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80 chevy plow lights

Discussion in 'Commercial Snow Removal' started by wirenut, Jan 26, 2014.

  1. wirenut

    wirenut Senior Member
    from nh
    Messages: 529

    hi all
    i have a 78 chev and i lost all head lights and plow lights.
    what i found was all the wires on the 6 pole switch had come off.
    there is gr,gr/wh,r,r/wh,br,wh.
    i found that the gr was common power that was switched from the
    dimmer on floor so i put that to the center terms now i dont know
    what the others are.... anyone have an old chev with switch with those
    color wires...

  2. Triton2286

    Triton2286 Senior Member
    Messages: 653

    Posting in the truck repair or Chevy section would probably get more results.
  3. derekbroerse

    derekbroerse 2000 Club Member
    Messages: 2,377

    I had that on my '78 this year too, worked for three nights with alligator clipped jumper wires from the battery to the truck headlights under the hood...

    My issue was the dimmer switch on the floor. Guess all these years of wet salty boots finally took its toll!
  4. jasonv

    jasonv PlowSite.com Addict
    from kannada
    Messages: 1,122

    Unfortunately, the wire colors will be unique for the manufacturer who made it. In fact, a single manufacturer may even change the wire colors one year on a whim.

    Which means that you are going to have to resort to dealing with it one of the hard ways.

    First hard way; find all the other ends of the wires, and see where they are going to -- what makes this particularly difficult, is that on an old truck, the wires will probably be very very dirty and difficult to identify.

    Second hard way; try hooking each individual wire up to every possible place that it can be put.

    Now the nice thing about that old switch, is that its just a simple DPDT switch. Two common wires (high and low beam source) -- which you've already identified, two PLOW LIGHTS SIDE wires (high and low beam), and two TRUCK LIGHTS SIDE wires (high and low beam).

    Newer configurations will use a much bigger switch with far more connectors. 12 to be exact -- since they're divided into left side and right side.

    So what I would do; the common wires go on the "common" pins of the switch. These will be the two "center" pins. It doesn't matter which side at this point.
    - Put the switch into "plow lights" mode, and the headlights into "low beam" mode. Now just trial and error until the plow LOW beams go on.
    - Then switch to high beams and repeat. Then switch the switch to truck lights mode and back to low beam, repeat, and the remaining wire will obviously be truck side high beam, put it in the last position.

    Edit; once you have the wiring figured out, you will want to do something to keep the wires in place, AND make it easier to put it back together in case it does happen again. Obviously, draw yourself a diagram of what color of wire goes to which pin on the plug. You can use a pair of pliers to tighten up the clips. Finally, consider using some *very soft* hot glue to hold the wires in place. The reason you want to use soft hot glue is so that you can take it apart later if you have to.
    Last edited: Jan 28, 2014