Headlights intermittently shut off? - Vintage Mustang Forums
 
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post #1 of 12 (permalink) Old 05-01-2014, 02:29 AM Thread Starter
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Headlights intermittently shut off?

Hello, I'm a new member here and I just picked up a 66 c-code. The other night I was driving the car down the street and the headlights kept turning on and off. Both sides were going out at the same time so I'm pretty confident that it is not the plug to the head lamp itself. Could it be the head light switch not making proper contact? Is there a main wire that powers both sides?

Any input is greatly appreciated. Thanks
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post #2 of 12 (permalink) Old 05-01-2014, 04:19 AM
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Most likely the switch, they get hot over time and often short out.

Mustang Headlight Switch 1965-1968

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post #3 of 12 (permalink) Old 05-01-2014, 11:14 AM Thread Starter
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Sorry all, I just realized this is the wrong section. Please move/close if necessary.

Thanks for the input StangKid.
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post #4 of 12 (permalink) Old 05-01-2014, 10:25 PM
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I saw your post on cafords. I was going to suggest this forum but i guess you found it. Lol

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post #5 of 12 (permalink) Old 05-02-2014, 04:58 PM
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My car used to do that when I had my brights on for too long. If I hit the dimmer switch, they would come right back on. After I replaced the dimmer switch it quit doing that.

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post #6 of 12 (permalink) Old 05-02-2014, 08:27 PM
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The headlight switch has a circuit breaker in it. When it gets hot it will turn off the lights.
Change the switch!

Wayne

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post #7 of 12 (permalink) Old 05-02-2014, 09:36 PM
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post #8 of 12 (permalink) Old 05-07-2014, 07:31 PM
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When you look for a new headlight switch, be aware that you can buy one for a Ford from the 1970's or early 1980's which have a higher load circuit breaker. The switches for old cars such as these are interchangeable.

Part of the problem is Halogen headlight draw more current and the old switches have a lower amperage rating. I don't recall the stock/original rating. The lights going out is more of a problem when using high beams. If you use the low beams only, you might find the lights don't flash. Just a way to get by until you put in a new switch.
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post #9 of 12 (permalink) Old 05-07-2014, 10:24 PM
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agree with Wayne67vert. circuit breaker built into original switch. Install new switch & convert headlights to relays .

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post #10 of 12 (permalink) Old 05-07-2014, 10:47 PM Thread Starter
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Thanks for the info everyone! Is there a certain car/model I should ask for when looking for a replacement switch?
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post #11 of 12 (permalink) Old 05-08-2014, 09:31 AM
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Buy one for a 67 Cougar. They are heavier duty
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post #12 of 12 (permalink) Old 05-08-2014, 09:39 AM
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The switch has two breakers: One does the tail, courtesy, parking lights & horn, the second does the headlamps.
67-68 Mustang is 15A/12A (two headlamps)
67-68 Cougar is 15A/18A (four headlamps)
69-70 models (Mustang & Cougar) is 15A/18A.
The wiring is 16 gauge, which is rated to 22A when used as automotive chassis wiring.
I am not a fan of using higher rated switches to solve a problem. The Circuit Breaker is tripping for a reason.
If it's because it's old and worn, replacing it with an good original replacement switch will solve the problem.
If it's tripping due to load with all stock components (lamps) then clean each connection and check your wiring for shorts. Also check the dimmer switch on the floor - it is notorious for going bad.
If it's tripping due to load (halogen or other lamps), install relays with a separate breaker to handle the power requirements.
No matter the reason, installing relays is always a good idea.
Also - note that the Cougar switch has the vacuum actuator attached to it.

Bob

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Last edited by TheRktmn; 05-08-2014 at 10:12 AM. Reason: Added dual ratings for different years & models
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