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I recently had a small problem and wondered if it's an indication of a bigger problem to come. I always keep my headlights on auto. As soon as I exit the car and lock it, the lights go off.

When I left my car the other day and locked it I noticed my lights didn't go off. I waited for maybe 15 seconds and still didn't go off. I figured they would eventually go off. I came back to the garage about 20 minutes later and they were still on. So I unlocked the car with my remote and the horn wasn't as loud as before and sounded kind of slow, so I knew the battery was being drained. I checked the light knob to make sure it was on auto and it was. I turned the car on to recharge the battery and the starter struggled to turn the car over. Keep in mind this was no more than 20 minutes with the lights on.

I let her run for about 10 minutes and shut her off. I got out and as soon as I locked the car the lights went off. It hasn't done it again since but I fear that this is an indication of a bigger problem to come.

Has this happened to anyone before? And why would my battery almost run dead after only twenty minutes? I have the stock battery and maybe I should change to an aftermarket battery. Any suggestions as to which one is best for our cars?
 

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formerly NJGoat
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Document ID#1848553

Yes, It has happened to me. I put a sunshield in my windshield, left car running while getting items out of trunk, then turned off car and locked it immediately. I had taken vehicle into pontiac dealer and everything checked out okay. Then they received a bulletin, not a recall, but a bulletin. I have a copy of it. Here is what is states:

7/19/06 2004- 2006 model gtos

Pic3483c was created to remove the information tht a fix was being worked on. No updated calibration will be available. If the vehicle were to ever lose power at night while still rolling, the current would allow the headlamps to stay on. Please discard PIC3483B

Condition/concern:
With headlamp switch in auto mode, headlamps may remain on with ignition switched off and driver's door opened. headlamps will remain on, potentially discharging the vehicle battery.

Recommendation/Instruction:
The BCM does not recognize that speed has dropped below 6mph if the ignition is turned off prior to or as the vehicle comes to a stop. Due to lag in updating vehicle speed, depending on the rate at which the vehicle is stopped, the BCM may continue to register some vehicle speed momentarily after the vehicle has actually come to a stop. To activate the headlamp off condition, BCM must register a vehicle speed of zero, as well as driver's door switch cycled. If the ignition is switched off while the BCM is registering 6mph or greater, the headlamps wil remain on even following cycling of the drivers door switch.

As the vehicle condition cannot be rectified, customers experiencing this condition must be advised to ensure that vehicle is brought to a complete stop, and perhaps delay switching off the ignition momentarily after stopping the vehicle.

No other action should be attempted in order to overcome this condition.

Note for the 2004 GTO Only:

If the BCM does not recieve the door open input from the drivers door jamb switch, due to corrosion or a poor connection, the BCM will not turn off the headlamps. The BCM uses the jamb switch to see the door open as opposed to using the switch to latch. you can see the latch switch on the BCM data stream, but not the jam switch.

Remove the door jamb switch to inspect for corrosion or a poor connection at the switch. the door jam switch is held in place by a screw and is easliy removed for inspection. On the 2004 GTO, the door jamb switch is located just below the a pilliar. if corrosion is found, replace the door jamb switch and verify proper operation of headlamps..

"No" re-calibration or retuning of the vehicle computer is going to be done by GM. The dealership said GM has not plans of correcting the problem.

Having this information I asked the dealership if i should keep the lights on the off position instead of Auto. They highly recommended against that. So other words, dont come to a fast stop, shut your car off, and run off.

Hope this helps. this bulletin came from gm and was given to me at my dealership.
 

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Having this information I asked the dealership if i should keep the lights on the off position instead of Auto. They highly recommended against that. So other words, dont come to a fast stop, shut your car off, and run off.
Please elaborate on this NJ.

Why would the dealer recommend that you not turn the headlight switch off, but instead, use Auto?

I have never used the Auto setting on the headlights. I always turn my headlights on and off manually.


Russ
 

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I've noticed on a few occasions when exiting my car in the garage I encountered the same problem. I believe it happened when I turned the car off but let the key in the ignition and opened the door then closed it again, pulled the key out and exited the car and shut the door. All I did to turn the lights off was to manually turn the switch off then back to auto.

This is the only scenario I can think of that caused it.
 

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formerly NJGoat
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Highly recommended

Please elaborate on this NJ.

Why would the dealer recommend that you not turn the headlight switch off, but instead, use Auto?

I have never used the Auto setting on the headlights. I always turn my headlights on and off manually.


Russ
One of the person(s) that waited on me at the service counter showed me the bulletin and told me that they were not going to issue any new programs to fix the problem. I then asked him if I should just keep the headlight switch in the off position and he stated he highly recommended against that. I assumed he said that due to safety issues, with the lights coming on automatically at dusk. I was still in the confused state about GM not correcting this problem with a simple program and left the dealership after asking for the copy of the bulletin. Why, I asked for a copy of it I don't know. Just to keep with the service papers I guess. CYA!
 

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One of the person(s) that waited on me at the service counter showed me the bulletin and told me that they were not going to issue any new programs to fix the problem. I then asked him if I should just keep the headlight switch in the off position and he stated he highly recommended against that. I assumed he said that due to safety issues, with the lights coming on automatically at dusk. I was still in the confused state about GM not correcting this problem with a simple program and left the dealership after asking for the copy of the bulletin. Why, I asked for a copy of it I don't know. Just to keep with the service papers I guess. CYA!
Well, that really didn't answer the question, but, it's really a moot point for me, as I have HIDs and shouldn't use Auto anyway.

Russ
 

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formerly NJGoat
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No sense!

Well, that really didn't answer the question, but, it's really a moot point for me, as I have HIDs and shouldn't use Auto anyway.

Russ
That is all I have, don't beat up on me, it was a young kid behind the counter, and I was still kinda pissed at the time when I heard GM was not going to correct the problem. Obviously, id there is a manual off selection on the headlights it can be used or they would not of put it there. Your right, it doesn't make sense! Other than the lights coming on at dusk issue and one might be use to them coming on automatically and may forget.
 

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That is all I have, don't beat up on me, it was a young kid behind the counter, and I was still kinda pissed at the time when I heard GM was not going to correct the problem. Obviously, id there is a manual off selection on the headlights it can be used or they would not of put it there. Your right, it doesn't make sense! Other than the lights coming on at dusk issue and one might be use to them coming on automatically and may forget.
I'm not beatin you up NJ, just trying to figure the logic of what the service guy told you. :D

Russ
 

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okay

Well, that really didn't answer the question, but, it's really a moot point for me, as I have HIDs and shouldn't use Auto anyway.

Russ
Okay, cool. The only logic would be the safety issue of someone forgettin' to turn headlights on that are use to them coming on automatically. I see that all the time in my line of work.
 

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NJ Goat is right, I had this same problem. As long as I shut if off below 6, it never happens.....
 

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The best way to prevent this situation is to use the switch manually. It happened to me yesterday for the 1st time as I rolled up the driveway turning the car off as I was still moving, pulled the key out and opened the door in one rapid motion in conjunction with setting the parking brake... bolted into the house, got what I needed and returned to find my lights still on. Using the remote to lock or unlock did nothing. I turned the lights off manually, started the car and drove away. While driving down my street I put the switch back to auto. Upon stopping and getting out again after shutting down the normal way I do it the auto lights worked properly.

Just a quirk to remember if your in a rush and you shut down while moving or open the door before removing the key and you have the headlight switch on auto.
 
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