99 Chevy Cavalier Rear Turn Signal not working

#1

The rear driver side turn signal on my 1999 Cavalier is not working (it blinks rapidly when I turn it on). Problem started over a year ago…back then I could change the bulb and it would work fine for a couple months. Now when I change the bulb or remove and re-insert the bulb it will work when I turn on the turn signal for the first time only. Also, not sure if it is related, but the ABS light is on constantly. Do I need to change the bulb socket? Do I have a short? Any help would be greatly appreciated as I would like to fix the problem myself if possible.

#2

Does the bulb burn out with the first use, or is the bulb OK but just not working?

Try cleaning the bulb socket and check the electrical connections, including ground.

The ABS is a separate issue. If the ABS light is on the anti-lock function is disabled. You will have to have the ABS computer scanned to see what’s wrong with the brakes.

You could inspect the wheel speed sensors and see if one of the wires is loose or damaged. Other than that a scan is all you can do.

#3

I am going to ask a question about the bulb design your car uses,I hope I don’t confuse you, are you using bulbs that have thin exposed wires for contacts (wrapped around a flat plastic housing or are the bulbs the older style with “buttons” at the bottom for contacts?

The exposed wire type give problems with the wires becomming distorted and not conducting,I first noticed this when the “new” Malibu came out in 1997,we had loads of cars with inop brake lights,GM allowed us to change the entire housing (complete with lens) you may have to change the bulb socket if your car uses the exposed wire type bulb.

GM is not alone in using this problematic bulb design,BMW uses it on the X5 front turn signal and its a major effort to change the bulb.

Get the ABS system scanned,write down the code,clear the code, see if it returns,I don’t believe it is related. You don’t have a short as you are not blowing fuses.

#4

The bulb is Okay, just not working.

#5

The bulb design is exposed wires for contacts. I am going to try changing the socket. I assume this is similar to wiring in a light for a house. Thanks for your reply. I will post my results.