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Ol'MarbleEyes

Trailer lights???

27 posts in this topic

Went to test the trailer lights today and found one taillight would not work...took cover off and can see that both bulbs are bad...no problem right?? Wrong!! I can't get to the bulbs!! These are Wesbar taillights on a 2001 Spartan trailer...after taking off the red cover, I came to the bulbs inside a sealed casing!! I can't get that casing off...I'm afraid I'm going to break the thing!! There is probably a simple solution but I just can't see how it's supposed to come off...FRUSTRATING!!! Any help or insight is greatly appreciated!!!

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I hated my wesbar lights soooo bad. Constantly fixing it seemed like. You can get replacement "pods" or what ever they call them at most shrelander dealers. After a hard summer of constantly fixing on mine I chucked the entire trailers electrical system and rewired it with stuff from the local semi trailer repair shop. I didnt burn a bulb last year, SWEET! lol I dont have to unplug them either. One less hassle is a good thing.. Good luck!!

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Paul Rohweller
Pine to Prairie Guide Service
218-962-3387
http://fishingminnesota.com/pinetoprairie

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I have saw cut the plastic cover and replaced the bulbs.

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The hubby also put semi trailer lights on our boat trailer. They are waterproof and we never unplug them when backing into the lake. I'm not sure how many years it's been since he changed them over and hasn't had a burned out bulb yet, maybe 5 years now.

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Fishn'Lady

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I wish the boat trailer mfgrs would just wire things with quality stuff to start with. It would save alot of people alot of grief. I suppose cost is a huge factor tho, 150 dollars to wire a trailer compared to 25.....Low bid sells stuff but sure hurts quality.. Paul

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Paul Rohweller
Pine to Prairie Guide Service
218-962-3387
http://fishingminnesota.com/pinetoprairie

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Thanks for the info everyone...I finally figured it out somewhat...you'd think they would make the lights a little easier to change out a bulb?? The way these are made I have to find a new "bulb capsule" every time a bulb goes bad!! Not something that is stocked at Fleet Farm or Walmart!! Hey Paul...could you give me some more info on the semi lights...would like to replace my whole works very soon!! Thanks again!!

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I have always just used the normal square lights that you can pick up anywhere I believe they are called Petersen or something like that is usually on the reflector. I have them on all of my dad's trailers and have never had a problem as long as the are wired and GROUNDED properly. I have them on the boat trailer and I never unhook them and I submerge them everytime I put the boat in. I would use this method before I spend a lot more money on those mentioned Semi lights.

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Grip it and Rip it

IFFWalleyes
I Fish For Walleyes

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After spending hours fixing trailer lights and fighting with them I also went to "Semi trailer" sealed lights. I rewired my trailer last spring and used outside extension cord for wiring. Solder the connections together then use shrink tubing over the soldered ends and then I used liquid electrical tape over that. Extension cord wiring is sealed and excellent for trailer wiring. With the sealed lights I have never had another problem. I never unplug my lights to back in the water. Don't have to. My next trailer will be purchased without lights so I can do the same thing to it and not have to fight with factory lights.

Jeff
Scenic Tackle
sctackle@paulbunyan.net

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I've had all kinds of problems with my trailer lights also. I have a 2000 Spartan that holds my 1650 Fishhawk. It worked fine for the first 3 months I used it, then suddenly it began blowing fuses. The turn signals and break lights work fine, but it blows out the fuse that works the marker lights and the rear tail lights at night. I found the fuse and can replace it, but any time it gets a little wet the darn thing blows again. I took it in twice, and they claim they can't find anything. There obviously has to be a bare wire somewhere or a connection that isn't sealed, and when it gets wet, it blows the seal. Any suggestions on what I should try or who I should take it to? I took it back to where I bought it originally, MN Marine in Ham Lake. Any advice would be appreciated.

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I have the exact same lights. I burned a bulb and learned I had to buy the whole assembly for $15 everytime a bulb went out. No way. I ended up cutting the capsule open and replacing the burnt bulb! No problems since wink.gif
I always unplug the lights at the launch regardless if they say the lights are submersible! Easier to unplug than deal with replacing fuses.

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Thanks for the info. In dealing with MN Marine, and their intial claim that it had to be something other than the trailer, I went through many steps. First I hooked the trailer up to my dad's F150, and it blew his fuse also. I replaced the fuse, and bought a new 6 to 4 converter to plug the trailer into on the truck, and still used my dad's truck, and it still blew the fuse. So the truck was taken out of the equation, as was the connection to the truck. That only leaves the darn trailer. The guy at MN Marine got under the trailer, and checked out all of the various places on the trailer where there were connections, and said he saw nothing exposed or loose. So how would I go about checking the ground?

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If you are blowing fuses you have a short to ground on one of your 3 hot wires ( brown yellow or green ) If you can, disconnect one side at a time to see which side blows the fuse to help narrow it down. Typical places that they short are at the connector from getting pinched in turns. Another is where the clips attach the wiring to the frame. And if that does not do it check where the wires plug into the lights themselves, sometimes you get stray ends that can short. It is probably one of those areas. grin.gif

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Where are the fuses located? I may have blown one with a loose wire on the trailer.

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I purchased a Hoppy 4700 trailer tester. The diff between the 4700 and most other plug in trailer testers is: The 4700 has 6 led lights. 3 lts tell if the fault is with the tow vehicle. The other 3 tell if the fault is in the trailer. Here is the neat part, if you have a short to ground in the trailer, the 4700 has a auto reset breaker, so it won't blow fuses in you tow vehicle. If the short to ground is intermitant, it will reset when the fault clears.

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Thanks for the info, I'll take a look and see what I find. As far as the question of where the fuses are located, on my 2000 F-150, the fuses that are related to the trailer lights are in the distribution box under the hood. They are yellow 20 amp fuses I believe.

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There are 2 irrefutable truths regarding trailer electrical systems and if you remember them they will make your life much easier! 1. The majority of them time you have a problem with the lighting it is going to be a ground problem ( this assumes the bulb is good, and it is not fuse blowing problem which would be a short to ground) 2. When there is a problem with a tow vehicle and a trailer not working properly together it is in the majority of cases the tow vehicle which is causing the problem. I did not say all of the time, but in most cases if you make sure the ground on the trailer is good and the tow vehicle wiring is working properly your problem will dissapear. grin.gif

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Count me in on "light repair". After I got the boat home from storage yesterday, my little guy says, "dad, that suppose to be like that?". (Bulbs and plastic assembly hanging below the red light housing). Ah, nope....the plastic bulb assembly is broke so I need new lights. I'll have to check out these semi lights you guys were talking about.

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These trailer lights are such a pain, eh? My tow vehicle is the problem as it relates to my question. Why am I blowing my brake fuse in my GMC Jimmy? As soon as I touch the brakes while hooked up to a trailer (have tried 3 different boat trailers) it blows. I'm claiming ignorance with this, as I've never had to monkey with the tow vehicle wiring. Any guesses? Where to start?

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Hemlock
"Throw'm back"

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Hemlock, only when a trailer is hooked up, right? Are you using any type of adapter (big round plug to flat 4-pin lug)? Maybe that adapter has a short.

Also, check the fuse size in the Jimmy. Maybe it was changed to a smaller size and blows from the extra current taken from the trailer lights. ?

[This message has been edited by Dave (edited 04-29-2003).]

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I have a similar problem to Hemlock. When my trailer is hooked up and it's raining, (wet out) I blow the brake lite fuse also. Wiring looks good where exposed to outside of trailer. When it's dry, no problems.

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I do not have any sort of adapters. It's the standard four plug deal, not the round type. I'll check with the manual on the brake fuse size. I got mad one day and put in a bigger one and had no problems. I was told later to be careful in doing that, as I could fry something and have bigger problems. Does anyone know if I can get away with a 30 amp in place of a 20 that blows?

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Hemlock
"Throw'm back"

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hemlock, I'd say 10 amp over fuse rating is too much. It could cause mor trouble.

My neighbor had trouble with his trailer lights last year. I thought for sure it was a ground problem. Ended up the wires inside the middle of the toungue (not visible) were corroded and one was bare. Replaced the wiring and worked like a charm.

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Well, I guess I'll hold off on going with a larger fuse, unless anyone (any 96 Jimmy owners out there?) can confirm otherwise.

As stated earlier, the problem has to be with the truck, as three boat trailers hooked up to this vehicle have all caused it, and the same two trailers are fine on my older GMC Jimmy. I untaped and inspected some of the wires in the last 3 feet of wire on the truck trailer wires and everything appeared to be lined up and looking good. One last call for help before I take it in and pay the $$ for something I really don't want to. THanks again guys.

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Hemlock
"Throw'm back"

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hemlock, if your brake fuse is good without any trailer and blows with a trailer connected, and the trailer works good on another vehicle...LOL.......that is a wierd problem.

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