How To Fix Car Indicators Not Working?

Having indicator issues and figuring out a way to fix them can be a daunting task. This situation can get even harder if you have a modern car with a lot of electrical connections. You need good knowledge and the will to spend a lot of time to figure out why you have the issue of car indicators not working. This article explains the common causes of a faulty indicator and a few fixes you can do on your own for the same. 

Common Scenarios Of Car Indicators Not Working

While there can be many turn signal problems, there are a few very common problems that cause the issue of car indicators not working. These problems can be seen in your vehicle no matter its size. So let us discuss each of these issues one by one.

1. Both The Indicators Are Not Working

One of the most common problem, when one has the issue of car indicators not working in vehicles, is both the turn signals failing to work. The fix for the issue is quite simple. You have to check the bulb through the engine bay of the front and the boot of the rear. You can also do so by removing the lens. Make sure that the two filaments of the bulb are connecting and the glass is already not dar. In either case, all you may have to do is replace the bulb. Also, make sure that the socket is in fine condition and if you find corrosion in the socket, you may have to replace it as well. 

2. Hazard Lights Fail To Work But The Indicators Do

The hazard lights are in the same circuit as the turn lights. So many of these problems can happen to your vehicle. 

  • A faulty hazard light flasher
  • Faulty fuse in case the flasher is fine
  • A bad connection at the turn signal switch
  • A loose connection in the circuit that connects the turn signal switch and the flasher
  • An electrical open circuit/ short circuit in external lights wiring

If you are facing either of the first two issues, you have to get the flasher and the fuse replaced. In other situations, you need to fix the connections. 

3. Turn Signals Don’t Work

When your car has the issue of car indicators not working, one of the common situations can be that neither of your signal lights is working. In most situations, there is a blown fuse or a defunct flasher. Sometimes, it could be a faulty signal switch too. You can fix these problems easily by consulting your car manual. 

Apart from these, there could also be other issues like damaged bulbs or corroded bulb sockets. If possible, check the ground connection of the bulb and if you can’t make your trusted mechanic check the problem. Other than these, it could also be the issue of an open or short circuit which you can fix on your own. 

4. Turn Signals Don’t Flash

You have to check for a burned-out bulb at first if you notice that the turn signal lights and emergency light have stable light. Test the turn signal flasher and check the turn signal switch if the above mentioned is not the issue. You have to identify wires at first and also the best way to reach for the signal switch electrical connector. Besides this make sure that you disabled the system to avoid airbags inflating if your car has them. Your car’s owner’s manual will have a detailed guideline for each particular model. 

5. Indicators Do Not Turn Off

This is a very common situation that is mostly caused when the cancelling finger inside the switch is broken or when the cancelling cam or clockspring is broken. You have to replace the switch for the former issue and you need to replace the cam or assembly for the latter problem, depending on your specific model. 

6. Indicators Flashing Too Fast Or Slow

Changes in the flashing rate of your car’s indicators are not very hard to notice. In case this situation occurs after replacing the flasher or one of the light bulbs, it indicates that you installed the wrong type of flasher or bulb for your car model. Otherwise one of your light bulbs must have burned out as it is a potential cause of an indicator flashing fast. Another reason if your indicator is flashing faster than usual is that the alternator is overcharged. 

However, there are can be several reasons if the flashing rate of your indicator is slower than usual. These include

  • A loosely connected turn signal switch.
  • Poor power connection or grounding at the lamps.
  • The alternator is undercharged 
  • The battery is undercharged

7. The Turn Indicator Don’t Flash At All

You have to know that there is something wrong with your indicator if the turn signals illuminate but wouldn’t flash as usual. In this situation, you have to do the following.

  • Firstly check if the turn lights are working properly. The flasher unit is most likely bad if you notice that the lights illuminate but fails to flash.
  • If one of the turn lights does not come on, then make sure to check the bulb. Check the bulb socket as well for any damage or corrosion. You can also check for poor ground at the socket. 
  • You can also check for an opening in the circuit, between the light(s) that doesn’t work and the turn signal switch.

How To Fix Indicator Problems?

If you are looking for a complete guide to fix indicator issues, here is what you should do. 

Steps Involved

As a first step, you have to park your car on level ground with the engine OFF. Here is what you should do further.

  • Keep the ignition in the ON position but do not start the engine. This will get the electrical system powered up for testing. 
  • Locate the PDC or the fuse panel to check all system fuses. You must pay complete attention to locate the fuse. 
  • The blinkers won’t switch on if the turn signal flasher or replay fails. The purpose of the direction signal system is to operate with a flasher or blinker unit which interrupts the signal which caused the blinking action.
  • When a turn signal switch is false, the system will short or go open which will lead the blinker to not operate. Then you can make use of the test light to test input and output power circuits. 

  • If in case the module has an issue, various lights will not work. In such a situation, it needs to be updated or reprogrammed. 


Having a faulty indicator is not a condition to ignore. It can turn into a safety hazard if no action is taken as soon as possible. This article has explained the common scenarios of faulty indicators and their fixes. Hope this article will prove helpful to you!

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