Brake lights and rear turn signal light problems on 88 chevy pickup

I found out the other day that my brake lights and rear turn signal lights weren't working. I've replaced the switch on the brake petal and checked all the fuses. Flashers, signals work fine in the front
but nothing works in the back except the driving/parking lights. Has anybody ran into this problem or know what could be causing it?
Thanks in advance for any help,
- Paul
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Yes, I have run into this problem with my former '88 C1500, and here is what was at issue for me.
If you take out either rear light assembly and remove the light bulb holder base from the lens, take a close look at each bulb socket very carefully. You will notice that the metal ring the bulb seats into to make contact is actually only press fit into the plastic socket. The strip of metal from the ring that runs down the side of each socket makes contact with the main circuit and maintains contact by using pressure only. What happened with mine was the point at which both small pieces of metal made contact got dirty enough over time to lose continuity, although they still appeared to be touching. All I had to do was shine up the connection point with a small wire brush and add a drop of solder to make permanent contact again and the lights worked like a charm after that.
Hope this helps.
Cheers - Jonathan
--
Acta Non Verba - Deeds Not Words
Lieutenant Jonathan Race, EMS Supervisor
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the circuit boards that the bulbs plug into in the rear are most likely corroded. there is a redesiged board available from chevrolet. -pete
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Bingo. Super common problem. Autzone has em' for $25 each as opposed to the GM dealership that charges $75 a piece.
Doc

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Isn't that for the later style trucks? Like 8 or so years later?
~KJ~

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Nope. When they changed the taillight design in '88 for the C/K series (the R/V series blazers and 'burbs as well as one tons stayed the same), they went to the 'connector plate' board that's plagued with problems caused by too much heat from the bulb. Or is this advice poor too?
JC
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I think it is and isn't. I was told it wasn't heat but corrosion that caused the problems.
~KJ~

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You're right with the year, but wrong with the reason. Heat doesn't cause em' to die, it's corrosion.
Doc

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Got replacements from Autozone for my '90 k1500... the key is to ask for "Connector plates" otherwise they might not ever know they stock them.
KJ wrote:

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You guys were right. It was the circuit boards that the bulbs plug into. I need to clean up or replace those connector plates/circuit boards. Thanks to everyone who responded!
- Paul
Now if I could only figure out why the power locks stopped working.. Does anyone have any suggestions for diagnosing power lock problems?
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The fuse would be a great place to start. After that, check the power relay center (near your left foot when driving) to see if there are any plugs that have popped loose.
Doc
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Re: Brake lights and rear turn signal light problems on 88 chevypi... Group: alt.autos.4x4.chevy-trucks Date: Tue, Mar 2, 2004, 10:52am (EST-3) From: snipped-for-privacy@yahoo.com (PaulE.Ester)
the circuit boards that the bulbs plug into in the rear are most likely corroded. there is a redesiged board available from chevrolet. -pete Bingo. Super common problem. Autzone has em' for $25 each as opposed to the GM dealership that charges $75 a piece. Doc You guys were right. It was the circuit boards that the bulbs plug into. I need to clean up or replace those connector plates/circuit boards. Thanks to everyone who responded! - Paul Now if I could only figure out why the power locks stopped working.. Does anyone have any suggestions for diagnosing power lock problems? you most likely have broken wires inside the rubber boot between the a-pillar and the door. good luck -pete
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PETE Any idea why your OEM previous message indicator marks stopped working!?
~KJ~
the circuit boards that the bulbs plug into in the rear are most likely corroded. there is a redesiged board available from chevrolet. -pete Bingo. Super common problem. Autzone has em' for $25 each as opposed to the GM dealership that charges $75 a piece. Doc You guys were right. It was the circuit boards that the bulbs plug into. I need to clean up or replace those connector plates/circuit boards. Thanks to everyone who responded! - Paul Now if I could only figure out why the power locks stopped working.. Does anyone have any suggestions for diagnosing power lock problems? you most likely have broken wires inside the rubber boot between the a-pillar and the door. good luck -pete
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