North American Turbocoupe Organization



No Brights
TCLover82 Offline
Member
#1
This is an Auto-Lamp and Auto-Dim equipped '88 TC.

Have been having this problem for awhile. My Brights will only stay on if I hold the switch lever back the entire time, let it go and they go back to Dim. I replaced the Multi-Switch on the Column expecting it to be resolved, but it still does the same thing as the previous switch did. It's like something won't allow the lever to stay engaged once you pull it back, and I'm now thinking it has something to do with the Auto-Dim setup.

I unplugged Both the Sensor in the Dash, and the Sensor hanging from the bottom of the rearview mirror, and nothing changed. Anyone here had this problem before?
'88 Thunderbird Turbo Coupe - 120K miles, 99% Rust-Free, 351W/AODE Swap coming soon!
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TCLover82 Offline
Member
#2
Anybody have a clue as to where I should start looking next, to get my brights to stay on without me having to hold the lever back constantly?
'88 Thunderbird Turbo Coupe - 120K miles, 99% Rust-Free, 351W/AODE Swap coming soon!
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Not B Anymore Offline
Administrator
#3
So if you turn the auto-dim wheel all the way to "off", it still exhibits the same symptoms? I was thinking maybe it's a short in the wiring for the sensor, but turning the auto-dim wheel to off should release control of the high beams from the auto-dim system altogether as far as I know. It's acting like the system is on and you're trying to turn on the high beams with light shining into the sensor.
Brian Leavitt
'86 TC 5-Speed -- MS2x w/COP | 83 lb. injectors | T3/T4 50 Trim Stage 3 .63AR | Full 3" Exhaust - No Cat | Motorsport FMIC | Ranger Roller | Ported E6 | Walbro 255HP | Kirban | 20psi | 120-amp 3G | 8.8" 3.55 rear | '03 Cobra Wheels
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natmac3 Offline
Administrator
#4
i'd start with the senitivity adjustment wheel / switch.
bypass it into full-off & try the brights then.
1987tc
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TCLover82 Offline
Member
#5
Yep, the auto-dim/lamp wheels where the first thing I tried, turning it to off it has no effect whatsoever, neither did any other position. I definitely believe it to be the Auto-Dim system doing this though. Like you said it's acting like someone is shining a light into the sensor, even when there's no sensor connected anymore...

How exactly do I Bypass the Adjustment wheel/switch? Just unplug it?
'88 Thunderbird Turbo Coupe - 120K miles, 99% Rust-Free, 351W/AODE Swap coming soon!
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longbedGTs Offline
Senior Member
#6
FWIW, mine does the same thing and it does not have the auto dim feature. Pulling the stick back to turn the brights on, it "clicks" but doesn't hold. I haven't investigated into the problem in the 8 years I've had the car, but suspect it's some internal switch that has gone bad. Maybe a part of the multifunction switch or the switch itself. Confusedhrugs:
88 TC 5spd~money pit
88 TC 5spd~78K miles
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TCLover82 Offline
Member
#7
Strange that yours is doing it without even having the auto-dim feature.

I've already swapped in a brand new multifunction switch, and it still does the same thing, clicks the brights on, but will not hold the brights on. I didn't see any other part to the system when I was in the column. Just the headlight/turn signal wiring harness going into the multifunction switch, and the lever coming out of the switch itself. The switch just bolts onto the column. I don't know what else would cause the lever to not hold itself back. This is some strange stuff. Can't even drive my car safely at night anymore...
'88 Thunderbird Turbo Coupe - 120K miles, 99% Rust-Free, 351W/AODE Swap coming soon!
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Jeff K Offline
Administrator
#8
Possible bad MFS even though it is new? Replaced my MFS a few years ago due to a minor problem, and the NAPA replacement was worse than the original one. Returned it, got another, and it worked fine. Outsourcing everything to China = low quality parts, even supposedly "high quality" ones.
Jeff Korn

88 Turbo Coupe: Intake and exhaust mods, T3 turbo at 24 psi, forced air IC, water injection, BPV, Ranger cam, subframes, etc., etc.
86 Tbird 5.0 (original owner): intake, exhaust, valvetrain mods, 100 HP N2O, ignition, gears, suspension, etc., etc.
05 Taurus SEL Duratec daily driver
04 Taurus Duratec (wifes car)
02 Pontiac Grand Prix GT
95 Taurus GL Vulcan winter beater
67 Honda 450 Super Sport - completely customized
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5.0TurboCoupe1988 Offline
Posting Freak
#9
isn't the auto dimming sensor on the back of the rear view mirror? maybe try jumpering it?
1988 TC 2.3/5-Speed, 148K
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TCLover82 Offline
Member
#10
I guess I'm stuck with this issue then, since no one can seem to figure it out, including me or anyone I know. The MFS was a brand new OEM replacement, and I can't take it back for a refund. Not looking to pay $50 for another one, just to have it do the same thing, and **** me off even more at this car.

I will try jumpering the auto-dim sensors wiring harness, but I have no clue what wires to cross, and can only guess.
'88 Thunderbird Turbo Coupe - 120K miles, 99% Rust-Free, 351W/AODE Swap coming soon!
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