2001 Grand Cherokee Tail Lights Don't work

Asked by Jul 07, 2010 at 12:22 AM about the 2001 Jeep Grand Cherokee

Question type: Maintenance & Repair

One night all my tail lights went out. No rear parking lights, no brake lights, no tail
lights. The only thing that is on is the license plate lights. Rear turn lights work,
reverse gear light works. When the light switch is off, my brake lights work. I checked
all my fuses and they are all in good shape.. My question is, what's causing the
problem and how do I fix it?

25 Answers


ive got a 99 with the same problem. if you figure out id like to know as well. ill do likewise

13 out of 13 people think this is helpful.

I own a 2007 JGC witht he same issue. I am in the process of finding the answer. I will let you know if I find anything out.

3 out of 3 people think this is helpful.

yea it once happened with me too, so i recommend you to hold up your baseball bat, go to the rear of your car, and SMASH the rear lights up, and then install a $60 dollar pair of led tail lights with damn bright brake and reverse lights...........as i did :)D Peace.........

4 out of 4 people think this is helpful.

in the back side panel, there is a controller for the lights, make sure no wires r loose and also check fuses in passenger side compartment under glove box.

10 out of 10 people think this is helpful.

the lights are controlled from one of the side panels? i was under the impression it was somewhere buried in the dashboard.

5 out of 5 people think this is helpful.

dawg my freaking jeep is havving the same problem and i cant seem to get this damn back lights working at night... im interested on what u did with ur tail lights and the leds. let me in dawg, i need some help bad

8 out of 8 people think this is helpful.

did you ever get it fixed? if so how did you do it.

6 out of 6 people think this is helpful.

my 01 Limited has no running lights in the rear either. wiring harness may b ? idk any more

13 out of 13 people think this is helpful.

The following items were how I was able to solve my taillight,breaklight,backup light issues. 1st pry up the silver metal tabs on the light assbly. if that still doesn't work try #2 2nd replace the bulb holders. Of course check the fuses 1st I've found it best to keep back up light bulbs and holders with me at all times.

5 out of 5 people think this is helpful.

I have a little bit different problem. My lights front and tail comes on without anyone being in the car! Happened twice that I am aware of. HELP!

4 out of 4 people think this is helpful.

Glad i am not the only one with this problem and they said it was not a defect and i see several Jeeps with this problem 2000 to 2004 models and i have a 2001. what is really happening here and they want $200-$400 to fix this ... what do you do?

8 out of 8 people think this is helpful.

replace the tail lamp assm. the problem is inside the tail lamp.(the circuit board). this usually only happens on one side or the other. rarely both sides the same time. I used to work for Jeep dealer.

9 out of 9 people think this is helpful.

replaced tail light assemblies and same problem.... brand new aftermarket tail light housing and same issue.... tail lights and passenger side turn signal is all out.

7 out of 7 people think this is helpful.

After reading about this and doing some work myself, what actually worked was to first remove the tail lights (so it's easier to work on them) then remove the bulb holders. Lightly sand or clean all the connections and be sure they are all able to reach each other. Pry them just a bit, not too much.. I noticed that the turn signal holders need to go about 180 degrees to get to the connectors and the brake and back up only go 1/4 turn or less. Next test them...... Whichever bulb does not light turn the holder just a bit one direction or the other until it does light. Not all the bulb hollders will look perfectly straight, but they work. Just got mine working...... :) And...... if you have trouble look me up and I'll charge you 1/2 what the dealer will charge you for the same result...... :D

8 out of 8 people think this is helpful.

Hey Watty_Watts are you located near New Orleans?

2 out of 2 people think this is helpful.

I sort of have the same problem, I have an 01 Jeep Grand Cherokee Laredo and at first the left twilight wouldn't work, so I got new LED lights and once they were installed both left and right side and top light don't work but only work when I press on breaks..if anyone can help me out on how to fix it, that would be so great!

4 out of 4 people think this is helpful.

This problem has just started with me and my 2001 jeep grand Cherokee. My brake lights, reverse lights and blinkers were working. Hubby started buying Led bulbs because he wanted to change them all over like he did with our 96 Ford F 350 and like he did when we had our 2003 Cadillac CTS except on our CTS for some god only know reason it turned off my reaction control and it was lit up on my dash that reaction control was off. Hubby bought the new circuit boards for both sides but only did the passenger side. My 3rd brake light up on the top apparently works so keep getting told it isn't brake switch. I turn blinkers on they were flashing really fast as if a bulb was blown now if I put them on they just stay solid in my dash. I'm seriously at my whit's end and hubby bitches at me for buying this vehicle because the caddy got totalled. So if anyone has any suggestions as to how I can get my brake lights, backup and blinkers to work I'm really open to any type of advice right now. According to the chilton manual there's some sort of a wiring under the back seat under the rug which actually saw on Sunday but we didn't attempt to go at that. I really wonder if it's just as simple only turning all the new pieces just certain ways and only so far

1 out of 1 people think this is helpful.

I have tried it all and cleaned all connectors, traced all wires, replaced all fuses inside and under the hood. I have replaced the pigtails, and I replaced the brake light switch at the brake pedal. All I managed to accomplish was getting my parking lights and plates working again. I still have no brake lights and no backup lights. I personally am going to blow this POS to smitherings... If there is a trick that I have missed in my long search for a fix please feel free to let me know. I have a 2000 Jeep Cherokee sport

3 out of 3 people think this is helpful.

I had a left blinker what wouldn't work and I bought a new light assembly from Morris 4x4 in Florida. Got some new socket holders, and once I got those changed out it works like a charm. The sockets all get overheated over time and melt causing a loss of contact.

1 out of 1 people think this is helpful.

I'm at wits end I have replaced the bulbs 5 time in 2 months

2 out of 2 people think this is helpful.

Remove the bulb sockets and you will see the small silver contacts down inside where the socket goes. Gently pry up I the contacts, but not too hard, and this should take care of your problem. Over time, the heat from shrinks the plastic, keeping the contacts from making a good connection.

2 out of 2 people think this is helpful.

had I tail light out and cleaned and lifted each tab in the tail light assembly put it back together and brake lights worked now with the headlights on. I think I was looking for something more difficult instead of looking at what was right in my face

1 out of 1 people think this is helpful.

LED stands for light emitting diode. The diode at the end of your circuit instead of a lamp could create a type of the loop in the circuit. Certain LEDs or if you put enough of the men will cause flashing problems and could throw alarm codes or even just make some of the lights stay on all the time. Usually wherever you put a diode in circuit you'll need to put a 50 watt 6 ohm resistor in line behind it. That solves some of the lighting issues if you have LEDs.

Randy N Samantha nailed it. The ground contact on the top of the assembly needs a very slight pry up and BINGO. I owe you a beer or msg me for if you're in St. Petersburg Fl. Thanks everyone. Great forum.


Try a tail lamp circuit board. The lamp sockets fit into this board. It may be glued in place but it will come off. $30 at your auto parts store

1 out of 1 people think this is helpful.

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