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Unread 04-03-2010, 02:23 PM   #1
chosos
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1987 YJ Wrangler 
 
Join Date: Apr 2009
Location: michigan
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fuel gauge is at max and none of the other gauges or lights work?

the gauge cluster with the clock, fuel, temp, oil, batt does not seem to work correctly.

the fuel gauge instantly goes to full the clock does not move, and the rest of the gauges remain unworking.

i have the whole dash out so im looking for some ideas on what to check or how to troubleshoot it.

and ive already cleaned all the contacts and checked the fuses - i didnt see any blown

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Unread 04-03-2010, 02:28 PM   #2
littlejohn411
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Sounds like a bad ground especially the way the fuel gauge is acting.
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Unread 04-03-2010, 02:39 PM   #3
chosos
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where is the ground for that cluster located?

if ground is the black wire on the cluster plug, then i am showing no resistance to that and the frame - would mean its working - if that black is the ground
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Unread 04-03-2010, 02:54 PM   #4
littlejohn411
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I tried searching and found this, it will give you a place to start.

http://www.jeepforum.com/forum/f12/g...orking-757752/
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Unread 04-03-2010, 07:21 PM   #5
chosos
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i tore apart all the gauges and sanded all the contacts. I now have a working fuel gauge (showing 1/2 tank), volt meter, clock, but no oil pressure or engine temp. I'm going to rip it apart again tomorrow and give it another sanding with the dremmel. Is it also true that the brackets on the back are polarity sensitive and only work one way? Also... NONE of my gauge lights work - from the speedo tach to any in the cluster block. any clues?
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Unread 04-03-2010, 08:25 PM   #6
BioTex
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Quote:
Originally Posted by chosos View Post
i tore apart all the gauges and sanded all the contacts. I now have a working fuel gauge (showing 1/2 tank), volt meter, clock, but no oil pressure or engine temp. I'm going to rip it apart again tomorrow and give it another sanding with the dremmel. Is it also true that the brackets on the back are polarity sensitive and only work one way? Also... NONE of my gauge lights work - from the speedo tach to any in the cluster block. any clues?
I have exactly the same problem in my newly aquired 88. One of the reasons I got it cheap.

I found a green fusible link blown, and soldered in a new one. I took apart the bulk head connector, and cleaned it. I took off the fuse box and cleaned all contacts. I found alot of them loose where the fuse plugs into, so I used small needle nose plyers to crush them back together. It worked fairly well.

When I turned on the key, my gas gauge pegged full. I found the tan wire open at the connector to the sending unit, so I soldered it back. The gas gauge works better now, but still the needle moves around like the gas is sloshing around, even though it is not.

Still no temp or oil. The clock works, as well as the volts.

I took the cluster apart, and cleaned things, but still nothing.

I did notice the E-brake does not have those black wires hooked up to the switch. Maybe that is the ground?

I've looked over the wiring diagrams, but can't seem to figure out why the oil and temp both don't register. Let me know if you figure it out.
I'll do the same.
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Unread 04-03-2010, 09:19 PM   #7
chosos
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Quote:
Originally Posted by BioTex View Post
I found a green fusible link blown, and soldered in a new one. I took apart the bulk head connector, and cleaned it. I took off the fuse box and cleaned all contacts. I found alot of them loose where the fuse plugs into, so I used small needle nose plyers to crush them back together. It worked fairly well.

When I turned on the key, my gas gauge pegged full. I found the tan wire open at the connector to the sending unit, so I soldered it back. The gas gauge works better now, but still the needle moves around like the gas is sloshing around, even though it is not.
My gas gauge is sitting at half a tank. I think that might be fixed after a more in depth cleaning. I'm not sure what you mean about a green fusible link, or what the bulk head connector is. I am hoping to avoid pulling the fuse box. This wiring seems like a mess.

I had the previous owner do a hack job trying to install an aftermarket radio and now its all a mess.
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Unread 04-03-2010, 09:42 PM   #8
BioTex
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Quote:
Originally Posted by chosos View Post
My gas gauge is sitting at half a tank. I think that might be fixed after a more in depth cleaning. I'm not sure what you mean about a green fusible link, or what the bulk head connector is. I am hoping to avoid pulling the fuse box. This wiring seems like a mess.

I had the previous owner do a hack job trying to install an aftermarket radio and now its all a mess.
Yeah, that's exactly what happened to me. PO just cut wires, and when things didn't work, he would just run new ones. You know what I mean.


The green fusable link is down to the right of the battery and below. A fusable link is a piece of wire 2 gauges smaller than the wire it protects. It will melt before your other wires, so it's a safety thing. Your YJ has several of them. One
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1971 800B with 345/T-19
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Last edited by BioTex; 04-05-2010 at 07:28 AM..
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Unread 04-04-2010, 08:06 AM   #9
24vtd
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mine was the printed circuit board bought a new one on ebay for 80 bucks all gauges work great now
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Unread 04-04-2010, 08:07 AM   #10
chosos
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80 bucks seems really pricey. I'd rather just solder in new leads. :-(

I've taken it apart again and now i have the oil pressure working sort of... it goes all the way to max when the key is on (not started). they are all about as clean as they'll get. I also took solder and covered some of the copper trace pads for the lights. I still cant get the lights to come on and the harness is also registering no voltage for the lights, so im not sure what the deal is... does anything else have to be hooked up for the gauge lights to work (aside from the headlight switch / dimmer)?
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Unread 04-04-2010, 05:41 PM   #11
chosos
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okay...

Temp Gauge - problem was the wire wasnt connected to the engine - Fixed
Gas Gauge - says I have half a tank - maybe it's right
Volt Meter - Fixed
Oil Pressure - Still shows beyond 80 - I'm not sure what the deal with this one is... where the is the oil pressure lead in the engine bay?

Gauge lights - They do not dim - they are either on or off. sorta confusing - sorta fixed?
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Unread 04-05-2010, 12:32 AM   #12
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The latest JP has a great article about Electrical Gremlins. All above info is covered.
Clean out all the plugs where they pass through the firewall.
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Unread 04-05-2010, 08:00 AM   #13
firebrick43
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I just fixed the same problem last week on mine.

First check remove the wire on the oil sensor which should be on the front right of a 4 cylinder and with a multimeter check resistance from ground to the connector tab on top. It should be 0 when the engine is off. If not(mine wasn't) get a new sensor and replace. My oil gauge still read 20 psi with the switch in the run position but the engine off. So I did the following.

Remove and clean the grounds on the fire wall and engine block. Use a scotch bright pad and smear with di electric grease before reinstallation. I think there was 3 different ground studs on my fire wall and two on the engine block on mine, do them all while your at it.

Then remove the gauge panel from the dash and un hook the connector in the back. Using a pencil eraser and pencil eraser only clean the contacts of both the connector and the wire traces. Also remove the nut on the back of each gauge(one at a time to keep your sanity) and carefully pry off the black plastic gauge connector. Each connector has two studs and small pads. On the connector and connector only use a small pieces of scotchbright pad to shine up. On the wire trace where the pads of the connector set against use the pencil eraser. Apply a very small amount using a q tip of dielectric grease before putting back on the connector(studs and pads) and reinstall. Don't over tighten the nut, just snug it down until the small lock washer is compressed. Repeat on the other gauges.

Using the qtip put a thin coating of dielectic grease on the connector and plug in. Turn the key to the run position and the oil gauge should read 0. If higher and you cleaned the contacts then there is a problem in the wires.

Doing this I fixed my all of my gauges and it didn't cost me anything but a half hours worth of time and a new oil pressure sensor.

Also while the gauge panel is out, carefully disengage the clips and pull the clear plastic lens off. (Dont touch the pointers of the gauge) clean the gauge faces with a q tip or computer compressed air lightly.

Use a plastic polish on the clear lens like novus. Mine look like new now that I did that.

Good luck.

The dash lights being either off or on is caused by the headlight switch cluster. The little roller switch controls this and is probably corroded. Replace it if you want to adjust.
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Unread 04-05-2010, 08:03 AM   #14
chosos
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thanks - good info. i need to figure out where that sensor is on a 4.2L now.
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Unread 04-05-2010, 08:20 AM   #15
firebrick43
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According to the picture in my Haynes manual it appear to be rear ward of the distributor down by the oil filter.
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