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Thread: False brake light warning

  1. #1
    VIP-Member GSiFan's Avatar
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    Vehicle : Vectra GSi 3.2 V6

    Trim : GSi

    Engine : Z32SE

    Year : 2003

    Mileage : 212,060

    Default False brake light warning

    My GSi (2003) is giving me a false warning about a supposedly faulty left-hand rear brake light bulb. I have tried removing the lamp unit and gently sanding the contacts but it still does it, seemingly at random.

    The brake lights still work. My other half checks it for me and a friend has also had a look and all seems fine.

    Any idea what else might cause the problem? Is it something to do with a possibly non-VX light bulb being fitted? Or is there some other part of the vehicle's electronic system that is playing up?

    It is an irritation rather than a problem but I don't want any further action being taken by the car's computer systems.

    Any clues would be welcomed.

    Paul

  2. #2
    Regular Member gtr1000's Avatar
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    Vehicle : Insignia

    Trim : Sri

    Engine : 140 Ecoflex S/S

    Year : 2013

    Default

    Had exactly same thing over the past 3 weeks and the same bulb with my GSi.

    Yes, I got three people to check it and they all said it was OK. Two days ago, same warning so stuck other half in car to press brake.

    Lo and behold, bulb had blown but the sidelight bulb below it kicks in when the brake bulb fails. I can only guess my mates were looking at what they thought was a brake light but was indeed a side light.

    Have you changed the bulb as a precaution just so as you can rule this out?

  3. #3
    Regular Member BlueRob's Avatar
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    Its either a bad contact between the bulb and the holder or the bulbs it`s about to die. Try changing for a new bulb again to see if that cures it.

  4. #4
    Regular Member rushy's Avatar
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    Vehicle : SRi


    Engine : Z22SE (2.2 Petrol)

    Year : 2004

    Mileage : 137000

    Default

    When a bulb blows in the vec c another takes over its job, so the bulb will hav3e blown but it will look like it hasn't. There is a spare working bulb in the false reverse light by the way. Also when I looked at my blown bulb it was fine. It drove me nuts for weeks, sometimes the bulb would work and other times it wouldnt. Turned out the filament had snapped off of one end and was intermittently reconnecting itself as the car went over bumps.

  5. #5
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    So long as the bulb is the correct wattage, fitting another brand bulb should cause no issues.

    An easy way to check the operation of the bulb without outside help is to turn the headlamps on. Then check that you have two red tail lights on each side. If a bulb is blown you'll only see one light on that side.

  6. #6
    VIP-Member GSiFan's Avatar
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    Vehicle : Vectra GSi 3.2 V6

    Trim : GSi

    Engine : Z32SE

    Year : 2003

    Mileage : 212,060

    Default

    Thanks, guys. I shall go outside now and check.

    Paul

  7. #7
    Regular Member bruceybonus's Avatar
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    apparently, due to the canbus system, it can detect a fault with a bulb before it actually blows and starts putting warnings out... dont know how true this or how it works is as i was told it by the stealers when quizzing them with exactly the same problem!

  8. #8
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    Quote Originally Posted by bruceybonus View Post
    apparently, due to the canbus system, it can detect a fault with a bulb before it actually blows and starts putting warnings out... dont know how true this or how it works is as i was told it by the stealers when quizzing them with exactly the same problem!
    The car cannot detect a bulb that hasn't failed yet... but it can detect a bulb that has failed before the driver turns it on. I think the car turns the bulb on very briefly to check for an open circuit. By the way, this feature has nothing to do with CAN bus.

  9. #9
    Regular Member bruceybonus's Avatar
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    no prob.. wasnt sure.....

  10. #10
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    Vehicle : Vauxhall Astra-J

    Trim : Elite

    Engine : 2.0 CDTi

    Year : 2013

    Default

    Quote Originally Posted by rushy View Post
    There is a spare working bulb in the false reverse light by the way.
    I think you mean the nearside foglight.

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