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Ignition light comes on when headlights are turned on

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  • Ignition light comes on when headlights are turned on

    Just got home from a shop that helped me out with a few things I didn't have the time or energy to do. When I turned on the headlights as I entered my garage I saw the ignition light come on on also.
    The mechanic told me over the phone this can be caused by a bad relay. I have the Advance Autowire headlight relay kit installed, so there are indeed relays. Otherwise, there is a drain somewhere in the headlight wiring that is causing an excess load when the lights are turned on. But there is not a short in the system, I assume, because the low and high beams are working fine and the column switch properly toggles between the two beams.

    I contacted Advance Autowire to find out if I can buy replacement relays without buying the entire relay kit at $95.

    Any thoughts on this will be greatly appreciated.

  • #2
    Further on this subject, the Parking lights do not activate the Ignition light. The Headlight switch is brand new.

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    • #3
      Is the engine running when this happens? Does your TR6 have a voltmeter or ammeter? What happens at the gauge when you turn your headlights on?

      Comment


      • #4
        Engine is running.1974 TR6 with a voltmeter. I'll check gauge when lights are on. Also, I'll check to make sure the shop connected the Headlight Relay power wire correctly at the battery cable on the starter solenoid per Advance Auto Wire directions.
        Thanks

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        • #5
          I think it's very unlikely a relay would cause this problem. I'd be looking at the alternator output. But first, check the brown wires connected to the terminal block in the middle of the positive battery cable for corrosion and tightness. You might also want to pull the alternator plug, look it over for any problems and reseat it. Also, check that the alternator belt is not too loose.

          Does the light go out or become dimmer as you rev the engine? That would be indicative of a weak alternator.
          R3
          Jim Herter Copperas Cove, TX
          Original Owner ֍ 1970 TR6 ֎ CC 50990 LO
          VDU 506H

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          • #6
            Check voltage across the battery with everything off then with the engine running and headlights on and report back.
            I72 Pimento w/overdrive

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            • #7
              Alternator voltage is drooping under load. As above, could be corroded connections or a weak alternator.

              Ed
              For just a little more, you can do it yourself!

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              • #8
                Yep, I suspect the alternator or alternator wiring, too. I will be checking. I have a rebuilt Lucas alternator in the garage that I can swap in and, if the problem goes away, I'll know for sure the upgraded 55 amp alternator I've been using is starting to fail. Thanks for the ideas, and have a great Fourth!

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                • #9
                  Don't forget- the simple things first. Can you just tighten the alternator belt?
                  Walt
                  CC80954U '72 TR6 original condition/sold 16.500.
                  poolboy rebuilt the Z-S Carbs. Philstr6 rebuilt both rear hubs.

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                  • #10
                    I drove the car about 15 miles yesterday and saw no fluctuation in voltage.

                    I ran the engine this morning and checked for current drain with car running and headlights on. The battery reads at least 12.4 volts stationary, and with the alternator charging at least 14 volts, with and without the lights on. There is no change in voltage or idle when I turn on the Headlights, even though the Ignition light goes on. So, it does not appear to be an alternator problem.

                    The Ignition light also goes on when I turn on the Headlights with the engine OFF. However, the Ignition light does not go on when the switch is set to Parking lights. Therefore, I suspect a switch problem, even though the switch is BRAND NEW.

                    I spoke to Advance Auto Wire. They believe the relays would not be at fault, and referred me to the Alternator. But, in light of what my Battery Test Meter shows, I maybe should suspect the relays after all.

                    I would check the Low/High beam selector switch on the column, also, but if there is a fault there, I assume the lights would not work. They do work in both positions.

                    I can't imagine that wiring at the ignition switch is screwed up. If that were the case, I wouldn't be getting power.

                    I hope I have made things clear. It's a puzzle for sure, but by process of elimination, and I suppose a new Headlight switch, and possibly, new relays, I should have things straightened out.

                    Any thoughts?

                    Comment


                    • #11
                      Wild arse guess but do check the high beam operation, if the 'ign' light goes off and on, it could be the bulbs are in the wrong gauge sockets, or you could pull the 'ign' bulb socket and check the color of the wire.
                      '74 TR6 CF13007U aka "Mr. T"
                      Custom Blue (Delft-Like) and New Tan (Formerly Mallard and New Tan)
                      Points, Ballast Bypassed, Bosch Blue Coil, Moss Cobalt Wires, Champion RN12YC plugs.
                      Peaks and tweaks, but the spirit of Original
                      Redlines always.
                      My wife is the Driver, I'm just the Mechanic....

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                      • #12
                        The Ignition light is on whether Low beams or High beams are selected. I understand what you're suggesting, and wish it was as simple as switched warning light bulbs in the gauge.
                        I'll check the bulb locations anyway, and make sure the beams really are toggling from Low to High properly. If there is a problem with the column switch and the beams are stuck on High, AND the warming bulb is mis-located, then at least I'd know what needs to be fixed.

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                        • #13
                          Three questions:
                          • What did the shop do to the car?
                          • Has the ignition warning lamp been replaced with an LED bulb? An LED bulb will not work.
                          • Does your alternator have a single brown wire connected to it in addition to the two or three wire inline plug? If so, unplug it and see what happens.


                          If this and Harris' idea doesn't fix it, put the rebuilt Lucas alternator in and the problem should go away. Stop thinking about the relays or any switches, the problem is in the alternator.
                          R3
                          Jim Herter Copperas Cove, TX
                          Original Owner ֍ 1970 TR6 ֎ CC 50990 LO
                          VDU 506H

                          Comment


                          • #14
                            Good question Jim, I don’t know about a shop doing wiring that can think it can be a solenoid problem. What else did they do to the car?
                            I72 Pimento w/overdrive

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                            • #15
                              I have narrowed the problem down to the headlight switch. I can get the Headlights to work OK without the Ignition light coming on, but when I connect the Parking light wire to the switch, the Ignition light comes on. I took the switch apart,and it seems OK, but didn't fix the problem. I'm hoping a new switch solves the problem. In the meantime, I'll check the parking light wiring and make sure there is no other issue there. I've never seen the ignition light come on when a headlight switch failed, they either work or they don't. That makes me a little suspicious.

                              The shop spent some time on the turn signals which were not working. (That was not what I had taken the car in for in the first place.) Anyway, they replaced the old Flasher switch, and also determined that the turn signal column switch needed to be replaced. Once that was replaced, the turn signals were working again.

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