98 Accord electrical snafu

I just returned from a month long vacation to find that my Accord wouldn’t start. No big deal- I jumped it and it started right up and I figured that was it. While driving I realized I could only open the power windows on the drivers side (front and back) with the controls on the drivers door. The passenger side windows could only be operated with the buttons on the doors themselves. I also noticed that I could only control the power side mirror on the driver side not the passenger side. One last thing- the driver side brake light is out but the central and passenger side brake light is permanently ON. This is obviously what is draining the battery. I removed and checked all the fuses and they are fine. Anyone have any wisdom they would like to share?

Check the brake light switch mounted near the brake pedal for a problem. It may just need adjustment or it is shorted internally.

The window problem could be due to broken wires, bad switch contacts, or both. I suggest you get a service book to follow the wiring.

ah… thanks, Cougar. that explains the little pieces of broken plastic I found on the floor. there’s nothing making contact with the pedal so the car thinks the brakes are being depressed. Can I replace that part myself?

I just stuck a little wrench in there and the brake lights are turned off. I guess I could just glue a little piece of metal on there and be done with it?

oh, I forgot to add- the power locks are out as well. could this be related to the window issue?

NO, don’t just glue a little piece of metal in there.

Replace the faulty brake light switch, or whatever is faulty.

It’s only a few bucks. Don’t cheap out on the safety things. Please.

If you glue something on there, your brake lights will never go on. That’s dangerous, not to mention illegal in most places (or at the least, enough for your car to fail inspection). Get it fixed.

Was someone using the car or driving it while you were gone? Did kids have access to the inside? If not, you may have a critter problem.

Does anyone know how to change the brake light switch? I’m just gonna live with the other problems for now.


looks like I just pull off the old switch and plug in the new one. but what about that nut- it looks like it needs to be adjusted somehow.

You adjust it so the switch connection will open up when the bake pedal is released. It is pretty simple.

oh, so it goes on the bottom side of the pedal arm- makes sense. thanks again, Cougar.

solved: the switch was the problem- it was the piece of plastic that the switch was making contact with- I glued a little piece of plastic to the brake pedal arm so that it triggers the switch and it seems to work so far. Thanks all.

*was NOT