355 headlight problem

Discussion in 'Technical Q&A' started by benedict, Jun 12, 2004.

  1. benedict

    benedict Formula Junior

    Nov 6, 2003
    Full Name:
    I have a recurring problem with the passenger side headlight not popping up.
    In the past I have been able to manually lift it by spinning a knob above the light. However today I tried it and got a wicked electric shock, it also spun so fast it practically ripped my finger off. It's been in the shop for this problem and was fixed but it keeps recurring. Anyone have any expererience with this?

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  3. Schatten

    Schatten F1 World Champ
    Rossa Subscribed Owner

    Apr 3, 2001
    Austin, TX
    Full Name:
  4. ernie

    ernie Two Time F1 World Champ
    Lifetime Rossa Owner

    Nov 19, 2001
    The Brickyard
    Full Name:
    The Bad Guy
    Hey Benny

    The headlights for the 348 and 355 are the same. I had a similar problem with my right side headlight not popping up on my 348. The light would come on but it would not lift. I could get it to come up by hand but it wouldn't open by itself with the light switch. What it turned out to be was a spot weld had broken on the back of the headlight housing. As a result of the spot weld being busted it caused the housing to droop down just enough to get caught under the lip that runs along the front of the car, just above the bumper and between the hood. I was blowing fuses left and right. So when the head light would try to lift it would get hung up and bogged the motor down. Were you need to see if one of the welds are busted is on the back of the headlight housing. It is the area were the brackets, that allow the housing to swivel up and down, are attached to the housing. You will be able to see were they are tacked onto the back of the housing. Get the headlight to pop up and then check to see if there is any play in it. Also when you turn the lights on look to see if it is getting hung up under the lip. If you find that the weld is busted it is and easy fix. Just take the housing out and have it rewelded. The spot welds done at the factory are crap. I had a friend reweld mine for free. The other thing you want to look to see is that the wires aren't being pinched, causing a short. If the spot welds are good check the relays. You can swap them from one side to the other to see if you get the problem on the drivers side. You will find them on the passenger, or is it the drivers side, OH one of the sides of the car in the trunk, just above the wheel well. Lift the cover off and you will see a diagram of were the fuses and relays are located. Also make sure that they didn't just put a bigger amp fuse in, to allow more current to go to the motor. That could be why you got zapped, and can cause a fire. I found that this is what the previous owner did with my car. I think the fuse for the motor is a 15amp fuse. The idiots who owned the car before me had a 25amp fuse in it, and it was blowing that! But once I had it fixxed, I put the 15amp back in and it has been fine ever since.

    One other thing. The next time you decide to lift the headlight manually, make sure to pull the fuse for the motor, or better yet unplug it. As you have found out it does move even with the car off. The motor is very strong and it will jack your finger up bad.

    Hope I was of some help.

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