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Old 04-24-2009, 05:12 PM   #1
hardy101
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Idea 2000 Sl - One (Right) High Beam Won't Light, Short?

Hi Everyone,

I have a 2000 SL with one (right) high beam that won't light. I think there is a short somewhere, but I'm not very experienced with wiring issues, and would appreciate a little guidance. Here's what I've tested.

Replaced the bulb, only to find that the old one still had a good filament. New bulb won't light either.

Checked fuses in under-hood box. Left and Right lamps have a single fuse for high/low. i.e. 1 fuse governs high and low beams for the left, another fuse governs high/low for the right. Both fuses are good.

No voltage (well, 100 mV) at the right high beam electrical connector (this is the lamp that won't light). But again, the left lamp works.

Pulled the right (dead) headlamp fuse to check voltage at those pins - no voltage! (100 mV) UNTIL I pulled the left lamp fuse. Then there is voltage at the right AND left lamp pins.

Then something odd happens. When the right lamp fuse is installed, the LEFT lamp fuse pins have 8 volts, and the left high beam lights with NO FUSE in the box. The left lamp also lights when the right fuse is pulled.

So, there has to be a short somewhere. I'm just trying to figure out the logic that would lead me to a particular trouble spot. Can anyone help?

Thanks

Matt

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Old 04-24-2009, 06:22 PM   #2
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Default Re: 2000 Sl - One (Right) High Beam Won't Light, Short?

Make sure the DRL relay is in place. If it's not, you'll have to either get one, or bypass it with a jumper wire, as in this How-To: http://www.saturnfans.com/forums/showthread.php?t=38952 . If it's there, it might have failed. Problem is, it's a "double-throw" relay (which is why the jumper is required in its absence), so you can't just swap it with, say, the A/C relay to test it.

If the relay is there, then try removing it, and inserting a jumper as described in the How-To. If that gets both high-beams working, then your wiring and switch are all good, and the relay is the prime suspect.

Do the DRLs work, BTW?

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Old 04-28-2009, 08:12 PM   #3
hardy101
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Default Re: 2000 Sl - One (Right) High Beam Won't Light, Short?

My DRLs do not work. I was inspecting the wiring diagram, and I think that relay might be the problem. I'm going to get a new one from Saturn and see what happens, then post back. Thank you for the reply!

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Old 04-28-2009, 11:18 PM   #4
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Default Re: 2000 Sl - One (Right) High Beam Won't Light, Short?

Before throwing money at a part, TEST TEST TEST. It could well be the relay, but if both the DRL and the right high-beam are out, the problem could be with the wiring to the relay. That DRL disable how-to is, in effect, a test. If you can run the jumper wire as shown in the how-to, and that makes both high-beams work, that's a good sign. As a more conclusive test, take the end of that jumper wire out of the "top middle" position of the relay socket, and put it in the "top right" position, leaving the other end in the "bottom left" position. This simulates the DRLs being turned on. Turn the key to RUN. If the DRLs light up (high beams at half voltage), that's a very good sign; that, along with the above, pretty-much means that the relay is indeed bad, and the rest of the wiring is good.

Alternative test, if you're not inclined to play with jumper wire -- go into the interior fuse box and remove the fuel pump relay. It's about the only other five-pin (double-throw) relay in the car. Try it in place of the DRL relay. Test both high-beam and DRL functionality. If they both work, then you've pretty-much determined it's the relay that's bad. If you want an anally conclusive test, you could install the questionable DRL relay into the fuel pump relay socket, and see if the engine starts.

DON'T FORGET to put the good fuel pump relay back in its home socket.

I *think* these relays are readily available in the aftermarket; just make sure it's one with five pins, in the same layout as the bogey relay. A four-pin single-throw relay will make the DRLs work, but you'd still have the right high beam out.

Last edited by madpogue; 04-28-2009 at 11:32 PM..

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Old 09-06-2013, 09:18 AM   #5
Lvnmarks
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2000 SL1
2004 VUE 3.5L
Default Re: 2000 Sl - One (Right) High Beam Won't Light, Short?

Both my DRL work and only my left high beam work.

After changing the bulbs and the front wire harness I suspect this to be a possible cause.

Thank you for the detailed test description! I will try it tonight.

...
Eric
2004 Saturn VUE, 3.5L AWD
2000 Saturn SL1
1995 Lincoln Mark VIII LSC
1914 Ford Model T

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Old 04-29-2015, 05:28 PM   #6
Aggie08
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2000 SL1
Default Re: 2000 Sl - One (Right) High Beam Won't Light, Short?

Quote:
Originally Posted by madpogue View Post
Before throwing money at a part, TEST TEST TEST. It could well be the relay, but if both the DRL and the right high-beam are out, the problem could be with the wiring to the relay. That DRL disable how-to is, in effect, a test. If you can run the jumper wire as shown in the how-to, and that makes both high-beams work, that's a good sign. As a more conclusive test, take the end of that jumper wire out of the "top middle" position of the relay socket, and put it in the "top right" position, leaving the other end in the "bottom left" position. This simulates the DRLs being turned on. Turn the key to RUN. If the DRLs light up (high beams at half voltage), that's a very good sign; that, along with the above, pretty-much means that the relay is indeed bad, and the rest of the wiring is good.

Alternative test, if you're not inclined to play with jumper wire -- go into the interior fuse box and remove the fuel pump relay. It's about the only other five-pin (double-throw) relay in the car. Try it in place of the DRL relay. Test both high-beam and DRL functionality. If they both work, then you've pretty-much determined it's the relay that's bad. If you want an anally conclusive test, you could install the questionable DRL relay into the fuel pump relay socket, and see if the engine starts.

DON'T FORGET to put the good fuel pump relay back in its home socket.

I *think* these relays are readily available in the aftermarket; just make sure it's one with five pins, in the same layout as the bogey relay. A four-pin single-throw relay will make the DRLs work, but you'd still have the right high beam out.
I don't recommend using the fuel pump relay in place of the drl relay. They seem to be the same but are a different size. Somehow switching them caused my IP BATT fuse to blow!

...
2000 Saturn SL1 - 168,169 miles
I changed the fuel pump and the headliner.
Both were royal pains in the butt, but I loved every minute of it!

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Old 12-13-2015, 04:30 PM   #7
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Default Re: 2000 Sl - One (Right) High Beam Won't Light, Short?

I had this same problem I noticed last week right side out, and a replacement bulb did not fix the problem...

So reading through saturnfans.com someone said if your high beam indicator is lit its your bulb and not a ground, they were right and im glad I read that, because I had a bag full of headlight bulbs with connectors from my old Saturn, I realized the connector to the high beam bulb was the issue, one wire was corroded and almost broken but still attached, I rewired the new connector on and now my right high beam works again. the wire only had to be cut two inches from the bulb where it was bad leaving me plenty of room

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