87 X1/9 headlight issue

87 X1/9 headlight issue

Joined: October 6th, 2008, 8:11 pm

October 6th, 2008, 8:18 pm #1

Hey gang, having a headlight issue on my 87 X. I was in a drive-thru the other night at 2:30am and my headlights just plain quit on me. Lights raise/lower fine, parking/brake/side/dash/dome lights all work fine, but no low/high beam whatsoever. Checked the fusebox and no blown fuses. Looked in my owners manual and it had a layout of the relays in the fusebox, but only saw one to do with the actual headlights (Headlight high-beam relay).
Anyone else ever had this problem? I did download a schematic that showed some more headlight relays, but damn if I know where they are (under the front hood perhaps?). I'm at work now, but am going to give it the once-over when I get home. Anybody have any ideas? Thanks.

Brian
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Joined: August 29th, 2005, 4:22 am

October 6th, 2008, 10:27 pm #2

For the low beams, the power comes from the battery to the ignition switch, to the headlight switch, to the fuse panel for the two circuits.

It's very likely that either part of the ignition switch or headlight switch has "burned out" meaning too much current has overheated the contacts and they have either a) carboned up or b) melted the surrounding plastic so that it interferes with the contacts.

Trace the power with a 12v test light/probe and see where the juice stops.

Hint: The blue wire out of the ignition switch powers the headlight motors and parking lights, heat fan and other switched accessories. The black wire powers the headlights, which is probably where your problem is.

I had the same problem one day as described here:
http://www.network54.com/Forum/12159/message/1149194698

Hope this helps.

Gregory Smith

'87 Bertone X1/9 Corsa
'88 VW Vanagon
Olympia, Washington, USA
Last edited by budgetzagato on October 6th, 2008, 11:44 pm, edited 1 time in total.
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htf
Joined: May 5th, 2001, 4:29 pm

October 6th, 2008, 11:13 pm #3

It carries a lot of Amps, tends to heat up and die.
It is best to install a relay for this circuit.


HaXD
Herzel, in Israel

WhiteX
The late Green '85 X1/9
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Joined: December 21st, 2004, 3:04 am

October 7th, 2008, 5:45 am #4

Hey gang, having a headlight issue on my 87 X. I was in a drive-thru the other night at 2:30am and my headlights just plain quit on me. Lights raise/lower fine, parking/brake/side/dash/dome lights all work fine, but no low/high beam whatsoever. Checked the fusebox and no blown fuses. Looked in my owners manual and it had a layout of the relays in the fusebox, but only saw one to do with the actual headlights (Headlight high-beam relay).
Anyone else ever had this problem? I did download a schematic that showed some more headlight relays, but damn if I know where they are (under the front hood perhaps?). I'm at work now, but am going to give it the once-over when I get home. Anybody have any ideas? Thanks.

Brian
... troubleshoot the problem.

On 87's there is a HIGH BEAM relay in the fuse box... and I believe this circuit is addressed when the low beams are operational also.  I haven't had the need to trace one out... but if you look closely, you can swap out the high beam relay with one of the other LIKE relays (two types used) to PROVE or DISPROVE the relay as the problem.

This can be done rather quickly and eliminate that part of the circuit.

Most late model folks don't seem to have a NEED to add an addional relay for the low beams like us EARLY folks... who need to add TWO in order to get any real power to the lamps.  BUT, it wouldn't hurt, especially if you prove the problem to the headlight switch itself.

(Also look for burnt wiring and connectors at the ignition switch CONNECTORS.)

Keep in touch and we can probably SYSTEMATICALLY find the problem.

Lastly... I don't think there is a SINGLE one of us that hasn't had a similar problem with our headlights... just no COMMON remedy!

 


My best,



Tony
Black Tooth and me... since 1983!
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Last edited by Black-Tooth on October 7th, 2008, 5:46 am, edited 1 time in total.
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Joined: October 6th, 2008, 8:11 pm

October 7th, 2008, 1:15 pm #5

Hey gang, having a headlight issue on my 87 X. I was in a drive-thru the other night at 2:30am and my headlights just plain quit on me. Lights raise/lower fine, parking/brake/side/dash/dome lights all work fine, but no low/high beam whatsoever. Checked the fusebox and no blown fuses. Looked in my owners manual and it had a layout of the relays in the fusebox, but only saw one to do with the actual headlights (Headlight high-beam relay).
Anyone else ever had this problem? I did download a schematic that showed some more headlight relays, but damn if I know where they are (under the front hood perhaps?). I'm at work now, but am going to give it the once-over when I get home. Anybody have any ideas? Thanks.

Brian
Thanks for the excellent advise folks I'll check the relay first (since it's easiest), then move along to busting out the test light. I'll update when I find the culprit. Thanks again folks!

Brian
Quote

Joe F
Joe F

October 7th, 2008, 1:30 pm #6

Hey gang, having a headlight issue on my 87 X. I was in a drive-thru the other night at 2:30am and my headlights just plain quit on me. Lights raise/lower fine, parking/brake/side/dash/dome lights all work fine, but no low/high beam whatsoever. Checked the fusebox and no blown fuses. Looked in my owners manual and it had a layout of the relays in the fusebox, but only saw one to do with the actual headlights (Headlight high-beam relay).
Anyone else ever had this problem? I did download a schematic that showed some more headlight relays, but damn if I know where they are (under the front hood perhaps?). I'm at work now, but am going to give it the once-over when I get home. Anybody have any ideas? Thanks.

Brian
I am having the same problem with my 87 Bert.

This past weekend, I removed the headlight switch (a p.i.t.a.)and cleaned it. It really needed it! So far, so good as far as the lights go.

I would give this a shot first.

Remove the front of the switch very carefully by prying off with a small screwdriver, and then remove the body by inserting the small screwdiver into release tabs on both sides. It does not come off from the back.

Good luck.

Joe F
87 Bert
Quote

Joined: August 29th, 2005, 4:22 am

October 7th, 2008, 4:22 pm #7

... troubleshoot the problem.

On 87's there is a HIGH BEAM relay in the fuse box... and I believe this circuit is addressed when the low beams are operational also.&nbsp; I haven't had the need to trace one out... but if you look closely, you can swap out the high beam relay with one of the other LIKE relays (two types used) to PROVE or DISPROVE the relay as the problem.

This can be done rather quickly and eliminate that part of the circuit.

Most late model folks don't seem to have a NEED to add an addional relay for the low beams like us EARLY folks... who need to add TWO in order to get any real power to the lamps.&nbsp; BUT, it wouldn't hurt, especially if you prove the problem to the headlight switch itself.

(Also look for burnt wiring and connectors at the ignition switch CONNECTORS.)

Keep in touch and we can probably SYSTEMATICALLY find the problem.

Lastly... I don't think there is a SINGLE one of us that hasn't had a similar problem with our headlights... just no COMMON remedy!

&nbsp;


My best,



Tony
Black Tooth and me... since 1983!
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The late model Bertones have a relay for the high beams. The power for the high beams bypasses the headlight switch but not the ignition switch. This is why you can pull the flash to pass lever only when the ignition is on. The lowbeams are not on a relay and should be to protect the ign. and headlight switches.

Middle year models have a high beam relay, but it does not protect the ignition switch or the headlight switch. Full highbeam power still goes through the headlight switch on these mid models. These models would benefit from a high beam relay as well as a low beam relay.

Early models have neither a high or low relay, and need both on relays.



Gregory Smith

'87 Bertone X1/9 Corsa
'88 VW Vanagon
Olympia, Washington, USA
Quote

Joined: December 21st, 2004, 3:04 am

October 7th, 2008, 4:51 pm #8


Can you elaborate a bit more on what YEARS early, middle and late are.

I would think mid '80 and back would be early, although wired differently almost every year, there are NO relays... but I don't know what the MIDDLE years really constitute, '81 - '83???&nbsp;

Thanks...


My best,



Tony
Black Tooth and me... since 1983!
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<font face_"Times Bew Roman" size=1>Disclaimer: This message does not necessarily reflect the views of the sender, or, for that matter, any other carbon-based life form; Any resemblance to actual persons, living or dead, is unintentional and coincidental; All models are 18 years of age or older; Dry clean only, do not use bleach, Tumble dry and remove immediately; Do not bend, fold, staple or mutilate; Anchovies, cheese or jalapenos may be added to orders upon request for an additional charge; Professional driver on a closed course, do not attempt to duplicate; Your actual mileage may vary; No substitutions are allowed; Available for a limited time only while supplies last; Offers are void where prohibited by law; Humor is provided "as is" without any warranties expressed or implied; The user assumes full liabilities and originator is not liable for damages due to use or misuse; We are an equal opportunity employer, with no regard to race, religion, sex, or sexual preference; No shoes, no shirt, no service; Read at your own risk; This post may contain material some may find to be objectionable; Parental advisory: Explicit lyrics; keep away from pets and small children; limit one-per-family please; No money down; No purchase necessary; Ask us about our guns-for-dope trade-in plan; You need not be present to win; Some assembly required; Batteries not included; Action figures sold separately; Contents were packed full at the factory, but may have settled during shipping; Peanuts and peanut products are produced in this establishment and also consumed by the author; Sanitized and sealed for your protection; Do not use if safety seal is broken; Do not use while operating a motor vehicle or heavy equipment; Safety goggles may be required during use; Use gloves when handling; Call before you dig; Use only with proper ventilation; For external use only, if a swelling, redness, rash, or irritation develops, discontinue use; Do not place near a flammable or magnetic source; Keep away from open flames; Avoid inhaling fumes or contact with mucous membranes; Contents under pressure, may explode if incinerated; Smoking may be hazardous to your health; No smoking allowed, except in designated areas; The best safeguard, second only to abstinence, is the use of a good laugh; Text is made from 100% recycled electrons and magnetic particles; No animals were harmed while writing this post; No salt, MSG, preservatives, artificial color or flavor added; If ingested, do not induce vomiting, If symptoms persist, consult a comedian; Ribbed for your pleasure, slippery when wet; Must be 18 to enter; No one under 21 allowed; We check IDs to age 40; Seniors Welcome; Ask for our Senior Menu; Present discount coupons to cashier before totaling; An 18% gratuity will be added to the total for parties of 8 or more; We reserve the right to refuse service to anyone. Return all carts to the store; No dogs allowed, except for the visually impaired; Penalties for early withdrawal, one size fits all; Offer is valid only at participating sites; Prices slightly higher west of the Rockies; Allow four to six weeks for delivery; If defects are found, do not attempt a repair, return to an authorized service center; Please remain seated until the vehicle has come to a complete stop; Objects in the mirror may be closer than they appear; Fasten seat belts; In the unlikely event of a loss of cabin pressure, oxygen masks will fall from above, cover your face first, then assist those around you. Your seat cushion may be used as a floatation device. This disclaimer is invalid in the event of hurricanes, floods, earthquakes, sonic booms, vibration, electromagnetic radiation from nuclear blasts or any other act of war, unauthorized repair, improper installation, misuse, typos, misspelled words, missing or altered signatures, and incidents owing to computer or disk failure, accidental file deletions, and Acts of God. Other restrictions may, or may not apply.</font>
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Joined: August 29th, 2005, 4:22 am

October 7th, 2008, 6:11 pm #9

"Early" in my post refers to bullet-style fuses and smaller engines. An easy way to check for a highbeam relay is to pull back on the "flash-to-pass" lever, and see if a relay trips when the highbeams come on. Early cars will be silent in this regard.

"Middle-year" cars still have bullet-style fuses but larger engines. Pulling on the flash-to-pass lever activates a relay. According to the diagrams I've seen, the headlight switch is still in the path. I suppose you could call these "late-Fiat".

Late model in my post means Bertones with blade fuse panels. They have the relay but it's wired to bypass the headlight switch. Still need a lowbeam relay added.

Hope this makes it clear. I looked into it last year or earlier in response to inquiries about which models need headlight relays. My research indicates all years need lowbeam relays, while all years need highbeam relays except late-model Bertones.

I've designed a 2-relay kit for the Spiders, if there was sufficient interest I could design one for X's. Seems like there would have to be 3 styles for the X depending on model year.

Gregory Smith

'87 Bertone X1/9 Corsa
'88 VW Vanagon
Olympia, Washington, USA
Quote

Joined: December 21st, 2004, 3:04 am

October 7th, 2008, 9:47 pm #10


<EM>"Middle-year" cars still have bullet-style fuses but larger engines. Pulling on the flash-to-pass lever activates a relay..."</EM>

On my '79, I have a 1500, ceramic fuses, and NO relay for the high beams.

In the early year cars, you said the word BULLET also, so I interpreted it to mean ceramic.&nbsp; Is that what you mean?

I call the clear glass fuses with the metal caps, BUSS-type fuses, as I don't know of another word for them, but I can't remember ever seeing any STOCK in a FIAT... only the later model plastic push in types (name, anyone???)&nbsp;and the early ceramics.

WOWOWOW...is this gettin' messy...

Well...one thing we both agree on, auxilliary relays are the best upgrade for eliminating future problems and providing the best amount of voltage for the most amount of light!&nbsp; Then there are dozens of ways to do that also... but that's another post...

Good yakkin' with ya...


My best,



Tony
Black Tooth and me... since 1983!
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<font face_"Times Bew Roman" size=1>Disclaimer: This message does not necessarily reflect the views of the sender, or, for that matter, any other carbon-based life form; Any resemblance to actual persons, living or dead, is unintentional and coincidental; All models are 18 years of age or older; Dry clean only, do not use bleach, Tumble dry and remove immediately; Do not bend, fold, staple or mutilate; Anchovies, cheese or jalapenos may be added to orders upon request for an additional charge; Professional driver on a closed course, do not attempt to duplicate; Your actual mileage may vary; No substitutions are allowed; Available for a limited time only while supplies last; Offers are void where prohibited by law; Humor is provided "as is" without any warranties expressed or implied; The user assumes full liabilities and originator is not liable for damages due to use or misuse; We are an equal opportunity employer, with no regard to race, religion, sex, or sexual preference; No shoes, no shirt, no service; Read at your own risk; This post may contain material some may find to be objectionable; Parental advisory: Explicit lyrics; keep away from pets and small children; limit one-per-family please; No money down; No purchase necessary; Ask us about our guns-for-dope trade-in plan; You need not be present to win; Some assembly required; Batteries not included; Action figures sold separately; Contents were packed full at the factory, but may have settled during shipping; Peanuts and peanut products are produced in this establishment and also consumed by the author; Sanitized and sealed for your protection; Do not use if safety seal is broken; Do not use while operating a motor vehicle or heavy equipment; Safety goggles may be required during use; Use gloves when handling; Call before you dig; Use only with proper ventilation; For external use only, if a swelling, redness, rash, or irritation develops, discontinue use; Do not place near a flammable or magnetic source; Keep away from open flames; Avoid inhaling fumes or contact with mucous membranes; Contents under pressure, may explode if incinerated; Smoking may be hazardous to your health; No smoking allowed, except in designated areas; The best safeguard, second only to abstinence, is the use of a good laugh; Text is made from 100% recycled electrons and magnetic particles; No animals were harmed while writing this post; No salt, MSG, preservatives, artificial color or flavor added; If ingested, do not induce vomiting, If symptoms persist, consult a comedian; Ribbed for your pleasure, slippery when wet; Must be 18 to enter; No one under 21 allowed; We check IDs to age 40; Seniors Welcome; Ask for our Senior Menu; Present discount coupons to cashier before totaling; An 18% gratuity will be added to the total for parties of 8 or more; We reserve the right to refuse service to anyone. Return all carts to the store; No dogs allowed, except for the visually impaired; Penalties for early withdrawal, one size fits all; Offer is valid only at participating sites; Prices slightly higher west of the Rockies; Allow four to six weeks for delivery; If defects are found, do not attempt a repair, return to an authorized service center; Please remain seated until the vehicle has come to a complete stop; Objects in the mirror may be closer than they appear; Fasten seat belts; In the unlikely event of a loss of cabin pressure, oxygen masks will fall from above, cover your face first, then assist those around you. Your seat cushion may be used as a floatation device. This disclaimer is invalid in the event of hurricanes, floods, earthquakes, sonic booms, vibration, electromagnetic radiation from nuclear blasts or any other act of war, unauthorized repair, improper installation, misuse, typos, misspelled words, missing or altered signatures, and incidents owing to computer or disk failure, accidental file deletions, and Acts of God. Other restrictions may, or may not apply.</font>
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