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brake light problem
#85540 Thu Apr 11 2002 04:59 AM
Joined: Mar 2002
Posts: 8
The brake lights on my newly aquired 55-1st will not function. The other lights are all ok (head, tail). Can someone give me some help in tracking down the problem? I'm not a mechanic by any means. Very new at this old truck thing. Would be thankful for any help.

Re: brake light problem
#85541 Thu Apr 11 2002 05:46 AM
Joined: Dec 2000
Posts: 9
Hi welcome to the hobby, get ready to spend the most $ you ever had. Anyway, first take the tail lens apart and take out the bulb, it should be a 1157 two point bulb. go to the yard sales and swat meets and find a electric adapter that puts out 13.5 v. then sut the ends off and attach a black and red alligator clips, now you have a handy bench tester. plug it in and touch the red clip to one of the bottom nipples and the black clip to the side of the buob. test both nipples. if the bulb works, then get a spray wd40 and clean out the socket, stick a folded sandpaper down the socket and rub the sides. look at the end of the wire nipples, are they shinney or rusted out. you can go to the napa , kragen, autozone and buy just one or two wires that have the nipple ends. while you are there get one of those 12 volt testers, its a ice pick looking thing that has a clear handle and a bulb in it. attach the end of the tester, alligator tip to metal, and stick the ice-pick into one of the wires, turn on the lights, one wire should turn onthe handle, that means that the other in the stop light. have a buddy go to the cab and press the brakes, then stick the other wire with the tester, if the tester lights up then you know that everything in ok up front. if it doesn't then the problem is up front. follow the wire under the truck until it gets to the brake switch. get your tester and ice pick the terminals there are two on the swith. depress the brake and the tester should turn on. if not then the switch is no good or not aligned with the brake stem. make it fun, turn on music, or tv, drink cokes, and go on this treasure hunt. You will get great satisfaction when you find the problem yourself. I am not a mechanic but love to get in there and get full of grease and sometimes figure things out and brag about it for weeks, later, grin grin

Re: brake light problem
#85542 Fri Apr 12 2002 12:14 AM
Joined: Dec 2001
Posts: 21
I would agree with all comments above from Kool 65. Corrosion is the big problem with tail lights and with parking lights as well. I found the sandpaper cleanout really worked. Get all the dirt and corrosion off the brass pieces and the pins from the wires. Another thing to check is grounding. If the ground isn't solid, the connection will be weak. I added a ground wire from the hood of my 64 to the firewall and it cleared up a lot of turn signal problems. Same could apply to the bed/turn signal mounts.

Re: brake light problem
#85543 Fri Apr 12 2002 03:37 AM
Joined: Mar 2002
Posts: 8
Kool 65, 64 swb, Thanks for the great info. I'm learning that there are many very helpful truck owners willing to share their knowledge. Thanks again. smile

Moderated by  Rusty Rod 

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