instrument panel lights -
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post #1 of 10 Old 10-07-2019, 04:24 PM Thread Starter
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1990 YJ Wrangler 
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instrument panel lights

1990 YJ 4.2 automatic. Bone stock. Not for sale.
My instrument panel lights have stopped working. Now when the headlights are on, only the turn indicator lights, steady on. Fuses all checked. Switch and dimmer checked. Any guesses?

Last edited by baudiom; 10-07-2019 at 04:58 PM.
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post #2 of 10 Old 10-07-2019, 05:03 PM
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Location: Port Orchard
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did they all stop all of a sudden? is your 5 gauge cluster and your speedo/tack out? so only the little black box in the center of your speedo/tach is working?

1987 YJ 4.2 / 1990 YJ 4.2 / 1995 YJ 4.0 / 2014 JKU / 2019 JLU
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post #3 of 10 Old 10-08-2019, 10:18 AM Thread Starter
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Actually they went out and came back a couple of times. I was beginning to think it was rain related. Now all the dash lights are out except the turn signal indicator (different circuit?). The interior light works from the dimmer switch. The odd thing is that instead of any instrument lights, the turn signal indicator stays steady on. Almost like a error indicator, I don't remember this being on with the headlights before.
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post #4 of 10 Old 10-09-2019, 08:47 AM
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Probably corrosion on the circuit board. They all get that way eventually.

is it the lights in the tach and speedo the gauges or both? Is the light on the heater control working?

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post #5 of 10 Old 10-09-2019, 02:12 PM Thread Starter
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All dash lights are out except the right turn sig indicator, which comes on steady with the headlights
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post #6 of 10 Old 11-14-2019, 03:33 PM
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Bumping this thread bc I'm having a similar issue, and I didn't see the need to start a new thread. My tach/speedo cluster light is out, 5 gauge cluster light is out, and my heater panel light is out. The panel directly above the steering wheel works normally, as do the under dash / door lights. I tried the obvious things like checking the fuses and bulbs, but that didn't do it. I have a multimeter, but I don't really know much about how to use it correctly. I'm thinking the easiest thing is to probably just direct wire it with a new wire from the switch, but I'm not sure which wire does what. All gauges work correctly, just no light.

Anyways, any help is appreciated.
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post #7 of 10 Old 11-14-2019, 06:23 PM
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1987 YJ Wrangler 
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If your right turn indicator is on with the headlamps try this. Is it also on with the park lamps? I am pretty sure it probably is.

One of your park, tail, turn signal bulbs can have a filament that is broken and touching the other filament. Replace both right meaning front and rear dual filament bulbs. Cheap and easy.

If that does not work your rear light is grounded by the mounting screws to the body and the front park turn light has a ground wire near the light somewhere. The grounds need to be clean.

When you replace the bulbs, make sure the sockets are clean and not green. Also make sure you have the tangs on the side of bulb oriented the correct way. One rides high and one rides low. The bulb has a right and wrong way to go in. If it does not go in correctly it will not twist properly and can cause contacts to cross and weird stuff to happen.

This is what I would chase first.

If you cannot fix it with a hammer then it has to be an electrical problem.
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post #8 of 10 Old 11-14-2019, 06:43 PM
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Sounds like a ground issue. I would start with the right side check the bulbs as stated above then check for power and ground.

When in doubt and you can't figure it out, Stand on it !
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post #9 of 10 Old 11-15-2019, 02:55 PM Thread Starter
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Update on the instrument panel lights. My son drained the battery the other night and had to get a jump. After the jump, all instruments lights returned to normal. To me this stinks of a weak or corroded connection somewhere that was made solid (at least temporarily) by either the extra power or exercising a connection during the jump. Anyway I will have a better clue to what to look for next time they fail.

Thanks for your suggestions
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post #10 of 10 Old 11-15-2019, 02:58 PM
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Had the same issue with my YJ, Took the cluster off and cleaned in very gently with a pencil eraser, converted the lights to LED bulbs, cleaned all the grounds and have had no issues in the past 4 years.
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