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Discussion Starter #1
Hi all,

I've landed myself in quite the situation. I have a 2005 Insight and the lowbeams stopped working a few months ago. Took it into the dealership (who were quite surprised to see the thing) and they said the switch burnt out. They replaced it and it worked for a month. Then the lowbeams quit again. Turns out it wasn't the switch. The harness is burned up.

Problem. I have a U.S model but moved to Canada recently. As in, so recently that I need to get my car inspected still in order to complete the importation. Obviously in its current state it won't pass and I have a set time limit to get it inspected. I can get an extension but no idea for how long. The dealership said they can't get the U.S version of the harness. I'd have to order it myself (if I can find one) and then have them install it. As I'm sure you all know, that's a big job and will cost a lot. If I need to, I can go down this route but would rather not. They did suggest one other possible route. There's a garage nearby that specializes in electrical stuff. The dealership suggested I ask them if they could hardwire it, effectively bypassing the harness for the lowbeams.

My question: is this a good idea? Has anyone done this before and is it just going to be a fire hazard. I'm new to the Insight (probably didn't know what I was getting myself into to be honest, but I still love the thing) and have very little electrical skills. Anyone know what my best move is!? Or what part number I should be looking for if I'm going to replace the harness?

Thanks in advance!
 

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Just hard wire around the bad connector. You will find several threads on this if you do a search.
 
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I wouldn't ask them if they can hardwire it, but I would ask them what they can do to fix it. I'm not sure what the problem is, but they can likely fix it. Possibly bad connectors at the switch or other bad connector? They can use individual connectors on the switch if that is the problem. I have a 2005 parts car with the dash out already if that can be of help. I'd be happy to mail you whatever you need if its easily removed.
 

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Discussion Starter #4
I wouldn't ask them if they can hardwire it, but I would ask them what they can do to fix it. I'm not sure what the problem is, but they can likely fix it. Possibly bad connectors at the switch or other bad connector? They can use individual connectors on the switch if that is the problem. I have a 2005 parts car with the dash out already if that can be of help. I'd be happy to mail you whatever you need if its easily removed.
Thanks for the offer! I might be in touch. I took it to the garage to get the situation assessed and we'll see what they say. Whatever Honda did when they put it back together makes it so the tail lights are running 24/7 now which is great. Completely killed the battery...
 

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This happened to me a couple years ago. I found that auto parts stores sell replacement switches WITH a new wiring harness. Probably not in stock but most can order it & have it in a couple days. I think mine came from AutoZone. The problem is the original harness to switch connection overheats damaging both. Just cut the wires one at a time and splice them to the wires on the new connector.
 

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I think this was part of a recall that may still be active. Mine failed about 2 years ago and the dealer fixed it (maybe just out of goodwill) on my 01.
 

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Dealers are not allowed to "fix" wiring harnesses. Too many problems with failures/fires and lawsuits. Some connectors are quite hard to get in fact. However if you know what you are doing running a wire to bypass a funky connection or damaged wire is not a problem. Anyone with an older british car is very familiar with this process.
 

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I’ve had electrical work and harness work done on nearly every car I’ve owned, performed by dealers. Totally integrated power module, main Harness, Sub harness replacement for proximity sensors and sensor replacement, connector and wiring fix for headlights on my 01 insight, and the list goes on (yes I’ve had my share of challenging cars)

What makes you say they aren’t allowed? There’s no legal prohibition in the US and there’s no prohibition by the manufacturers in the US for this kind of work trust I’ve ever seen or experienced.
 

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Discussion Starter #9
I’ve had electrical work and harness work done on nearly every car I’ve owned, performed by dealers. Totally integrated power module, main Harness, Sub harness replacement for proximity sensors and sensor replacement, connector and wiring fix for headlights on my 01 insight, and the list goes on (yes I’ve had my share of challenging cars)

What makes you say they aren’t allowed? There’s no legal prohibition in the US and there’s no prohibition by the manufacturers in the US for this kind of work trust I’ve ever seen or experienced.
Apparently its policy at the dealerships, at least up here in Canada. I took it to a garage and they successfully bypassed the harness using a connector. However, because the old harness damaged the switch, I'm on the hook for a new switch. Basically, the headlights work for now but the damaged switch will almost certainly burn out the new connector. Only permanent fix is to replace the connector AND the switch at the same time. As per lakewalker42's comment. Should work long enough for me to pass inspection first. Or so I hope...
 

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Discussion Starter #10
This happened to me a couple years ago. I found that auto parts stores sell replacement switches WITH a new wiring harness. Probably not in stock but most can order it & have it in a couple days. I think mine came from AutoZone. The problem is the original harness to switch connection overheats damaging both. Just cut the wires one at a time and splice them to the wires on the new connector.
Yup, this is exactly what happened. Which sucks because I just installed a new switch on the dealership's recommendation. They missed the harness the first time around. I have it temporarily fixed with a new connector but I'll need to replace the switch AGAIN to permanently fix it. By the time the part comes in (1.5 month backorder) the connector will have probably burned up too. So basically I'll have to replace both at the same time. I'm just praying the connector/switch holds out long enough for me to get it inspected and imported.
 

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I understand the connectors losing their tension because of overheating, but I don't understand the switch failing until it gets melted. I don't see that happening with your repaired or replaced connector. I bet it's fine as is.
 
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