Blnkers and Brake Light won't work 78 GL1000


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Lastwachter
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Blnkers and Brake Light won't work 78 GL1000

Post by Lastwachter » Sun Jun 03, 2018 8:09 pm



1978 GL1000

Bike got REALLY wet, blinkers went solid and eventually stopped working altogether during a ride. Now neither the blinkers or the brake light work. So no blinkers when using the indicator switch and no brake light when using the front or rear brake.

-Taillight works.
-Fuse is good.
-All 5 bulbs replaced.
-I cleaned ground at the neck of the bike and under the seat.

I noticed the brake light, blinkers and horn are all on the same fuse. That seems a bit of a coincidence. I was thinking something went wrong after power or gets to the horn but before it reaches the other instruments. I can't see anything obvious. I have been dealing with this problem for 6 months now. I could really use some help. If someone could walk me through exactly what to try I would REALLY appreciate it.

Ryan



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SnoBrdr
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Re: Blnkers and Brake Light won't work 78 GL1000

Post by SnoBrdr » Sun Jun 03, 2018 8:31 pm

Lastwachter wrote:
Sun Jun 03, 2018 8:09 pm
1978 GL1000

Bike got REALLY wet, blinkers went solid and eventually stopped working altogether during a ride. Now neither the blinkers or the brake light work. So no blinkers when using the indicator switch and no brake light when using the front or rear brake.

-Taillight works.
-Fuse is good.
-All 5 bulbs replaced.
-I cleaned ground at the neck of the bike and under the seat.

I noticed the brake light, blinkers and horn are all on the same fuse. That seems a bit of a coincidence. I was thinking something went wrong after power or gets to the horn but before it reaches the other instruments. I can't see anything obvious. I have been dealing with this problem for 6 months now. I could really use some help. If someone could walk me through exactly what to try I would REALLY appreciate it.

Ryan
Does the horn work?

If not the fuse could be blown.

The glass fuses could look OK but could still be cracked.

fatalbert
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Re: Blnkers and Brake Light won't work 78 GL1000

Post by fatalbert » Mon Jun 04, 2018 9:16 am

Replace the fuse for the lighting circuit first even if you think it tests OK. You would be amazed at how many hours of frustration can be spent troubleshooting electrical circuits only to find that a fuse that was thought to be good turned out to be the problem.

Start from the fuse through one of the lighting circuits that does not function making sure you find 12v along the way towards the bulb hot side. The GL has some peculiar components for the backup lighting system that add some complexity.

Water is a great conductor and will create sneak paths for short circuits as well as do damage to switches and connectors.

How wet did your bike get to cause this - left in the rain or hit by the 100 year flood?

Good luck.

fatalbert
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Re: Blnkers and Brake Light won't work 78 GL1000

Post by fatalbert » Mon Jun 04, 2018 9:48 am

One last thought. One thing I have learned about electrical troubleshooting from people smarter than me. On a complex electrical failure, break the failure down into smaller pieces and work on one at a time.

In your case, start with one failure such as the brake lights and trace the power through only that circuit, correcting one issue at a time. You can zip tie down the brake pedal or hand brake to activate that circuit. Also, handlebar switches are a weak link in the circuitry and are prone to failure if over exposed to water.

Lastwachter
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Re: Blnkers and Brake Light won't work 78 GL1000

Post by Lastwachter » Mon Jun 04, 2018 1:47 pm

fatalbert wrote:
Mon Jun 04, 2018 9:16 am
Replace the fuse for the lighting circuit first even if you think it tests OK. You would be amazed at how many hours of frustration can be spent troubleshooting electrical circuits only to find that a fuse that was thought to be good turned out to be the problem.
SnoBrdr wrote:
Sun Jun 03, 2018 8:31 pm
Does the horn work?

If not the fuse could be blown.

The glass fuses could look OK but could still be cracked.
Yes, the horn works. I also tried switching out another fuse in the box and the horn continued to work and the lights continued to NOT work.
fatalbert wrote:
Mon Jun 04, 2018 9:16 am
Start from the fuse through one of the lighting circuits that does not function making sure you find 12v along the way towards the bulb hot side. The GL has some peculiar components for the backup lighting system that add some complexity.
I am terrible with electrical issues. So to clarify, I should expose the wires on my harness and using my multimeter, start poking the wire from the fuse to the indicators making sure I am getting 12volts. If at any time I am not reading 12volts then I lost power at the last connector or somewhere along that particular piece of wire?
fatalbert wrote:
Mon Jun 04, 2018 9:16 am
How wet did your bike get to cause this - left in the rain or hit by the 100 year flood?
Good luck.
Two days of heavy rain.

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Re: Blnkers and Brake Light won't work 78 GL1000

Post by fatalbert » Mon Jun 04, 2018 2:38 pm

Yes, you have the right idea. Use the battery ground fof hour dvm meter for the black meter lead. You need to look at a schematic for your bike to follow the expected path towards the tail light. Their are schematic I think on this sight. I would remove the side covers to do this.

You might be able to just follow the correct wire to the next junction point and verify you have twelve volts along the way. The schematic will tell you the color of the wires as well.

I stressed changing the fuse because another poster had a similar electrical issue as you and I advised him to get a new fuse first. Three days later after many hours he found that his fuse was bad and the cause of the problem. Fuses do not always fail totally open but can have a higher impedance than a dead short between the contact points.

Knowing that the issues started after heavy rain makes me suspect the problem would most likely be in a switch or connector. Also don't rule out a failed flasher relay for the turn signals. Good luck.

fatalbert
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Re: Blnkers and Brake Light won't work 78 GL1000

Post by fatalbert » Mon Jun 04, 2018 2:51 pm

Sorry, one suggestion I forgot to add. If you go to remove any parts or do any electrical repairs, always disconnect the battery ground before proceding.

Lastwachter
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Re: Blnkers and Brake Light won't work 78 GL1000

Post by Lastwachter » Mon Jun 04, 2018 3:03 pm

fatalbert wrote:
Mon Jun 04, 2018 2:38 pm
Knowing that the issues started after heavy rain makes me suspect the problem would most likely be in a switch or connector. Also don't rule out a failed flasher relay for the turn signals. Good luck.
Thank you for your help. I will attempt this later today. As for the flasher, I did replace that years ago when first getting the bike up and running. So that would be an easy swap. However, that would not affect the brake light as well, correct?

fatalbert
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Re: Blnkers and Brake Light won't work 78 GL1000

Post by fatalbert » Tue Jun 05, 2018 12:19 am

You are right, the flasher would not affect the brake lights.

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Re: Blnkers and Brake Light won't work 78 GL1000

Post by DaveO430 » Tue Jun 05, 2018 6:35 am

I suspect the ground wire to the rear lights is disconnected or broken.

Lastwachter
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Re: Blnkers and Brake Light won't work 78 GL1000

Post by Lastwachter » Thu Jun 14, 2018 4:14 pm

So I have been trying to follow wires and test using the multimeter up and down the bike and with SOOOO many wires and my extremely low skill level with electric work, I am at a loss...

Something I did notice, the two wires going to the brake pedal for the brake light, when both are disconnected from the switch they both are showing 12volts. Shouldn't the switch when opened be sending the 12 volts from one wire to the other? It would seem to me that when disconnected, one should read 12 volts and other 0. Does this indicate anything about what could be wrong with the bike?

Lastwachter
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Re: Blnkers and Brake Light won't work 78 GL1000

Post by Lastwachter » Thu Jun 14, 2018 4:17 pm

DaveO430 wrote:
Tue Jun 05, 2018 6:35 am
I suspect the ground wire to the rear lights is disconnected or broken.
I can trace that wire back into the loom. I am not seeing that wire being grounded before going back into the nest of wires. Since that is the case, wouldn't other items not be grounding out as well?

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Re: Blnkers and Brake Light won't work 78 GL1000

Post by DenverWinger » Sat Jun 16, 2018 7:17 am

With 12v on both sides of the brake light switch it just confirms you've lost a ground somewhere. The 12 volts is coming from your running lights power, which should light the bulb and go to ground. But with the ground missing, the voltage feeds thru the running light filament, misses ground and flows back thru the stoplight filament of the same bulb and back to your stoplight switch and your meter.
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Fred Camper
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Re: Blnkers and Brake Light won't work 78 GL1000

Post by Fred Camper » Sun Jun 17, 2018 7:31 pm

Agree that this sounds like a ground issue. Try giving the circuit a known good ground close to the last connection, then move back if that corrects the issue.



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