(Formally "Plan V: A Van Dwelling Blog", when I lived in a 1978 Dodge Xplorer 228 Class B motorhome van)

Friday, November 2, 2012

Rewiring running lights, part 1

When I bought the van, fuse #6 was blown and had randomly blown a couple other times. I had no idea why... but I found out the other day.

The running lights (tail lights, front and side markers) were not working. The cluster's back lights had also gone out. I replaced the fuse, turned on the headlight switch and the fuse blew again. I traced it to the two runs of brown factory wire dedicated to the running light "hot" function. It took me over 2 days to figure out how to go about fixing the problem without screwing up the headlights, brake lights and turn signals since they were all working. Last night, I was able to do so.

Today I went to O'Reilly and bought 40ft of 14 gauge wire (two 20ft rolls) and some connectors.. which I won't be using. I tried to use one crimp connector and it didn't hold so that package I'll have to keep. The other package I will probably just return. I may need more wire in fact... but I may get by with some scrap wire I have laying around of the same gauge but of another color.

I also bought a new 97db backup alarm which I will be installing after I wire up the tail/side lights. There was a cheap 1156 bulb type backup alarm that was broken on the bulb holder so I tossed it in the trash. It was barely audible anyway when it worked part of the time and sounded very weak.

When I got home I had just enough time to wire up the front and get it working. I will also be replacing and wiring up the lights on the running boards so I am providing a power lead to them, wired into the factory headlight switch.

I ran out of daylight to finish the wiring at the headlight switch harness but that won't take very long to do tomorrow.

Part 2 will be about wiring up the rear lights. I may also do a part 3 for the running board lights.

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