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Why Don’t My Blinkers Work? 5 Common Causes of Turn Signal Problems

Why Don’t My Blinkers Work? 5 Common Causes of Turn Signal Problems

Broken blinkers can potentially kill people. A 2012 study by the Society of Automotive Engineers found that failure to use a turn signal accounts for more than 2 million accidents every year. If you find out that your car has turn signal problems, then it’s imperative that you fix them, or find a replacement car.


In this article, we’ll go over some of the common problems that affect turn signals. We’ll also help you decide whether it’s worth it to fix the problem or scrap your vehicle.

Different Types of Turn Signal Problem

Turn signal problems can show up in a lot of different forms, so it’s helpful to first identify the symptoms before the disease.

So what are some signs that your blinkers aren’t working?

The most common problem is that one of the blinkers simply stops working while the other one remains fine. Another common problem is one side of the turn signal doesn’t operate.

It’s important to remember that your turn signal system also controls your hazard lights. Sometimes your turn signal may work fine, but your hazard lights don’t operate.

Other times you may find that your turn signal doesn’t shut off after you make a turn. This issue can be dangerous because it makes other drivers think you’re going to turn when you aren’t.

Other problems can cause minor annoyance, like your signal light blinking too fast or too slow. Now that we know some of the different problems that affect turn signal, let’s get to the root of the causes.

What Causes Turn Signal Problems?

A broken blinker is one of many reasons why some drivers don’t use their turn signals. Unfortunately, there are a variety of different things that can cause a turn signal to malfunction.

So, if you want to identify the cause, then you will need to do a bit of troubleshooting. Here are the five common sources of a turn signal problem.

1) Dead Light Bulb

If your turn signal isn’t working, then you should first check the life of your light. A dead bulb is one of the more common problems that occur with blinkers. Like any lightbulb, a turn signal will eventually burn out.

If the bulb in your signal dies, then it’s a pretty straightforward fix — simply replace it with a new one. Turn signal lights usually last a few years, but they can die quicker if you use them often.

2) Faulty Turn Signal Switch

The turn signal switch is the device near your wheel which controls your signal. A faulty signal switch can’t send a signal to the blinkers to work. Sometimes the problem may lie in the wiring, or in the switch itself.

If the problem lies with the switch then it’s likely getting stuck in position due to the clock-spring. Regardless, the problem isn’t the blinker itself, but the device that communicates with it. This problem requires advanced knowledge of wiring to fix.

3) Oxidation On Bulb Sockets

Different parts of a car oxidize naturally over time. If you don’t prevent it, then it will affect your turn signal too. Rust can disrupt the contact between the blinker socket and the bulb.

This disruption interrupts the circuit and causes the blinker to malfunction. Rust isn’t the only problem either. Dirt can also block the connection. So, you must make sure that you provide routine cleaning and maintenance.

4) Blown Out Fuse

If a light, or electronic device, produces too much energy, then a fuse is responsible for protection. This device melts on purpose when too much energy goes through it to stop the current and protect circuit.

As such, the device is a sacrificial component that must be replaced when used. A blown fuse will effectively shut off power to the light or electrical system. So, if your turn signal blew a fuse, then you will need to replace it to start it again.

5) Broken Flasher Module

If you find that the turn signal works in your car, but not on the blinker themselves, then the problem may be a broken flasher module.

The flasher module provides power to the turn signal system. The fuse connects to this device through a strip of lead. If this lead is damaged, then it will likely affect the exterior blinkers.

How Much Does It Cost to Fix a Broken Turn Signal?

A broken turn signal does not affect the other systems in your car, but it’s illegal and hazardous. There are a lot of reasons why you should fix your turn signal — not least of which is the safety factor.

Drivers that don’t signal are annoying at best and more often dangerous. You can’t pass a state inspection with a broken blinker signal either. A broken signal also decreases the overall value of your car.

As such, you need to replace it as soon as possible. So how much money does a new turn signal cost to install?

The specific price depends on your mechanic, signal problem and vehicle.

However, most of the time labor for the installation costs between $70 and $100. The parts will likely cost an additional $200 to $300. As such, a broken blinker can cost you anywhere in the ballpark of $270 to $400 to replace.

Cash Car Buyer Will Pay for Your Junk Car

If you can’t afford to replace your turn signal, then don’t panic. Turn signal problems may be a sign that it’s time to sell or scrap your vehicle.

Even if your car is a piece of junk, there are likely still functioning parts that you can sell to the right buyers.

All you have to do is find someone who will give you a fair price. Here at Cash Car Buyer, we put the customer and their needs first.

You can get a free estimate on your vehicle with no obligations at all — it takes just a few minutes. If you wanna see what we can offer you for your car, then visit us here.