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Am putting together an 86 Alfa Spider that I purchased with the interior and trunk pieces totally torn out and in pieces. I need help with 2 questions dealing with electrical problems:

1) In the attached picture what is the portion of the tail light with the question mark in the picture below (the portion that sits directly above the reverse light? I have replaced the tail light fixtures and bulbs, all portions of the lights work except for that one segment. I can't figure out when it is supposed to light and my shop manual doesn't answer the question.

2) The driver turn signal light and blinker work but when I try the passenger it immediately blows the fuse. I have upplugged the tail lamp assembly and it still blows the fuse which tells me it is either the front turn signal fixture, which I also serviced and replaced the bulbs or something in the wiring. Any suggestions on how best to go about tracing down a short in the turn signal system?

Thanks. This site has already been a very big help to [email protected]

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1) The '?' doesn't light up on our '84 Spider. I suspect (as in I'm guessing but don't know) it for a European-only use. However, the tail light on our Spider is horizontal...!

2) remove the bulbs from F&R turn signals, make sure the bases and contacts are in good order then use an ohm meter to look for faults. Look for wires pinched and insulation worn, burned, or defective. For good measure replace the bulbs while you are at it.
 

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The ? mark light is part of the brake light, the reason it is blowing fuses is that the copper pins in have shorted at the bulb in the trunk.
 

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The Alfa shop manual's rear lighting schematics indicates a 'Fog Light' (#E16). The USA owner's manual makes no mention of that.
I had wondered why my whole lighting in back lit up like that when I turned the rear fog lights on!!! It makes it appear as though my brakes are always on.
 

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Rear fog lights are required in Europe. U.S. Spiders did not originally have these, but later series 3 cars did. I'm not sure if this started in '86 or not for U.S. Spiders, but my '87 has them...

Best regards,
 

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Rear Fog Lights

OK my guess was a good one.

Now, please explain what rear fog lights are. Are they extra tail lights? Are they the same brightness as tail lights or brake lights?
They are like extra tail lights to provide more visibility in fog situations.

I'm glad the later series have them as Spiders are much smaller than all the minivans and SUVs out there these days. I consider it a good idea to always drive with the headlights and the rear fog lights on even in the day light. Any thing that helps me be seen is a good thing as we are just a few steps up from a motorcycle when riding around in these cars. Note: they will only come when the headlights are also on.
 

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... Now, please explain what rear fog lights are. Are they extra tail lights? Are they the same brightness as tail lights or brake lights?
They are just another set of bulbs inside the tail light assembly. In the series 3b and series 4 Spiders one of the push button switches in the center console turns them on, and an indicator fog light display lights up in the monopod instrument cluster. The lights are the same intensity as the other bulbs, and in Europe you are supposed to turn them on in foggy conditions.

In your '84 Spider, in between the power window switches and the emergency flashers switch, there is an empty slot. That is where the fog light switch is located in European Spiders, and the switch is sold by European outfits. The OEM tail light assembly of the '84 Spider never came fitted with the fog bulbs, and it is different from the later series 3 assemblies, although they look identical when fitted on the cars.

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On my 89 the fog lights are just that-for increased visibility. They ar not additional brake kights.
Not sure about yours, but mine come on with the brakelights, also, my lights will light up (fog lights that is) with just the parking lights on (headlights themselves do not need to be on).
 

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Thought I'd Chime In

My 86 Quad has a set of rear fog lights in the ? spot, connected directly to the center console fog light switch. My IA manual shows this as well. Since I don't need them in the U.S. I connected these lights to the brake lights after replacing all the bulbs with low draw LED bulbs. This gives me twice the brake light without over drawing power.
 

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Not sure about yours, but mine come on with the brakelights, also, my lights will light up (fog lights that is) with just the parking lights on (headlights themselves do not need to be on).
Unless I'm misunderstanding this post, it is not the way the fog lights are meant to work. The fog lights should only come on when you turn them on manually, via the switch on the console...

Best regards,
 
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