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ok i got into the garage tonight after everyone went to sleep... i do have to say i like the way kia mounted the taillight... its literally only bolted to the car... other cars ive seen like my focus before was bolted as well as the taillight had a plastic keeper type thing, so you had to yank the taillight out which could cause scratches then rust....

so i have to say, once the taillight grommet is pushed through and then the taillight is unbolted, the taillight just slides out easily without causing any scratches, which is a concern of mine if i were to bring my car to kia for replacements....

anyways...

heres a pic with the access cover pulled off... loosen and remove the 4 10mm bolts, and then push the taillight grommet through the hole after unplugging it from the chassis harness



heres the taillight pulled out as well as the body, also notice that there isnt excessive holes in this area, which helps reduce the chance of any water intrusion



now, you can see the sub harness for the blinker and then the wires going into a removable cap for the LED portion of the taillight



heres where the LED board gets plugged in at, theres a small clip on one side, a small screw driver or the tip of a knife will do the trick, then you can unplug the led board



heres inside the actual plug. im assuming we have a ground, then we have a red and green... im assuming one for the top strip and then one for the bottom strip... then the blue jumper... only thing i can think of maybe possibly is that the blue jumper helps share the ground for the top and bottom strip sense the can obviously go out independently.



the wires inside that small plug have a little bit of play also... when i went out to the garage the bottom strip wasnt working again, and just the slight vibration of me pulling the access cover off inside the trunk moved the wires just enough to make the strip come back on

i forgot to get dielectric grease from autozone earlier, but i have an antioxidant compound ive been using for the outside bulbs on my house to keep water out as well as insulate the connections



i plugged it back into the board inside the taillight, then dabbed a little on the turn signal bulb for good measure then re-installed everything...

of course the taillight is fully functional at the moment do to me moving the wires... but only time will tell if this can correct the issue.

that small plug can very well be the issue... i also noticed there was slight tension on the small plug from the harness grommet for the main taillight plug... so who knows maybe its just enough to break connection....

maybe precrack you can try this out... i would definitely get genuine dielectric grease though... it has better conducting capacity and i actually might get some and redo what i did tonight.... hope this helps
 
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Discussion Starter · #22 ·
Thank you so much for all the work! Very informative. Keep us updated you may be on to something.
 

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well i checked it this morning and it didnt come on right away, but it came on within a few seconds without me touching the light...

so it may be the vibration from the initial startup that jossled the light enough to get it to come on or that the LED isnt working properly...
 

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Wow, I took the access cover off but never realized the light comes off with 4 bolts.... the more I look at the way Kia has done things makes me love this car more. Everything seems so easy to work on. I just hope this finally fixes it. Currently the upper led light has been out for 2 days now so I will check this out later and see if it fixes the problem. I tapped the light and wiggled the main connector and light still doesn't come on so it must be that connector on the board.
 

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well i thought about it today, when i went to drop my daughter off at school, the light needed a tap for it to come on. i got a video of it so when / if i went to KIA i had proof of it.

but i started thinking also, the brake light is also in that harness.

so thats probably the red wire, the green wire is the running light, black ground and who knows what the jumper does...

so with that in mind. because the top led isnt going out, it shows the LED board is getting power, but not sending it to the bottom LED without a little tap... so the board is probably malfunctioning in some way...


so i stopped by kia today, and they ordered me a new taillight, showed the service guy the video on my phone so he would believe me and then low and behold, the like wasnt working which was good for him to believe me... also, it wouldnt even come on with my tapping it like it has before. so the board may be completely bad now....

oh welll... new light next week when they get it in
 

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good point, i forgot about the brake light.... If you look at the pigtail on the car end, there is 5 wires also(one is not used) I kind of wonder why thats like that? But yeah must be the board. I might test the harness later to see which wire is what.
 

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I did too. Oh well. We all learned something though
 

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If I didn't read this thread, I never would have even noticed... time to make an appointment at the dealership!
Automotive tail & brake light Automotive lighting Automotive tire Wheel Vehicle
 

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My top right one is out to and has not worked in a few days now. Other one seems to be working now.
 

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Very strange mine haven't done this yet. I will keep checking though
 

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I only noticed it yesterday and I am right around the 400 mile mark, but it seems to turn back on after driving a bit. Not sure if it from the vibration of the car driving or because it has "warmed up". Either way, it's covered under warranty so I'll be getting it fixed.
 

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Are the lights the same on the forte 5 as the koup?
 

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I'm pretty sure they are, but so far I don't think anyone with a 5 has had an issue with their tail lights.
 

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Got my light replaced today. Service advisor said the light was $433 lol so hopefully kia doesn't have an issue otherwise it'll add up quick for them
 

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just for the rear driver side outer piece..
 

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I have been experiencing the same problem with my Koup tail lights. Sometimes the top part lights up, sometimes it doesn't....I'm gonna have to call the dealer and get an appointed, i'll get you guys updated on how it goes.
 
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