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Unread 06-22-2013, 09:54 PM   #1
Shane0730
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2003 TJ Wrangler 
 
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Cluster gauge lights not working - signal lights good

I was driving around yesterday at night and when I left my area there are giant speed bumps. Right when I hit one of the bumps... my gauge lights went out. All signal lights (brake, seatbelt, turn signals, airbag etc. still work fine) just my gauge lights aren't working. I checked the proper fuses behind the glove box, they all check fine, but had some corrosion so I replaced them all anyway just for future measures. Still no luck. I removed the cluster and cleaned the contacts for both connections, they weren't dirty in the first place but I cleaned them anyway, still no luck. I have an '03 Sahara as you can see in my profile. The dimmer switch works fine also, the only part I can see dimming is my odometer and it goes to full bright, then the next click and my dome lights come on. My fog lights come on like they're supposed to as well, no issues there. I replaced the bulbs on the cluster to see if they were bad and tried again with no luck. I'm not sure where to go from here, so I want to ask you experts on here. I haven't had the TJ very long so I'm slowly learning where and what everything does. Any help would be appreciated. Thanks!

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Unread 06-22-2013, 11:34 PM   #2
higgins192
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It happened to me when I replaced my stereo. Check your fuze box behind your glove box and check the number 16 fuze I believe, (check the diagram) but its a 10A small one and that should fix it. Let me know how it turns out
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Unread 06-23-2013, 02:22 AM   #3
Shane0730
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Yes I checked all the fuses and they are all good. I do want to add that I used my multimeter to shoot for voltage at my #10 fuze which is my 'cluster' fuze and when the jeep was running I had 13VDC, so I know there's good power to the fuze and its not blowing it so its not shorted. Could my cluster just have gone bad? Being that its on a giant circuit card? Anyone have a diagram or some kind of schematic? Thanks
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Unread 06-23-2013, 08:12 PM   #4
higgins192
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What kind of switch is your headlights? I have the old school pull out one and those are known to go bad or get loose and when mine go out I jiggle it a bit an it comes back on. If that doesn't work I would check your contacts in the back of the cluster for any burn marks or moisture and clean out the contacts with some electronic cleaner spray, and put some electrical contact grease back in the harness. Check all your grounds just incase. The problem with electrical problems is there is a lot of components and hard to diagnose. I wish I could be more of a help. But that's all I got for suggestions
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Unread 06-23-2013, 08:20 PM   #5
Shane0730
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I'll try the jiggle trick. But I've found wiring diagrams and have shot all the wires and grounds and they have all been good. Everything works fine except for those five lights for the gauges. Just doesn't make sense to me. All the contacts are as clean as they would be new. I'm going to try and grab one from a junkyard but my model year is hard to come by. I've got the extra lights for the lockers on my cluster so my connector will only work for 03-06. Any other suggestions would be helpful!
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Unread 06-23-2013, 08:59 PM   #6
higgins192
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Well I suppose you checked all the bulbs I just refer back to the tried and true jeep method of bang on it with your fist haha it worked on my TJ with the switch lights and my friends YJ gauge lights. How ever what are the chances that your brightness is turned down or that part of your switch is bad?
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Unread 06-23-2013, 10:49 PM   #7
Shane0730
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Well I've done a lot of shooting wires. So far I have determined the cluster is not bad. According to 2 different wiring diagrams I'm using, the wire for the lights on the cluster is an Orange wire. The same orange wire powers the A/C control lights (which don't work either) and also is the illumination/dimmer wire for the radio. It says it's fuse number 12 which I have power at when in Run or engine running, but no power to the lights. I've been trying to find out where the splice point is for these wires. The diagrams say "S206" on all of them where this orange wire splices off to everything, I just can't find it. If anyone knows where S206 is please let me know. The dimmer switch on my left steering column switch works for my odometer only, but turns on the some lights like it should. The parking lights and headlights part of it works fine, and the fog light switch works fine as well. I think I'm looking at a broken splice for that orange wire... I just have to find it!
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Unread 06-24-2013, 07:53 AM   #8
twshutika
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i am having this exact problem, dash lights out but everything else works, BUT if i mess with the head light switch and pull it out until just before the headlights come on sometimes my dash lights will work. . . ( does that make sense?) im still ata loss, because since i know it works some times its not the fuss, i checked and cleaned the grounds, checked all connections. replaced the headlight switch. no idea yet though.
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Unread 06-24-2013, 10:33 AM   #9
Jonny Jeep
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S206 is described as center rear of instrument panel, so pretty much behind/under the heater controls. It shown in the connector/ground/splice locations section of the FSMs, though the loom is shown away from the panel so the exact location isn't entirely clear. In 03 the cluster controls the dimmable lamps and if the odometer dims I'd expect the cluster illumination lamps to work even if a bad splice was preventing the heater lamps illuminating. I should add though that it's not unknown for the lamp driver circuitry within the cluster to fail.

One work around that I've suggested in the past is to tap the wire from the marker lamp feed coming from the light switch to that orange wire. It means that the dash/cluster will light up, but it will be at full brightness and non dimmable.
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Unread 06-28-2013, 02:11 AM   #10
Shane0730
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Just to update anyone who may have this problem or interested to know what I got to. I troubleshot it down to a bad instrument cluster. I spent a lot of time following this orange wire up and down the dash and found that it splices off to several other places (radio, AC/heater controls, etc.) and terminates at an empty connector under the console near the 4WD handle. After that I looked closer at the wiring diagrams and found a good FSM for my year and looked at the diagrams there. Apparently that orange wire is power coming from the instrument cluster to send power to all the other lighting that comes on when the parking lights or headlights are turned on. Due to the fact that my marker lights and all the other lights on my cluster work except for the 5 backlights, I'm assuming it's the cluster. Power comes in from fuse 10 to power the entire cluster, then once the lights are turned on it powers the 5 bulbs on the cluster then goes out to the other interior lights. No junk yards I have called have any Wranglers in stock and no Cherokee's passed 1996. The dealership said it's a special order item and it's $900 for the cluster... safe to say I'm not buying anything from a dealership, they rob everyone anyway. Ebay has some for around $200 so I might try that and see where it leads me.

I still haven't been able to find a clear answer if my year model has the mileage stored in the cluster or in the ECM. If it's in the cluster than I have to find a way to get the mileage changed to match mine. But that's where I'm at now if anyone has anything else to add or inform me about. Thanks for the help!
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Unread 06-28-2013, 04:45 AM   #11
Jonny Jeep
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The Mileage is stored in both the cluster and PCM. Have you considered just tapping the dash/cluster lights into the marker light circuit as I've already suggested?
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Unread 06-28-2013, 05:03 AM   #12
Shane0730
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Jonny Jeep View Post
The Mileage is stored in both the cluster and PCM. Have you considered just tapping the dash/cluster lights into the marker light circuit as I've already suggested?
Yes, and from my understand it's not possible. If you look at the Jeep Knowledge Base online repair manual, I was going off of the "Wiring-Instrument Cluster" diagram, page 8W-40-9. You can see that power comes in from the Run-Start G5, which if you look at that diagram (8W-11-7) it's power straight from fuse 10, which is power for the entire cluster. When the ignition switch is turned to Run/Start and the lights switch is turned to parking or headlights on, the power to the cluster is what powers the panel lights, and then goes out to power the other lights via splice point S206. Therefore the cluster lamps properly working send the power to the other lights. Unless I can find a diagram of the cluster circuitry than I can't tap into another wire just to power the panel lights. Since the cluster is a big circuit card it's not like I can just splice into another wire to power just the lamps. Unless I'm missing something than please lead me in the right direction.
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Unread 06-29-2013, 03:15 PM   #13
Jonny Jeep
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It's been done by people already and reported as working. If you want to be certain there's no current going to feed into the cluster anywhere it shouldn't you may want to try and trace the circuit going around the back of the cluster. If you make a cut in the printed circuit that would isolate it from the cluster chip but leave it connected to the output pin to the dash lighting there would be no chance of current leaking. As said though is has been reported as working for people so far. I couldn't find the threads in my replies so the OPs of those threads could have been asked for input.
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Rockauto 5% discount code can be found here... http://www.markviii.org/LOD2/products_services.htm

Online factory service manuals (FSMs) and parts lists can be viewed at http://www.jeep4x4center.com/knowledge-base/index.htm
If the link doesn't work properly, look for the service manual link under Jeep Resources at the bottom of the page.
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