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reverse lights

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check the reverse-light switch at the gearbox end. If you are looking for a new switch:




'88 Excel SE - monaco white

'99 Elise 111 - azure blue �

'87 TurboEsprit - calypso red

'02 BMW 325ci convertible - diamond black


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You see the citroen switches regularly on Ebay. Not sure if they would be OEM though.

My reverse doesnt work either. Switch OK. Earth? This seems to be shared with all the rear lights.

"Intellectuals solve problems; geniuses prevent them." Albert Einstein

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Hi Chris,

The terminals on my reversing light ended up disintegrating and falling of the switch, which not suprisingly stoped the reversing light working !. If you can find the switch on the gearbox try pulling off both connectors and touching them together and see if the lights come on then, if so the switch is probably knakered. I presume you have checked the bulbs are Ok though ? and the wiring especialy earths on the rear light clusters.

Martyn :sick:

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  • 2 weeks later...

Just investigated my reverse light.

Firstly, to work, ignition must be on. Obviously, reverse selected.

There are 2 connections in the boot where the wires from the reverse switch at the back of the gearbox enter. These are bullet connectors, 1 to 1 and 2 to 1. In mine, both were corroded to the extent that when the 'protective' sleeve was removed, the connections disintegrated completely in a cloud of rust!

Once these were repaired, and the reverse switch bypassed, the lights lit.!.

Now, I have identified my switch as faulty also. :)

These 'protected' connections looked totally OK until I looked inside. Oh well.

"Intellectuals solve problems; geniuses prevent them." Albert Einstein

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The electrics on our cars seem to be similar to Quantum physics, by merely observing something an event can be triggered.


Actually, I thought I heard a cat in a box in the garage. Should I open it or not?....

"Intellectuals solve problems; geniuses prevent them." Albert Einstein

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  • 2 years later...

It's right at the back of the gearbox, high up on the RH side, above the exhaust bracket. Sometimes the connectors fall off the switch...then it's a cheap fix!! If the do fall off, they can sort circuit to ground and blow the fuse...this fuse works other stuff too, and produces the usual Lotus wiring chase....until you find the dangling connectors! If you have the rare lower panel, which covers the underside of the engine compartment ( only fitted so that the car would pass a noise assessment, iirc) then you'll have to take it off to see the back of the gearbox...I think...I've never seen the panel myself! Otherwise, you could unscrew the panel which forms the floor of the boot compartment behind the engine. Whichever you try to remove, unless it's been off before you're liable to get embroiled in rusty fasteners and spinning pulserts....

Scientists investigate that which already is; Engineers create that which has never been." - Albert Einstein

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I can get to mine from underneath the car no problem. Don't even have to lift anything. If the connectors have fallen off the switch, give them and the switch's terminals a good cleaning then, with some pliers or similar, give the female connectors a gentle pinch to tighten them so they won't fall off again.

"If you can't fix it with a hammer, it's electrical." -somebody's dad

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