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This is driving me nuts..The display on my radio does not light up. A couple of times it came on but now its been off for good I think. The orange wire is the illumination wire and it has no power to it. All the buttons and backlighting work with the dimmer switch..even the radio works but no display because this orange wire..I don't want to start cutting the harness up to find out where the source is. Does anyone know where this orange wire comes from? The light switch ? the ignition switch? All the fuses are good. Could it be a ground wire somewhere? I just want everything to work normally..Im not a big radio fan,just want to hear the news etc. but I don't know what station im on lol

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Superwinch..Ultimately, the radio power source is the light switch, but if you're not having issues with other lights like the dash lamps, my approach would be checking for voltage and a stable ground at the radio's light lead.  First access the harness plug at the radio, then use a volt-ohms meter and check the input voltage for the dash light circuit at the radio.   

If you have a good, stable voltage source here, rule out the hot lead side.  See whether there is a ground issue (too much ohms resistance) between the radio to chassis; also check for resistance at the ground feed to the bulb.  If there is a specific ground lead at the radio, test it for continuity to a good ground source.  You're looking for resistance (ohms) on the ground circuit.  

If the radio face bulb has an actual ground lead on a pigtail, test ground resistance to a good chassis/body ground point.  In a 12V system D.C., the ground is just as important as the hot side's integrity.  If this is a pigtail and there is adequate voltage and a good ground reading, suspect the bulb itself.  As a prudent move, I'd replace the radio bulb(s) anyway with the radio already out.

Summing it up, with an intermittent problem like this, I would suspect that there may be a ground issue or loose connection. In the day, when automotive radio lights were just a common dash bulb, we would test the bulb socket for looseness, as the socket shell was the ground.  Your radio face uses a bulb(s) as well, and you can test the bulb's ground and hot lead.  You need to remove the radio and face plate to access the bulb and its leads.

If you think there is a broader ground issue on the Jeep, test your ground-to-body for ohms-resistance.  This can be done with a volt-ohmeter.  I'd check directly from the battery's negative post to a body grounding point like at the firewall.  You can test from the battery negative post directly to the radio chassis, too.

If you do need a wiring schematic still, this a '97 Jeep TJ Wrangler?  I can provide the chassis to radio lighting schematic if you can't access one.  Obviously, if the problem is internal to the radio, bench tests of the radio and repair soldering might be necessary.  Tackle the simpler possibilities first.

Moses

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Thx for the input Moses. A wiring spec for the radio wiring would really help. The orange wire in the harness for the illumination isnt getting any power and Im afraid to start stripping the thing down to see where it leads to. At first I thought it was the radio so I bought the exact same one on Ebay and same prob. No display. Good thing the guy was gratious enough to give a refund. I noticed a broken ground wire from body to motor im going to fix. Also im going to pull dash off by speedo to see where the other end of the radio ground wire goes. Has to be in the wiring. I have a new light switch to install but as you state if everything else works thats a longshot. Changed the fuel pump this weekend with no help. What a bear. Im 67 so im hurting from that one. Im going to venture into the wiring this weekend. A wiring diagram would help greatly. bigwheell53@yahoo.com.. Thx again Moses

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Alright..So I found a broken off ground strap from firewall to motor..repaired that..Took the ground straps off firewall and cleaned them up.  I had the whole dash apart and installed a new light switch and disconnected all the harnesses and cleaned them and put that electrical grease on everything. Put it all together and VIOLA!!!! Everything works as it should AND I have my radio display back..Im really happy this is fixed and I thank Mosses for taking the time and helping me out with his advice..THANK YOU MOSES... 

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You're very welcome, Superwinch!  By covering all the bases, you know the unit will work properly.  You addressed the potential trouble areas all at the same time.  Good job and great results!

Moses

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So the display light goes off again after a couple of days..This weekend I cleaned all the grounds I could find..Battery ro firewall..Firewall to motor..firewall to hood..cleaned battery teminals..pulled dash apart and even made a now ground strap from behind cluster to radio..and also put electr grease on plugs..NOTHING..I was sitting there so angry I slammed my hand on the face of the radio and the display came on??? Go figure. Mabe it has a mind of its own and figured oh oh this guy is pissed so lets stop messing with him LOL..So anyway for now it works and if it goes out again I would think the bulb in the radio is going..Now to find out how to go about that if I need to..

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Sounds like the bulb or its socket(s)...Oxidation, corrosion or a defective bulb...Could be a solder joint or contact/terminal within the radio, look it over when apart.

Good news:  Your grounds are all sparkling clean!

Moses

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