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Left brake light won't work when pressing down brake pedal

 
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Old 16 Dec 2016, 03:43 am
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Default Left brake light won't work when pressing down brake pedal

I have the 2004 PT Cruiser. When I have the car on, all the rear lights work, including the signal lights. However, when I press down the break pedal, the left break light does not turn on. The light is on when I have the headlights on but shuts off when I press on the breaks. The top middle break light and the right break light works. I have changed the fuse and the light bulb but it still does not work. PLEASE help this Mom! I do not have the money to get it fixed and my kids depend on us being mobile and legal.
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Old 16 Dec 2016, 09:53 am
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Default Re: Left brake light won't work when pressing down brake pedal

One thing that you may want to verify is whether or not the two metal contacts inside the base of the socket that the bulb goes into are clean and not corroded or dirty in any way. Sometimes the rear lamp housings get small cracks in them and let in moisture, which sometimes ends up inside the base of the lamp socket, causing corrosion.

Also, have you verified that you have the correct replacement bulb installed? If this is a rear brake light bulb, I believe that it has two filaments or circuits. One for your brake light on that side and the other for your actual tail light.
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Old 16 Dec 2016, 10:15 am
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Default Re: Left brake light won't work when pressing down brake pedal

Quote:
Originally Posted by sscanlan View Post
One thing that you may want to verify is whether or not the two metal contacts inside the base of the socket that the bulb goes into are clean and not corroded or dirty in any way. Sometimes the rear lamp housings get small cracks in them and let in moisture, which sometimes ends up inside the base of the lamp socket, causing corrosion.

Also, have you verified that you have the correct replacement bulb installed? If this is a rear brake light bulb, I believe that it has two filaments or circuits. One for your brake light on that side and the other for your actual tail light.
This was my problem last month [with my right brake light].

The bulb is dual filament and the contacts are offset so make sure it's installed correctly.

As it turned out, mine had a bad socket [rusted] and needed replacement [$18 dealer part] as it wasn't passing voltage.
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Old 16 Dec 2016, 10:33 am
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Default Re: Left brake light won't work when pressing down brake pedal

Welcome to the forum. Try swapping the bulb from the other tail light. If it works, you'll know it's just a bulb. If it doesn't work, then it's either a socket or wiring problem. Do the front parking lights and turn signal both work on that side of the car?
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Old 16 Dec 2016, 11:14 am
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Default Re: Left brake light won't work when pressing down brake pedal

Did you try flipping the bulb over? Last time I replaced a taillight, the brake light did not work, tried a second bulb, same thing. Pulled out the bulb, flipped it over and then it worked. Went back to the first replacement, when I plugged it in, it worked, took it out flipped it over and it didn't work.

If that doesn't work, you may want to check the contacts in the socket for corrosion and ensure they are making good contact with the bulb.
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Old 16 Dec 2016, 11:15 am
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Default Re: Left brake light won't work when pressing down brake pedal

This was my problem last week[with my right brake light]. A new bulb solved it. On visual inspection, the old bulb appeared to have two good filaments, but one of them was in fact dead...
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Old 16 Dec 2016, 11:30 am
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Default Re: Left brake light won't work when pressing down brake pedal

Chuzz, robadat and rockandroller-- I am going to try that. Thanx! I will let you know how it goes.

ALSO, ALL lights, turn signals and functions in front and back of car work except the left break light when I press down on the break pedal. TY

Last edited by ReeseBear; 16 Dec 2016 at 11:33 am.
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Old 16 Dec 2016, 11:57 am
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Default Re: Left brake light won't work when pressing down brake pedal

If none of these fixes work, the filament may be burned out. A new bulb is less than a dollar at Rockauto (but you'll have to pay for shipping) or probably less than $5 at Walmart, NAPA, Autozone, O'Reilley, etc.

If you take your burned out bulb to a local auto parts store, you can be sure you have the right replacement by checking it against the part in the store.
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Old 16 Dec 2016, 12:34 pm
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Default Re: Left brake light won't work when pressing down brake pedal

TO EVERYONE since I did not notice others' replies when I replied earlier. I took a half inch by one inch sandpaper and cleaned the connectors. I blew all the dust out with a cool hair dryer. I put in a new bulb. YEAH it now works!! And it was all with a $3 bulb that I already purchased in the past. THANK YOU EVERYONE!! Have fun cruising your PT!!!

Last edited by ReeseBear; 16 Dec 2016 at 12:37 pm.
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Old 16 Dec 2016, 01:39 pm
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Default Re: Left brake light won't work when pressing down brake pedal

Glad to hear you got your problem worked out and very happy you took the time to come back and post the solution to your problem. It can get very frustrating to read these threads only to reach the end and not learn what finally solved the problem.
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