Do brake lights work when car is off? No, they don’t. If your brake light is one when your engine is turned off, there might be some fault in the car. Read on to know more.
The brake light is a very important part of the rear light in your vehicle. When you press the brake pedal, the light turns on. It indicates to the person driving behind you that your car is stopping and helps avoid accidents.
But do brake lights work when car is off? If you simply park your car somewhere and go, will the brake lights continue to work because you have applied the parking brake? No, they should not. We will explore common problems with brake lights in this article.
What you will find in this article:
- Do brake lights work when car is off?
- How can you fix your brake light switch stopper?
- Why do brake lights stay on when car is off?
- Do brake lights work without key?
- Should brake lights always be on?
Do Brake Lights Work When Car Is Off?
No, brake lights should be off when your engine is turned off. Otherwise, your car’s battery will be drained every time you park your car!
If you find your brake lights turned on, there may be some fault or issue in the car. This may be due to a broken brake light switch.
If you find this issue, you should immediately disconnect your battery until you get it fixed with a technician. Otherwise, you will have two problems at hand!
Do Brake Lights Come On When Car Is Off? Why brake lights stay on when car is off?
Usually, the brake light is part of the rear light, and it will only be illuminated when you press the brake pedal.
But if the brake lights come on even when your car is off, then the most common cause of this issue is a broken light switch or some problem with the brake light switch stopper.
How Can You Fix The Brake Light Switch Stopper?
You Need To Examine The Stopper And Brake Switch.
For this, you need to place your brake light switch near the brake pedal.
Examine The Stopper
Now check the stopper in your brake pedal, which is there in front of the brake light switch.
If you can see the stopper, make sure you can press the switch properly. Check if the brake light switches off when you release the switch or not. If not, you need to replace the brake light switch.
Next, Examine The Floor For Stopper
If you cannot find the stopper or if it is missing, you need to scan the floor and look for a plastic stopper that may have broken.
Replace If Broken
You will have to replace the stopper with a new one if it’s broken into pieces. Look for a similar size stopper having the same width.
Make sure not to lose the pedal and once you replace the stopper, make sure the brake lights switch off when you depress the brake.
Remove From The Power Source
If you don’t find any fault with the stopper, disconnect the battery or the brake light switch; else, the battery may drain out quickly. You might have to take your car to a garage.
Common Issues When Brake Lights Don’t Work
When you find your brake lights are not working, it may be due to the blown-out fuse or broken brake light, or the brake light is burned out.
In most vehicles, the brake system consists of a circuit that includes the light bulb, fuse, switch, and wiring that connects everything. Sometimes, you will find some issues with the brake lights. Let’s have a look at some of the problems.
Sometimes One Or More Brake Lights Don’t Work.
If you find one brake light working and the other is not, it is relatively easier to deal with such issues than when none of the brake lights are working. Just follow the steps below
- If you find one brake light working, check the brake fuses first. The fuse in most vehicles is there for two rear brake lights.
- Check your brake light bulb. You can check the condition of the bulb through the trunk, or you can remove the screws around the lens. You can get it checked at the service center if needed.
- Take the bulb out and check each bulb. If you find the bulb dark, it has been used a lot, and you need to replace it. Along with the bulb, have a check at its filaments. Make sure it is not broken or burned.
- When you place a new bulb, make sure it is of the same watt and type. Please have a look at the car manual or repair manual before replacing it with any bulb.
- But if you don’t find any fault in the brake light, you can use DMM and check the voltage. If you find high voltage power, then this means the bulb is not good enough. And if you find no voltage, look at the bulb for corrosion and check the wire if it is loose. You can remove the corrosion using the wire brush.
When No Brake Lights Work
When you find none of the brake lights working, you need to check the components affecting the circuit. You need to check on the fuse, brake light switch, and the circuit that connects to the brake light.
- Start by checking the fuse. If you don’t know where the fuse is located, you can check the car’s manual and find out. Usually, it is beneath the dashboard near the driver’s side. Once you find the fuse, remove it by just pulling it out.
- Remove it carefully using the nose plier. You can use the digital multimeter and check if the fuse is blown out.
- Examine The Brake Switch. Now you need to check the brake light switch. It is always better to keep the manual book in hand. It makes it easy to find the location of the fuse or any switch of the vehicle to repair.
- Once you find the brake switch, locate how it is connected through the wires. You can check the brake switch through the test light.
When Brake Lights Never Turn Off
Another common issue is when the brake lights do not turn off. In most vehicles, when you press the brake pedal, the brake light turns on. And if by chance the switch gets damaged or moves out of place, the lights say on.
Troubleshooting Brake Lights That Don’t Switch Off
- Try operating the brake pedal using your hands and looking at the pedal movement and the brake switch. You may need to adjust the switch if it is out of place to fix this issue.
- Remove the connector and rotate the brake switch either towards or away from the pedal to adjust the switch. The position depends on the situation. Make sure to place it so that you don’t have to depress the pedal to make the brake light working.
- If the switch is placed outside its position, adjust it to its actual position.
- Sometimes, the switch wears out, and you need to replace it.
Answers To Frequently Asked Questions
Do brake lights work without key?
Brake lights can work without a key when you start your vehicle. But the light turns off when you release your foot from the brake.
Should Brake Lights Always Be On?
If the brake lights are always on, it may lead to accidents because the person riding behind you would not be able to tell if you are stopping or slowing down.
If your brake light is always on without using the brake, then this means there is some fault with the brake light switch or its fuse.
Does The Brake Light Drain Battery?
If your brake light is on for a long time, it will drain out the battery. If the brake light is not getting off when you release the brake pedal, you need to disconnect the switch and look if it turns off. If they do, you need to replace the brake light switch.
Your Brake Light Should Not Work When Your Car Is Off
As explained, a brake light that’s on when you are parked and the engine is off will end up draining out your battery, so you should quickly check the issue and sort it out. Disconnect the battery and inspect the brake switch for damage.