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Discussion Starter · #1 ·
Headlamps will not power up ??    85 RAMCHARGER

OK.. I checked the confirmed fixes, nothing there..
When I pull the headlamp switch all the way out, my headlamps fail to power up ??  my parking lamps and turn signal dash indicators do light up.

What I checked ??
1. The floor mounted dimmer switch via a multimeter showed it's getting power. Also showed high and low voltage outbound to the headlamps.  That dimmer switch is new, installed about 4 months back..
2.  Circuit tester showed power at both plugs then enter the halogen sealed beam bulbs.
3.  I pulled each headlamp, both showed continuity / resistance re multi meter.
4.  I pulled the left Halogen bulb, and resoldered the center terminal, plugged it back in.
ALSO..I used a wall plug in power adapter to test the sealed beam.... (Input 120 V AC, Output 12 volt DC, 1.0 amp to test that bulb, terminals the high and low elements worked.. 
5. I discarded the ammeter, and have had a digital volt meter, tapped into the run circuit, at the coupling at the bottom of the steering column.  It has been no problem for months now and showed a steady recharge after the engine is cranked over..
Also I checked the batter directly with a multi meter ..shows 12.50 volts..    So this indicated that my alternator and voltage regulator both are OK..

    I just don't understand why I have power at the headlamp plugs, but THEY don't illuminate ???  Yet the several tests above show that the passenger side sealed beam works..  I didn't pull the driver side..
Tonight I will pull the headlamp switch out to check the dash lights ..(too dim to see re bright sunlight) .. although the headlamp switch lamp did light up when I pulled the headlamp switch on..   

The only thing I have checked was the headlamp sw, IT should be good ??... as it simply routes power it receives on to the dimmer switch which in turn routes it to the sealed beams either high or low, depending on the switch position.  At this point am I up for suggestions in addition to a few shots of Jack D....  Yee hah !!    Now I'm going to my copy of the wiring schematic... per FSM.   
ED




 
 

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If you have 12 volts at the headlight plug then either the bulbs are bad or the ground in the plug is bad.  Check continuity between the ground circuit in the plug to the frame or other known grounding point.
 

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I had a similar problem with mine. If i remember correctly there is a separate power that feeds the switch for headlights only. I think it was a fuseable link on the left inner fender that feeds it. I ran a new wire. So check the larger feed wire to the switch.
Hope that helps.
 

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Gut, the OP said he has power to the plugs at the bulbs.
 

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Broncowilly said:
If you have 12 volts at the headlight plug then either the bulbs are bad or the ground in the plug is bad. Check continuity between the ground circuit in the plug to the frame or other known grounding point.
Agreed, but could be the head light ground, or the battery to body ground.
 
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Discussion Starter · #6 ·
  Thanks So Much.. Broncowilly, GUT and SuperBurban..
    This morning, I pulled the headlamp switch on, and when I grounded the left side black wire headlamp via a wire with two alligator clips, .. "and there was light" !  Back up to normal.  I then disconnected the jumper wire and kept flexing the entire headlamp wiring harness from front left to right to see if the black ground from the front left to the right headlamp would give me an intermittent ground. I did find an intermittent connection in one of the 3 leads that were re-spliced together, leading to the RT Park & Turn Signal lamp. All there were about 7 in from the RT Park & Turn Signal socket/lamp.
I just cut all 3 out and re-soldered new connections and heat shrink wrapped them.  I got a little better illumination say 25% of normal..
So I kept looking for the disconnected ground wire. The FSM shows one ground on the left side, but I only checked for it from the area of the battery tray forward. It's probably between the battery tray and the firewall. No matter. I soldered one ground wire for the right headlamp and plan to give it a good ground on the engine block or alternator. Tomorrow I'll finish the left side headlamp, and ground that side on to the negative battery terminal as a 2nd or back up ground wire. Will finish wrapping with electrical tape and enclose it with the plastic "split sleeve" tube wrap.    Again thanks to you all for your kind help...      Images are below..
ED
 
 

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Great!!!  Thanks for the update :)
 

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good deal , yes the headlamp grounds are a sheetmetal screw right ontop of the radiator support above the headlamps . some have the screw only on the driver side , and wire TO the pass side IIRC
 

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the trouble we all have is age , most all of our trucks have been "repaired" by previous owners at some point , and now they don't match anything from any year book LOL ... (?)  but I do know that the front lights from '82 to 87 all have ground wires screwed to the rad support , along with a ground right from the battery - . so do not be afraid to install grounds , just be sure it IS a ground wire your grounding and not a + from a light that's switched "off"  .
 
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Discussion Starter · #10 ·
      Thank You dodge82273, Sorry for the delay to your reply of 9 Jan... ... I thought I had my settings to notify me
  of any replies, just corrected that.. Thanks to all on this thread I appreciate all of your replies to
    assist.. In this part of FL we have been getting chilly WX, and other obligations delayed my finishing the re wiring
  project until yesterday. 
  Glad to report, that I rewired the headlamp, TS, and parking lights all the way back to the bulkhead.
      dodge82273..YES I did find the broken ground on the left side rad support, used new blk wire for that, after
  wrapping all in good electrical tape, I wrapped in with the "split loom" tubing.. and injected dielectric grease into the
      plugs and light bulb sockets, to delay corrosion.  So it's all weather tight..and lights up as designed.
  This is FL with 95% humidity almost five months out of the year....    Again thanks to all...
 
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