How Do I Troubleshoot Camaro Headlights?

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A wiring harness plugged into the back of the headlight body delivers power from the car battery to the headlight bulbs on the Camaro. A fuse protects this circuit from power surges and the headlight switch on the steering column controls the lights. Any of these devices on the circuit may be the source of the problems you are having with your Camaro's headlights. Troubleshooting the issue involves checking the functionality of each component on the headlight circuit.

Things You'll Need

  • Voltmeter
  • Crescent wrench
  • Screwdriver
  • Turn on your headlights and check which ones do not come on. Replace a headlight bulb by propping open the hood with the hood support rod, disconnecting the wiring harness from the headlight unit, unscrewing the headlight socket and pulling out the headlight bulb. Install the replacement headlight bulb and check that the headlight now works. Continue to the next step if it still does not.

  • Open the fuse box that houses the fuses for the headlight circuit. The fuse box is located in the engine compartment above the left wheel well. Pull a fuse directly out of its socket and check whether it is blown. Replace a blown fuse with a new one and slide the new one into the socket until it cannot be pressed in any further. Turn the headlights on again. Continue to the next step if any still do not come on.

  • Check that power is coming through the headlight wiring harness on the headlight that is not working. Unplug the wiring harness from the headlight unit. Connect the bare metal of the positive lead on the voltmeter to the positive terminal on the Camaro's battery. Connect the other lead to the positive lead on the wiring harness. The positive lead on the wiring harness is usually covered in red insulation. Replace the headlight wiring harness if no power is coming through it. Test the headlights again. If the headlight still does not turn on, continue to the next step.

  • Check that the headlight switch is functional. Disconnect the negative cable from the negative terminal on the Camaro's battery by loosening the nut holding the two together with your crescent wrench. Remove the two screws holding the steering column trim together and pull the trim off of the steering column. Disconnect the wiring block from the back of the headlight switch by pulling it straight out of the headlight switch. Inspect the leads on the wiring block. Clean them if they are dirty or discolored. Plug the wiring harness back in and test the headlights again. If they still do not work, replace the headlight switch. Disconnect the wiring block, remove the three screws securing the headlight switch to the steering column and pull out the headlight switch. Insert the replacement headlight switch, plug it back into the wiring block and secure it with the three screws removed earlier. Test the headlights once more to verify that they now function.

References

  • "Chevrolet Camaro and Pontiac Firebird (1993 thru 2002): Haynes Repair Manual"; John Haynes; 2002
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