Brake Light Not Lighting Up

Question Having problems with a 1992 FLTHCU. The signal lights are intermittent and brake light is not lighting up. Any suggestions? I have changed all the bulbs.

Via Email

Answer Get out your test light. You will need to chase some wiring. The signals & brake lights would be 2 separate issues on your make & model. For brake light. Remove your taillight lens. Use your test light to verify that only one contact has voltage (running light) with ignition switch turned on. If both contacts have voltage; one if your brake switches is stuck on. This might make it seem as if you have no brake light because the light does not get brighter when applying brake pressure. Inspect your taillight harness and taillight assembly. Make sure the harness is intact. Otherwise, start testing at your brake switches, front & rear. Test to verify voltage. Test your way from the switch and out. Pin point where, switched, voltage is lost. For the signal issue; you may have a week connection or ground if they work intermittently. Start testing at the signal housings and work your way toward your turn signal module. Your service manual has a map of your wiring harness. It can be a good reference.

Related Videos:
Harley Brake Switch Diagnosis
How to Test a Harley Brake Light Switch
How to Fix a Motorcycle Brake Light Switch
How to Replace Brake Light Switch on a Harley
Electrical Systems

We even have an article on it In The Shop – Read It Here

Have more questions? Check out the Tags here and our Q&A index page to find some answers here.

Reply to Customer Service
  • (will not be published)

12 Responses to “Brake Light Not Lighting Up”
  1. Jim Shinholt
    Jim Shinholt

    I have a 2007 FLHTCU and the shift lever shaft is stripped out. Do you have to remove the primary case to get the shaft out or can I cut the shaft out being careful not to cut into the case?

    • jean.wozniak

      Hi Jim. If you are talking about the alken head pinch bolt, being stripped, that secures the front shift arm: cutting should be a last resort.
      Remove your shift levers (heel and toe)
      Roll the front shift arm to a better position where you can smash a torx bit into it. You will probably need an extension. Smashing the torx bit should shock the bolt and give you a good bite to loosen the stripped allen head.

  2. Doak McCraney
    Doak McCraney

    I have a 2006 flhtpi starting last year no brake lights replaced rear brake switch ..within two weeks no brake lights mechanic who replaced switch stated faulty replaced switch again..within a month no brake lights this time intermitment sometimes ..this year determined after disconnect rear brake switch that front brake apply light work s . lights stuck on.Replaced rear brake switch again ..FYI bike has led tail brake lights there another possible failure going on here have never before had a brake switch go never mind three

  3. Tomas

    Having issues with my ’07 HD Electra Glide Classic. Purchased LED tail light and replacement bulbs for rear signals. Issue one: Tail light will not illuminate brighter when breaks are applied. Issue two: the socket/pigtails on rear signals are single filament and they had dual filament bulbs inserted. Is this a mistake. The single filament bulbs I picked up from the part store get stuck and I barely got them out. Now the rear signals don’t come on.

    • Customer Service
      Customer Service

      Hi, Tomas. Plug your stock taillight back in. If your brake light works correctly, there is an issue with the aftermarket LED taillight. If your rear signal sockets are dual filament, they will not support a single filament bulb or plug in.

  4. In The Shop: Brake Switch Failure | Fix My Hog
    In The Shop: Brake Switch Failure | Fix My Hog

    […] Related Videos: How to Replace Brake Light Switch on a Harley How to Test a Harley Brake Light Switch How to Diagnose a Motorcycle Brake Light Switch Harley Brake Switch Diagnosis Via Manual If you update your bars and housing, please watch this video series in full: Handlebars 101 Post: Brake Light Not Lighting Up […]

  5. JAMES

    When I put tester on wires from rear brake light switch the tester light comes on with switch off

  6. buddy lee
    buddy lee

    i have 85 flht and if the throttle grip housing isnt touching the turn signal housing the brake light doesnt light up some kind of ground connection.. its always a ground problem

  7. Lorrie Hastings
    Lorrie Hastings

    Ticket 18054 I have a 2005 Heritage Softail and the brake light doesn’t come on. Changed the bulb, fuses good, installed new brake light switch and still nothing. Pulled the tail lamp 4-pin multilock connector and jumped across the terminals in the base with a test light. The brake light came on. Would that indicate I need to replace the entire circuit board?

  8. JOHN

    2015 Fat Boy Lo, my rear riding lights do not work. Rear turn signals, brake lights and flashers work. Front driving lights work fine. I have replaced the bulbs and ordered a new tail light circuit board. Any thoughts?