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Electrical issue; taillights stay on even if vehicle is off

 
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BerryWD21



Joined: 31 Aug 2017
Posts: 1
Location: Oklahoma

PostPosted: Thu Aug 31, 2017 9:07 am    Post subject: Electrical issue; taillights stay on even if vehicle is off Reply with quote

I have a 1994 Pathfinder SE 4WD auto with 211k miles.

On Sunday morning, my car would not start so I used my wife's CR-V to jump my battery; drove to work fine except the ABS light was on, which has never been on before. When it was time to go home, the battery was dead again. I tried using a jump-box from work, but it would only get enough power for the lights/clock. Then I tried using a friend's Dodge Caliber to jump, and that wouldn't give it enough power to turn anything on.

Took the battery to AutoZone and they confirmed it was a bad battery. Once I had my new battery in, I made sure it worked (success!) and had to run inside for something. Coming back outside (walking towards the rear of the vehicle) I noticed the taillights/brake lights were on, even though the car was off. The cover to the lights was hot to the touch, and the bulb itself was smoldering hot. Ended up getting out after burning my thumb, but now I'm driving without taillights. I'm guessing that's what killed my old battery, the lights never turning off.

Any ideas how I can fix this? Or why the ABS light came on only after jumping it? I'm sure these two issues are related, I just don't know how.

Thanks in advance.

Edit: Found the fuse for the brake lamps, looks to be in good condition. Removed it to keep my new battery from draining.
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smj999smj
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Joined: 22 Jan 2012
Posts: 4794
Location: Prospect, VA

PostPosted: Thu Aug 31, 2017 12:16 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

Many times on these older Nissans, when the brakes lights stay on continuously, it is due to a broken brake stopper on the brake pedal, Nissan # 46512-H0101. This is a round, plastic button that presses into the upper end of the brake pedal lever that contacts the plunger of the brake switch. Often the stopper gets brittle, breaks and falls out of the pedal, so there is nothing to depress the brake switch plunger. You'll have to climb under the dash with a flashlight to confirm. A faulty or misadjusted brake switch could also do this.

As far as the ABS light, it is possible when the battery was weak that it caused a false code. However, I would check the master cylinder just to make sure the level is not low and also check the charging system voltage, to be sure that the weak battery wasn't the result of low charging system voltage. Charging system voltage should be between 13.2-15.5 volts, at idle and at 3000 RPM, both with and without loads "on." Also, make sure the alternator belt is not loose. If all is good and the ABS light is still "on," I would have the code retrieved and erased...and then see if it returns, again.
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2006 Pathfinder LE VQ40DE AWD, Nitto Dura Grappler P265/65R17, aftermarket radiator, Airlift 1000's, Bilstein HD rear shocks
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