2 to 3 bulb tailight change - Ranger-Forums - The Ultimate Ford Ranger Resource


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Old 12-07-2010
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2 to 3 bulb tailight change

I have been reading alot of threads lately on changing my current tailights on a 2002 XLT to an earlier version, like a '99 so I can have the amber turn signal which seems safer to me. Couldn't I just get the harness off an earlier pickup so I would not have to cut and splice some wires? I do have 8 wires going into the connector but only 5 coming out.

I have been looking at some aftermarket LED versions but I have not seen any with the amber turn signals.

I have searched for this info and any feedback is greatly appreciated, thanks!
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Old 12-07-2010
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I know this might not help, but I have an 04. Im only supposed to have two bulbs, but I have three. I think that the extra bulb is splice in somewhere, but I havnt looked, and I dont know what the bulb is for (tried everything and couldnt get it to light up)

I could sell you the extra piece of harness?
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Old 12-07-2010
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Look at your harness in the rear right by your spare tire. Depending on how many wires are on the vehicle harness it might be as simple as a new rear 3 bulb harness that is plug and play or you may have to run new wires. The harnesses changed in the early 2000s My 04 is the different harness
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Old 12-07-2010
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Thanks for the reply. It looks like I will get the harness from an earlier model so I won't have to do any splicing!
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Old 12-07-2010
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Well you first have to look at your harness that goes to the rear to see how many pins it is and dependent on that you may be able to use the 3 bulb harness without splicing.

Im not sure why ford changed the harness because new STX models and Mazda models are all 3 bulb Stupid penny savers ( Guess thats why we didnt have to bale them out)
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Old 12-14-2010
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If you have two wire at the red portion of your tail lights you should have Run, Brake/Turn, then there should be a back-up light wire.

This is how I did it: I used only one extra wire from the Dash to the rear lights.
1) Take the existing Brake/Turn wire at each Tail Light and cut it leaving a 6” or longer pigtail.
2) Take those wires and hook them up to the turn signal bulb socket on the same lights.
3) Go under the Dash, on the Brake Pedal there should be a switch with two connections, one from the battery and one going to the rear lights without power, probe the wires and find the one that has no power on it.
4) Disconnect the wire without power from the brake light sw and tape it back out of the way.
5) Run a new 16 ga min wire from the brake light sw (non powered Connector) to the rear lights.
Note - Run the wire to the rear lights from the brake light light sw outside of the vehicle first, as a test to make sure it works then go back and dress it out.

I did this but with an LED Light Setup and used the backup lights as turn signals and will add backup lights to the bumper if I ever get my shop back.
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