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Headlights - Up/Down/Flash

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Hi guys,

Reaching out for some help here. Every since my S2 rebuild the headlamp pods haven't worked properly and I don't get up/down/flash.

I've had an electrical engineer visit twice and a local garage take a look and they can't diagnose the fault. I've finally got it booked into a specialist but they can't see the car until Thurs 9th Oct at the earliest.


Is there anyone local to Reading who'd be happy to take a look, if they know what they are doing? I'm more than happy to pay for their time but this something I need to get sorted asap.


I've done just about everything on the car myself (apart from paint) but I just don't have the time to pour over the wiring diagrams, and someone with better knowledge will find the fault quicker. It's probably just an earthing issue.


Thanks in advance!



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I've got nothing, I haven't had a huge amount of time to diagnose the fault but there's no movement in the motors at all - although they can be manually turned. I know on the S1 they have quite different setup for the headlamps.


I have taken the motors out and checked their internals, both looked almost mint. So it's in the loom somewhere between all four relays and the earth. Perhaps it's the switch, I've replaced the headlights stalk twice now, once due to it burning through and the second the indicator wire snapped!


Anyway to cut a long story short, I literally don't have the time to look at it and really would like to pay someone to get it sorted for me!

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Sorry to suggest obvious things (that almost certainly already been done) but are the relays new and the correct type?

"Intellectuals solve problems; geniuses prevent them." Albert Einstein

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Sorry I can't help out Chris, and you sound desperate too! I'm just too far away.

If you can't get someone (and everything slows down for you!), I'm (and I know loads of others) are very willing to talk you through a systematic fix.

Luv a good electrical fix :)



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Thanks guys, if I had more time I'm sure I'd figure it out but I'm flat out with work at the moment.

Technically I've sold the car but need this fixed before it can continue and I'm in a massive catch-22 where I can't find the right person to work on it!

Hopefully I'll find a few minutes of the weekend to sanity check everything.

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  • 1 month later...

Thought I'd update this with some positive progress.

Yesterday I got the car back from Downton Engineering (Mini specialist, but love a challenge) and the work they've done is amazing. I can't tell you how much it cost but they completely stripped out the front loom, renewed the earth bolts, replaced all the relays, serviced the headlight motors, front fans, thermostat etc.

Traced the fault back to a couple of places, including the motor brushes dropping out of one of the motors setting the whole housing live, burnt out stalk, dead and fused relays.


Turns out my car has the same wiring as a late S2/S3 federal version, very odd but I can only recommend them highly. Great family run team and would happily solve any electrical problems for another Esprit owner.

If you need them, get in touch as they have little need to have a presence online as they're mostly through recommendation and word of mouth.


Well chuffed, the wiring has never looked neater - the headlights popping up and down has never been more reliable (if at all) and I know the fans now work properly ever time!

Edited by Chris Southam
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Downton has always had a good reputation....I believe they are the ones that developed the Cooper S mini.... Sometimes it's just easier to throw money at a problem, and you've got a resultm for sure.

Scientists investigate that which already is; Engineers create that which has never been." - Albert Einstein

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