trailer and the trailer isn't hooked to your trailer hitch you don't have a complete ground.
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Postby doogie494 » Sat Nov 04, 2006 7:46 pm

just a question and im not trying to insult you but, did you mount the lights to the trailer before you turned the lights on? if you didn't then that may be your problem as the light fixture completes the ground to the trailer. if you did, then if you have the trailer on the ball of the truck and you still have no lights, then go down to your local wally world and buy a digital multimeter for $13.00 or so. because you not getting power somewhere. i am sure that when you do figure it out you will want to kick yourself because it was something simple.
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Postby Boomn4x4 » Sat Nov 04, 2006 8:50 pm

doogie494 wrote:just a question and im not trying to insult you but, did you mount the lights to the trailer before you turned the lights on? if you didn't then that may be your problem as the light fixture completes the ground to the trailer. if you did, then if you have the trailer on the ball of the truck and you still have no lights, then go down to your local wally world and buy a digital multimeter for $13.00 or so. because you not getting power somewhere. i am sure that when you do figure it out you will want to kick yourself because it was something simple.


Looks like we have another vote for a ground problem. If you don't have a multimeter, get your hands on one. You are going to want to get one with an audible continuity tester. Take one lead and stick it into the black wire on the vehicle side of the wire harnass and take the other and dig it into the frame of the trailer. If you get a tone you have a good ground.
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Postby jto » Mon Nov 20, 2006 4:03 am

what kind of truck is it? Year, make?

imports used to have separate wires for LT,RT+Brake. With domestic trucks, they are both the same lights but turn signal light cancel out the brake light wire when either turn signal is on. Uhaul used to sell a simple package/unit that could mount to 4 trailer wire plugs. It came with directions and scotchlocs(sp) to tap into your wires.

one wire should be ground
one should be running
one should be LT+brake
one should be RT+brake

I'll maybe disagree with the ground issue, there would be no lights at all if there wasn't a ground. dim lights might mean the running lights are on instead of the brighter brake and turn signals. backwards bulb maybe?

check the power at the truck side of the plug. A simple tester (light bulb kind) shouldwork just fine. Ground it, check for running, brake LT RT and hazards. If your brake is applied, the LT+RT should still blink.

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Postby cdowden03 » Sun Jun 10, 2007 1:56 pm

Well, since October 2006, this damn trailer light problem has been eating at me. Since it's the off season, I finally decided to get my future son-in-law and get-r-done so to speak.

The problem ended up being the following:

On Toyota truck (first problem) there are 4 in-line fuse's tucked under the back seat in the cab. You cannot see them as they are behind/under the carpet. That is problem was two-fold and after what seems like endless frustration and hours of effort it is resolved.

Problem #1 - 3 of the four in-line fuse's were blown (i.e. all three had to do with trailer lights - go figure). We replaced all 3 fuse's...

Problem #2 - The light box on the back of the trailer was not properly grounded so once we scratched off the trailer and gave it some metal showing, tightened the lightbox back to the trailer it was much brighter and worked.

NOW - EVERYTHING WORKS - All the turn signals, the brake lights, etc.

:thumbsup:
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Postby noluck » Mon Jun 11, 2007 12:33 am

they make a tester that plugs in between truck and trailer that does a fair job of telling you what the problem could be .
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