View Full Version : Headlights no ah working, and dark out
08-28-2006, 07:27 PM
I have a 2001 Subaru Impreza RS and the headlights aren't working. The highbeams work, as well as the fog lights. I checked the fuses and all are good. Also, the lights worked when I left school, then when I went to dim my highbeams, the lights went out, leaving just the fog lights. Any ideas?
08-28-2006, 07:28 PM
You need new headlight bulbs. Many times the highbeams on mine have remained working while the regular ones have burned out.
08-28-2006, 07:29 PM
Are your bulbs combination hi/lo beams? The lo beam elements could be burned out. Happens all the time - you just need new bulbs. Or if you have separate hi/lo elements, same deal.
08-28-2006, 07:30 PM
Just replaced the bulbs last year. And seems doubtful they'd both go at the exact same time. I'm guessing something more difficult to fix :(
08-28-2006, 07:30 PM
Doggone you, SCL! That'll teach me to proofread! :p
08-28-2006, 07:33 PM
Check the connector at the rear of each headlamp assembly. Make sure it's on tight and that the terminals are clean and corrosion-free. It could be the lamp control switch, too, but first you'll also want to be sure that the lamps themselves didn't both blow at about the same time; you can check that with a meter or continuity tester. It could also be a wiring issue--look under the dash and trace the wiring under the hood from the headlamps to see if you can spot any loose connectors or wires. If you come accross any connectors, make sure they're tight.
08-28-2006, 07:34 PM
As far as them going out at the same time, the Car Talk guys addressed this. Most headlights these days are bright enough that if you lose one, you might not necessarily notice it, but when the second one goes, then it's obvious. So people think they've lost both at once, but chances are they didn't.
It's entirely possible that you got bad bulbs that just happened to go out quickly. I suppose it could also be an electrical issue, but I wouldn't know how to check that out.
Maybe you could check out cartalk.com - you might find this addresses there.
Go back and look at the fuses again. Make sure there is not a seperate fuse for the low beams.
Check for voltage at the plug on the back of the headlight with the switch in the low beam position. If you have power, it is the bulbs. If you don't have power it is a fuse, relay, switch, or the wiring connecting the mess together.
08-28-2006, 08:53 PM
I had a very similar problem on a completely different vehicle (1997 Mazda B2300 pickup) recently, so I'll just toss it out as a possibility here.
I suddenly lost both low beam lights, as well as high beams unless I pulled back on the stalk ("flash-to-pass") - I had to hold that damn thing back the whole way home. The problem, in this case, was the "multi-function switch" in the steering column - it controlled the wipers, the turn signals, the hazards, and the dim/bright toggle. I replaced that (no small amount of effort), and the problem was resolved. It took a good deal of troubleshooting for me to narrow it down to that part - wiring diagrams from Haynes and a multimeter eventually got me there, though.
08-28-2006, 09:56 PM
If both low beams failed suddenly and together, it's almost certainly a fault in the combination switch. There's one fuse for each side's headlamp, covering both high and low beam, so if the high beams work it cannot be a fuse problem. Other than a wiring problem (possible but rare) or both low beams burning out simultaneously (possible but damn near miraculous) that's all there is.
*This assumes no daytime running lights. The circuits are more complex with DRL, and possibly some component in that system could be at fault. Even with DRL, I'd test the combination switch first.
08-29-2006, 12:27 AM
Got a 93 Subaru and the stalk on the column is the big time problem. I have replaced it twice. )(*&^)*&^ ( Big bucks)
Now I have a toggle switch wired into the tail lights so when it goes on the fritz. I can pull the fuse and insert the fake fuse that is really the connection to the wires to the toggle switch so I can control the taillights. They won't go off when in the broken condition. The dash lights are in the mix also. So, about every 6 months, it switches from broke to fixed and I adjust. Cheaper than $300 stalk switches and I know it will work when it goes on the fritz. And it will ......... At the worst possible time.
It is an Subaru thing .........
08-29-2006, 10:26 AM
Well, it was the bulbs. Both burned out at the same time. With odds like that I should go to Vegas.
Thanks everyone for the help.
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