98 Dodge Grand Caravan problem with brake lights.

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  #1  
Old 01-20-10, 02:48 PM
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98 Dodge Grand Caravan problem with brake lights.

The mounted brake light is working but not the two on the sides. Lights bulbs are working properly.

What could be the problem and to solve it?

Any response will be appreciated.

AJ
 
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  #2  
Old 01-20-10, 03:00 PM
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It can't be the pedal switch, since the one works. It has to be the hot, ground or sockets, if bulbs are good.

This just has to be a seek and destroy mission, based on what I said. Unfortunately, wiring diagrams you can buy, show you what goes from what to what, and identifies wires by color code. That is very useful. But it doesn't show where the wires are run.

Not sure if a factory manual would or not. Other than that you would just have to trace, starting back by the sockets, and test with a meter as you go. You may have to use one of those awl-type testers where you poke through the wire insulation to test to see where you have juice, and where you loose it. Look for bad connections or corrosion, perhaps under the chasis. That has usually been my problem when rear lights have gone out on me. I've managed to find the problems. You have to be at least somewhat electrical savvy.

Do your rear directionals work. Filament may be shared. You are sure the brake light filaments in the bulbs are good?
 
  #3  
Old 01-20-10, 04:17 PM
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In general for all vehicles...

A common problem is the wrong bulbs are installed. Some bulbs have two connections on the bottom, others just one connection. Make sure you have the correct factory specification bulbs installed.

Then check all fuses. Your owner's manual should give the location of all fuse boxes. It may say what all each fuse goes to? But many times what the fuse is called and what it goes to are a bit confusing. So best to check them all.

Just check one fuse at a time, then put it back. How to check fuses...
Testing fuses Page

Then if you have add-on trailer wiring, check that. This can be a source of many problems, if the wiring is not installed like the factory wiring is.

Factory wiring has tape around it, then protective plastic tubing over it, then it is tie wrapped and fastened down so it can't move.

Do-it-yourself wiring is loose wiring which is not protected in any way. This can move around as the vehicle hits bumps and rub against sharp metal objects. Then this eventually cuts through the insulation on the wire and shorts out the circuit to ground. And a fuse blows.

If the above does not find the problem and you are familiar with troubleshooting electrical circuits and how to use a multimeter, you can order a factory service manual set from your dealer which would contain complete electrical diagrams of the vehicle.

(This would also show where every wire / electrical cable is run in the vehicle. Factory electrical diagrams manuals [if a separate book] can be 150 to 300 pages long - just on the electrical systems alone! And just for one model and year vehicle.)

Otherwise take it to a dealer for service.

How to use a multimeter...
how to use a multimeter on a car - Google Search
 
  #4  
Old 02-01-10, 10:01 AM
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This problem may be fixed by now. Some cars have a double pole brake switch with 3 or 4 wires on it. I'd check the switch/wires first.
 
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