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Discussion Starter · #1 ·
I've got Passat "2001.5" GLS V6 with leather steering wheel (four-spoke) - model for Canada.

Few days ago two problems started (not sure whether at exactly the same time):

1. Left daytime light stopped working. I foolishly bought a new bulb right away and replaced it but it did not work. I checked the fuse - OK (I switched it with the working one). I will check further - there is a remote chance that the new bulb I just bought is not working, but I doubt it. Could 173 be the problem?

2. Directional (turning) signals started flashing erratically - they would start, flash once to few times erratically then stop. They blink in "hazard lights mode" (all four) just fine. Could the relay between the hazard lights switch be the issue - i.e. does it have separate parts for directional vs. hazard lights?

I am scared that it might be the contacts in the steering wheel column, in which case I'd have to remove the airbag and all... I desperately searched through the forums to find some explicit guidance but found nothing other than I have learned about 173 is responsible for DRL and that there is an easy-to-replace hazard relay behind the switch...

Please help!
 

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I've got Passat "2001.5" GLS V6 with leather steering wheel (four-spoke) - model for Canada.

Few days ago two problems started (not sure whether at exactly the same time):

1. Left daytime light stopped working. I foolishly bought a new bulb right away and replaced it but it did not work. I checked the fuse - OK (I switched it with the working one). I will check further - there is a remote chance that the new bulb I just bought is not working, but I doubt it. Could 173 be the problem?

2. Directional (turning) signals started flashing erratically - they would start, flash once to few times erratically then stop. They blink in "hazard lights mode" (all four) just fine. Could the relay between the hazard lights switch be the issue - i.e. does it have separate parts for directional vs. hazard lights?

I am scared that it might be the contacts in the steering wheel column, in which case I'd have to remove the airbag and all... I desperately searched through the forums to find some explicit guidance but found nothing other than I have learned about 173 is responsible for DRL and that there is an easy-to-replace hazard relay behind the switch...

Please help!
relay 173 controls both drl,s ,not one.....in canada its state law for them to be operational at all times correct,,so if someone pulled it,they would have to be a fool. ,if turn signal is acting up on on side only then its a bulb,both sides would be relay,good luck
 

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Discussion Starter · #3 ·
I know that...

As I said:

- directional signal bulbs are all OK
- both sides acting up, but:
- hazard lights work OK


As for 173/DRL, noone pulled it out - the other light works just fine. I was just trying to find where the problem might be.
 

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As I said:

- directional signal bulbs are all OK
- both sides acting up, but:
- hazard lights work OK


As for 173/DRL, noone pulled it out - the other light works just fine. I was just trying to find where the problem might be.
So are you saying that when you turn the headlight switch to on both low beams work? But with the headlight switch in the off position, the left low beam does not work with the DLR relaly? That's virtually impossible to see how that could happen. If the left low beam does not work for both the DLR and when the headlight switch is turned to on, then the problem is between the common connection where the positives from the DLR relay and the headlight switch are connected together to feed fuse 20 and fuse 21 all the way to the left headlight bulb.
As far as the emergency flasher relay, if both sides act up when the turn signal stalk is not moved then its probably the relay.
 

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Discussion Starter · #5 · (Edited)
So are you saying that when you turn the headlight switch to on both low beams work? But with the headlight switch in the off position, the left low beam does not work with the DLR relaly? That's virtually impossible to see how that could happen. If the left low beam does not work for both the DLR and when the headlight switch is turned to on, then the problem is between the common connection where the positives from the DLR relay and the headlight switch are connected together to feed fuse 20 and fuse 21 all the way to the left headlight bulb.
DRL and low beams use separate bulbs. Low and high beams are "inner bulbs" (towards the VW logo) whereas DRLs are outside (between low/high and directional). See attached picture... If I find how to attach it... Did not ... here's the link:


I already checked fuses 20 and 21 (switched them around) and situation did not change, suggesting it is not the fuse problem.

As far as the emergency flasher relay, if both sides act up when the turn signal stalk is not moved then its probably the relay.
Both sides act act up when I use them as turn signal (i.e. only one side is supposed to flash). Blinking is only OK if I turn all four - hazard lights. All bulbs are OK.

To make matters more interesting, this problem coincides with cold wheather coming and is more pronounced when I start the trip (car is cold) then at the end of the trip (car is warm).
 

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When looking at your pics, the low beam bulb (which is also your DRL) or fuse 21 is out on the left side. Your DRLs are the low beams (bulb 4 in the pic below). Bulb 7 is your high beam. The DRLs operate at a reduced power output through the DRL relaly. There is only one bulb per side for the DRL and low beam. When you turn your head light switch on to low beam, one contact of the head light switch disables your DRL relay which removes voltage from fuse 20 and fuse 21 while another contact of the headlight switch puts positive to the low beam bulb through fuses 20 and 21. When your headlilght switch is off, your DRLs are only activated when you release the parking brake. Bottom line get a voltmeter and measure to see if you have 12 volts on fuse 21 when your DRLs are on. If you do than either the bulb is bad (or maybe you have the wrong bulb) or your not getting positive to the bulb like I said in the previous post.

As far as the turn signal, I'd replace the emergency flasher relay.
 

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Discussion Starter · #7 ·
Thank you...

Thank you. I will recheck those things but I already checked fuses 20 and 21 (by switching them around). I will recheck the entire thing with voltmeter tomorrow.

Maybe I am using different terminology but, as per my car and pictures of it and your diagram, bulb #4 is only DRL, whereas it is the bulb #7 can operate in two modes - low and high beam.

One clarification re my last post. Hazard lights started acting up too. Not as much, but they did. This actually appears to be good news as it might point to the relay - i.e. I might not have to dissasemble the steering column.
 

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Bulb 4 and bulb 7 are both H7 55 watt bulbs. Bulb 7 is used for high beam only. It is not a dual filament bulb. Bulb 4 is your low beam bulb which is also used as your DRL at slightly reduced power level. Your pics should be labled DRL only, low, high, and low+fog. As you can see the left outside bulb 4 is never on. As soon as you turn your headlight switch to any position other than off, the DRL circuitry is disabled by a contact in the headlight switch.
 

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Discussion Starter · #9 ·
Bulb 4 and bulb 7 are both H7 55 watt bulbs.
Appears to be correct.

Bulb 7 is used for high beam only.
Incorrect. Bulb 7 is used for low beam as well. Have a look at the pictures. It operates at lower intensity in low beam mode and high intensity in high beam mode.

Bulb 4 is your low beam bulb which is also used as your DRL at slightly reduced power level.
Bulb 4 seems to be DRL only and NOT low beam. Have a loot at working lights (right side of car, left on the picture). You will see that Bulb #4 is always ON at the same intensity and it is the bulb #7 has two different intensities.

Your pics should be labled DRL only, low, high, and low+fog.
Well, actually they are labeled correctly. DRL is always present, including in "low+fog".

As you can see the left outside bulb 4 is never on.
Correct. This is the problem I am trying to solve.

As soon as you turn your headlight switch to any position other than off, the DRL circuitry is disabled by a contact in the headlight switch.
I have no control of DRLs. As soon as the key is in and turned to give it a contact, they turn on and nothing turns them off or changes their intensity.
 

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As I said:

- directional signal bulbs are all OK
- both sides acting up, but:
- hazard lights work OK


As for 173/DRL, noone pulled it out - the other light works just fine. I was just trying to find where the problem might be.
ok,was just trying to answer your confusing post.good luck
 

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Discussion Starter · #12 ·
Pull the parking brake up and your DRLs should go out.
Correct, that is about the only way you can affect DRLs.

ok,was just trying to answer your confusing post.good luck
Thanks! Still trying to figure it out. I did not put much effort today, as I was busy doing other things (my daugther's birthday) but I will tomorrow night.
 

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Discussion Starter · #13 ·
FIY: Problems (almost) resolved

OK... Just to inform you...

Daytime running light problem was just the bulb. It is just that I was lucky enough to buy a brand new broken bulb, which led me to believe that it may be some other issue. So left bulb #4 was bad, I replaced it with a brand new bad one .... and now with another brand new working one. All fuses are OK.

As for the directional signals I pulled out the hazard light switch and just by doing that things started working much better. It may be that I have some contact problems there. Anyway, I took the switch itself apart and am resoldering it and cleaning the contacts. Will see what happens tomorrow morning.

BTW... It was painful trying to figure out how to take the switch out without damaging anything... What is the normal procedure?
 

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FYI... For clarification purposes, that dim light is your city light, not the DRL. DRL and low beam are the same bulb! There is a third low intensity bulb in your housing. DRL's ONLY work when the light switch is OFF, and they are simply the low beam running at a slightly lower output. As soon as you turn the light switch on, the exact same bulb goes to full power, the corner lights come on, and the city lights come on. The outside lights function as DRL or low beam, and the center lights function as high beam and also get dimly lit by the city lights.


As for your turn signal issues, it is definitely an issue with the hazard switch. The turn signal relay is part of that switch, and has been the cause of that exact problem for many people on this forum. I use the keys that came with my aftemarket radio to get that switch out when I need to. I have a set of keys that are completely straight, and since I know where the metal tabs are on the switch, it's easy to get it out of the dash. I originally figured it out by pulling the whole trim piece loose and having acces to the back of the switches while they were still in that trim piece.
 

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Fixed a similar (?) problem on my '01 wagon

I had what I sorta guess was a problem similar to what the OP was having. The right DRL/low beam was out, but the high beam worked fine. All other lights were fine. I foolishly bought a new headlight bulb, which did nothing.

After some investigation and quality time with the Bentley manual, I found the culprit. It was a loose connection in the connector panel on the passenger side. Pop off the trim panel just to the right of the passenger footwell, to the right and below the glove box. Behind it you will see a panel with several connectors. The right (passenger side) headlight low beam is connected through a red and pink connector. On my car, the pink connector was simply loose. I popped it back in place, double checked the red connector, checked the function of the lights, then buttoned everything back up. Five or six minutes max.

If it came loose so easily on my car, I'm certain it can do the same on many other Passats.

Happy Thanksgiving :beer:
 

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I had what I sorta guess was a problem similar to what the OP was having. The right DRL/low beam was out, but the high beam worked fine. All other lights were fine. I foolishly bought a new headlight bulb, which did nothing.

After some investigation and quality time with the Bentley manual, I found the culprit. It was a loose connection in the connector panel on the passenger side. Pop off the trim panel just to the right of the passenger footwell, to the right and below the glove box. Behind it you will see a panel with several connectors. The right (passenger side) headlight low beam is connected through a red and pink connector. On my car, the pink connector was simply loose. I popped it back in place, double checked the red connector, checked the function of the lights, then buttoned everything back up. Five or six minutes max.

If it came loose so easily on my car, I'm certain it can do the same on many other Passats.

Happy Thanksgiving :beer:
This sounds like exactly the problem I'm having! I'll try this solution and report back with my findings.
 

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Well, that was exciting! I got into the panel, disconnected every connector, sprayed liberal amounts of electronic cleaning fluid (DeOxit and ProGold), even found exactly which connector went to the passenger-side headlight, and it did absolutely nothing.

Then I cleaned all the headlight assembly connections. No dice. Finally as a last ditch attempt I replaced the bulb, even though I was pretty sure the bulb was fine as it would still intermittently come on. It was the bulb.
 

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Wow !! what a tread. First time poster ,but I have used this forum to save myself ( and many of my friends ) a lot of money /time .Thanks all for taking the time to post and reply. Your efforts do not go unnoticed. Now to do my little part . I had similar problem w/ my headlight (DRL) & directional signals. My ride : 02- 1.8T automatic w/ triptronic tranny,- just under 80k miles, standard 4-spoke steering wheel ( no controls for radio or cruise on it ) My directional stalk contains the cruise , high beam , and of course the directionals.
Conditions: with either the ignition "on" engine off - or- ignition "on" engine "on" my specific problem with the direction stalk in the neutral (center) position the right (passenger) side turn signal bulb would be steady on, the fender high mounted "side" directional bulb steady on & the head light (DRL) on the same right side, would be "OFF".
The directional would blink normal when when the stalk was moved to the "down" ( left turn) position along w/ it's corresponding direction arrow on the dash. When the stalk was moved "up" ( right turn) the original stated malfunctions would be present. Therefore ,regardless of the position of the stalk in either the "N " or "R" turn position, the malfunctions outlined earlier would be present. Also the dash direction arrow would be steady on but dim in the above stated conditions.
Some troubleshooting -after reading many ,many ,many posts here - Hazard lights working fine ,all around , high beams , fog light ok . Brake lights , wiper , washer radio et al .. OK . swapped DRL from malfunctioning (R) pass.side w/ the working one from the (L) side ,but no change from original problem. Therefore eliminating the bulbs as culprits. I was preparing for the removal of the steering wheel/ airbag to access and possible replace the stalk . But once again w/ the help from this forum I followed the advice of many experienced and knowledgeable posters by spraying the 'base" of the stalk -where it meets the steering column- w/ electrical contact cleaner and blasts of air from a can . There was no immediate result , but returning a few hrs later ..WALLA !! problem solved . All lights and directionals / hazards- et al - working normal again .. I hope I'm not pushing this problem further down the road. But for now I will see how long it lasts and will certainly re-post if the problem re-occurs . Thanks again to all of "yuse" who contributed and helped solve my problem.
Tony ,Bklyn NY.
 
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