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Correcting Trailer Ground Problem Turn Signals Blink Once and Stop When Brake Is Pressed

Question:

I have a 2003 Chevy Tahoe without a towing package. We installed the receiver hitch and 4 flat light harness. The blinkers running lights and brake lights all work. But when I push the brake, my blinkers will blink once and stop. Any ideas? Thanks

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Expert Reply:

it sounds like you have a ground problem somewhere in the trailer wiring or on the trailer wiring harness installed on the vehicle. Ground problems will make the trailer lamps do all sorts of wacky things. With the running lights and the brakes on, activating the turn signals will draw maximum amperage on the trailer wiring system. If you have a ground problem, that's when it will typically show itself.

Make sure the trailer connector on the vehicle is securely grounded to clean metal, preferably on the frame. On the trailer, the trailer connector should be grounded somewhere on the trailer tongue. Each lamp should ground in one of two ways, either via a separate ground wire attached to clean metal on the trailer frame or by its mounting bolts being in direct contact with the trailer frame. Check the bulb sockets, and make sure they aren't corroded.

I'll also link you to our trailer wiring troubleshooting article.

expert reply by:
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Mike L

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