harley davidson turn signal troubleshooting

Harley Davidson Turn Signal Troubleshooting Guide

Harley Davidson motorcycles are famed for their power, finesse and reliability. However, like any machine, they may experience difficulties on occasion – especially with electrical issues. An all-too-common problem that riders of these magnificent machines might face is turn signal trouble and today we’re here to do some Harley Davidson turn signal troubleshooting.

Turn signals are a vital part of motorcycle safety, and most states require them to be in working order. Unfortunately, malfunctioning turn signal lights can be difficult to fix on the road – especially for Harley Davidson Touring bikes. To keep you from getting into trouble with the law, this article will provide help with Harley Davidson turn signal troubleshooting and solve your turn signal issues as quickly as possible.

Step 1 – Check your connections

To troubleshoot your turn signals, you should begin by inspecting their connections. If all the signals are not functioning, start with the simplest solutions and proceed through the process step-by-step for optimal success.

More often than not, the source of a malfunction is something simple like a loose wire. And if your bike has been in storage for an extended period due to temperature, moisture and dust changes, then it becomes even more likely that you’ll encounter some issues.

To perform Harley Davidson turn signal troubleshooting on the issues at hand, you will need a voltmeter, multimeter or test light, Phillips screwdriver and needle nose pliers. Additionally to ensure safety have emery cloth and electrical tape on hand. Firstly inspect the fuse box for any irregularities; examine all wires for breaks or constrictions as well as signals connecting directly to hazard lights cases. If only one side is not illuminating then investigate power supply leading into bulb plug-ins connections.

Expert Advice: Additionally, contemplate what type of repairs were recently done to the bike that could have caused disruption in its blinker system. It’s possible a connection may not have been secured tightly and became loose due to vibration or another factor.

Step 2 – Check your bulbs

If your flashers are functioning properly but the turn signals remain off, it’s likely that there isn’t enough amperage running through the system load equalizer. To remedy this situation you should switch out the bulbs for some hotter varieties which draw more current.

The left and right turn signals are equipped with two bulbs each, while the emergency flashers have four. This is often why your hazard lights will be functional even when the turning indicators don’t work; there’s a higher amount of load in their circuitry that helps them remain lit.

If you are having trouble with this, ensure that the bulbs are correct and clean both sockets they go into. Also make sure to check if there is a good ground at the socket. If everything else fails, consider switching to an automobile-style low watt flasher for more efficient functioning.

Expert Advice: A small amount of dielectric grease should be gently applied to the bulb socket connections. However, it is important not to use too much as this can cause connectivity issues. Remember: a little goes a long way.

Step 3 – Check your components

If your turn signals are stubbornly staying on, the issue could be rooted in either connection to the speedometer or even with your TSSM. To start troubleshooting, begin by inspecting all switches and wires connected to the speedometer for any that may be loose or disconnected. Additionally, ensure that there is no problem occurring within the tip switch responsible for canceling if ever a bike were to fall over.

Your motorcycle may contain a Bank Angle Sensor (BAS), typically situated in the Turn Signal Security Module (TSM or TSSM). To make sure your ride is running smoothly, take some time to clean and check out the speed sensor. If you need to reset your TSSM security module, simply refer to Step 5 for an easy-to-follow guide.

Expert Advice: As you progress through your Harley Davidson turn signal troubleshooting project, be sure to set aside adequate time for yourself. Additionally, exercising caution as you work on the wiring harness will help ensure that any existing connections are not inadvertently disturbed.

Step 4 – Lights blink too fast

Got a bike with aftermarket LED signal lights that don’t seem to be working properly? Don’t worry – rapid blinking is normal for these types of setups. To troubleshoot, check the equalizers and light socket for any dirt or grime buildup and inspect your wiring for shorts. If all else fails, it could just be a bad bulb.

Installing LED lights on a Harley Davidson might trigger the failure alert system, as they draw less amperage than expected. To fix this issue, you must add a load equalizer to the line; it enables the power source to recognize that two incandescent bulbs are present even though only one is installed. With this in mind, your bike’s electrical system will function properly without any errors or alerts.

Inspect the light bulbs for any burnt ends; if you find any, replace them immediately. Examine the sockets and remove dust from their connections. Additionally, assess for connectivity issues in its ground wiring – should there be a short circuit detected, proceed with caution to avoid further damage or injury.

The cause of this issue could be hidden anywhere from beneath the seat to within your fairing. Make sure you inspect all wires for any signs of damage or disruption in connectivity.

Pro Tip: When it comes to boosting the performance and freshening up your bike’s appearance, custom modifications are always welcome. But be careful when making any electrical changes, as this can cause some troublesome issues if done incorrectly. Stay aware of all potential hazards beforehand.

Step 5 – TSSM reading and resetting trouble codes

After you’ve cleaned your terminals and sockets as well as checked your connections, proceed to examine the codes for further Harley Davidson turn signal troubleshooting.

The TSSM offers a wide range of functions, from canceling signals after turns and stopping cancellation under 7 mph to turning off the bike/fuel pump post-tip over. Additionally, its “accelerometer” accurately records lean angle and speed so as to provide tailored advice for optimal performance.

To read and reset the TSSM Security Module, follow these steps:

  1. Ensure that the load equalizer module is installed correctly.
  2. Make sure to always switch the run/off button off.
  3. Cycle the ignition key switch from ‘on’ to ‘off’, then back to ‘on’.
  4. Rapidly press and release the left turn signal switch, repeating as necessary. (The signals should flash one to three times – if they do not respond after that, don’t proceed.)
  5. Press the right turn signal switch and let go. You should see the indicator light blink once to confirm your action.
  6. Push and release the right turn signal switch. (You’ll see it blink twice.)
  7. To activate your right turn signal, press and hold the switch until you hear three quick flashes of the indicator light.
  8. Push and hold down the left turn signal switch, then let go. (You’ll be able to see error codes flashing on your turn signal indicators.)
  9. To activate your left turn signal, press and hold the lever for approximately four to five seconds until you hear two flashes from the indicator.
  10. Flip the ignition key switch to off.

Conclusion On Harley Davidson turn signal troubleshooting

In summation, problems with Harley turn signals can be both irritating and hazardous for riders. Nevertheless, by utilizing suitable devices and troubleshooting techniques you should have no difficulty pinpointing the issue. Initial steps always include examining your connections, lamps, and components before resolving to further complex issues. Keep in mind to give yourself plenty of time when dealing with electric wiring – take extra precautions.


Below are some frequently asked questions (FAQs) on the topic of Harley Davidson turn signal troubleshooting:

What are the most common causes of turn signal issues on Harley Davidson Touring bikes?

From broken wires to blown fuses, Harley Davidson Touring bikes are susceptible to faulty turn signal systems. Malfunctioning switches and flashers, as well as malfunctioning bulbs or sockets can also be the culprits. Additionally, problems with the TSSM (Turn Signal Security Module) or other components may cause issues too.

How can I perform Harley Davidson turn signal troubleshooting?

To evaluate your Harley Davidson Touring bike’s turn signal issues, it is recommended to inspect the connections, fuses, wiring and lightbulbs for any potential malfunctions. Utilizing a voltmeter or test light can assist you in determining whether power and continuity has been disrupted.
Additionally, viewing the turn signal switch, flasher and other sections of the vehicle may reveal wear or damage that requires attention. Above all else make sure to reset TSSM as well clear any diagnostic trouble codes associated with this issue.

Why do my turn signals blink too fast on my Harley Davidson Touring bike?

Is your Harley Davidson Touring bike’s indicator light flashing too quickly? This often indicates an issue with the load equalizer, LED lights, or wiring. To investigate this problem further, you should inspect the bulbs and sockets for proper function as well as ensure that any LED lights are installed correctly with a load equalizer to match up two incandescent bulb loads.

Can I ride my Harley Davidson Touring bike with a broken turn signal?

While you may be able to technically ride your Harley Davidson Touring bike with a broken turn signal, it’s not advisable for safety and legal purposes. Turn signals are vital for motorbike security, in particular during the night time hours; furthermore, having an inactive or malfunctioning turn light is illegal in many states. Therefore it’s important that you get your signals mended as soon as possible to avert any potential accidents or litigation problems.

Do I need to take my bike to a professional mechanic Harley Davidson turn signal troubleshooting?

If you’re a motorcycle enthusiast and confident in handling wiring operations and repairs, many problems with the turn signals on your Harley Davidson Touring bike can be resolved using fundamental troubleshooting techniques as well as some tools. However, if you are uncertain or lack expertise when it comes to fixing bikes, entrust an experienced mechanic to address the issue in order to guarantee that no further harm is done while ensuring safety concerns are addressed.

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