Rear lights not doing what they are supposed to do. Help


Information and questions on GL1800 Goldwings (2001-2017)
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Tangsoodo2135
Posts: 23
Joined: Fri Feb 15, 2019 9:26 am
Location: Redding, ct
Motorcycle: 2005 gl1800

Rear lights not doing what they are supposed to do. Help

Post by Tangsoodo2135 »



Good evening everyone. The riding is season is very close at hand here in CT, USA. I have a 2005 GL1800 with about 30,000 miles on it. I am having a problem with my rear lights that hopefully someone can steer me in the correct direction to fix them.

1. When the bike is running Both turn signal indicators on the dash light up dimly
2. All bulbs in the trunk and side bags light up dimly
Note: I did find a turn signal light in the left side bag that was out. It was the bulb closest to the center of the bike behind the red lens cover. I replaced the bulb.
3. When the turn signals are engaged all lights in rear flash inconsistently alternating quickly from side to side.
4. When front brake lever is pulled in, nothing happens to the lights, The brakes work fine. (No brake lights come on).
5. When the brake pedal is engaged the rear brake lights come on normally. The turn signal indicator lights on dash light up brightly.
Note: Front turn signals and head lights work correctly.
thanks in advance for any help someone can offer. Let's all hope for a great riding season this year.


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M61A1MECH
Posts: 145
Joined: Sat Jul 12, 2014 9:38 pm
Location: Edgewater, Florida
Motorcycle: 2013 Goldwing

Re: Rear lights not doing what they are supposed to do. Help

Post by M61A1MECH »

That sounds like a grounding issue, there is a major ground point under the fuel tank that is known to be problematic. It is not easy to get to, but you may to consider checking it. I have read that Honda uses a thread locking compound on that ground point and that inhibits a good ground and results in corrosion building up.
I am sure that some smart people with more knowledge than me will be along soon, maybe with better ideas.
Steve K
Edgewater, FL

And the Lord said. "Thou shalt have dominion over all of the animals, except of course the cat."
Tangsoodo2135
Posts: 23
Joined: Fri Feb 15, 2019 9:26 am
Location: Redding, ct
Motorcycle: 2005 gl1800

Re: Rear lights not doing what they are supposed to do. Help

Post by Tangsoodo2135 »

Thanks i will check it out.
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tamathumper
Posts: 584
Joined: Mon Jul 02, 2018 6:02 pm
Location: Charlotte, NC
Motorcycle: 2003 GL1800A

Re: Rear lights not doing what they are supposed to do. Help

Post by tamathumper »

IIRC there are posts here or on other forums that reference "turn signal indicators lit dimly", so you might be able to find a resolution for your specific problem that way.
'03 GL1800A - Warning: fopen() [function.fopen]: failed to open stream: Sense of humor not found on line 2
the_big_h
Posts: 15
Joined: Thu Oct 01, 2015 7:35 pm
Location: Gads Hill, ON, Canada
Motorcycle: 1984 GL1200 Aspencade
1999 GL1500 Aspencade
1984 VF1100S Sabre

Re: Rear lights not doing what they are supposed to do. Help

Post by the_big_h »

Definitely a grounding problem with the rear lights. One clue is the turn signal indicators lighting dimly with the bike running.
Another clue is other lights being affected when a function not related to that light is operated.
I believe there is also a second problem with the switch on the front brake lever not working, but get the grounding problem sorted out first.
Tangsoodo2135
Posts: 23
Joined: Fri Feb 15, 2019 9:26 am
Location: Redding, ct
Motorcycle: 2005 gl1800

Re: Rear lights not doing what they are supposed to do. Help

Post by Tangsoodo2135 »

Another person suggested the ground under the gas tank. Can i test this without getting to that ground from a different location. Thanks
the_big_h
Posts: 15
Joined: Thu Oct 01, 2015 7:35 pm
Location: Gads Hill, ON, Canada
Motorcycle: 1984 GL1200 Aspencade
1999 GL1500 Aspencade
1984 VF1100S Sabre

Re: Rear lights not doing what they are supposed to do. Help

Post by the_big_h »

Yes, you can test it from any of the rear light sockets.
With the lights ON (bike running), measure the voltage between the green wire at any rear light socket, and the battery negative terminal.
Anything more than a volt or so proves that the green wire is not properly grounded.
On all Honda's I have worked on, green wire is ground. Battery negative is ground. Any significant voltage between 2 supposedly grounded points proves they are not tied together.


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