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Headlight motors problem

This is a discussion on Headlight motors problem within the LT1 forums, part of the Vehicle Specific category; is anyone having trouble with their headlight motors? i have the left side , the plastic cover on the side ...

  1. #1
    Import Killer camarostripes96's Avatar
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    1996 Trans am

    Headlight motors problem

    is anyone having trouble with their headlight motors? i have the left side , the plastic cover on the side has popped off, and whenever i turn my lights on sometimes my driver side light comes up and sometimes it starts to come up and slam back down, and then i have to get like a screw driver and push the cover back on and the headlight will come up but next time i turn them on it will do the same. But NOW about 3 days ago it started, my passenger side headlight is fine , it will go up and down, but whenever i turn it off and it goes down , it makes god awful sound like grinding noise and does for about 7 seconds and then stops? Has anyone had this problem before?

  2. #2
    Member Pntbll309's Avatar
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    Arctic White
    1999 Trans Am

    its your headlight motor. There are gears in it and they are pretty much gone, thats why it grinds. Its an easy fix, about 10 minutes or so.

  3. #3
    Import Killer camarostripes96's Avatar
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    how do u fix it? replace the whole motor or what

  4. #4
    Member Pntbll309's Avatar
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    Arctic White
    1999 Trans Am

    No you have to unhook the little part that connects to the headlight bracket, and rotate the little knob 90* degrees...I know I cant explain it well.

  5. #5
    Import Killer camarostripes96's Avatar
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    what do u mean rotate it 90? i dont understand

  6. #6
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    94 Firebird Formula

    I had same problems with my bird until I came across this guy:

    http://www.bfranker.badz28.com/headlightfix/index.htm

    Click on the home page too for a bunch of other stuff..No-one better then Brent Franker!

  7. #7
    Me + TransAm = BadA$$
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    2000 Pontiac TransAm

    I just bought my T/A yesterday, drove home with no problems except for the anoying grinding gear from the light when it goes down. What were you saying about turning something 90 degrees to fix it? Plzz tell!

  8. #8
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    Like I said, open this link. It explains how to do it yourself:

    http://www.bfranker.badz28.com/headlightfix/index.htm

    It worked for me on both headlights. Good Luck.

  9. #9
    Me + TransAm = BadA$$
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    I tried that, and it still makes the noise, maby i just need to go with the brass gear.

  10. #10
    Pontiac Addict 01RaptorTA's Avatar
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    Black on black
    2003 Bonneville SSEi S/C

    I made my own pair out of 4140HT but the brass set for sale on that site is a killer deal. Definitely worth it IMO.

  11. #11
    if the turning trick doesnt work then both sides of your nylon gears are shot. buy the brass kit, works perfect... longest time is waiting for the epoxy to dry! easy peasy even if youve never touched a tool before in your life. did both my headlights last year, no problems since... come up/down with less noise and vibration now too.

  12. #12
    Me + TransAm = BadA$$
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    Yeah, I'm breaking down and buying a brass one. I turned the gear and now it makes the noise and vibrates when it comes up.

  13. #13
    just remember to let the epoxy get a really good drying time before remounting or it could just snap back open, then you gotta scrape the old shit off and wait all over again. i forget the exact amount of time but i think it was a good 12 hour set time at room temp.

  14. #14
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    94 Pont. Firebird Formula

    wow i feel so stupid haha
    i read one of these posts the other day because i have this problem as well... and thought it was 180* instead of 90*... so i changed it and instead on grinding when it goes down... now it does it going up haha
    so i will have to fix that... should def. use my head next time lol
    so word to the wise... don't do this as a 180* fix haha

  15. #15
    well... you cant very well turn it 90 degrees and expect the piece to fit back on the shaft now can ya its 180, half a turn around... if it still gives you problems, both sides of the nylon gear are stripped. turning it 90 degrees would mean you would have to lower the headlight to get it back on the shaft, realigning the whole thing thing again where it was in the first place. the point is to turn the entire shaft around half a revolution to get to the other side of the gear... since the shaft can only realign on the headlight at 2 possible positions... and why the trick only works once. i suppose you could open the motor and reposition the gear internally but as i recall from disassembling it the first time, there are only 4 holes and 2 possible positions that the thing can fit on the shaft itself. if there are 4 you might get away with it, but then youll still have half of a stripped part working with a good part... my guess is that it would slip off completly under the strain.

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  17. #17
    Me + TransAm = BadA$$
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    Quote Originally Posted by squeals99 View Post
    wow i feel so stupid haha
    i read one of these posts the other day because i have this problem as well... and thought it was 180* instead of 90*... so i changed it and instead on grinding when it goes down... now it does it going up haha
    so i will have to fix that... should def. use my head next time lol
    so word to the wise... don't do this as a 180* fix haha
    I thought it was 180, if it was 90, it would fit back on the the arm. If you turn it 180 and still have problems, your gear is stripped on both sides, atleast that was my problem.
    Just adding my 2 cents. Sorry if I'm wrong.

  18. #18
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    ok ya i thought i read something wrong... but im guessin that both sides of my gear are stripped... not sure what the deal is
    what i did though... instead of takin the gear out completely was just to remove the arm and turn the manual headlight control 180*... ill check out turnin it back 90* this weekend and see if it does anything.... and ill get back with ya all about that

  19. #19
    Me + TransAm = BadA$$
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    Quote Originally Posted by squeals99 View Post
    ok ya i thought i read something wrong... but im guessin that both sides of my gear are stripped... not sure what the deal is
    what i did though... instead of takin the gear out completely was just to remove the arm and turn the manual headlight control 180*... ill check out turnin it back 90* this weekend and see if it does anything.... and ill get back with ya all about that
    Noy yo get you hopes donw, but after I turned mine 180 and it made the noise going up, I turned it 90 back. Didn't help at all except for the headlight dont come all the way up now.

  20. #20
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    hey also, if anyone is having problems with this and doesnt want to dish out like $80 for new brass gears if they dont think that the gear may be their problem or something, auto zone sells the nylon replacements also... you may have to order it, and it is part #42400... but its only like $14 and could save you the money if the gear isnt the problem

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