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Old 10-24-2013, 11:38 AM   #1
lowes48 OP
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'97 Chevy Truck Tailight Issues... Need Some Help!

Hey Guys,

I recently replaced the fuel pump in my 1997 Chevy Z71 (bought it new, it now has 146k on it) and was successful with my fix (cost me $69.00 vs. the $850.00-900.00 the Chevey dealer quoted!) but after reinstalling the bed and plugging up the 2 harness plugs that are near the rear of the frame the tail lights don't function! If I hit the brake pedal I'm not getting any light and they aren't lighting up when the light switch is turned on in the cab. I do get turn signals without the lights on, but when the switch is turned the lights flash quickly, like a bulb is out. When the bed was removed the trailer connection was forgotten and was ripped out because it was routed thru the hole in the rear bumper.

The pic shows the now seperated trailer connector on the left, a white and black wire that seemed to have been connected to something before the bed was removed in the center and the factory trailer connections that come out of the harness are on the right. Does this stuff need to be connected so the brake lights will work properly? What are the black and white wires, and were they connected to something before the bed was removed? They had tape around them at their ends but I stripped it off to see if I could figure out where they went.

Thanks in advance for the help, guys!

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Old 10-24-2013, 12:34 PM   #2
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Sounds like a short. If you have a blown bulb, usually the light will stay lit and not blink. If it is now blinking fast, the resistance is now greater to the flasher than a bulb causing a faster rate (short). Check for open/grounded wires or a pinched wire between the frame and bed.
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Old 10-24-2013, 02:01 PM   #3
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The color code on those 4 wires is standard for a flat-4 trailer connector. White is ground, and I believe that brown is tail light. Green and yellow are turn signals. I have no idea what the other wires went to. You may need to lift the bed again and look to see where they went.
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Old 10-25-2013, 06:48 AM   #4
Switchblade315
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you lost your frame to body ground. I have a 97 and I have had the bed off. best i remember the ground is in the back just to the drivers side. take it back off clean every thing down to bare mettle and get back with us. other then that. its in a connection you unplugged to take the bed off. I would start at the ground if that doesn't fix it go to each connection you unplugged and check for corrosion.


these guys are giving good advice but everything was working before you took the bed off. So it's in a connection you had apart. just back track what you did and clean everything and you should find it. Also you only have a problem on your ground, don't mess with the other wires. why do I say this because nothing works, they only share a ground. and the reason the blinkers will work kind of and nothing else is because they are back grounding through the tail lights. and that's not a true ground so they rant working right.
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Old 10-25-2013, 10:06 AM   #5
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Switchblade315 View Post
you lost your frame to body ground.

.
^^ would be my guess too. I had a '65 Chevy truck and did the same thing you did and ended up with a bad ground connection. Chased that problem for a long time.
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Old 10-25-2013, 02:36 PM   #6
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I looked at your picture again, something tells me that black wire that is by its self is your body to frame ground. I bet if you look around under there you'll find a bolt that it will reach with what is left of a conector under it. And that white on might be the ground for your trailer wires. It's posible that it was on the same bolt.
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