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Old 05-14-2012, 01:59 PM   #51
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Re: 91 Firebird headlights won't pop up, help?

OK so I checked all the fuses and none are blown.. but as I was checking these two fuses in the right hand corner I pulled one out and put it back in and one of the headlights closed.. both of the headlights close when I put these fuses in but they don't open back up.
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Old 05-14-2012, 02:05 PM   #52
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Re: 91 Firebird headlights won't pop up, help?

Check again that you have power to the headlight switch. I suspect that now you do. It could have been merely corrosion on the fuse holder preventing the fuses from working previously. Now that they power down but won't power up could be that the wrong headlight control module is in the car. You need the module for a 1990-2002. Someone may have installed a 87-89 module. They look identical on the the outside. If you open the module check the date code on the circuit board. It will list the week of the year and year it was made.

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Old 05-14-2012, 02:28 PM   #53
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Re: 91 Firebird headlights won't pop up, help?

I checked and it says 32/90 on the circuit board
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Old 05-14-2012, 02:40 PM   #54
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Re: 91 Firebird headlights won't pop up, help?

OK, correct module for you year. When you press the headlight switch now what do the headlight motors do? Do they spin or not? They should spin for 6 seconds even if they fail to raise the headlight buckets if the headlight motors are getting current from the module. Yo may need someone to press the switch while you look at each of the motors to see if they are spinning.

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Old 05-14-2012, 02:51 PM   #55
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Re: 91 Firebird headlights won't pop up, help?

The switch doesn't do anything. The first time I have ever got the headlight to move was when Itake the fuse out and put it back in.
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Old 05-14-2012, 03:12 PM   #56
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Re: 91 Firebird headlights won't pop up, help?

You may have a bad switch. I suggest you get a 1991 FIREBIRD Service Manual. It will have the details on how to test the circuits and circuit diagram. It is available online at www.helminc.com or sometimes you can get them used on ebay.

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Old 05-14-2012, 03:18 PM   #57
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Re: 91 Firebird headlights won't pop up, help?

You're in luck. I see over a dozen 1991 Firebird Service Manuals listed for sale on eBay.

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Old 05-14-2012, 03:31 PM   #58
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Re: 91 Firebird headlights won't pop up, help?

I have the owners manual? Idk if there's a difference ..?
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Old 05-14-2012, 03:39 PM   #59
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Re: 91 Firebird headlights won't pop up, help?

If yours has the number S-9110-F on the lower left of the cover and weighs in at a hefty6 lbs then you are good-to-go. 4 pages covering the headlight doors, 2 pgs of circuit diagrams, 2 pgs of diagnostics beginning on pg 8A-102-0.

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Old 05-15-2012, 10:04 AM   #60
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Re: 91 Firebird headlights won't pop up, help?

ok i fixed the problem! as i said the hell with the lights for now i went on to fix the hatch motor.. you could see were some jackass went and spliced every which wire to each other.. so as i was fixing the cords i noticed that the lid wire didn't have power to it. so i ran power to the wire straight from the battery and my headlights popped up and turned on! my dash lights and the interior light now all work! i appreciate you trying to help me to find the problem by the way!! now i believe my car will take a sticker without a problem!
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Old 05-15-2012, 10:22 AM   #61
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Re: 91 Firebird headlights won't pop up, help?

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ok i fixed the problem! as i said the hell with the lights for now i went on to fix the hatch motor.. you could see were some jackass went and spliced every which wire to each other.. so as i was fixing the cords i noticed that the lid wire didn't have power to it. so i ran power to the wire straight from the battery and my headlights popped up and turned on! my dash lights and the interior light now all work! i appreciate you trying to help me to find the problem by the way!! now i believe my car will take a sticker without a problem!
From what you wrote, you still have a problem. Unless you installed an inline fuse into that wire that you tapped off the battery, you now have one or more unprotected circuits. Since your wiring was obviously "rigged", I would advise you to get the proper wiring diagrams and correct the problem so that you car matches them. It will make further troubleshooting a lot easier, especially if you are not the one doing the TS.

I'm glad you got everything working, but for best results, it pays to keep everything standardized.
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Old 05-15-2012, 11:21 AM   #62
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Re: 91 Firebird headlights won't pop up, help?

Ya I was just testing it. I'm going to run an inline fuse for power but I managed to fix the wires.
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Old 05-19-2012, 11:12 PM   #63
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Re: 91 Firebird headlights won't pop up, help?

Similar problem. 88 Firebird. Replaced both headlight motors with rebuilt. Turn the lights on (or off), lights come on, but headlights don't raise (or lower). There is only a faint clicking noise. I've read that it might be the relay or module, but I don't know where these are or what I need to do to fix them. I'm not an experienced car person, but I can generally figure things out if I can see them or it is explained in layman/girl terms. I'm frustrated that I spent the money on new motors and got them changed out myself (don't think that it is the problem as they will raise and lower manually) and don't have working headlights. Does any one have video or pictures of where the relay and/or module are and how to fix them? Would a Chilton's book explain where and how to fix these items? I'm really frustrate so any help would be greatly appreciated!!!
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Old 05-20-2012, 06:53 AM   #64
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Re: 91 Firebird headlights won't pop up, help?

Not sure about the Chilton's book, but the module is on the firewall right next to the power brake booster. It is a flat rectangular black module, with two pigtail connectors.

Remove the connectors first, and then slide the module out to the right.

The module can be opened up carefully by prying the cover off, which is held in place with some kind of soft sealant.

Inspect the solder joints around the pins for the two electrical connectors. You will probably see that there are hairline cracks. Most of the time when these modules fail it is due to poor solder joints. Re-solder any joint that is cracked or looks like it might crack, reassemble the module and install it. That's it.

Here is a link to a video.

http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=UM4S5UJ7HSE

The quality isn't great, but it does show the location of the module, and what it looks like, and shows the board being soldered. It doesn't show the module being disassembled, and all commentary is in a foreign language, but it might help you at least a little.
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Old 05-20-2012, 08:52 PM   #65
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Re: 91 Firebird headlights won't pop up, help?

Did you find where the fuses are for you 89? I have an 88 and am having the same problem. Hate to buy a module if that isn't the problem. Please let me know.
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Old 05-20-2012, 11:03 PM   #66
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Re: 91 Firebird headlights won't pop up, help?

If your looking for just the fuse box then your going to have to lay on your back upside down in the seat. As your on your back its to the right of the steering column. It could also be a drl fuse. Drl #1 or drl #2. Which is located on the left of the steering column but to get to it you have to remove the plastic which is only a few screws.
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Old 05-20-2012, 11:08 PM   #67
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Re: 91 Firebird headlights won't pop up, help?

When you find the drl#1 and drl#2 fuses there is also a black and white box plugged in next to them. The black box is a speaker(when you put the key in the ignition ) and the white box is your headlight relay.
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Old 06-04-2012, 01:18 PM   #68
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Re: 91 Firebird headlights won't pop up, help?

On my 88, it turned out that there aren't any fuses or relays for the headlight motors (I think the fuses were added in 90 or 91). I thought that because my lights came on but didn't raise, and because I had just bought new headlight motors, that it must be the headlight control module. While this has been the solution for several on this site, it did not work for me. My problem was the headlight switch itself. I would have never thought the inside switch would be the problem, but it was.
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Old 07-17-2012, 08:27 PM   #69
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Re: 91 Firebird headlights won't pop up, help?

Hey,
New to the thread. Just got my 88 formula back from my parents after 13 years. When I got it both headlights were not working. I figured it was bushings so I opened up gear box and there was nothing. I cleaned it out and put new bushings in. Put it back together and hit the switch lights popped up smoothly and sounded good. When I flip switch down the lights shut off but headlights stay up. I can hand crank them down no problem.
Thoughts?
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Old 07-18-2012, 12:12 AM   #70
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Re: 91 Firebird headlights won't pop up, help?

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Hey,
New to the thread. Just got my 88 formula back from my parents after 13 years. When I got it both headlights were not working. I figured it was bushings so I opened up gear box and there was nothing. I cleaned it out and put new bushings in. Put it back together and hit the switch lights popped up smoothly and sounded good. When I flip switch down the lights shut off but headlights stay up. I can hand crank them down no problem.
Thoughts?
Two possible solutions: Headlight switch or Tail Light Fuse is bad.

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Old 07-18-2012, 01:17 AM   #71
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Re: 91 Firebird headlights won't pop up, help?

That's what happened to me after I got new headlight motors. Replacing the switch (interior on/off switch), fixed my problem. If that doesn't work, I would try the tail light fuse and then the headlight control module (small black box near the firewall, by the windshield, of the engine compartment with two wire connectors attached. I think I started a thread that deals with this problem. You might look at my old stuff and see.
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Old 07-18-2012, 06:31 PM   #72
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Re: 91 Firebird headlights won't pop up, help?

Where is the tail lightfuse?
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Old 07-18-2012, 08:30 PM   #73
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Re: 91 Firebird headlights won't pop up, help?

Till you said tailight fuse I would never have looked at tailights but there all out except for brake lights. Is that a different fuse? My guessis that's what it is. My dash lights are out as well.
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Old 07-22-2012, 09:36 PM   #74
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Re: 91 Firebird headlights won't pop up, help?

It was tailight fuse. Thanks for the help. This is a great forum.
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Old 10-15-2012, 07:08 PM   #75
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Re: 91 Firebird headlights won't pop up, help?

86 Firebird headlights crank open by hand lights work but only work automatically when the switch is turned off and that makes them go down I can see this being an issue in the rain if I stop and turn the car off for anything, the relays are clicking but no results head lights stay down. Relays bad? controller? I can put power to the motors and make them go up and down but wont with switch. ????????
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Old 12-02-2012, 01:29 PM   #76
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Re: 91 Firebird headlights won't pop up, help?

Hello,

I have a 97 Firebird.

The lights work, but only the driver side pops up consistently (the passenger side about 1 in 15 attempts). The passenger side light motor still runs for about 6 seconds, even if it doesn't pop up.

Usually I need to jump out and hit the cover with my fist to make the passenger side pop up, but I need to do it before the motor stops turning.

Any thoughts or suggestions on how to make both lights pop up (without channeling the Fonz) are appreciated.

Thanks.
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Old 12-03-2012, 06:48 AM   #77
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Re: 91 Firebird headlights won't pop up, help?

It sounds like you have a stripped gear in that headlight motor.
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Old 12-07-2012, 06:33 PM   #78
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Re: 91 Firebird headlights won't pop up, help?

Thanks for the help. I guess I can look inside the motor to see if a gear is stripped. I see they sell replacement gears online for around $20. That would be better than buying a whole new motor.
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Old 12-08-2012, 12:37 PM   #79
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Re: 91 Firebird headlights won't pop up, help?

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Thanks for the help. I guess I can look inside the motor to see if a gear is stripped. I see they sell replacement gears online for around $20. That would be better than buying a whole new motor.
yes indeed
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Old 12-11-2012, 06:23 PM   #80
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Re: 91 Firebird headlights won't pop up, help?

i have an 87 firebird and i read through all your replys and im still confused as to what might be my problem. My headlight dont pop up or down when i press the switch. i can manually put them up and down so as i read that means its not my motors correct? the lights do go on and when i press the switch so thats fine. So where does that leave the problem? help much appreciated.
-Alex
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Old 12-12-2012, 04:42 PM   #81
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Re: 91 Firebird headlights won't pop up, help?

Quote:
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i have an 87 firebird and i read through all your replys and im still confused as to what might be my problem. My headlight dont pop up or down when i press the switch. i can manually put them up and down so as i read that means its not my motors correct? the lights do go on and when i press the switch so thats fine. So where does that leave the problem? help much appreciated.
-Alex
It is likely the headlight control module or wiring. The module's function is to send power to the motors to raise and lower the headlights.
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Old 04-08-2013, 08:30 AM   #82
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Re: 91 Firebird headlights won't pop up, help?

do you know where the relays are located? i drive a 91 bird and only my passenger side doesnt go up and both motors are good.
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Old 04-08-2013, 08:48 AM   #83
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Re: 91 Firebird headlights won't pop up, help?

okay i have a 91 firebird and need to open my module and i dont know how. their werent any screws to open it up. do you know what i should do?
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Old 04-08-2013, 08:51 AM   #84
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Re: 91 Firebird headlights won't pop up, help?

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okay i have a 91 firebird and need to open my module and i dont know how. their werent any screws to open it up. do you know what i should do?

The cover may be pried off carefully with a screwdriver. It is held on with some kind of a soft sealant.
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Old 04-08-2013, 09:12 AM   #85
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Re: 91 Firebird headlights won't pop up, help?

and then how would i get it back together? just some sort of glue
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Old 04-08-2013, 09:25 AM   #86
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Re: 91 Firebird headlights won't pop up, help?

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and then how would i get it back together? just some sort of glue

It's been a while since I have done this.
IIRC the sealant stays pretty soft and you might just need to press it back together... worst case you add a little bit of RTV.
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Old 04-08-2013, 10:56 AM   #87
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Re: 91 Firebird headlights won't pop up, help?

Okay thank you
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Old 04-08-2013, 10:58 PM   #88
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Re: 91 Firebird headlights won't pop up, help?

Both of my headlight motors work and my drivers side goes up and down fine but my passenger side never goes up. I would like to know why only one works
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Old 04-09-2013, 06:18 AM   #89
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Re: 91 Firebird headlights won't pop up, help?

The headlight module sends the signals to the motor. Obviously, "up" and "down" will require different conditions to be met, and that's what the module does.

I wouldn't be surprised if you have a cracked solder joint in the module. In mine, a couple of those were cracked right where the pigtail plugs into the board. I resoldered them and it has worked fine ever since.
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Old 04-09-2013, 09:02 AM   #90
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Re: 91 Firebird headlights won't pop up, help?

So you think that's the problem even tho one of the headlights work? Ill try it out it
, thanks you've been a huge help
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Old 04-09-2013, 09:35 AM   #91
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Re: 91 Firebird headlights won't pop up, help?

Yes. They are individually controlled by the module.
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Old 04-09-2013, 09:45 AM   #92
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Re: 91 Firebird headlights won't pop up, help?

Also check out the rebuild kit for the motor/ headlight drive.

http://www.top-downsolutions.com/Bod...ight-motor-kit
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Old 04-09-2013, 03:33 PM   #93
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Re: 91 Firebird headlights won't pop up, help?

Do you have any idea where my air temp sensor is located?
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Old 04-09-2013, 04:21 PM   #94
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Re: 91 Firebird headlights won't pop up, help?

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Do you have any idea where my air temp sensor is located?
It should be in the air intake plumbing ahead of the throttle body.
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Old 05-03-2013, 10:30 AM   #95
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Re: 91 Firebird headlights won't pop up, help?

hey guys im really stumped and maybe you all can help. i have an 87 firebird that has been having head light problems. first what happened was when i turned on and off my lights the head lights went up and down but the left side kept spinning for a while. then eventually the right side stopped coming up and down. so i wired power from the left side to the right side because i couldnt figure out why. then they both stopped working so i opened up the control module and saw it was burned to a crisp. so i ordered a new one and installed it and now i can't get them to function correctly. the switch only works to bring the lights down but they dont go up. when i turn the switch on the left side motor spins but the light doesnt go up, and the right motor doesn't spin. but when the lights are going down they both work fine. does this make any sense? i need help please!
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Old 05-03-2013, 12:33 PM   #96
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Re: 91 Firebird headlights won't pop up, help?

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hey guys im really stumped and maybe you all can help. i have an 87 firebird that has been having head light problems. first what happened was when i turned on and off my lights the head lights went up and down but the left side kept spinning for a while. then eventually the right side stopped coming up and down. so i wired power from the left side to the right side because i couldnt figure out why. then they both stopped working so i opened up the control module and saw it was burned to a crisp. so i ordered a new one and installed it and now i can't get them to function correctly. the switch only works to bring the lights down but they dont go up. when i turn the switch on the left side motor spins but the light doesnt go up, and the right motor doesn't spin. but when the lights are going down they both work fine. does this make any sense? i need help please!
The symptom of the motor continuing to run for about 6 seconds after opening or closing means the headlight actuator needs to be rebuilt. It can cost as little as $6.75 for a TDS 207280 kit to repair one motor with 3 CNC machined Delrin bushings to replace the OEM hard gel busings which are now dust. The $20.25 TDS 209280 Deluxe headlight repair kit contains enough parts to repair two headlight motors. That kit consists of 6 delrin bushings, two side-cover gaskets, one motor gasket, two screws and nuts (common for them to snap off on the motor due to corrosion and the motor being pointed up, exposed to moisture) and a packet of synthetic grease. Both kits include detailed illustrated instructions.

Instead you chose a slightly more expensive route to rewire the motors so both motors are controlled by one side of the module. Unfortunately this destroyed an expensive item, the headlight control module. Double bad is that module was used for only 3 model years (1987-89) and is a LOT more hard to find. You could have skated easier if your car was a 90-92 since that module was used for 1990-2002 Firebirds.

I sell the modules for $60, but unfortunately I am currently out of stock. You can place an order and get yourself first in line when I get more or try to find one online or at the Pick-a-Part yards. Just remember it MUST be from a 1987-89 model year Firebird or 1987 Fiero.

Good luck,

Lon Salgren
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Old 05-03-2013, 01:47 PM   #97
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Re: 91 Firebird headlights won't pop up, help?

well i took off the wires that i made before putting the new control module on.. so after i put the wiring back to the factory stock and put the new control module on its still not working. the lights both go down but they dont go up.
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Old 05-03-2013, 04:31 PM   #98
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Re: 91 Firebird headlights won't pop up, help?

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well i took off the wires that i made before putting the new control module on.. so after i put the wiring back to the factory stock and put the new control module on its still not working. the lights both go down but they dont go up.
Do you know the history of the car? It sounds as if someone replaced the headlight control module with one from a 90-2002. Externally they look the same. To satisfy your curiosity, you can pop the module open with a flat-blade screwdriver. Once you have it open you'll see a date code telling you when it was made.

Lon
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Old 05-17-2013, 10:29 PM   #99
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Re: 91 Firebird headlights won't pop up, help?

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The symptom of the motor continuing to run for about 6 seconds after opening or closing means the headlight actuator needs to be rebuilt........
i still have the same symptom even after replacing both complete headlight assembly and motors (they were working fine when pulled from donor car) ... also when i turn the parking lights on, both head lights still pop up...
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Old 05-17-2013, 11:12 PM   #100
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Re: 91 Firebird headlights won't pop up, help?

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i still have the same symptom even after replacing both complete headlight assembly and motors (they were working fine when pulled from donor car) ... also when i turn the parking lights on, both head lights still pop up...
Which symptom? The motor running for 6 seconds before shutting off or the parking light side of the headlight switch causing the headlight motors to energize?

For the second symptom, I'd replace the headlight switch. I think you have stray voltage internally jumping inside the switch causing the motor to actuate.

For the first symptom, you still haven't diagnosed the condition of the bushings inside the gear. If you open it up and find they are cracked (as I suspect) the headlight buckets will still work, but when the headlight bucket hits the physical stop it may not be a solid enough contact to cause that spike in current that the headlight control module needs to see in order to shut off the power to the motors. Or that circuit of the headlight control module could just be bad and the secondary timer circuit is being relied upon to shut them off.

If you do open them up and find the bushings are perfect, then the problem can be that the cast 3-lobe hub has come loose from the steel shaft. The steel shaft is staked to the cast hub. The material of the hub is the weak-link there. I've had 4 customers have this happen to the motors on their car.

I have suggestions to solve this condition if you experience it, but I won't list it here until I've heard back from you regarding my questions.

Lon
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