High beam indicator takes a long time to go off

nitrofalcon

TJ Enthusiast
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Waynesboro, VA
When switching from high beam to low beam it takes almost 45 seconds for the blue indicator light on the instrument panel to go off. It's not only annoying but a safety hazard as I can't always tell if high beams are on or not with oncoming traffic.
Any idea why and how to fix it?
 
The multi function switch on the TJ columns seem to be the culprit in a lot of lighting related problems. I'd start by checking it out and looking for any wire issues.
 
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Does the arm that you dim the lights with feel like it moves and differently that what it used to?
 
Are you thinking I might need to replace the turn signal arm unit?

I was just thinking that since the arm is used for switching back and forth between high and low beam, maybe something is sticking in there. Is it just the indicator that stays on for 45 seconds or so, or does it take that long for the headlights to go to low beam as well?
 
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I was just thinking that since the arm is used for switching back and forth between high and low beam, maybe something is sticking in there. Is it just the indicator that stays on for 45 seconds or so, or does it take that long for the headlights to go to low beam as well?

Headlights work fine. No other electrical issues. Just the high beam indicator light.
 
I was just thinking that since the arm is used for switching back and forth between high and low beam, maybe something is sticking in there. Is it just the indicator that stays on for 45 seconds or so, or does it take that long for the headlights to go to low beam as well?

I was also thinking if it might be the circuits on the instrument panel itself.
 
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I was also thinking if it might be the circuits on the instrument panel itself.

Possible. I suggested checking the multifunction switch first because there is less stuff to remove than there is getting to the instrument cluster.

I don't recall ever hearing anyone having this particular problem, so I'm curious to know what you find.
 
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Possible. I suggested checking the multifunction switch first because there is less stuff to remove than there is getting to the instrument cluster.

I don't recall ever hearing anyone having this particular problem, so I'm curious to know what you find.

I thought it was peculiar too. I did switch all the instrument panel bulbs to leds about a year ago but that's standard procedure. The led for the high beam indicator was actually way too bright so I ended up putting a new spec incandescent bulb in for it.
 
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It's worth looking at the wiring diagram, but off the top of my head I can only come up with 3 reasons why the indicator would take a long time to turn off:
(1) there's a relay that isn't unlatching for some reason
(2) there's a capacitor in the circuit that is slow to discharge
(3) IDK what #3 is but as I was typing the first sentence I corrected 2 to 3, and now I'm committed to coming up with 3 reasons.

I would be surprised if there's a relay for the indicator, but there is a precedent for the instrument cluster to have a relay; the rear window defogger has a timed relay built in there somewhere, that's how the defogger turns off after 15 min. I can't think of why the indicator would need a relay though, nor can I figure out why there would be a cap in that circuit. I would have guessed it was wired in the same circuit as the high beams; whenever one is on the other is on. I should know this but I don't...do the headlights get power through a relay? If so it still doesn't explain it because then the high beams would stay on as well. So that's a lot of words to say IDK, but now I'm invested and I'm going to look at the diagram. brb.
 
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I did that a while back and found the LED I used in the high beam indicator was way to bright as well. I think I ended up finding one that was not as bright and worked well.
 
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It's worth looking at the wiring diagram, but off the top of my head I can only come up with 3 reasons why the indicator would take a long time to turn off:
(1) there's a relay that isn't unlatching for some reason
(2) there's a capacitor in the circuit that is slow to discharge
(3) IDK what #3 is but as I was typing the first sentence I corrected 2 to 3, and now I'm committed to coming up with 3 reasons.

I would be surprised if there's a relay for the indicator, but there is a precedent for the instrument cluster to have a relay; the rear window defogger has a timed relay built in there somewhere, that's how the defogger turns off after 15 min. I can't think of why the indicator would need a relay though, nor can I figure out why there would be a cap in that circuit. I would have guessed it was wired in the same circuit as the high beams; whenever one is on the other is on. I should know this but I don't...do the headlights get power through a relay? If so it still doesn't explain it because then the high beams would stay on as well. So that's a lot of words to say IDK, but now I'm invested and I'm going to look at the diagram. brb.

Thanks. Relay and capacitor ideas seem interesting. Both of them could cause a delayed reaction with the high beam indicator light. I don't know where they would be located. I think headlights do use a relay, as most aftermarket lights do. The headlights work fine in my case. I hope you're smarter than I am (most likely! 😁) after looking at the diagrams.
 
Ok here goes. This circuit is a little more complicated than I imagined. For a second I was flashing back to my CJ7 days. I've posted what I think are the relevant sections for a 2002. Why 02? Because I didn't feel like going back to see what OP has, and I have an 02 so if I'm going to trace a circuit it may as well be one that benefits me.

Question: do you have daytime running lights? Those seem to be tied into the high beam indicator somehow on page 8W-50-8.

I also see a relay involved with the fog lights on page 8W-40-9. I don't have it in me to chase this down tonight after all, but now it's just an exercise to the reader. :)

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I think headlights do use a relay,
The CJ definitely didn't, although it might not be considered a modern car. I don't know if ours do, but if they're wired through the switch that would explain the piss poor brightness that we get from non-LEDs. If they are wired through a relay then IDK why they suck out loud. :)
 
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Ok here goes. This circuit is a little more complicated than I imagined. For a second I was flashing back to my CJ7 days. I've posted what I think are the relevant sections for a 2002. Why 02? Because I didn't feel like going back to see what OP has, and I have an 02 so if I'm going to trace a circuit it may as well be one that benefits me.

Question: do you have daytime running lights? Those seem to be tied into the high beam indicator somehow on page 8W-50-8.

I also see a relay involved with the fog lights on page 8W-40-9. I don't have it in me to chase this down tonight after all, but now it's just an exercise to the reader. :)

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Thanks for great info and research. More food for thought (or action! ) I did replace the stock headlights with led ones a while back, but I don't remember if the problem started before or after that. Along with your and other great suggestions by @MountaineerTom I think I'll try disconnecting the oem fog lights and test. And also put the oem headlights back on and test again .
 
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Gonna share my thoughts here:

My LJ came with po installed LED headlights. The high beam indicator is always slow to go off. My completely unproven thought is the headlight capacitor back-feeding the high beam indicator. I'll be interested to see if that is remotely accurate.

Tim