It's Lights Out - BMW Luxury Touring Community
 
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post #1 of 8 Old Feb 16th, 2011, 10:41 pm Thread Starter
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It's Lights Out

Got to ride today for the 1st time since Thanksgiving weekend. YEAH!
Was at a friend's house about 30 miles from home. The sun had just set, but still quite a bit of light. Start the bike and notice right away the bright light indicator is on. Hmm, didn't have the brights on before. Hit the switch to low, and light stays on. So I take off for the interstate and light starts fading fast. Notice no lighting ahead. Pull off at next exit & look. No headlight bright or dim, just the parking light. Crap, just put in new HID low last summer, and it's worked great for several thousand miles. So, I decide to take a county road back home instead of the interstate. The parking light was enough to see the white line at the edge of the road. Pucker factor rising. Finally make it to a town 5 miles away from home. Stop, shut the bike off, and pick up some cigars. Take off and go under an overpass at the edge of town, no white line, pucker factor max. Decide to flip the switch again and lights come back on! Both lights work now, but even on low the bright indicator still has dull glow. Pulled in the garage, and thanked the Lord, and went inside. Haven't looked at anything yet. An ideas on where to start? I don't understand why both lights were faulty at the same, but I haven't looked at the wiring schematic yet either.

BMW 1200 LTC 2002


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post #2 of 8 Old Feb 17th, 2011, 4:26 am
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Re: It's Lights Out

Probably a bad ground from HID ?


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post #3 of 8 Old Feb 17th, 2011, 6:37 am
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Re: It's Lights Out

Quote:
Originally Posted by Razmataz
but even on low the bright indicator still has dull glow.
That is a clue that the ground from the headlight has a problem -- the headlight is likely grounding backwards through the high beam indicator circuit. Follow the headlight ground line from the back of the bulb to the connector which passes through the back of the headlight housing, then from the connector back into the bike's wiring harness -- there's likely an issue in this path. The first place I'd look is your HID installation wires and connections.

Mark Neblett
Fairfax, VA
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post #4 of 8 Old Feb 17th, 2011, 7:03 am
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Re: It's Lights Out

There is a ground in the headlight area (dirty brown wire) that is a common source of problems. Mine was corroded and loose when I was installing my HID. Many others have had the same problem.

Dano
Tampa, Fl.

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post #5 of 8 Old Feb 17th, 2011, 10:26 am
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Re: It's Lights Out

As mentioned above, it is a ground problem. Known issue on pre-05 models with the older headlight design, but fortunately easy to solve.

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post #6 of 8 Old Feb 17th, 2011, 11:36 am
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Re: It's Lights Out

I had my HID low beam headlight fail in the middle of the desert on a very dark night. Stock high beam was virtually useless. I vowed never to be in that position again. Installed PIAAs and always carry an extra low beam bulb.

Doug Sorchilla
La Quinta, CA
2012 K1600 GTL

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post #7 of 8 Old Mar 21st, 2011, 10:54 am Thread Starter
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Re: It's Lights Out

Update: As several of you have suggested, I do have a grounding problem. I ran a new ground wire from the battery to the front end as suggested by cfell. Upon touching the new wire to the high beam socket clip, both lights came on. Question is, how do I attach this wire? I tried soldering it to the bottom of the clip with no success. I really don't want to take the nose cone off at this time, as the next time I do, I will probably be looking at a new windshield. (long story) Not ready for that....yet.

BMW 1200 LTC 2002


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post #8 of 8 Old Mar 21st, 2011, 6:47 pm
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Re: It's Lights Out

If the end of the bulb retaining clip has an eye on it, get a small (#4) nut and bolt that will pass thru the eye. Get a small ring terminal and use that to attach a wire to the clip. Hook the other end of thewire to the brown wire on the low beam socket. You can use a crimp on connector, but I would strip and solder the connection. The brown ground wire actually is siamesed into a push-on connecter near the high beam .Fixed a friends RS this way until we had time to remove the headlight and fix it correctly. His ground wire had gotten so hot from the bad connection that it burned the insulation back about 1".

Chuck Swenson,
Sioux City, IA
2010 R1200RT Low with ESA2!
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