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Old 02-28-2007, 09:40 PM   #1
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Default Electrical problems with a '96 S10

I have a friend who is having crazy electrical issues with his '96 Chevy S10. The truck has the 2.2 4 cylinder and a manual 5 speed tranny (not that it matters much). Here are the symptoms as they occurred:

1. Fuse for parking lights, taillights, and dash lights kept blowing, even with a 30 amp fuse in a 20 amp slot. He eventually wrapped wire around a blown fuse to make a constant circuit.

2. These same lights started flickering every time he would make a hard left turn (doesn't happen in slow left turns, and rarely does it in right turns). Every time this would occur, an audible repetitive clicking from an in-dash electrical relay could be heard. Removing the noisy relay kept the lights from flickering, but now in hard left turns the lights dim completely. Sometimes they come back on, but if they do not a burning smell enters the cabin until the headlight switch is turned off.

3. Now the tail lights are completely inoperative. The brake lights, hazard lights, and turn signals still work, but tail lights will not turn on at any time.

If you can shed any light on this problem it would be most appreciated. I might get him to register here and communicate directly with any troubleshooting. We were thinking it might be related to the headlight switch or an alternator issue. Thanks in advance!
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Old 02-28-2007, 11:10 PM   #2
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My father-in-law'* 02 Sonoma does all of this too. Been doing it for a while, but he'* dealt with it.

In addition, his radio gets reset everytime he turns off the truck. All presets reset and the clock resumes to 1:00 upon restarting.

It'* very odd, and frustrating. He only has 70K on it, too.
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Old 03-01-2007, 11:35 AM   #3
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Sounds like the wiring system needs to be traced over and you need to find what wires are grounding out. They may not be grounding out entirely, but somewhere along the line, something is causing a draw that is much greater than that system was ever intended to support. Smell of burning means lots of heat, lots of heat can lead to a fire.

Considering the tail lights are completely inoperative, I'd start at the back and trace the wires all the way to the front. Start by pulling one of the tail lights out, and seeing if you have continuity up to the fuse box. That will give you an idea of if you're in the ballpark.

I'd almost go so far as to say the burning smell is from that wire that is disabling the fuse. The whole point of the fuse is to fail.
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Old 03-01-2007, 07:37 PM   #4
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Have you replaced all the bulbs? Sometime whenthe filament breaks it can hang and make odd contact esp in turns and drive you nuts. I'm guessing by now he has burnt open wires somewhere.
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