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Go Back   TDIClub Forums > TDI Model Specific Discussions Areas > VW MKIV-A4 TDIs (VE and PD)

VW MKIV-A4 TDIs (VE and PD) This is a general discussion about A4/MkIV Jetta (99.5-~2005), Golf(99.5-2006), and New Beetle(98-2006). Both VE and PD engines are covered here.

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Old December 7th, 2010, 14:25   #1
TwoFuel
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Question License Plate Lights HELP!

The biggest problems I've had with my VW's has always been electrical.

Either bad grounds, or like my '04 Golf all the dang wires going to the hatch broken in their harness.

On the Golf, now, the license plate lights have chosen to stop working.

I need some help on what/where the problem may stem from if you have had experience with this situation.

The bulbs are ok, both went out at the same time, seems there is no juice to the license pl. lts. All other lights are working, tail, stop, turn, B/U.

Thanks if you can help!!
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Old December 7th, 2010, 16:18   #2
VChristian
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Do they get 12v when the taillights are on? Does one side of the bulb have continuity (less than an ohm or two) to ground?

Have you looked at the wiring diagrams to see if they get their own 12V feed from the light switch, or are they wired with other lights (suggesting the problem is in the back end of the car)?
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Old December 7th, 2010, 17:29   #3
PDJetta
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I would remove both bulbs and in fact verify that there is no power at their socket contacts with the light switch on. When I found mine not working BOTH were burned out (and all blackeded from the filimament boiling off over time).

--Nate
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Old December 8th, 2010, 04:55   #4
TwoFuel
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Quote:
Originally Posted by PDJetta View Post
I would remove both bulbs and in fact verify that there is no power at their socket contacts with the light switch on. When I found mine not working BOTH were burned out (and all blackeded from the filimament boiling off over time).

--Nate
Both bulbs are good. I checked with test light, there is no juice to them.

I'm wonderin' if somehow they are wired through the rear hatch wiring "shame" VW used as a harness to feed all that relates to the hatch.

Mine has all the wires in the harness that comes up through the body, & goes through the rubber boot and into the hatch broken where they bend opening and closing the hatchback.

The high mount stoplight and hatch release still work, so I have not repaired the wires yet.

Thats why I was wondering where the feed to the license plate lts. comes from.
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Old December 8th, 2010, 06:13   #5
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I would imagine so. Any way to cut into the harness and seperate the wirse and check for breaks in the LP light wires?

--Nate
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Old December 8th, 2010, 14:16   #6
JB05
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Check for any corrosion inside the light fixtures.
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Old December 8th, 2010, 17:28   #7
VChristian
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Anyone have the bentley for the 2004? Mine doesn't go to then, but the wire diagram will probably tell you where the 12V for the LP lights comes from. Then you can buzz it from there.
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Old December 9th, 2010, 05:51   #8
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I'm at work now, but this evening I will look for you and post the current track for this.

--Nate
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Old December 9th, 2010, 06:56   #9
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Thanks for all the posts!
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Old December 9th, 2010, 17:56   #10
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OK, I traced the Golf LPL (license plate light) circuit from the bulbs to the headlight switch. Its a little different than the one for the Jetta, but close. For the Golf, working back from the LPL to the headlight switch:

1. The positive power goes to both bulbs through a 0.5 MM green/grey wire. This wire splits for both light bulbs at "plus connection 58 in the wiring harness" (it has to be near to these bulbs). There is a 2-pin (double) connector for the "plus" wire "in luggage compartment, left" (the other wire in this connector is the ground wire for the LPLs). On the headlight switch side of this connector, another green/grey 0.5 mm wire goes to fuse #4, the load side of it. Fuse 4 is 5 amps.

2. To the supply side of fuse #4, a .5 MM grey/yellow wire goes from it to to the supply side of fuse 3 (simply connects both supply sides of these fuses). From the supply side of fuse 3, a .5 MM grey/yellow wire goes to the headlight switch, terminal 58, which is position 16 on the 17-pin connector (for the headlight switch, I think).

Now for the ground side of the circuit:

3. The ground wire for the LPLs is .5 mm and brown and has "ground connection 1 in rear wiring harness" where it splits to supply ground for the 2nd LPL. There again, this probably is near to the two LPLs. The ground wire to the LPLs goes to "ground connection in rear wiring harness" where it connects to a 2.5 MM brown ground wire, which in turn connects "to ground connection, luggage compartment, left" (connects to the metal body, I suppose).

If you have plus power at Terminal 58 on the headlight switch, your problem is further towards the LPLs. I bet the wire broke from the hatch being opened, or there is a short that blows the fuse #4.

I'd remove the headlight switch and check for power there if a broken wire is not obvious. You can also check the continuity of the positive grey/green wire back to the rear of the car.

--Nate
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Old December 10th, 2010, 04:18   #11
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Nate, Thanks!

I want to thank you for taking the time to put the effort into that post. Very informative and I have plenty now, to keep me busy and find this problem.

Why don't these things pop up in the summer when it's nice and warm and the days are long??

Thanks again and I'll post what I found to be the problem. I need a couple days till I have a day off to look at it.

Stay safe.
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Old January 5th, 2011, 15:33   #12
TwoFuel
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Thumbs up Golf License Plate Lights UPDATE:

I can't believe it took a month to get to it, but I found out why the dang'd lic. plate lights. quit.

In short, it was the 2 wire plug in connector, inside the car at the rear, going to the lic.pl. lights. It was plugged in, just not making good contact... how that could be, who knows but taking it apart , a little WD40 and back together and they are working.

The connector, is right under the left rear tail light plug in cluster,inside the rear storage area, but it is behind the interior panel for the rear storage area, so I did have to pull the Monsoon amp. out and pull the interior panel away from the taillight area to get at it. Would'a been at least a $100.00 fix if at the Stealership.

So now, alls I gots left to deal with is my broken wires in the harness going to my hatchback lid that I still say should be a VW warranty fix. I can live without the rear wiper and defroster till it gets warmer out to fix that mess.
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Old January 6th, 2011, 06:20   #13
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Glad it was an easy fix. Even with the Bentley, when it says this about that connector, "in luggage compartment, left" , that leaves a lot for you to look for. I think the Bentley descriptions could be better.

--Nate
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Old January 29th, 2011, 11:20   #14
DavidML
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Default Can't find that doggone connector

I'm having a similar problem- supply side at fuse box is hot, looks like no ground. That is, if I meter between the supply side on fuse 4 and the ground on fuse 3, I get 12.5 volts. I check at the lights themselves and one has no voltage and the other is reading 6ish.

I wanted to meter at the plug (and check the connection) but I can't find it.

I pulled the amp and the amp frame and looked all around, couldn't find it. Could you confirm- below the light cluster underneath the liner?

Thanks,

-D...
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Old January 29th, 2011, 13:28   #15
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See if you have 12 volts at the hot side of the socket. Use the vehicle body for the meter probe ground and put the + probe right in the light socket contacts with the light switch "on". If you have 12 volts, it is a ground issue. You could simply run an new ground wire and fish (feed) it next to the original harness and splice it in right near to the license plate bulb holder, or solder it right to the ground side (usually a brown wire). You could use a ring connecter and a sheet metal screw and screw the connector to the body sheet metal under the carpet in the trunk. Run your ground wire from the ring connector.

--Nate
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