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Unread 11-15-2014, 10:50 PM   #1
uhohthe50
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1990 YJ Wrangler 
 
Join Date: Jan 2009
Location: , Michigan
Posts: 454
Gauge backlights flickering

I've had a problem with my gauges for a little while that happens half the time I drive my yj. The backlights for gauges on my dash will have a constant flicker. It doesn't happen on the Speedo and tach, just the smaller gauges in the center of the dash. If it makes any difference I've had the led bulbs in the dash for a while now. They worked fine when I first put them in though.

I'm assuming this is caused by a bad ground somewhere. Anyone else have this issue? Where are the grounds at for the dash?

I've heard the dimmer switch will cause similar issues so I took mine off and cleaned up the terminals. I also bought a spare from the junkyard and tried that one too but still had the same issue.

Any suggestions?

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Unread 11-16-2014, 03:03 AM   #2
Gausswave
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Location: some where in the Cascades, WA
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Have you cleaned up the contacts on the PWB recently? The TAC, Spedo and gages are fed from the same place so it's unlikely the dimmer switch is bad.
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Unread 11-16-2014, 07:50 AM   #3
uhohthe50
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Gausswave View Post
Have you cleaned up the contacts on the PWB recently? The TAC, Spedo and gages are fed from the same place so it's unlikely the dimmer switch is bad.
What's the pwb?
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Unread 11-16-2014, 12:22 PM   #4
Gausswave
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Quote:
Originally Posted by uhohthe50 View Post
What's the pwb?
PWB = Printed Wire Board. It's the piece that has all the circuits on it. The copper oxidizes causing poor connections. Some times small cracks form at the connections causing intermittent connections. Not hard to fix but can be hard find.
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Unread 11-16-2014, 06:21 PM   #5
sdotcarter
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1995 YJ Wrangler 
 
Join Date: Nov 2011
Location: Fort Kent, Me
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Get This:
http://shop.advanceautoparts.com/p/p...9117/7160063-P

And some clear nail polish.

Follow this guide:
http://www.jeepforum.com/forum/f12/r...er-how-991307/

While its apart I'd recommend the led dash light mod.
http://www.jeepforum.com/forum/f12/l...te-up-1003751/
I have it done and its a very great improvement.

When you pull your instrument cluster out, removed your PCB and sand it lightly. If the copper is green sand it down. If there is no longer a connection, use the defogger repair and with a steady hand redraw the line.

After you get it all done, smother it in clear nail polish. I did this because of a pesky windshield leak and the 3rd time I redrew my board I said enough is enough.

Clean all contacts thoroughly and you'll be golden.

(edit)
I reinstalled my PCB while the nail polish was tacky so hopefully it would set to the curves behind the cluster.
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Unread 11-18-2014, 06:39 AM   #6
uhohthe50
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1990 YJ Wrangler 
 
Join Date: Jan 2009
Location: , Michigan
Posts: 454
Quote:
Originally Posted by sdotcarter View Post
Get This:
http://shop.advanceautoparts.com/p/p...9117/7160063-P

And some clear nail polish.

Follow this guide:
http://www.jeepforum.com/forum/f12/r...er-how-991307/

While its apart I'd recommend the led dash light mod.
http://www.jeepforum.com/forum/f12/l...te-up-1003751/
I have it done and its a very great improvement.

When you pull your instrument cluster out, removed your PCB and sand it lightly. If the copper is green sand it down. If there is no longer a connection, use the defogger repair and with a steady hand redraw the line.

After you get it all done, smother it in clear nail polish. I did this because of a pesky windshield leak and the 3rd time I redrew my board I said enough is enough.

Clean all contacts thoroughly and you'll be golden.

(edit)
I reinstalled my PCB while the nail polish was tacky so hopefully it would set to the curves behind the cluster.
Great information . I'll probably try pulling it out this weekend and cleaning it up.

I'd still like to know where the factory grounds are at for the dash. If that ends up being the problem I can always make my own.
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Unread 11-19-2014, 12:38 PM   #7
sdotcarter
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Location: Fort Kent, Me
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I wouldnt know where the factory grounds are, but maybe this wiring diagram will help. (PDF Format)
http://www.harostreetmedia.net/iwant...ams-copy-1.pdf
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Unread 11-19-2014, 03:30 PM   #8
dancytron
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1990 YJ Wrangler 
 
Join Date: Jun 2008
Location: st. louis
Posts: 1,667
check out this thread http://www.jeepforum.com/forum/f12/r...er-how-991307/
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Unread 11-20-2014, 10:13 AM   #9
uhohthe50
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Location: , Michigan
Posts: 454
Thanks for the info everyone. I'll post my findings once I get a chance to work on it
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Unread 04-29-2015, 11:15 AM   #10
uhohthe50
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1990 YJ Wrangler 
 
Join Date: Jan 2009
Location: , Michigan
Posts: 454
Sorry, I never posted a reply about this. My lights are working great now. All I had to do was take out the cluster and clean up the contacts on the circuit paper. I even was able to get my dash clock to work The strip running as the power source to the clock was completely burned up. I took a really small wire and soldered it in place of the burned out strip. It works great now!

Here's the burned up clock strip


Kind of hard to see but here's a before shot of the strip where the connector plugs in:


And After:


one of the bulb sockets before:


After:
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