Problem With Auto Headlights [Archive] - Forum


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11-04-2004, 10:31 AM
My '96 Grand Am has a problem with the automatic headlights coming on when its daylight. I like the automatic lights-on feature but during the day,I'm satisfied with the DRL's.
I'm not talking about partly cloudy but full,bright sunshiny days! Is the light sensor going bad?
Oddly enough everything seems to work much better on the cloudy days.
For me the most annoying part of all this is that when the DRL's go off and the headlights come on during the day, I can't see the clock/stereo tuner! You know,it dims when the full headlights go on.
What could be causing this problem? Anyone else have a similar problem?
I hope someone can steer me in the right direction.

11-04-2004, 12:50 PM
DO a search, I just hepled a guy last month with that same problem. Easy fix, long to type.

11-04-2004, 01:37 PM
i was the guy he "helped" last month. What he said was probably right on his car, but it was pretty wrong on my 2000 Alero. The sensor on the car WAS underneath the vent where the defrost comes out, however it DOES NOT install from above - meaning that when i dislodged it - it fell down into the compartment. After some manuevering with a coat hanger and my little sisters skinny arm, i was able to get to the sensor itself. I took it out and opened it up (it was glued together - so opening it means you buy another one or tape it out glue it yourself) I decided that the AUTOMATIC lights feature wasnt important enough to me to buy a new sensor, so i tested out the sensor with an open and closed condition and found that with a closed condition, the lights turned off. Basically i ripped the sucker out, soldered the wires together, and now i have normal headlights. i must say i prefer it because i can control it (no AUTOMATIC overrides anymore)

maybe this helps

11-04-2004, 04:03 PM
Cool, Why does GM insist on making 2 similar car lines so completly different in some of these respects??? Weird...

11-05-2004, 08:52 AM
DO a search, I just hepled a guy last month with that same problem. Easy fix, long to type.

I did but I didn't find the answer. I also looked up the thread you suggested.
I mainly want to know what could be causing the lights to act this way.
I don't want to disable the system.
Could the light sensor be at fault? Or possibly a relay? If so I will replace it.
I don't think it is anything too serious,just being a pain to track down.

11-05-2004, 01:37 PM
Sensor, pop out the grill of the dash windshield defroster, there is a light sensor there. It is dirty and needs to be cleaned.

11-09-2004, 07:52 AM
he's right, probably dirty. i will say however that mine appeared clean and still didnt work, probably not an expensive part anyway