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2001-2005 Explorer Sport Trac All questions related to the 2001-2005 Explorer Sport Trac model.

my tail lights and cluster lights went out, but everything else lights up

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Old 09-14-2011, 01:47 AM   #1
LONO100
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my tail lights and cluster lights went out, but everything else lights up

hey all,

i was driving earlier tonight when out of nowhere the lights in my gauge cluster and the lights in my ac controls went dark. when i parked i checked to see if any other lights went out. my headlights, fogs, turn signals, and dome lights all work, but my tail lights are also out. i checked the fuses for the cluster and the tail lights and they still looked good, but i will check again in the morning when it is bright outside. if its not the fuses, what could be causing this?

i did a little digging on the forum just now and what i found is that a few people who had 91-94 explorers experienced the same combination of lights going out and they solved it by replacing the headlight switch. could this be the same problem im having considering i have a 2003 sport trac? i read another thread where a guy was talking about his hitch light assembly was causing a short. how exactly would i go about diagnosing that?

any help would be awesome, i wont have to do any driving at night for a few days, but id like to get it fixed sometime in the next day or so if possible.

btw, if it is the headlight switch, do i have to go to the dealer to get a new one, or would an autozone or kragen have one? thanks fellas.
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Old 09-14-2011, 04:52 AM   #2
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What about your front "parking" lights? Still work? Tag lights? Do you have Autolamp or not?

I'm sending you the diagnostics.




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Old 09-14-2011, 06:40 AM   #3
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thanks ranchero. im going to go out there in a few minutes and checking the parking lights. what is an autolamp? i appreciate the help.
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Old 09-14-2011, 09:26 AM   #4
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The autolamp is like daytime runners, there's a switch on your rearview mirror for it.




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Old 09-14-2011, 09:40 AM   #5
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thanks rebel, no autolamp. havent been able to check on the parking lights yet, but once i do, ill report back. im thinking its the headlight switch, but hoping its a fuse i missed. i doubt it though since both my cluster lights and tail ights are out.
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Old 09-14-2011, 10:32 AM   #6
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No autolamp on your '03? mines an '03 XLT, what model is yours? There should be a sensor on the front of the rearview mirror and a slider swtch on the bottom of the mirror.




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Old 09-14-2011, 03:19 PM   #7
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its def an xlt, but no autolight. should i feel ripped off? parking lights and fog lights work, just instrument cluster and tail lights. i think its the headlight switch. im going to open up the dash and pull the switch.
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Old 09-14-2011, 04:04 PM   #8
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Check the wiring harness in the cloumn. Maybe it was stretched from tilting the wheel up/down. Common problem.




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Old 09-14-2011, 04:16 PM   #9
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The column problem relates to the stop/turn lamps, was my first thought too, but his issue is tail lamps. Not in the column.

Check the white/black wire for power when you pull the switch. No power, bad switch. If it has power go for the parking relay which is in the Aux Relay Box 2 under the dash to the right of the column..




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Old 09-14-2011, 04:42 PM   #10
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awesome, thanks fellas. hey ranchero i was telling rebel that either you or him should change your name to sport trac yoda. i thinks its fitting, you guys are geniuses. ill let you know what i find.
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Old 09-14-2011, 04:46 PM   #11
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i was telling rebel that either you or him should change your name to sport trac yoda. i thinks its fitting, you guys are geniuses. ill let you know what i find.
There ya go Jerry, I mean MidnightYoda!




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Old 09-14-2011, 07:05 PM   #12
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Aww no, you know and have way more knowledge about these trucks than I do, I am merely a jedi.





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Old 09-14-2011, 10:30 PM   #13
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ok so i checked the fuses, all good, so i got a new headlight switch for 20 bucks and replaced it. got my interior lights back but my tail lights are still out. any thoughts?
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Old 09-14-2011, 10:34 PM   #14
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ranchero, is aux relay box 2 inside the steering colum? i cant seem to find what you are talking about.
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Old 09-14-2011, 10:36 PM   #15
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check that, i found it! now which relay should i be testing? there are about 5 of them.
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Old 09-14-2011, 11:20 PM   #16
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ok, so tonight i switched the headlight swith, noticed that the fuse to my cig lighter/obdIi was out, replaced that, and after i hooked the batteryback on i turned the truck on and now my abs light is on. how the hell did i trip that!? well anyway, im going to try to get it all squared tomorrow morning. if you fellas have any more advice i could sure use it. thanks guys and have a good night.
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Old 09-15-2011, 09:17 AM   #17
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Well since your OBDII port is working again then go to Advance, O'reilly's, Checkers or whatever you have out there borrow there OBDII scanner and check for codes, it should tell you why the ABS light is on.

With the bigger tires I know of other members that have this issue with the ABS light but not sure where your sensor is on you 2wd spindle. On the 4wd the hub bearing assembly has it mounted to it.




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Old 09-15-2011, 10:30 AM   #18
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i think either the abs came on because my speedo is off because of the bigger tires. i might have to change out the speedo sensor which i think is on the diff. i just dont know why it decided to come on now. ive been driving with these wheels for a week and the abs light just tripped after i replaced the headlight switch. my main problem is that my tail ights are still out. everything else works now lighting wise. just my tail ights and my abs. im going to check the actual tail light bulbs to see if they blew out this morning. still not sure how to test the tail light relay being that ive never had to do it before.
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Old 09-15-2011, 01:55 PM   #19
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Maybe one of the ABS cables got stretched when you did the TT and now has become detached. I have 32" tires and the ABS light has never come on. Just a thought.




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Old 09-15-2011, 03:45 PM   #20
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Originally Posted by MidnightRebel07 View Post
Well since your OBDII port is working again then go to Advance, O'reilly's, Checkers or whatever you have out there borrow there OBDII scanner and check for codes, it should tell you why the ABS light is on.

With the bigger tires I know of other members that have this issue with the ABS light but not sure where your sensor is on you 2wd spindle. On the 4wd the hub bearing assembly has it mounted to it.
A regular OBD II reader will not read ABS codes so be sure they have the newest combo OBD II/ABS reader




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