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Old 03-02-2013, 08:43 PM   #1
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Join Date: Jul 2011
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Location: Grand Rapids/Big Rapids/Bangor/South Haven, MI
What I Drive: 2008 Vista Blue SES Coupe

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Exclamation Having aftermarket headlight problems?

Dont get stranded due to your projectors not working.

Recently i had to replace a relay on my harness from theretrofitsource for my projectors when i noticed my headlights didnt turn on after unlocking the car. Checked the fuse for the car first then the harness both were ok. Checked the relay and from the outside there was signs of trouble. The clear relay was now dark from rust. A check look at the relay for the high beam revealed the same. Went to pull it off and found a terminal had rusted off. Pulled the other relay to find the same terminal had broken off due to corrosion too. A quick run to the parts store and two $6 generic relays later back in business. For a few days ar least.

Most recently i have been driving without high beams. When i would go to use them the solenoids would click the filter would drop then my lights would turn off. Turning off the high beams made the lights come back on. A check for any loose wires returned nothing. Checked the relays -nothing. What could it be this time? Removed the harness and switched to the opposite side of the car. Same problem. unplugged the solenoids from the harness and tried the lights -still not working. Now im getting even more agitated. A quick look at the wiring diagram showed me the routing of the factory wires and of course it passes thru the smart junction box (the diagram just shows the wires entering the box then leaving- no decription of what takes place- maybe black magic). This makes me a bit worried that the box might be to blame. Not the most affordable thing to replace. Better do a little more digging.

So i pull the harness out all together and plug in my old h13 bulbs. Everything works fine. at least im getting some where. So i cut the relay bases off (an unnecessary mistake) and placed insulated female terminal ends on and plugged the relays back in. A quick test revealed nothing changed.

Better attack the black octopus. What coupd be going on under all off that plastic shielding? Cutting it off revealed a lot off corrosion and sludge that was permiting shorting between the circuits.everything is covered by shrink wrap but in all of the connections there are three wires coming together with just enough of a space for moisture to seep in. Cutting back the shrink wrap reveales soldered splices which is nice. I was expecting just to see some wires twisted together.

I should cut everything apart and trim back to clean copper, re solder, and shrink wrap, but it is late so i will most likely just dry everything out and wrap in electrical tape put back on the car and test.

Some pics to follow when i get to a computer.

Moral of the story -moisture sucks. I had the harness high and dry but what little moisture found its way there wrecked havoc. It might have not been so bad if the plastic sheath was split down the side to permit drainage. Or if they had staggered the splices so they were not side by sideon all of the wires

2008 Vista Blue SES Coupe 5spd FRPP Zx3B Suspension
5000K D2S Retrofit
130,000+ miles and still on factory brakes and clutch!

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