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Thread: 71 corvette

  1. #1
    Join Date
    Aug 2016
    Location
    Ellicott City, MD
    Posts
    2

    Default 71 corvette

    Just purchased a 71 conv and I checked all the fuses, and will check the bulbs, but when you put on the headlights the dashlights don't come on. I am suspecting either the bulbs, but could it be the headlight switch itself? Thanks its been about 20 years since I've worked on cars myself.

  2. #2
    Join Date
    Jul 2008
    Location
    Ontario, Calif.
    Posts
    2,986

    Default

    Yes it could be the headlight switch. There is a dimmer coil (not sure the exact name) that the dash bulb power goes through so you can dim the dash lights. If that is bad then you would have no headlights. The only way I know to test it would be with a multi-meter.
    2015 Stingray Z51 w/ Magnetic Ride Control & 8-speed Automatic


  3. #3
    Join Date
    Dec 2011
    Location
    Washington State
    Posts
    552

    Default

    It's a rheostat in the headlight switch. If memory serves me right there should be a small tube fuse in the fuse panel that is a 3-5A rating. Take a test light with a known good ground (very important) and see if you have any voltage across, or on any side of the fuse with the tail and park lights on (no need for headlights on this test), being sure to check the fuse clips that hold the fuse too since it is common to lose continuity between the fuse clips and the fuse. Rotate the headlight switch left and right with the test light connected and see if the test light dims and brightens.
    20+ years ASE and Honda Master Tech

    1998 black 6 spd convertible

  4. #4
    Join Date
    Aug 2016
    Location
    Ellicott City, MD
    Posts
    2

    Default

    Thanks, I will check it in the morning

  5. #5

    Default

    I had the same problem with a 79 last summer. Then one nite coming home out in the country and no street lights I discovered they were on just very dim. I kept using the switch and turning the rheostat and they got brighter and brighter. Must have been corrosion on the coils.

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