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Headlight Motors not Running

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Hi all,


After removing the front bumper for a foam/bumper anchor repair, I re-attached the headlight lift arms to the motors and now the headlights won't go up/down. The headlights, high-beams, turn signals, wiper and horn all work.


At the relay cluster beside the left headlight, there appears to be a relay that is draining the battery if I leave it inserted (#5 from the top in the attached pic). It was buzzing at some points during the repair and seemed to eventually drain the battery.


Also, my manual does not indicate the relay setup I have so I don't know what some of the relays are for.


What I have found is that the relays control the following (from top down)



#3Headlights/High Beams

#4-Parking Lights




All help and guidance appreciated!










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Pull them out,, one at a time, and see what stops working!! Then you'll know what does which....change the suspect one for a good one....or a new one.... and see what happens. Pragmatic approach and a bit of thought will sort it.

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

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I have done what you're suggesting.


Have now found that the fuse was blown and the left side lift works but the right side keeps blowing the fuse.


I will experiment with switching the relays to see if all is good with the right side motor. If the relay is faulty will any 5 pin relay work?

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Share on other sites's only a standard simple relay iirc. If you are blowing fuses, you have too much current...either the motor is seized or there's a short circuit somewhere ( +ve connected directly to the -ve)....could be the relay contacts have welded together?

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

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Well I thought I had it sorted. Swapped the relays and the left side light worked fine. So, figured it was the relay yes?


Found a new relay and inserted, blown fuse again. Back to square one and will swap the new relay to the right side to see if that motor is ok.

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When buying relays for these cars make sure you dont get a type with a built-in protection diode across the coil which many modern cars use. Lotus paid no attention to the coil polarity, which is necessary when using this type of relay.


In the headlamp motor circuit the controlling current for the relays comes directly from the unfused headlamp circuit, but the actual motors are powered from a fused circuit. This suggests the motor is at fault, eg seized, shorted etc.


Unless its a US car in which case everything is completely different.

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Mine would be a US Spec car (I believe) as it was shipped to Canada and had all of the air pump kit (since removed) that the US cars required. My next step is to assume the new relay won't work and swap the known operating relay to the right-side headlight to see if it works. If it doesnt then I suppose the motor is at fault.

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  • 7 years later...

Did you ever find a solution to your continuously blowing fuse?

I have the same issue right now.  With the previously working motor and its front relay removed, fuse 16 (10A) blows every time I turn on the headlight switch.

I had a connector get filled with washer fluid and then that motor stopped working, and I've traced it to this. 

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