Issue with left headlight 98' Thunderbird

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  #1  
Old 01-03-10, 11:06 PM
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Issue with left headlight 98' Thunderbird

Ok so , about a year ago, not paying attention and in a hurry I connect my new battery for the car on backwards. I didn't even realize it then went to turn on the car and assumed it was something else after it didn't turn over. Came back outside about 30 minutes later to see if I didn't have the battery connections on tight enough and "then" noticed what I did.
About 4 days later of course, the alternator is found to be done for, replaced it, Radio was now shot, didn't bother replacing, about a month later the transmission , replaced it, (trans probley not related to what I did).
Now, its about 9 months later, and over the past month I've had my headlight go out 5 times, replaced each time. Until now it had no issues. This is my left headlight. Also, rarely, maybe once a week at most when I intially start the car at night, the left side of the MPH meter won't light up for about 5 minutes. The right side of the dashboard and right headlight show 0 signs of problems.
I'm wondering what exactly could be the issue here and that the LED on my display not lighting up for 5 minutes "sometimes" might be a hint to whats going on with the left headlight constantly going out. Trying to see what kind of things to expect before I take it somewhere and they try to tell me its 2000$ for a 5$ wire that was burned up and just needs replacement and refish-ing.
Each time after the left light goes out, when I try the high beam in the same light it turns on for about 2 seconds then the light explodes (glass breaks). Thats happened on all 5 of the lights when I try it after the regular power light burns out.

Also, since I did the battery thing, when my turn signals are on (left or right) my windshield wipers stop moving. It doesn't really bother me that is happening being I don't plan on driving this much more, just a possible hint as to what may be breaking the headlight.

I only need the headlight thing resolved out of all the other issues so I don't keep getting pulled over every night lol.

If it's something I can fix myself that would be even better. I'm a cable contractor so I have quite a bit of tools etc, just not to familiar with car electronics.
 

Last edited by Unreal813; 01-03-10 at 11:24 PM.
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  #2  
Old 01-04-10, 07:28 AM
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Use a voltmeter/multimeter and check your voltages under the hood and inside the car. Should be around 13/14 volts with the car running.

If the voltage is TOO high, this could be causing problems.

You may have a voltage regulator somewhere or this could be part of the alternator. This would keep the voltage at what it should be.
 
  #3  
Old 01-04-10, 09:28 AM
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yeah voltage is running a little high. I noticed now also the headlight goes out typically when I go above 4 rpm also in a day or two. If I stay around 3 rpm and under it usually lasts about 5-6 days.

Ok so should I return to the place that installed my alternator and tell them it isn't regulating voltage correctly? Or is there possibly somewhere else the voltage is getting regulated in a 98 thunderbird
 

Last edited by Unreal813; 01-04-10 at 09:45 AM.
  #4  
Old 01-04-10, 10:41 AM
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I don't know about your specific vehicle.

The best source to see how the voltage is regulated is with a factory service manual / electrical diagrams manual.

Sometimes 3rd party auto repair books sold in auto parts stores have limited electrical diagrams or information on this. (The books which cover many different models and years.)
 
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