tail light not working but brake light is - Stromtrooper Forum : Suzuki V-Strom Motorcycle Forums
DL650 and DL650A - 2004 to 2011 DL650 from 2004-2006 (K4-K6) and DL650 or DL650A from 2007-2011 (K7-L1)

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post #1 of 21 Old 05-03-2019, 10:26 PM Thread Starter
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tail light not working but brake light is

I have a 2009 V-Strom with a tail light problem.

I've checked out the bulbs and both work when the brake is applied. For a while it seemed that the tail light was only working intermittently. Now the tail light is not working (but the brake light is) although the filament does not appear to be broken.

I plan to change the bulbs with LED ones to see if that switch fixes the problem. If it does not, I suspect that the light sockets might be defective.

Any other ideas? I searched this forum for help and couldn't find any other potential solutions.

Thanks for your help.
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post #2 of 21 Old 05-03-2019, 11:30 PM
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No need to go to LED bulbs to confirm you still have a problem. Unless i'm mistaken, the 2009 650 should have two running/stop light bulbs. I believe they are of the 1157 variety available almost everywhere. Try a new bulb or make up a couple of jump wires to confirm the bulbs you have are defective by taking the bulbs out and putting current through each element. Your problem may not be bad bulbs, but you should confirm that before looking for other issues.
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post #3 of 21 Old 05-03-2019, 11:54 PM
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I'd spend the $2 on a new bulb, or put an ohmmeter on the old ones. I've seen plenty of bad bulbs with a filament that appeared intact.

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post #4 of 21 Old 05-04-2019, 12:53 AM
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+1

These are dual filament bulbs. They may both be burned out. Make sure this is not so before getting all excited.

If they are really in working order check with a V meter if there is really no running light voltage in both sockets. Seems you have ground since the brake light is operational.

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post #5 of 21 Old 05-04-2019, 04:16 AM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by WayTooSlow View Post
For a while it seemed that the tail light was only working intermittently. Now the tail light is not working (but the brake light is) although the filament does not appear to be broken.
There is your clue right there. As the Wee has two bulbs I find it unlikely to be the bulb.
You need to work through the system to find the faulty connector. Start with the large connector LHS of the steering head. It is susceptible to corrosion. Then unplug and inspect every connector you can find.
Alternatively you must trace through the system with a probe until you find the faulty connector or switch. Start by probing the bulb socket (one of the two terminals there will be for the brake) and work your way forward until you find power.

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post #6 of 21 Old 05-04-2019, 04:22 AM
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The twin contacts in bulb holder sometimes go bad contact, in that. there is not enough constant tension against the bottom contacts of the bulb. On one of my previous motorcycles I had a similar type of problem. Difficult to increase the tension of the contacts inside the bulb holder, to ensure contact to the bottom of the bulb. To solve the problem, I added a little bit more solder to the bulb connectors, to give it a taller / longer profile, thus allowing for a better contact. Worked like a charm.
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post #7 of 21 Old 05-04-2019, 12:35 PM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Brockie View Post
Start with the large connector LHS of the steering head. It is susceptible to corrosion. Then unplug and inspect every connector you can find.
It wouldn't hurt to look at the large connector just to verify its condition. But, according to the wiring diagram, the signal for the tail lights doesn't run through that connector. There are only 2 connectors in the tail light circuit. One at the ignition switch and one inside the rear fender above the tail/brake light assy.

I would discount the possibility of the connector at the ignition switch being the problem since the voltage from there, in addition to the tail lights, feeds the turn signal and side stand relays and they seem to be working.

If you don't find corrosion, loose crimp or pushed pin at the connector inside the rear fender, from there you can use a meter to check the voltage coming from the ignition switch making sure to check it from both sides of the connector to be sure the voltage is getting through the connector.

Just my 2 cents.

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post #8 of 21 Old 05-04-2019, 01:10 PM
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Well, we are debating and solving all his problems but Way Too Slow is … slow
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Last edited by blaustrom; 05-04-2019 at 01:44 PM.
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post #9 of 21 Old 05-04-2019, 01:38 PM Thread Starter
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Thank you to everyone for the suggestions. I will try them out and report back.
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post #10 of 21 Old 05-04-2019, 01:43 PM
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I've had dual filament bulbs burn one filament out and have it contact the other filament and cause weird problems. Change the bulb first, go from the simple to the complex.

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