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Sorting electrical gremlins


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While I just finished up my '76 2002 project car in October and she's running fine, I notice I now have a couple of electrical gremlins that need sorting and was looking for some advice on where to start and what would be the best troubledshooting plan to resolve the issues? Some background on what was added or upgraded, including: new Battery;  Hella driving lights; switch for driving lights (to space where dummy one was); after-market stereo system (head unit and front & rear speakers); re-built 65 amp Bosch alternator (replacing stock 25 amp one); and after-market steering wheel with center horn button.

 

The headlights seem to work fine, as do the Hella driving lights, and the stereo system. Also the horn button initially worked, but only for a couple days... now there's nothing. I first noticed some issues when the interior light only came on with an orange/yellow glow, not bright like it should be; then, when putting the turn signals on while driving the temp gauge and fuel gauge would tick (move slightly up and down) to the beat of the turn signal sound. I also had someone comment that the original wiring to/from the new alternator should be replaced to support the upgraded rebuilt one and additional load items, e.g., lights, stereo, etc.

 

I was planning to tackle the alternator wiring re-fresh over the winter and I suspect there is a ground issue somewhere? Any other ideas on what to check and the best sequence to follow? Thanks for any help.

 

-RoyW

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Sounds like a ground issue to me. 

 

But your horn- you should check your connections on your new wheel/hub to the horn hub-ring. since ya messed around there. 

 

It might not work now, but if that ring has shifted or fallen outa' its seat in the steering column (speaking from experience here) and decides to shift some more... there's the possibility it will all of a sudden work very, VERY well.

 

And with a constant and surprising stamina that will freak both you and other drivers out till you can pull over and figure out which fuse to yank so you can drive home without turn-signals. 

 

Or, ya get the less scary, but more entertaining version where it will just ever so subtly 'beep' at you when turning a specific corner radius, to where when you're driving around town, you're unsure if someone honked at you... or you're just hearing things. 

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I have similar issues where things seem to be connected that should not be.

 

My temp gauge changes sometimes based on the light switch being pulled out.

Signaling changes my headlights (also Hella) from bright to dim (or vice versa).

The other day the horn started honking repeatedly just on ignition. (I don't have any kind of alarm installed.)

 

Larry

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Make sure the end of every brown wire is properly secured :)

 

The voltage regulator also grounds through the securing fastener.

 

The alternator housing ground wire is still attached, right?

 

As you likely know, the front turn signals ground through the housing securing screws.

 

What's your horn button? Pull it off, or the wheel, and re-secure the wiring.

 

Have fun! :)

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