Electrical Issues: Parking, turn signal & dash lights
I have a 1997 TJ with 386,000 miles on it (original engine, but most everything that moves and some non-moving parts have been replaced - mostly by me because I'm cheap! And thanks to this forum!).
For the past several months, I keep blowing the fuse for the parking lights (also control the dash lights). Sometimes when I replace the fuse, it blows again right away, sometimes it lasts weeks, but the time between is getting less and less. Also, the turn signal fuse has blown and been replaced - they are working now, but the hazards do not.
It now seems to occur whenever I hit a bump and/or turn to the right - clearly a short - but where?
As I've read the various threads/blogs on here, I've tried the following (while avoiding the "big ticket" items like the Clockspring:
- Replaced all exterior bulbs
- Replaced the flasher
- Replaced the light switch
- Replaced the turn signal/flasher switch in the column
- Taken the instrument cluster off and cleaned it/checked bulbs
- Removed all exterior bulbs & the instrument cluster and tried to see when a fuse will blow - it's either immediately or if I turn to the right
By process of elimination, I'm sadly pretty sure that it's the clockspring (since it happens when I turn).
Any other thoughts?
I recognize that it could be a short in the wiring to the exterior lights somewhere, but wouldn't have removing the bulbs eliminated that as a possibility (recognizing that it doesn't take a bulb to create the short).
At this point I'm prepared to go to a trusted repair place, but know it will be (likely) a few $$ to have them chase-down what I could myself, except for the lack of time.
I'm also willing to do the clockspring replacement myself, but the dealership wants $220 for it.
- Can I just remove the clockspring and be okay without it (except for lack of airbags and horn)?
- If no (that I have to have it for some reason), where are some quality, but cheaper than dealership, places to purchase one?