Rear Indicator Light Issue - Stromtrooper Forum : Suzuki V-Strom Motorcycle Forums
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post #1 of 8 Old 05-13-2019, 01:57 PM Thread Starter
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Rear Indicator Light Issue

This is a basic electrical/test question for a novice so please be patient.

I dropped the my 2009 DL650 in the rain the other day. I smashed the left front indicator light case (only the raw led bulb is left which I've covered in clear tape for now), and somehow (??) also rattled apart the right front indicator (mostly intact, glued together for now). Both still work (light up), and I've ordered the replacement lights online to replace.

While checking the damage, I also noticed my rear right indicator is not working. It has no sign of damage, and does not light up with the turn signal OR hazard lights. The left rear indicator works fine.

I don't know for sure if the rear right indicator light/wiring etc. was damaged during the crash, or if it's been like that for a while - I haven't checked that since last fall before I stored it.



QUESTION: What is the hierarchy of steps towards troubleshooting and fixing this minor issue? i.e. A step-by-step guide to finding the problem, in the order of easiest to hardest/most expensive.

CONTEXT: I'm not a mechanic by any stretch, but am trying to learn. I've changed the oil, brakepads, removed the back tire, the gastank etc., and installed heated grips last fall (the 'correct' way, merged into the USB port switched via ignition).

I have a wiring diagram, but it's an older bike with a lot of wiring madness. I'm a bit intimated about splitting open the harnesses etc. and am not sure where if there are fuses to check.

Any help would be amazing. I'm happy to provide a picture of the wiring if that helps. I've already learned a lot through this forum so thank you in advance.

Stay safe friends.
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post #2 of 8 Old 05-13-2019, 03:40 PM
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CPR, there is no "hierarchy" as such. Most all techs have a procedure they follow for electrical diagnosis, and I'll be happy to share mine. An automotive 12VDC incandescent test lamp will be most helpful. Inexpensive, available at most tool outlets, gives a quick visual indication of powers, grounds, etc.

I save my meters and labscopes for electronic situations, and the testlamp for electrical issues. There is some overlap. Also, and inexpensive set of alligator-clip jumper wires is also useful.

1) Check all fuses, key on with the testlamp probe. A fuse can look good, and still be defective.
2) Ground the testlamp on the battery negatve cable end at the battery. Use the testlamp probe to touch the the contact being careful not to touch the inner socket shell in the bulb socket. It should light up. If not, you have a power issue to and through the socket. Then move the testlamp clip from the battery negative terminal to the battery positive terminal. Use the testlamp probe to touch the bulb socket inner shell. It should light up. If not, you have a ground problem to or through the socket. If you have both power and ground, the problem is the load--in this case the bulb. If you have both power and ground, and a new bulb doesnt light...you have a bad new bulb--it happens.
3) If you do not have power or ground, you have to work either from the bulb backwards through the wiring diagram to a cut wire, dirty or loose connector, loose or dirty ground eyelet until you have your power or ground. Then youll know the open circuit is between the bulb and the last verified power and ground. You can also trace from the power source through the wiring diagram to see where power is lost, and conversely from a ground point back to the bulb ground to see where ground is lost.
There are a lot of other tests and procedures you can do, but start with that. Then let us know.
Glad to help.
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post #3 of 8 Old 05-13-2019, 04:30 PM Thread Starter
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Thanks for your help @MAZ4ME !

I'll pick up the supplies and try to get started. I will probably have some questions - as dumb as this probably sounds, I'm not entirely sure how to 'test' a fuse.

Also, I don't have 'bulbs' per se, but a little LED strip inside, along with a yellowy-gold colored resistor. I feel like it's not OEM, but added to reduce the power draw from the aux lights and USB port (and now heated grips).

I'll get started and try to come back if I am struggling. It might take me a bit to get it sorted out - I'm busy and painfully slow at these things.

Thanks again for your help - the support of this forum positively influenced my decision to by a Vstrom and I really appreciate it!

Calen
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post #4 of 8 Old 05-13-2019, 04:39 PM
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WAIT!
There is no fuse for just the front bulbs or just the back bulbs.
Since the broken front still work the most logical thing is you have a bad bulb.

The easiest is to swap the right and left rear bulbs and see if the working side changes.
Then you know which bulb is bad!
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Last edited by Dockstrom; 05-13-2019 at 04:41 PM.
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post #5 of 8 Old 05-13-2019, 04:54 PM Thread Starter
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Thanks @Dockstrom ! That's easy, so I'll check that right away. I'll let you know what happens! Really appreciate everybody's help!
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post #6 of 8 Old 05-14-2019, 01:41 AM Thread Starter
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I am happy (hate) to admit that the issue was bulb related.

The crash f***ed up the front two indicator lights, but the rear indicator was simply burnt out (god knows for how long).

Moral: Check simple things first - work up to bigger problems!

Thanks: @MAZ4ME and @Dockstrom ! This community is what keeps Vstroms alive!
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post #7 of 8 Old 05-14-2019, 03:04 AM
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Glad that you got it sorted. When you convert to LED's your PO probably had to change the indicator relay to an LED suitable one.
The thing is that incandescent bulbs are driven by a relay that recognises a reduced power draw when any of the bulbs fail. When this happens the relay starts to hyperflash to warn you that all bulbs may not be working. When you convert to LED's you no longer have that warning and so a regular check of your brake and rear indicators becomes necessary.
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post #8 of 8 Old 05-16-2019, 12:48 AM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by CPR View Post

but the rear indicator was simply burnt out (god knows for how long).
I like to do a quick check of my lights before a ride.

14 tooth for me
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electrical failure , indicators , lights , turn signals , vstrom dl650

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