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Discussion Starter #1
I beg your indulgence, but I'd like to dredge up a post from the archives, first posted in Jan 2006. jpkomm writes:

For some reason, my high-beam indicator on the instrument cluster keeps constantly blinking when the headlights are off. If you turn the headlights on, it stops blinking. I haven't tried turning on the high-beams yet because I wanted to get and idea about what this car is trying to tell me. It is a 2001 Corolla CE. Could someone please shed some light on this? Thanks!
I forgot to mention that it is a rhythmical blink at about 1 blink per second. It is also audible. You can hear a clicking noise whenever it blinks (almost reminds me of a turn signal noise)
(for those of you that want to see this original post, it's at: http://www.toyotanation.com/forum/showthread.php?t=118831)
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I have a 1999 Corolla VE with similar issues. At first I had the blinking hi-beam indicator with no other symptoms (no clicking). After a few days, it progressed to a much more aggravating problem: The running lights would not go off, with the light switch on off and the keys out of the ignition. The chime would even sound when you opened the driver's door to warn you that you were leaving the lights on. (BTW, the DRL are on the main headlights and seem to function as intended).

The temporary fix I have found so far is to remove the TAIL fuse, which also deprives me of tail lights and I think might have killed the dashboard light (not dark enough to really tell yet).

Somewhere else online I have seen a problem posted that is identical to mine (except that they too had the loud clicking noise). A reply indicated that that poster believed that the problem was likely the tail light relay.

I have purchased a one-day subscription to Toyota repair manual site and found a fuse/relay panel containing this relay, but I can't seem to find it on the car. I think it might be the back of or behind the fuse panel behind the dash access panel on the left side of the steering wheel. The drawing is labeled "(Inner Circuit: See Page 30)" but I have no idea what page 30 might be, since the document this is in is only 16 pages.

So... Do you know (1) if replacing this replay might fix either problem, (2) how to get to the TAIL relay to pull it and test it?

Thank you for any guidance and advice!
 

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Discussion Starter #2
More info

Well now I've started noticing the "clicking" sound. I can make it go away by turning the light switch to the "running lights" position. The clicking happens whether the tail fuse is in or out, and the sputting high-beam indicator light also still happens from time to time as long as the light switch is in the off position.

Also, I am not quite sure, but I think the feature where the main headlights are turned on in reduced light is not functioning, although the DRL do seem to still function.

Still pleading for help from any knowledgable person:

1) How can I get to the panel with the TAIL relay?
2) Do you think this is the TAIL relay, or more likely an integration relay?
3) If so, which relay (and what are the chances for getting to it)?
 

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Discussion Starter #4
Thanks! I'll certainly try this and post the results.

Disabling the DRL relay has got to be more fun than inserting and pulling the tail light fuse every time I drive at night.
 

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Discussion Starter #6
Update

I disabled the DRL relay by disabling pin 23. I now have no DRL, but I still have the problem with the parking lights.

To add insult to injury, when I pull the fuse to turn off the parking lights, it totally disables the "lights are on, you dummy" bell when you open the driver's side door. So, when I pulled the fuse Friday morning, I forgot to turn the main heads off. By 3:00 PM, the lights had killed my battery.
 

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2001 Prizm
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JefferMC,

I just stumbled upon this issue yesterday with my 2001 prizm and found that if I flick the high beam front to back, it will turn off my running lights. Obviously this is a temporary solution! That may save the battery for you until we get around to finding the source.

Unfortunately in my case, I smelled wires burning moments after the issue arose. DRL = Daylight Running Lights, correct?

-Randy
 

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2001 Prizm
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Well... The "brights trick" doesn't work anymore, so I not only clipped wire #23 like in the vamp.darkravers.net link, but I unplugged the RunningLight relay box completely. At least my "lights on warning buzzer" stopped. We'll see how that holds up.

I inspected the circuit board in the RunningLight Relay and one of the resistors is burned out, which is the smell I experienced when the whole thing started.

Dealer wants $225 for a new Running Light Relay, ack.

-Randy
 

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TRD Corolla
02 Toyota Corolla
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72 Posts
Well... The "brights trick" doesn't work anymore, so I not only clipped wire #23 like in the vamp.darkravers.net link, but I unplugged the RunningLight relay box completely. At least my "lights on warning buzzer" stopped. We'll see how that holds up.

I inspected the circuit board in the RunningLight Relay and one of the resistors is burned out, which is the smell I experienced when the whole thing started.

Dealer wants $225 for a new Running Light Relay, ack.

-Randy
willing to send me the old one after you find a replacement? I've wanted to do a project on one of these control boxes for a long time but never found one at a junkyard.
 

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Big T Dizzle fo Rizzle
2001 Corolla LE
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2001 Prizm
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Not MUCH better, but a lil better:

$160.50

on

http://www.toyotaoemparts.com/ And search "running"

and if you have a prizm, or you are sure that the GM part is compatible with the Corolla...

$88 at http://www.nationwidegmparts.com/ and search "drl"...

and they said that "THE ILLUSTRATION WE HAVE HERE DOES SHOW THE DRL MODULE TO BE LOCATED BEHIND, OR ABOVE, THE GLOVE BOX."

I'm still going to replace the electronic components, so I'll let you know how that goes before I order the drl module.

-Rand
 

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Well, a good friend of mine helped me do some component identification. He pulled a schematic out of his brilliant head and we ended up fixing my DRL box. I re-inserted the box and the repair fixed all my problems! Pics for enjoyment:





My 1999 Corolla has the same problem you had. DRL will not turn off. Pulled Relay Assy and sure enough...the same transistor and zener diode were blown. Would you mind sharing information as to what value transistor and zener you used?

Spencer
 

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Thanks Randy! I'm going to give it a try. Will let you know how it works out.

Did some more evaluation on problem before ordering new parts. Measured 1.5volts at Z8 (output conn).
Since T12 was already burnt...I broke its charred remains off...in effect took it out of circuit. I now measured 12 volts at Z8 and alarm and running lights are off.

When turn on headlights, measure 0 volts at Z8.

Headlights, High Beams, and all other lights and signals work fine. If Headlights are on, and remove key...alarm sounds(as expected).

This has disabled the automatic DRL circuit but you can manually turn on all lights as needed.
Cost: nothing. This is another option on ways to handle this problem.
 

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2001 Prizm
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149 Posts
Nice investigation. I love getting to the bottom of these projects and coming out with the knowledge and no cost!

-rand
 

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that sucks .. how would the average joe know that a resistor was blown .. unless they did what randini did ..
 
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