Trailer Lights Not Working with a CURT Trailer Wiring Harness on a 1996 Nissan Pathfinder

Question:

I have recently installed a curt wiring harness for my tailler and i have tested it with a test light and everything works well until i plug my trailer in . once it is conected the light stop working or only one flasher will work and sometimes only the brakes work! i have tested the trailer lights with other truck and they work fine any suggestions would be greatly appriciated

Expert Reply:

There could be a couple of issues with the trailer wiring on your 1996 Nissan Pathfinder. Since you have determine that the trailer lights work on other vehicles, we will need to look at the vehicle for the problem. My first instinct is that you have a bad ground connection.

The CURT wiring harness you are using has a white ground wire with a ring terminal on the end. This ring terminal will need to be attached to a clean, bare metal surface. If there is corrosion or paint where it is connected it would make a poor ground and could cause the problem you are having.

The reason it may not show up with a test light is because the load the test light puts on the system may not be enough to reveal the bad ground. But when you connect the trailer, it puts more load on the system and that is usually when ground problems show up.

That brings me to the next possible problem. If the trailer has a lot of lights, it could be too much draw on the system which is causing the malfunction. You will want to check the packaging of the wiring harness to determine how much amperage it is rated for. Then determine if the lights exceed that limit.

The Tow Ready harness that you have referenced, # 118361, is rated for up to 1 stop/turn light per side for 2.1 amps and for tail lights a max of 4 amps.

expert reply by:
Michael H



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