Turn signals not working after headlight bulbs changed

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Turn signals not working after headlight bulbs changed

Postby Rhino » Fri Feb 09, 2018 3:05 pm

One of my headlights was burned out the other day so I acquired replacement bulbs at Crappy Tire and swapped out both headlight bulbs. Now, the headlights work fine but I've lost my turn signals, front *and* rear. What on earth could I have done wrong and how do I get my turn signals back?

In the course of swapping out the driver's side headlight, I noticed another bulb coming off the same wire but I could not find any place for it to go so I just left it dangling. I have no idea what it was for. I don't *think* it has anything to do with the turn signals because those never got removed; I saw that that it was still screwed into its spot lower down and further toward the middle on the grille.

It's a 2007 Nissan Xterra.
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Re: Turn signals not working after headlight bulbs changed

Postby Rhino » Fri Feb 09, 2018 4:44 pm

Just to followup, is there any chance I could have shorted out the turn signal relay/flasher in the process of disconnecting the battery terminal? The instructions in the users manual said to disconnect the negative terminal of the battery prior to changing the bulbs and I did that a few times. Could that have somehow messed up the flasher? Or does this vehicle even *have* a flasher? I changed at least one flasher on one of my six previous cars but that was a long time ago; I'm not sure if modern circuitry even uses the old flashers. Maybe they have a different technique/component to do the same job.
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Re: Turn signals not working after headlight bulbs changed

Postby Drizit » Fri Feb 09, 2018 8:24 pm

Image

Probably spilled out while you had the headlight bulb out, a quick top up should fix things.
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Re: Turn signals not working after headlight bulbs changed

Postby Rhino » Fri Feb 09, 2018 10:02 pm

I'll have to see if my local Crappy Tire has that.... ;-)

By the way, I figured out what the extra bulb was. It was for the side marker light on the front driver's side. I have it back where it belongs.

But I'd really like to sort out the turn signals. I'm bound to get pulled over and ticketed if I don't fix them.
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Re: Turn signals not working after headlight bulbs changed

Postby the x kid » Fri Feb 09, 2018 11:18 pm

I have never disconnected my battery to change a bulb.


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Re: Turn signals not working after headlight bulbs changed

Postby Rhino » Fri Feb 09, 2018 11:37 pm

That seemed excessive to me too but I thought it was bound to be safer to follow the instructions than to "improvise". Maybe I should have gone with my first inclination, which was to leave the battery connected.

I'm wondering if disconnecting/reconnecting the battery two or three times could have blown the turn signal flasher or maybe its fuse?

I really don't know how to work with modern fuses or to test them. I think I replaced one of the old glass tube style fuses on one of my first cars once but that was long ago. I know how to tell that glass fuses have failed by looking for a broken filament. I have no idea how to test the newer style fuses.

I've been looking at the shop manual but I'm not sure where to find that fuse or the flasher, assuming there is still a flasher component. (After some googling for 2007 XTerra flashers, I'm getting the impression there *is* a three-prong component called a CF13 that controls the flashing but I'm not positive of that.)
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Re: Turn signals not working after headlight bulbs changed

Postby Drizit » Sat Feb 10, 2018 12:55 am

You could check the owners manual for the fuse box location. As to testing fuses, a test light is the easy way. The 2 small squares on the back of the fuse are contacts connected to each leg. Just touch each side with the test light, if it only lights up on one side it's blown.

Or pull the fuse and look through the side, the bit of metal between the two legs is the part that burns up when they fail. A test light is better though as sometimes you can't see the break.

Or, seeing as the fuse diagram should tell you what fuse is for the flashers just replace it and see.
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Re: Turn signals not working after headlight bulbs changed

Postby Rhino » Sat Feb 10, 2018 1:48 pm

Let me ask a really silly question: are the turn signals *supposed* to work when the engine is off?

For some reason I thought they were supposed to work even with the engine off and my brother thought so too. In fact, I'm pretty sure I've had past cars where the turn signals worked even with the engine off although it's been a long time since I actually consciously paid attention to that.

The reason I ask is that I tried my 4-ways and they work fine, even with the engine off and the key out of the ignition and I noticed that I was getting turn signals on the dash while I was running my errands today. Just for the heck of it, I got my brother to walk around outside of the truck while the engine was running and tested the turn signals that way and they were working fine, front and rear, left and right.

I am strongly inclined to think I was completely wrong about having a turn signal problem and that everything is working just the way it is supposed to work. All that was wrong was my belief that the turn signals worked with key out of the ignition. For what it's worth, my brother tried his turn signals on his 2010 Grand Cherokee with the key out and he didn't get any turn signals either.
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Re: Turn signals not working after headlight bulbs changed

Postby Snafu » Sat Feb 10, 2018 6:52 pm

Pretty sure they are not suppose to work when the truck is turned off. The hazards will work but not the turn signals. The hazards work when the truck is off for those hazard type situations.


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Re: Turn signals not working after headlight bulbs changed

Postby Rhino » Sat Feb 10, 2018 8:12 pm

I certainly feel foolish now for thinking the turn signals should work with the engine off ;-)

Luckily, I reasoned things out before a mechanic actually got a chance to laugh at me. Of course I can never show my face *here* again.... :-)
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Re: Turn signals not working after headlight bulbs changed

Postby Drizit » Sun Feb 11, 2018 12:54 am

Rhino wrote:I certainly feel foolish now for thinking the turn signals should work with the engine off ;-)

Luckily, I reasoned things out before a mechanic actually got a chance to laugh at me. Of course I can never show my face *here* again.... :-)
Lol it's good for a chuckle, glad you got it sorted.
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Re: Turn signals not working after headlight bulbs changed

Postby Bow_Tied » Sun Feb 11, 2018 1:05 am

Anyone here who says they've never done anything silly like that is a liar. Except me, I'm perfct. :P: :lol:
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Re: Turn signals not working after headlight bulbs changed

Postby Drizit » Sun Feb 11, 2018 3:48 am

Bow_Tied wrote:Anyone here who says they've never done anything silly like that is a liar. Except me, I'm perfct. :P:
I've been at AW with you... That's just not true. Now me on the other hand... ;)
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Re: Turn signals not working after headlight bulbs changed

Postby Snafu » Sun Feb 11, 2018 10:22 pm

Silly poop happens. No worries. We won't hold it against you. At least not until the campfire at AW.

BTW I posted the video not to poke fun but because of the blinker fluid pic and the video is hilarious...one day might get my kids to do the same thing :D
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Re: Turn signals not working after headlight bulbs changed

Postby Rhino » Sun Feb 11, 2018 10:29 pm

No worries, I realized that was gentle ribbing :-) And it was pretty funny :-) You don't see that kind of thing - parents pranking their kids - very often any more. I miss that....
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Re: Turn signals not working after headlight bulbs changed

Postby Bow_Tied » Mon Feb 12, 2018 3:54 pm

Drizit wrote:
Bow_Tied wrote:Anyone here who says they've never done anything silly like that is a liar. Except me, I'm perfct. :P:
I've been at AW with you... That's just not true. Now me on the other hand... ;)


I meant to do it that way. It builds character.
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