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View Full Version : 98 Cherokee XJ Taillight Socket



JjDuder
09-01-2016, 03:57 PM
So the passenger-side brake light isn't working. I've already changed the bulb and that didn't fix it which led me to believe it's the socket that holds the bulb. The problem is I have no idea how to replace it. When you look into the bottom of the socket where the wires go, you can see that the wires are clamped down to the metal prongs of the socket. Is there some special tool I have to get to unclamp the wires to get them out and then reclamp them to the new socket?

Any help will be very appreciated. Thanks in advance.

WJCO
09-01-2016, 04:03 PM
Welcome to WAL. First thing I would do is find out if you have power and ground at the socket. No point in replacing it if there's nothing wrong with it.

JjDuder
09-01-2016, 06:21 PM
Welcome to WAL. First thing I would do is find out if you have power and ground at the socket. No point in replacing it if there's nothing wrong with it.

How would I go about doing that? I'm a bit of a rookie when it comes to auto repair.

WJCO
09-01-2016, 06:35 PM
How would I go about doing that? I'm a bit of a rookie when it comes to auto repair.

Here's a basic idea of how a circuit works:

220781

Here's a video on how to use a test light:

https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=ksrsXwwukFc

Basically, any metal part of the frame or body is the ground circuit. So at the rear of your vehicle, you can hook the clip of the test light onto any body bolt as long as it has exposed metal and isn't protected by paint. Then anything you touch with the pointed end of the light and causes the light to light up, means there is power there. So carefully touch the inside of the socket where the power wire is, to see if there is indeed power there. Obviously the switch for the circuit needs to be closed, so if it's the brake circuit, you'll have to wedge something to keep the brake pedal down, etc. Be careful not to drag the edge of the test light needle on any other metals at the same time, or you will cause a direct short and blow a fuse.

Checking the GROUND circuit can be done by hooking the test light clamp on the POSITIVE terminal and then probing the GROUND metal with a pin, however, the light cord isn't that long, so checking in the rear of vehicle may require jumper cables, etc.

Or you could buy a DVOM with a continuity tester, I prefer those over a test light anyways.

If you haven't already, make sure fuses are good.