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Jim Grant Tech Tips Jim Grant Tech Tips
A collection of helpful articles based on reader submissions
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Below is a collection of Jim Grant's Tech Tips sorted by Vehicle Make. These Tech Tips were answers to questions submitted to Jim by users over the course of many years.
If you have any questions, please feel free to email us.



Lincoln - Mercury
  Jim Grant's Tech Tips

'91 Toyota Camry, No Start With Headlights On

Q: I have a ‘91 Toyota Camry. The problem I have with the car is that I can't start the car up when I turn on the headlight at the same time; or the car will die right away when the headlight is being turned on. If the key is not in, the headlight will not be able to be turned on. They have checked the battery, distributor, spark plugs and wires. Can you point the direction so that they can fix it?

A: The headlight wiring in your vehicle comes a couple of different ways. Not knowing which system your vehicle is equipped with does create a problem with diagnosing. First, I do not believe that the ignition system is the problem on your vehicle. After all, there’s no reported starting problem with the headlights off. The first thing I would ask you to do is to pull the fuses to the left and right head lights and try to start the vehicle with the headlight switch on. If I’m going down the right path the problem will still be present. I’m inclined to believe that the integration relay (which is tied into the headlights and some other systems), one of its diodes, or there is a ground problem. The ground that I’m concerned with is right at the base of the fuse and relay block found by the driver’s kick panel. A bad ground here can create some challenging problems. The integration relay is located in the same area and happens to use the same ground too. I believe that if the integration relay is isolated and its operation checked you may find that there is some miss direction occurring. You need to know which headlight control system your vehicle is equipped with. Having that information and the problem being related to headlight operation, you should be able to track down the cause.

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