You are here:

Dodge Repair/headlights flicker: '08 minivan/ Caravan, T & C

Advertisement


Question
QUESTION: Hello

My question is this. My headlights wont turn on when i turn the knob on my 2008 Dodge Caravan.

Sometimes it will flicker and it does seem to turn on when some fuses are jiggled in the fuse box but when the car is turned off and used again, the headlights will not come back on. The lights in the van do come on. it just seems to be the headlights and high beams.
Please excuse my ignorance on the subject but i want to ask before i take it to a mechanic and they charge me for something i have no idea about. thanks

ANSWER: Hi Erika,
Let me check the wiring diagrams and get later this morning with an answer.
Roland

---------- FOLLOW-UP ----------

QUESTION: Thank You so much

Answer
You are welcome. I just sent a revised answer to your original question. If you would be so kind as to rate and nominate me in response to that answer and also to this reply I would be most appreciative.

In case you can't find that earlier question here is my answer:
Hi Erika,
I have been searching through the wiring diagrams for more than an hour and am not fully satisfied that I understand the detail of the headlamp circuits. But based upon what I have found so far, my suggestion would be that because you have determined that when you have the headlamp switch turned on to low beam setting that when you then can get them to come 'on' by jiggling one or more fuses in the fuse box, then I would remove the fuse(s) that behave in that manner and clean off the contacts of those fuses as well as the sockets into which those contacts connect. You can also purchase some electrical contact cleaner at an electronic store which comes in a spray can and spray that on the contacts/sockets of those fuses. Also look closely at the wire in side each fuse to see whether it might have a subtle crack which might be intermittently opening and closing. It is frustrating because the wiring diagrams are not ever revealing to me which fuses are the ones to inspect so I just have to encourage you to give the fuse jiggling another try! I suspect the fuses #19 and/or #20 are the ones that provide power to the headlamps as they are large current-carrying fuses (40 amp each)>
Please do let me know which fuses you find to be involved.
The other possibility, if the fuse approach doesn't work would be to spray some of the contact cleaner into the body of the headlamp switch after removing the switch from the dash panel.
The entire system is very complex and involves digital signaling and communication between several different modules. But the only place I see to try dealing with intermittent functioning are the fuses and the headlamp switch where there are actual contacts which can be dirty or weak.
Please rate my answer (see PS below)
Thanks,
Roland

2nd revision: If you can't affect a solution then the thing to check, with an ohm meter, would be the internal resistance of the headlamp switch when it is turned to the "on" position. Take out the switch, then measure whether the resistance reading is 788-809 ohms between pins 6 and 11 of the switch. If not, then spray the contact cleaner inside the switch through a crack or hole. You would remove the switch by removing the lower panel of the dash which is directly below the switch. Then reach up from behind the switch, find the switch body, and then press on a spring clip (either above or below the switch body) which will release the switch and allow you to remove the switch from the instrument panel and then remove the wiring plug from the back of the switch and test the ohm reading between pins 6 and 11 as described above.

Dodge Repair

All Answers


Answers by Expert:


Ask Experts

Volunteer


Roland Finston

Expertise

Get a Free Fast answer to your repair question about a Chrysler/Dodge/Plymouth car, minivan, SUV, or truck. Problems with electronically controlled engines and transmissions as well as body wiring problems are my specialty. This free troubleshoot advice forum helps you diagnose faults, minimize repair costs or do-it-yourself.

I answer questions seven days a week and respond to you in about 30 minutes. "Maxed Out" means I am answering another question or asleep overnight so try again later.

I have do-it-yourself experience (50+ years) and a library of 100 1982-2012 Chrysler factory shop manuals and 20 multi-manual Chrysler Corp. CD's.

I was voted "Top expert" from 2010-2015 here at AllExperts, and have answered 20,000+ questions.

Experience

Five decades as a 'do-it-yourselfer' on domestic and imported cars

Organizations
Yahoo Autos Group called The Chrysler Lebaron Club (co-moderator)

Education/Credentials
Degrees in Physics/bruised knuckles.

Awards and Honors
"Top expert" of 2010, 2011, 2012, 2013, 2014, and 2015 here at Allexperts. Quickest "average response time" at Allexperts (currently no. 1).

©2016 About.com. All rights reserved.