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Author Topic: Headlight switch knob removal and switch testing  (Read 4149 times)
KENSTOY1969
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« on: March 18, 2006, 09:03:09 AM »

Does the knob for the headlights pull off the shaft going into the switch?  If not is there a secret to getting the knob off?

Second, does anyone have the wiring diagram for the headlight switch?  I understand per the original manual there is a circuit breaker on the switch if there is a headlight wiring problem.

This is on a 69 Z28 RS.
« Last Edit: March 18, 2006, 09:22:17 AM by KENSTOY1969 » Logged
JohnZ
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« Reply #1 on: March 18, 2006, 12:30:28 PM »

There's a small spring-loaded plunger protruding from the metal portion of the switch; hold that little plunger down and pull the knob, and the knob and shaft will come right out. There's a self-resetting thermal circuit breaker inside the switch that reacts to a dead short in the headlight circuit so you don't lose the headlights completely - it cycles them on and off instead (that's why there's no fuse for the headlights).
« Last Edit: March 18, 2006, 12:33:04 PM by JohnZ » Logged

'69 Z/28
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KENSTOY1969
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« Reply #2 on: March 18, 2006, 12:49:13 PM »

Thanks John.  Shaft is out.  Know anywhere I can get the switch and headlight wiring diagram so I can troubleshoot it?
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KENSTOY1969
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« Reply #3 on: March 18, 2006, 03:56:59 PM »

Everything works except the headlights.  Is there any way to test the thermal breaker built into the switch?  Does this thermal breaker affect the running lights?  I have power at the connectors to the switch.   Is there anything down stream I should be looking at as well?
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rich69rs
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« Reply #4 on: March 19, 2006, 01:44:50 AM »

I replaced my swithch last year.  My '69 is a RS, so the headlight switch, like yours, also has the vacuum hose connections on it for routing vacuum to open/close the headlight doors.  Replacement switches are available in the aftermarket.  I purchased mine from Year One and it works fine. 

Only difference was that the original swithch, which I still have, had a couple of extra connections on it.  The replacement switch doesn't have the extra connectors - so your first impression is that the replacement switch is incorrect.  However, when you look at the wiring harness connector that plugs into the switch, there isn't any wiring at the locations where the extra connectors are on the original swithch. 

My original switch hadn't gone bad, but I had to remove it when I was redoing all of the vacuum lines during my front end restoration.  Once I had it out, I figured I'd go with a replacement instead of putting the old one back in (beside the basic switch operation, you have the rheostat for dimming the instrument cluster, and the vacuum connections - and I figured this was a good time to go back with new). 

Glad your shaft released easily from the switch.  Although I found the button on the bottom of the swithch easily enough, once depressed, the shaft didn't want to release.  Had to wrestle it for quite awhile.

I don't know of any wiring diagram for the switch itself.  Only thing I can find is the basic wiring dirgram for the dash which shows the wires connected to the switch, but nothing relating to the internals of the switch.

Just to cover a couple of other possibilites - are you sure it is a switch problem? 

Wiring harness properly connected (on both sides) of the fuse block/bulkhead connector? 

Is your headlight wiring harness properly grounded at both ends?  Should be a ground connection for the headlight wiring harness, to the radiator support, on both the driver and passenger side. 

Even if properly grounded at both locations, do you physically have a good ground at the connector to each headlamp?  Do you have 12v to the headlamps when they are supposed to be on?  Do you have 12v to the parking lights in both switch "on" positions (park and full on)? Good ground at the parking lights?

If all else checks ok, replacement switch is an option.

Good luck - Richard

« Last Edit: March 19, 2006, 02:17:28 AM by rich69rs » Logged

Richard Thomas
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KENSTOY1969
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« Reply #5 on: March 19, 2006, 04:16:43 PM »

Thanks for everyone's inputs.

The issue causing the headlights not to come on was a dirty connection on the dimmer switch.  Once cleaned the lights were back on.
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