The Reluctant Turn Signal

courtesy of Bob, The Auto Answer Man

The right front turn signal sometimes works and sometimes it doesn't. When it doesn't work, the blinker inside will flash faster (as if the bulb needs replacing). If I open the housing and fiddle with the bulb and then close the housing, it will usually work for a while. However, within a couple miles of driving down the road, it will stop working again.

I think there's a short in the wire somewhere, but I have no idea how to pinpoint where it is. How does one go about locating a short in the wire (short of taking it out and replacing it with a new wire)? I'd rather take care of this myself as I have yet to find a reliable mechanic in my neighborhood.

I don't think you have a short. Instead, I think you have an open circuit in the line. Since you said that once you "fiddle with it for a while" it will work, if you are keeping your "fiddling" to the turn signal socket, then I think you already narrowed down your problem.

If you go to any major automotive parts store, you will most likely find a turn signal replacement that will fit your car. They usually have them out on the shelf or on a turntable. It is a generic brand (you can get an exact replacement if you wish). Then, simply follow the instructions on the package to replace the old turn signal socket. This usually involves cutting out the wires (about an inch or so from the old socket) and then soldering or crimping on the new socket wires. No matter which method of attachment you decide to do, please make sure that you seal the connection from the elements. You don't want water or moisture to get in there and corrode your fine handy work!
Good Luck!
Drive Safely!
Bob, The Auto Answer Man

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