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Old 04-10-2014, 03:33 PM
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no gauge lights

I have an 02 F-250 and last night when I went out to start the truck I noticed my gauge lights (in the dash) were out. Then I realized my orange parking lights and my taillights weren't on either. After doing some research I checked the #17 fuse and it was blown. So I got new fuses, put one in, turned the parking lights on and it instantly blew the new fuse. I assume I have a short somewhere, does anyone have any tips on where to look first? or if I'm missing something else all together?
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Old 04-10-2014, 04:37 PM
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I'm assuming you have the typical aftermarket gauges (boost, egt, trans) and you spliced the aftermarket lights into the stock wiring (believe its the light blue with red tracer behind the light knob)? Did you use an "add-a-fuse" on the gauges main power when tapping into a key on power source? If you used autometer gauges they leave the add-a-fuse part out in the instructions. I went through like 5 fuses trying to figure this out when I installed my gauges.
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Old 04-10-2014, 05:57 PM
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Yes I do have the typical aftermarket gauges, but I did use add a circuits for those. I haven't spliced into any wires.
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Old 04-10-2014, 06:13 PM
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If you've had the aftermarkets for a while with no problems and this just happened recently than I'd shy away from them. Battery terminals clean? Disconnect add-a-circuits and replace with fuse so the aftermarkets aren't plugged in. Turn lights on and see if it pops the fuse. If it doesn't than its in your aftermarket wiring.
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Old 04-10-2014, 06:28 PM
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My battery terminals could definitely be cleaner lol, but they're not bad. Everything else on the truck works fine, that's why I'm so confused. I just unhooked the aftermarkets and replaced with the correct fuses and it instantly blew the same #17 fuse when I turned on the parking lights.
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Old 04-11-2014, 05:27 PM
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I'd start with checking all bulbs and make sure the connection is good with no corrosion or rust(broken lenses will let water in). If these all check out I don't know what else to do other than make sure all ground contacts all clean than start ohming everything out with a voltmeter.
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Old 04-16-2014, 03:30 PM
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So here's an update, I took the truck to a shop to hopefully at least get some direction since I know just about know nothing when it comes to electrical. They figured out if I unplug my dimmer switch on the dash it stops blowing the fuse and my exterior lights work. Still no dash lights though. So after them looking at my truck for about 3 hours they couldn't pinpoint the problem. My truck has an aftermarket alarm on it thanks to the previous owner and apparently whoever installed it.....wasn't the best. The shop told me due to the bird's nest of wires under the dash they couldn't fix it, and referred me to another local shop.
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Old 04-16-2014, 04:09 PM
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Why do they not think it's the dimmer switch?
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Old 04-16-2014, 04:30 PM
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That's what I thought, so I bought a new switch and it still blows the fuse when it's hooked up. It just blows it a few seconds after turning on the parking lights opposed to instantly blowing it with the old switch.
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Old 04-17-2014, 01:18 PM
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Back in the olden days, the printed circuit film on the instrument cluster in my 68 Galaxie burned up and I would blow the fuse for the cluster lights. I stuck a 1/4" dowel pin in the fuse block and just drove on. I miss glass fuses.
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