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Dashboard lights partly working

 
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Old 10 Nov 2014, 10:27 pm
Whistler's Avatar
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Default Dashboard lights partly working

Ever since I got my PT Cruiser (2003 Turbo) I always thought the dashboard lights were dim so I've always kept them up at the highest setting. The dimmest areas have always been the temperature gauge and the lower speedometer settings, everything on the left side of the center (75mph or 120km), in other words the brightest settings are way over what I'd normally be driving daily.

I try to avoid driving at night but had to go out tonight. The above mentioned dimmer section dash lights barely came on even at the highest setting I could not see the temp gauge or the left side of the speedometer. I turned it down one notch and I could barely see the speedometer, probably because I lessened the glare from the drive settings, though mostly I was guessing what speed I was driving. A little weird and unsettling. The light behind the gas gauge was fine. The right side highest speedometer settings were fine and the tachometer were fine. The car is automatic and the speed settings below the speedometer showed up just fine and the speed needle is also bright. Also fine are the center dashboard lights - temperature settings and radio. The last time I drove at night was 3 or 4 days ago and the lights were as they always have been.

I tried different dimmer settings. Tried the lights at low and high beam and with the fog lights on. Nothing changed. When I got where I was going I walked around the car and checked the exterior lights. All is good.

I'm not sure if its connected or not but this morning I discovered my rear defroster is not working. As part of troubleshooting I pulled out fuse 6 to see if it was good (yes) and put it back in. Is it possible I've done something to the dimmer lights while pulling out fuse 6. Maybe I didn't push it back in right.

Has anyone ever dealt with this, having the temp gauge and half the speedometer lit up dimmer than the rest of the dashboard lights and then pretty much go dark? Any suggestions? Looks like I'm going back to my mechanic anyway to check out why the rear defroster has stopped working. Thanks!
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Old 10 Nov 2014, 10:53 pm
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Default Re: Dashboard lights partly working

Are some lights completely out, or on but dimmer???
They do burn out.
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Old 11 Nov 2014, 12:10 am
Whistler's Avatar
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Default Re: Dashboard lights partly working

The lights are still on, went from being dim to very dim. I'd say the lights are just barely this side of being out. Its odd that the other half of the globe they're in the lights are normal.

I checked a video of changing the dashboard lights and it involves taking the entire dashboard out. I'm afraid that if I did that it would end up in an even bigger mess so it looks like a job for my mechanic.
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Old 11 Nov 2014, 02:21 am
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Default Re: Dashboard lights partly working

Quote:
Originally Posted by Whistler View Post
The lights are still on, went from being dim to very dim. I'd say the lights are just barely this side of being out. Its odd that the other half of the globe they're in the lights are normal.

I checked a video of changing the dashboard lights and it involves taking the entire dashboard out. I'm afraid that if I did that it would end up in an even bigger mess so it looks like a job for my mechanic.
it's not bad at all the entire dash doesn't have to come out. just a few plastic pieces to get to the instrument panel.

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Old 11 Nov 2014, 10:38 am
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Default Re: Dashboard lights partly working

I would suggest if you are going to remove the Instrument Cluster to check for a weak ground or cracks in the circuit board before replacing it. I would also try replacing all the light bulbs. One of the bulbs might have a short in it causing some of the other bulbs to dim.
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Old 14 Nov 2014, 07:20 pm
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Default Re: Dashboard lights partly working

Quote:
Originally Posted by ptcruisersteve View Post
I would suggest if you are going to remove the Instrument Cluster to check for a weak ground or cracks in the circuit board before replacing it. I would also try replacing all the light bulbs. One of the bulbs might have a short in it causing some of the other bulbs to dim.
Which circuit board? the dash circuit board?
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