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1994 Brake lights not working

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Old 11-06-2005, 02:31 AM   #1
BigOne
Vancouver Island
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CAN 1994 Brake lights not working

Hi:

I've done the search and it doesn't seem to have what I need.

My 1994 Explorer with the factory trailer tow package has no brake lights. Tail lights and turn signals work fine. I've check the power to the switch with a multimeter, it is good. I've taken the brake light switch out and bench tested it for continuity by pressing it by hand. Took a lot of force but it does make a connection. Have not been able to find any unplugged plugs.

Any suggestions?

Hoping to avoid a costly trip to the *S*tealer.

Thanks in advance for any help.




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Old 11-06-2005, 09:20 AM   #2
falls guy
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Sounds like the switch to me. It's not the bulbs is it? LOL. Have someone hold the brake pedal on while you check for power at the sockets.There also could be a short in the trailer wiring. Good luck.
Peace
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Old 11-06-2005, 10:52 AM   #3
holshotracer
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my had the same problem and it turned out to be the multi###tion switch. it is costly fix, mine cost $130. and took five minutes to fix.
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Old 11-06-2005, 02:09 PM   #4
BigOne
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Falls Guy: I have power to the socket into which the brake light switch plugs. The switch bench tests ok as I said though it is really stiff. There is no power to the bulb sockets when the brake pedal is held down and no power on the trailer wiring pin for the brake lights. The truck is equipped with the factory trailer light plug and tow package.

holshotracer: Multifunction switch? Ok, that is a new one for me, I don't know where that is or what it is. If you could point me to it I'll find it and take a look.

I'm thinking I should maybe replace the brake light switch anyway as it is a cheap possible fix. Even if I can get it to function on the bench, maybe it does not get the same amount of travel when attached to the pedal. If that fails, then I guess the multifunction is the next step and see if I can figure out a way of testing it.

Thanks for the help and I look forward to detail on this MF switch.

All the best.

J.




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Old 11-06-2005, 02:14 PM   #5
DeRocha
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Originally Posted by BigOne
holshotracer: Multifunction switch? Ok, that is a new one for me, I don't know where that is or what it is. If you could point me to it I'll find it and take a look.

I'm thinking I should maybe replace the brake light switch anyway as it is a cheap possible fix. Even if I can get it to function on the bench, maybe it does not get the same amount of travel when attached to the pedal. If that fails, then I guess the multifunction is the next step and see if I can figure out a way of testing it.

Thanks for the help and I look forward to detail on this MF switch.

All the best.

J.
The multi-function switch is the turn signals stalk.... Anyway have you tried the hazard switch to see if it lights up the rear? A big problem up hear is corrosion within the trailer plug causing the problems with the directionals and brakes.. BTW how are you directionals working...




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Old 11-06-2005, 04:03 PM   #6
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DeRocha:

Yes the turn signals are fine, the hazards work fine. Everything is working with the exception of the brake lights.

Power to the brake light switch is good. Switch bench tests ok, but is very stiff to activate by hand on the bench, don't know if this is normal or not as it is a stiff spring with very short travel.

All other pins on the trailer plug are fine as in turn signals and tail lights. Just nothing when brakes applied.

For a while the brake lights were working intermittantly, but now not at all.




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Old 11-06-2005, 04:37 PM   #7
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The brake switch should be easy to move.. I would replace it..




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Old 11-06-2005, 07:27 PM   #8
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mine had the same problem all the lights worked but the brake lights. it stumped me too, so i asked my teacher who has 30 years for working in the automotive field and thats what he said was the most common problem. my hazards worked fine too.
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Old 11-07-2005, 02:25 AM   #9
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Thumbs up

Thanks very much to all of you. I'll pick up a brake light and give that a go. I'll report back.

Thanks again.

J.




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Old 11-08-2005, 08:22 PM   #10
Frankkube
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94 With the same problem

Hey Guys- My brake lights just went today. Same exact symptoms as Bigones posting. My first thought was also the brake switch, except, I haven't the slightest idea where to locate the switch on the truck. Any help would be most appreciated. As old as the truck is, its still a fine ride. Problem is that we all know how the dealer service dept's look at a 12 year old truck.. a cash cow!

Thanks in advance
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Old 11-09-2005, 04:56 AM   #11
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Originally Posted by Frankkube
...My first thought was also the brake switch, except, I haven't the slightest idea where to locate the switch on the truck.
Thanks in advance
The switch (as the name implies) is part of the brake pedal assembly .. When you step on the brake it actuates a plunger on the switch...




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Old 11-09-2005, 06:54 AM   #12
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Yep, I got that part. Does that mean the switch is at the top of the brake pedal arm, under the dash?
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Old 11-09-2005, 07:33 AM   #13
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Yes...at the top of the arm will be a switch with a few wires going into it...




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Old 11-10-2005, 03:10 AM   #14
BigOne
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Cool

THANKS!!

Had to order the brake light switch from my local parts house and it arrived today. Installed it and all is well.

Bench tested the old one again after taking it out and it still shows good so I am suspecting that bench testing is not a definitive way to diagnose this type of switch. It seems to have a very short travel and I suspect internal contact wear is the culprit. I'm going to rip the old one apart and see what makes it tick.

Anyways, THANKS again to everyone for your assistance and suggestions to change the brake light switch.




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Old 11-10-2005, 05:07 AM   #15
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There is nothing quite like the feeling of fixing some broken... BTW how much $$ did the part cost you?




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Old 11-10-2005, 02:12 PM   #16
BigOne
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Quote:
Originally Posted by DeRocha
There is nothing quite like the feeling of fixing some broken... BTW how much $$ did the part cost you?

Yes, it is nice to get something fixed up without great hassles. Part cost here was $17 Cdn and it took me a whole 45 seconds to switch out.

Thanks again for the help!




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Old 11-10-2005, 04:48 PM   #17
Rhett
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Originally Posted by DeRocha
The switch (as the name implies) is part of the brake pedal assembly .. When you step on the brake it actuates a plunger on the switch...
Is that the same switch that is sometimes called a BOO (Brake On-Off Switch)?




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Old 11-10-2005, 08:48 PM   #18
jedok
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.

Hi,

I seem to have the exact same problem, so I wont make a new thread. Only difference is I don't know hardly anything about cars like the poster seems to. Well, I already posted this in a less than popular forum, so maybe it will get more views here. Here is original post:

I have a 1994 explorer. The brake lights dont work, and the cruise control doesnt work (CC doesnt matter to me, but I think I read it was connected to the brake lights not working). Well I took it to Valvoline to get oil changed and had them look at lights. They changed bulb, and said it wasnt bulb. While they did other stuff, I looked fuses, they looked ok.

I read (and the guy at Valvoline), said that more than likely it is brake switch or wiring to the lights. Well, Id like to get the brake switch theory tested. I read in another thread about finding it. The only thing that I had connected to my break pedal was a plastic piece, and there were 2 wires running to it. They were both green, and one of the green ones had a red line. Is this the switch Im looking for?

Im not good with cars, so I think Im going to take it in, unless this is a quick fix of the switch. I can also have pics of under my dash tomorrow...maybe even tonight if you need them.

***

I think we even have same model cars, 94 explorers. So any help is appriciated.

Thanks.
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Old 11-13-2005, 01:15 AM   #19
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jedok:

If I understand you correctly, yes, the two green wires (one with a red stripe) goes to a plastic connector. This connector pulls off, it has two spade connectors in it. The piece that remains on the brake pedal assembly is the brake light switch.

To remove it, remove the spring clip that goes through a hole in the end of the brake pedal shaft onto which the arm from the master cylinder goes. Then everything can slide to the drivers side, with a bit of wiggling and the brake light switch will fall off in your hand.

Reverse proceedure to install new one. Be sure when taking the old one off and putting the new one on to put the plastic washer/spacer on to prevent drag. Be sure to get the spring clip back through the hole in the shaft before pushing it back on all the way.

When taking the plastic plug on and off be careful to not break the little locking tabs. Mine were so brittle they broke anyway and I used electrical tape to re-secure the plug to the switch to be sure it does not work loose.

Hope this helps you out.




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