Trailer Light Issue


Old 04-11-11, 09:25 AM
Thread Starter
Join Date: Mar 2008
Location: Hudson Falls, NY
Posts: 27
Question Trailer Light Issue

I have a 2007 Fleetwood Niagara (pop up camper) that I tow with a 2006 Dodge Durango. The rear lights on the trailer use one 1157 bulb for brake, turn, and running lights. The trailer plugs into a 7 blade RV connector at the tow vehicle.

The issue that I am having is that the driver's side main light is not functioning. The marker lights on that side of the trailer are functioning, but nothing at the main rear light.

I have tested / tried the following:

-Bulb is good... it works on the other side with no problems.
-Contacts @ the bulb socket are fine
-Cleaned all contacts - Tow Vehicle / trailer plug / rear light
-I'm getting spark at the wires at the rear light (didn't have an electrical tester to test)
-Ground @ light appears to be fine

The only thing that I have found that is a bit weird is that I could get the light to come on sporadically (not consistently at all) while holding the wires to the contacts on the bulb. This is with the running lights on.

The plan for tonight is to:
-Get an electrical tester
-test each of the seven blades on the tow vehicle connection
-if good plug in and test each wire behind the plug
-work my way back to the tail light

Things I'm concerned about:
-The wires run inside the trailer and I do not have access to the entire run.
-Big trip on Friday and I NEED to have this resolved before then!
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Old 04-11-11, 11:55 AM
Group Moderator
Join Date: Mar 2003
Location: NC, USA
Posts: 17,327
In general I would focus on the connections. Trailers are notorious for using the saddle connectors to tie into the middle of a wire. Over time they always seem to be a problem with weak or intermittent connections. If possible I would solder all the wire connections on the trailer.
Old 04-17-11, 12:38 PM
Join Date: Jan 2006
Location: Ontario, Canada
Posts: 759
replace tail light assy. At very least, the socket but i"m thinking complete light assy is easier. Before you do, try squeezing socket slightly to snug up connection of bulb body to socket (ground).
Old 04-22-11, 05:40 PM
Join Date: Dec 2002
Location: Pittsburgh, PA
Posts: 551
+1 on replacing the light assembly. These cheezy lights have a wire pushed thru the back that in turn wedges between the plastic housing and a brass contact. You can very easily have a good contact from the bulb base to the brass contact and it still not work. If all other marker lights work but that one, it isn't the trailer plug. If by "main light" yoiu mean the brake light or flasher on that side, include your trailer plug connector in your troubleshooting. If its marker lights and they all work but that one, its a broken wire or a bad light fixture.
Old 05-11-11, 06:22 PM
Justin Smith's Avatar
Join Date: Dec 2010
Location: Cressona, Pa, USA
Posts: 2,546
I would just start with the lamphoulder and work my way front. Soulder and heatshrink all of your connections and use adhesive-lined heatshrink.

Are saddle connections those blue things?

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