1988 Astro high beam problem.

1988 Astro high beam problem.

Postby Jeppe [OP] » October 22nd 2011, 1:19pm

Me and some friends have just bought a 1988 Astro that we are going to use on a road trip the upcoming summer. The car was very cheap and of course have some problems, like a broken generator, brake lights not working front fan dont work. We managed to fix the brake lights today and we also removed the generator so that we can replace it. But there is still problems with the fan for the front seat passengers and the high beam. Most of all we would like to begin with the high beam since its getting dark and we would really like to see the road :)
Problem is:
Low beam works perfectly but when you pull the leverer to switch on the high beam: nothing. We have no idea on where to begin to search for what might be wrong thats why im hoping maybe you could give us a hand on that. Is there any regular issue that we can look into first? Maybe a relay? We looked for a relay but couldnt find it.

Best regards
Jeppe
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Re: 1988 Astro high beam problem.

Postby RECox286 » October 22nd 2011, 3:52pm

First I would suggest finding out if the bulbs are still good. Take the bulb out, and test for 12v at the connector. There are 3 prongs, one for low beam, one for high beam and of course there

is a ground common to both elements. When you get that checked out, Then see if the stalk operated dimmer switch has 12v on both sides (high and low beam). The only other cause would be

a wire that is disconnected somewhere between the "high" side of switch and the head lamp connectors. Let us know what you find. OK ? One question, does the I/P high beam indicator illuminate

when you operate the dimmer switch ?

Bob
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Re: 1988 Astro high beam problem.

Postby Phantom » October 22nd 2011, 3:59pm

If all the above checks out to be good , check the headlamp switch , when it gets old it's contacts can get corroded and wear out , requiring the need to replace switch ,, measuring voltage at the lamp socket as Bob mentioned is a good place to start
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Re: 1988 Astro high beam problem.

Postby Jeppe [OP] » October 22nd 2011, 4:40pm

Thanks for the quick responds, but you lost me at: "stalk operated dimmer switch" Im from sweden so my english isnt that very great and i dont really now what you mean. And i know for certain that atleast 1 of the bulbs is 100% OK and the other one looks OK.

Jeppe
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Re: 1988 Astro high beam problem.

Postby Phantom » October 22nd 2011, 4:57pm

Jeppe wrote:Thanks for the quick responds, but you lost me at: "stalk operated dimmer switch" Im from sweden so my english isnt that very great and i dont really now what you mean. And i know for certain that atleast 1 of the bulbs is 100% OK and the other one looks OK.

Jeppe

That is the turn signal lever ,pulling back on it switches the high and low beams :)

Reason to check voltage at the bulb socket is to make sure voltage power is reaching both the low beam and high beam , the bulbs have 2 filaments inside the same bulb , 1 for low beam , 1 for high beam , 1 filament may work while the other may be burnt out , , measuring the voltage at the socket helps determine that there is proper voltage reaching the bulb , if power is not at both the low and high beam wires , then it needs to be traced back to where it was last , before it stopped
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Re: 1988 Astro high beam problem.

Postby Jeppe [OP] » October 25th 2011, 8:33pm

Thanks for the quick responeses guys!

As i wrote we have also removed the alternator to get a new one, but we cant find anyone at the scrapyard and the price for a new one is quite high, so we are wondering if there might be any alternator from any other model that fits bolt on to this. Its a 4.3L V6 2WD if thats any to any help. Thanks in advance.

/Jeppe from Sweden
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Re: 1988 Astro high beam problem.

Postby RECox286 » October 25th 2011, 10:18pm

Look in the yellow pages for a Motor Shop, or Auto Electric Shop. Either one will be able to help you by rebuilding your alternator. The other option is to get one from your Local

Auto Parts Store (LAPS). I don't buy rebuilts from LAPS because the re builders use such low quality parts in order to compete in the marketplace. I prefer to use an Independent

Rebuilder who relies on repeat (IE: Steady) customers. If you want to take your chance at a JY, you can look at any thing that has a 4.3 in it, like a small Blazer, or S10 Pickup,

As well as the Astro and Safari Vans. Not sure about full size cars and trucks, you would have to rely on the JY for that kind of information.

You say it is broken, but there are no details. What exactly is broken ? the case ? something internal ? What ??? Perhaps there is another possible fix... If you can expound.
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Re: 1988 Astro high beam problem.

Postby Jeppe [OP] » October 26th 2011, 7:03am

It was my friend that took it to a company that works with car electrics and they hooked it up and tested it and said that it was broken, i dont really know what might be the problem with it.

/Jeppe
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Re: 1988 Astro high beam problem.

Postby RECox286 » October 26th 2011, 2:40pm

OK, it is an internal failure. That particular shop should be able to swap or repair your alternator for you. That would be better than taking a chance elsewhere. Consider it money

well spent in this case. I've been through the other choices, and have been burned big time.

Bob
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Re: 1988 Astro high beam problem.

Postby Lumpy » October 28th 2011, 3:21pm

I agree with Bob about that alternator. Spend what it costs to replace that with a well built piece
and replace the serpentine belt. Keep the old belt in the van during your road trip. If a headlight
fails while you're on the road, you can typically buy one of those nearly anywhere, and in a few
minutes, install it yourself. But if that alternator fails, you can only drive a few miles before
the van won't run. It will cost a lot to replace then and it's not nearly as simple to replace as
a headlamp or a belt.

I say, if I'm going to skimp, skimp on a piece that's cheap and easy to replace.
But spend the money on the hard to get at and expensive parts. I don't want
those failing soon.

Got pictures of your van?
Please take and post pics when you go on your road trip... :banana:

Lump
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