Fuel Gauge Not Working? Try This First.... - JeepForum.com
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post #1 of 24 Old 11-11-2004, 06:08 PM Thread Starter
mikenj73
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Fuel Gauge Not Working? Try This First....

Ok, we all know about the legendary Jeep fuel gauge. If yours doesn't work, try this first. Take apart the center of the dash and remove the gauge. Take some fine sandpaper and clean the contacts on the back of the gauge and on the circuit board that the gauge mounts to. After you clean them off, put the gauge back and then turn your ignition on. If it doesn't work, try cleaning them a little more, making sure you covered all the spots where the gauge contacts the circuit board. Then put the gauge back in again and see if that does it. I figure it's worth a try. It's easier than replacing the sending unit and cheaper than replacing the gauge.


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post #2 of 24 Old 11-11-2004, 07:06 PM
sentinal02
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i did this when my voltmeter went out. definitely something to check before replacing the more complex stuff. just watch you don't bend the needle of the gauge doing it. i would also recommend a light coating of di-electric grease (same stuff you use on spark plugs) on the clean terminals to help prevent corrosion from reforming.

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post #3 of 24 Old 11-12-2004, 07:35 AM
oct7brian
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My guage didn't work and I did exactly that and it fixed everything.. just to confirm your experience to others

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post #4 of 24 Old 11-12-2004, 12:01 PM
Bobbywolf
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I had the same problem with my voltage guage. After checking all the wiring, I pulled the guages, removed the nut from behind the guage, and pulled off the contacts (yes, they just pull out). The contact surfaces were all green and oxidized. After cleaning them up, the guage worked like a charm.
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post #5 of 24 Old 11-13-2004, 12:56 AM
jeep75
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i had a similiar problem. the inside lights didn't work, tach didn't work, no gauges worked, no gauge lights worked. took gauges out cleaned them - nothing.

Took a look at the fuse box - totally blueish green. went to autozone bought an ignition point file (3 in a pack for 3-4 bucks) very thin. went to town on the two clips that hold the fuses in and the fuses themselves.

Guess what - everything BUT the fuel gauge works fine.

My fuel gauge goes down to 3/4 tank and sticks there.

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post #6 of 24 Old 11-13-2004, 11:03 AM
Bushey6
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THANKS for posting that! I had an inop oil press gauge- I just finished stripping it down, used my dremmel tool with the wire wheel and cleaned everything up (gently of course) and I have oil pressure again!! Thanks for the tip!
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post #7 of 24 Old 05-05-2015, 07:36 AM
Irish-n-Zwack
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I know this thread is as old as dinosaurs, but before I start a new thread, I wonder if someone could tell me whether this possible fix would work with electronic gauges? The vehicle is a '76 CJ-7, and I just purchased it and brought it home yesterday. One of the POs took out the old analog gauges and put in a new electronic panel, so all of the info is digital, now. I'm sure you can tell that I'm not a mechanic, and neither is my husband, but he's a quick learner, and if this option might work for us, I'm sure he'd be willing to give it a try. Since the monster chugs fuel like a college student chugs cheap beer during Spring Break in Miami (304 V-8 engine), it would be handy to know when it's getting close to empty so we don't get stranded somewhere far from home, someday....

Thanks in advance.

"In the end, only kindness matters."
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post #8 of 24 Old 05-05-2015, 10:44 AM
Que89YJ
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You should post a pic of the gauge if you thing it isn't stock. The gauge is easy to troubleshoot. Post up a new thread and you will get guidance from the peeps here on troubleshooting it.
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post #9 of 24 Old 05-05-2015, 12:16 PM
mark1305
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Bushey6 View Post
THANKS for posting that! I had an inop oil press gauge- I just finished stripping it down, used my dremmel tool with the wire wheel and cleaned everything up (gently of course) and I have oil pressure again!! Thanks for the tip!
I also have a "part time" oil pressure guage. Time to make time to pull the gauges out and clean those contacts.

Thanks for the tip.

And +1 on dialectric grease on any contact that gets cleaned - corrosion will sneak back in otherwise.
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post #10 of 24 Old 05-05-2015, 12:41 PM
bharris68
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Comments and suggestions are always welcomed
http://www.jeepforum.com/forum/f12/r...er-how-991307/
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post #11 of 24 Old 05-06-2015, 09:00 AM
Irish-n-Zwack
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Que89YJ View Post
You should post a pic of the gauge if you thing it isn't stock. The gauge is easy to troubleshoot. Post up a new thread and you will get guidance from the peeps here on troubleshooting it.
I'm not sure what you could figure out looking at a black glass (or acrylic or plexiglass--not sure which) panel that doesn't even show the digital numbers until the vehicle is turned on. It's definitely not original/stock :-). But if you want me to run out and take a pic of it, I can.

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post #12 of 24 Old 05-06-2015, 09:49 AM
Que89YJ
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Is it a needle indicators for fuel level? I've never seen a digital display of fuel level on any yj even after market. If it is digital art the gauge then you have to verify the tank sending unit first then the gauge.
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post #13 of 24 Old 05-06-2015, 12:07 PM
TennesseeYJ
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I run Autometer gauges in my Mustang. For the fuel gauge it's all about matching the "ohms" of the sending unit. YJs are 0-90 ohms. Below is a link to my site that has the video where I repaired my gauge cluster.

jeep-fuel-gauge-problems

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post #14 of 24 Old 05-06-2015, 12:31 PM
Que89YJ
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The gauge works on resistance. You can really make quick test and figure out where the problem is with a piece of wire. If the gauge reads full all the time it means that it is not seeing too high of resistance from the wiring to the tank or from the sending unit. 89 is full and 0 is empty. Use a short piece of wire and connect one side to a piece of metal near the tank. figure out which wire is the signal wire to the gauge and by either using a paper clip and pushing it into the connector for the wire at the tank or by using a pin and piercing the wire connect the other side of the wire you just grounded to the sending unit wire. If the wiring is good and the problem is in the tank you will see the fuel level go to empty. If it does the problem is in the tank. If it doesn't then you repeat the same process but this time in the front at the fuel gauge. If it still doesn't go to empty then the gauge is bad. This is the easiest way I know to test it.
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post #15 of 24 Old 05-07-2015, 12:28 PM
Irish-n-Zwack
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Que89YJ View Post
The gauge works on resistance. You can really make quick test and figure out where the problem is with a piece of wire. If the gauge reads full all the time it means that it is not seeing too high of resistance from the wiring to the tank or from the sending unit. 89 is full and 0 is empty. Use a short piece of wire and connect one side to a piece of metal near the tank. figure out which wire is the signal wire to the gauge and by either using a paper clip and pushing it into the connector for the wire at the tank or by using a pin and piercing the wire connect the other side of the wire you just grounded to the sending unit wire. If the wiring is good and the problem is in the tank you will see the fuel level go to empty. If it does the problem is in the tank. If it doesn't then you repeat the same process but this time in the front at the fuel gauge. If it still doesn't go to empty then the gauge is bad. This is the easiest way I know to test it.
I'll pass this on to my husband, and have him give it a try. Thanks for the suggestion!

"In the end, only kindness matters."
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