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Old 02-17-2011, 04:52 PM   #1 (permalink)
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Default need headlight wiring diagram

I've had no luck finding a headlight wiring diagram for my 02 Forester L. Can someone please help me? I need to know what colored wire goes with each blade on the H4 bulb.
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Old 02-17-2011, 05:14 PM   #2 (permalink)
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Here's what it is on the 2003, and it seems to be the same on the earlier models. Note that the bulbs are fed directly to the common terminal, a separate circuit on each side—thus the different colored wire on each side. High and low beams are paralleled respectively, and the beam is selected by being grounded.

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Old 02-17-2011, 05:32 PM   #3 (permalink)
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Originally Posted by bbottomley View Post
Here's what it is on the 2003, and it seems to be the same on the earlier models. Note that the bulbs are fed directly to the common terminal, a separate circuit on each side—thus the different colored wire on each side. High and low beams are paralleled respectively, and the beam is selected by being grounded.

Thank you. Is right/left from the vantage point of the driver's seat?
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Old 02-17-2011, 05:37 PM   #4 (permalink)
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That's the customary interpretation, though it would be an easy check in person.

The use of low side switching and the mixing of two separate circuits can lead to the puzzling situation that one side is bright and the other dim when a fuse blows. Stash that factoid in the back of your mind, just in case it ever happens. Diagram and discussion here.
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Old 02-18-2011, 12:57 PM   #5 (permalink)
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Originally Posted by bbottomley View Post
Here's what it is on the 2003, and it seems to be the same on the earlier models. Note that the bulbs are fed directly to the common terminal, a separate circuit on each side—thus the different colored wire on each side. High and low beams are paralleled respectively, and the beam is selected by being grounded.

So for the 2002, mirroring the driver's side connector and using this GIF as a guide, the wiring is as follows for the passenger side: red/yellow (left), blue/white (top), red (right).

That said...my passenger side light still doesn't work in either low beam or high beam (I didn't check DRL). I ordered ceramic connectors, so in the meantime I did a quick fix using standard female connectors.

What might the cause be?
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Old 02-18-2011, 01:56 PM   #6 (permalink)
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Very strange. Every diagram I've seen has blue/white as right side common plus. As logical as it might seem, the common terminal on H4 bulbs is not at the top but at the left as looking at the back of the bulb, right as looking into the socket.
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Old 02-18-2011, 02:48 PM   #7 (permalink)
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Very strange. Every diagram I've seen has blue/white as right side common plus. As logical as it might seem, the common terminal on H4 bulbs is not at the top but at the left as looking at the back of the bulb, right as looking into the socket.
I just rechecked the driver side to make sure I was seeing correctly. Looking at the connector, it's red/yellow (left), red/blue (top), and red (right). Was I correct to assume the same for the passenger side, except blue/white instead of red/blue?
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Old 02-18-2011, 03:04 PM   #8 (permalink)
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Yes, the the high and the low beams would each have their same color on both sides, as the same beams of both sides are immediately connected in parallel on their way to the low-side control circuitry. What would be a different color is the common plus, since each side is fed through a separate circuit. And the common terminal is on the right side of the connector (looking into it) on every diagram I've ever found. Try a Google search on H4 Pinout.

PM me your e-mail address and I'll send you a diagram.
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Old 02-18-2011, 03:13 PM   #9 (permalink)
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Originally Posted by bbottomley View Post
Yes, the the high and the low beams would each have their same color on both sides, as the same beams of both sides are immediately connected in parallel on their way to the low-side control circuitry. What would be a different color is the common plus, since each side is fed through a separate circuit. And the common terminal is on the right side of the connector (looking into it) on every diagram I've ever found. Try a Google search on H4 Pinout.

PM me your e-mail address and I'll send you a diagram.
I just Googled and found exactly what you told me to expect. Why would my driver's side run counter? Did someone at sometime goof up the wiring? It looks original; it's the passenger side that someone messed with once. I had to clean up some bad connecting.
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Old 02-18-2011, 03:47 PM   #10 (permalink)
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Check it out with a meter. Turn the lights on and look for +12 (13.8) on the common terminal. Then check the beam terminals. The one that's selected should read zero (or thereabouts), and the one that isn't selected should be at about 12 (13.8) since it's just floating there.

The one that reads 12 (13.8) in both beams will be common plus.
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Old 07-12-2012, 01:14 PM   #11 (permalink)
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Default wiring diagram

EDIT: after reading your wiring posts I figured I needed a low ground to get lights to work if tapping in to headlights.

Last edited by seifier; 07-22-2012 at 01:21 AM. Reason: wiring diagram
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