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Brake and rear lights are smoking


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Juice22
Novice

May 6, 2013, 10:51 PM

Post #1 of 17 (1959 views)
Brake and rear lights are smoking Sign In

Hey everyone,
I'm brand new here and I've come with a couple questions in hand regarding some problems Im having with my car, hopefully someone out there can help me.

I have a 91 Honda crx and a week or so ago I noticed my brake lights weren't turning off. I figured out it was my brake light bumper that had corroded and fallen off, so as a quick fix I've been using a 6mm bolt and nut to make contact between my brake pedal and switch. When I discovered this issue, all my brake lights were smoking, but I figured that was because they had been consistently until I "fixed" the issue..not so! they smoke when i push on the brake and when I turn on my headlights. I had to pull them out and drive home from work with just my front lights..so not safe. When I pulled all my lights out and tried to put them back on, all the bulbs started to fill with smoke and won't come on, aside for the two top parking/brake lights that still smoke when they stay on (when my headlights are on). I have no idea what is going on and I don't have a lot of money to take it to a shop. Could it be a fuse? Or is it too coincidental that that would happen at the same time as my brake light bumper falling off? I'm really hoping this isn't a electrical issue, or I'm screwed. Any help would be appreciated! Also, I figure its worth noting that now when I push on the brake, my dash clock goes out..except when the headlights are on..even when the brakes are pressed it stays on. I'm sorry if this is a jumbled mess..I don't know very much about cars and am a 26 year old female trying to fix this on my own. Thanks guys!


Tom Greenleaf
Ultimate Carjunky / Moderator
Tom Greenleaf profile image

May 7, 2013, 2:39 AM

Post #2 of 17 (1919 views)
Re: Brake and rear lights are smoking Sign In

I don't know what you mean by a "brake light bumper" but no matter it should be fixed properly not hacked or who knows what troubles can happen?

Smoke inside bulbs is one way they blow. If right away it needs proper sockets and wired exactly as intended - soldered in and shrink tube over that.

Whatever this "bolt" trick is that has to go,

T



Discretesignals
Ultimate Carjunky / Moderator
Discretesignals profile image

May 7, 2013, 4:45 AM

Post #3 of 17 (1909 views)
Re: Brake and rear lights are smoking Sign In

I've never heard or seen brake lights smoking before. Are you sure the plastic housing the brake lamps sit in hasn't melted to the bulbs? The wrong size brake lamp bulb can get too hot and melt the lamp housing on some vehicles.





Since we volunteer our time and knowledge, we ask for you to please follow up when a problem is resolved.


Tom Greenleaf
Ultimate Carjunky / Moderator
Tom Greenleaf profile image

May 7, 2013, 5:16 AM

Post #4 of 17 (1901 views)
Re: Brake and rear lights are smoking Sign In

DS - I've seen some do that right away - defective no doubt just air inside not some specific gas sealed in. Pretty rare and next good one was fine. A whole batch - never - T

(edit) Yes a whole batch so far back you had to make sure they were 12V bulbs and not 6V bulbs.........



(This post was edited by Tom Greenleaf on May 7, 2013, 5:18 AM)


Juice22
Novice

May 7, 2013, 9:58 AM

Post #5 of 17 (1878 views)
Re: Brake and rear lights are smoking Sign In


In Reply To
I don't know what you mean by a "brake light bumper" but no matter it should be fixed properly not hacked or who knows what troubles can happen?

Smoke inside bulbs is one way they blow. If right away it needs proper sockets and wired exactly as intended - soldered in and shrink tube over that.

Whatever this "bolt" trick is that has to go,

T


Thanks for the quick responses, guys. This is a brake light switch bumper, probably go by another name.


It's a little rubber piece that fits between the brake pedal and the brake light switch to make contact telling the brake lights when to turn off and on. My lights were burning prior to me putting the bolt in there (an idea from a web page on how to fix the bumper, they said a bolt would act the same way as the little rubber piece and I'd not have an issue). Id expect my brake lights to get hot enough melt plastic after staying on for some time, but my rear lights when I'm driving at night? I've only had to replace a couple of the bulbs in my time owning this car, about 8 years, and never once have I had this problem. It's strange that all the bulbs are doing this at once..
They get so hot they melt the plastic around them, no doubt where the smoke is coming from, but they've never gotten that hot before? Ill go pick up all new bulbs today, to see if that makes a difference and try to locate the proper rubber piece for the brake switch to see if that helps. I'm not sure what you mean by needing to solder them in and shrink tube? Do you think it's all the sockets that have gone bad all on one shot? Sorry, wish I knew a little more about this stuff, thanks for your patience :)


(This post was edited by Juice22 on May 7, 2013, 4:07 PM)


Discretesignals
Ultimate Carjunky / Moderator
Discretesignals profile image

May 7, 2013, 10:06 AM

Post #6 of 17 (1874 views)
Re: Brake and rear lights are smoking Sign In

The brake lamp bulb that it calls for is a 2057





Since we volunteer our time and knowledge, we ask for you to please follow up when a problem is resolved.


Tom Greenleaf
Ultimate Carjunky / Moderator
Tom Greenleaf profile image

May 7, 2013, 1:55 PM

Post #7 of 17 (1859 views)
Re: Brake and rear lights are smoking Sign In

Just where did you put that bolt? The OE switch may have had a rubber cap that also made it longer over the tip to make brake lights work. that switch is pretty dump just connecting two wires or disconnected - not much else but needs to be in proper postion. Some are adjustable some not.




I can only wonder what you did to the thing and what could have happened in doing that?

T



HT
User

May 7, 2013, 3:05 PM

Post #8 of 17 (1853 views)
Re: Brake and rear lights are smoking Sign In

That rubber pad falls off pretty frequently but I think using a bolt may be too thick and prevent the lights from triggering. I usually use a rubber "push in" retainer or sometimes just glue a penny on the bracket.


Juice22
Novice

May 7, 2013, 3:22 PM

Post #9 of 17 (1842 views)
Re: Brake and rear lights are smoking Sign In


In Reply To
That rubber pad falls off pretty frequently but I think using a bolt may be too thick and prevent the lights from triggering. I usually use a rubber "push in" retainer or sometimes just glue a penny on the bracket.




I tried a penny, but it wasn't enough, two worked well, just didnt think of gluing it..the bolt head I put is the thickness of two pennies and makes contact pretty well. I really don't think that is what is causing the issue with the hot bulbs, though. I did nothing other than notice the little blue rubber pieces on my floorboard, googled the problem and it ended up being the issue with the brake lights not turning off..the bolt/pennies did the trick with that but the issue with the lights being hot still stands. I never messed with any electrical components in the car at all. I have noticed that the light plugs in the back have electrical tape wrapped around the wires, no doubt the work from a previous owner. Ill have to take some pictures to post so you guys can see. Hopefully I can figure this out soon


(This post was edited by Juice22 on May 7, 2013, 4:06 PM)


Tom Greenleaf
Ultimate Carjunky / Moderator
Tom Greenleaf profile image

May 7, 2013, 3:36 PM

Post #10 of 17 (1837 views)
Re: Brake and rear lights are smoking Sign In

Still don't understand how a bolt was useful. Stacking up pennies - done that in assorted places. A product called "Goop" is pretty fast to stay put vs silicone adhesive sealant stuff takes a while. Goop will tolerate the temps in this area below zero F to high enough. Even hardware stores my have something to make up the space.

I still don't understand why this does anything more than allow brake light to shut off nor why bulbs are smoking? Do you mean inside the glass or inside the lens? That part I don't know if correct bulbs are being used,

T



HT
User

May 7, 2013, 3:49 PM

Post #11 of 17 (1826 views)
Re: Brake and rear lights are smoking Sign In

Juice22, you need to stop posting links. They are not allowed here.

FORUM RULES


A plastic push pin works better than anything. The switch is adjustable for distance.





(This post was edited by HT on May 7, 2013, 4:01 PM)


Tom Greenleaf
Ultimate Carjunky / Moderator
Tom Greenleaf profile image

May 7, 2013, 4:03 PM

Post #12 of 17 (1816 views)
Re: Brake and rear lights are smoking Sign In

Didn't even check the links. Just pics fine not another whole forum. Juice, please go take those out or just show the pics........

T



Juice22
Novice

May 7, 2013, 4:04 PM

Post #13 of 17 (1810 views)
Re: Brake and rear lights are smoking Sign In


In Reply To
Still don't understand how a bolt was useful. Stacking up pennies - done that in assorted places. A product called "Goop" is pretty fast to stay put vs silicone adhesive sealant stuff takes a while. Goop will tolerate the temps in this area below zero F to high enough. Even hardware stores my have something to make up the space.

I still don't understand why this does anything more than allow brake light to shut off nor why bulbs are smoking? Do you mean inside the glass or inside the lens? That part I don't know if correct bulbs are being used,

T


The bolt does the same thing as the pennies, was just recommended in several articles as well as the penny trick for in place of that rubber pad for the brake lights. It is working for the brake lights, as they no longer stay On when the brakes are not being pushed or the car is off, so that problem is taken care of. Ill replace the bolt with pennies and some goop tomorrow when I have the day off.

What I meant by smoking is, the bulbs themselves are getting so hot they are burning some of the plastic housing around them, hence the smoke. What I'm trying to figure out though, is WHY they are getting so hot. I've not had this issue prior, and have changed the bulbs a few times while owning the car. I'm sorry if I've not explained myself well, I'm at work and on my cell phone. Also, apologies for the links, I had no idea they weren't allowed. They were basically the articles I found when troubleshooting the brake lights staying on, and the fixes that were recommended for the problem. I couldn't find anything regarding my lights getting hot anywhere, which is what led me here to you guys. Thanks so much again for your patience and help!


Juice22
Novice

May 7, 2013, 4:05 PM

Post #14 of 17 (1805 views)
Re: Brake and rear lights are smoking Sign In


In Reply To
Juice22, you need to stop posting links. They are not allowed here.

FORUM RULES


A plastic push pin works better than anything. The switch is adjustable for distance.





I have seen those at work! Ill grab one tonight and pop it in there :) Any ideas though, regarding the hot bulbs?


HT
User

May 7, 2013, 4:06 PM

Post #15 of 17 (1803 views)
Re: Brake and rear lights are smoking Sign In

That is determined by which bulb you are using. The number of the bulb determines the brilliance.


Juice22
Novice

May 7, 2013, 4:09 PM

Post #16 of 17 (1797 views)
Re: Brake and rear lights are smoking Sign In

Just using the bulbs that were recommended for my make and model at the auto parts store. Have been in there for a few years now. Ill take them out, have a looksy and let you guys know as soon as I can! I would have posted pictures instead, but doing so from my phone is proving difficult lol. I've removed the previous links.


Tom Greenleaf
Ultimate Carjunky / Moderator
Tom Greenleaf profile image

May 7, 2013, 4:25 PM

Post #17 of 17 (1788 views)
Re: Brake and rear lights are smoking Sign In

Juice, the links show another site's ads and hyperlinks. The people who pay to advertise here would be ticked - makes sense right? HT is a seasoned ASE Master tech part of this place.

Do check the bulbs as said. If somehow they are wrong or too strong there's a chance they or the sockets are overworking the set up. Dunno why they lasted at all if all wrong? - T







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