Stumped on a Gauge Issue..... - JeepForum.com
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post #1 of 21 Old 04-30-2018, 10:08 PM Thread Starter
JDennis
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Stumped on a Gauge Issue.....

I bought my TJ a month ago and been tracking down why the gauges randomly work. I did all the tricks mentioned online and searched the grounds I could find. And they were all tight.

I tracked it down to if my gauges don't work, if I press the defrost button they will start working. Everytime. What else should I check?

Also my blower motor intermittently works, I did the fan switch, blower motor resistor and checked all connections. It all checked out.

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post #2 of 21 Old 04-30-2018, 10:31 PM
gollywomper
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Check the blower motor ground. Think it might be just under the passenger side dash speaker.
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post #3 of 21 Old 05-01-2018, 02:09 AM
Jonny Jeep
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If all of the dash controlled lamps work when doing the cluster actuator test, but no gauges, then you have ground and switched power but are not getting feed from the IOD fuse under the hood.
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post #4 of 21 Old 05-01-2018, 10:24 AM
Jerry Bransford
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You haven't bothered to fill out your Profile yet so we'd know what model year you have but early TJs like 97-99 commonly had bad connections in the connectors behind the instrument cluster.

When you have a choice, buy American made.
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post #5 of 21 Old 05-01-2018, 08:56 PM Thread Starter
JDennis
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Sorry Jerry. I did not see a place to put my jeep in a Profile. It is a 99 TJ, 4.0l Manual.
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post #6 of 21 Old 05-04-2018, 05:50 PM
mukluk
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Quote:
Originally Posted by JDennis View Post
I bought my TJ a month ago and been tracking down why the gauges randomly work. I did all the tricks mentioned online and searched the grounds I could find. And they were all tight.

I tracked it down to if my gauges don't work, if I press the defrost button they will start working. Everytime. What else should I check?

Also my blower motor intermittently works, I did the fan switch, blower motor resistor and checked all connections. It all checked out.
Saying you did all the tricks mentioned doesn't tell us much as to what you actually did, please clarify what you have done.

TJ's don't have "defrost buttons", what are you pressing to get the gauges to work?

Is the blower motor intermittent in all speeds, only certain speeds, and is there anything common to how/when it quits?

2000 TJ SE
2005 LJ Rubicon
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post #7 of 21 Old 05-05-2018, 04:33 PM
Jerry Bransford
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Quote:
Originally Posted by JDennis View Post
Sorry Jerry. I did not see a place to put my jeep in a Profile. It is a 99 TJ, 4.0l Manual.
Go to the top of the page and click on My Account. Then click on Your Profile where you'll see places to edit your Profile so you can add your Jeep's details to help everyone when you ask future questions.

When you have a choice, buy American made.
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post #8 of 21 Old 05-06-2018, 08:59 AM Thread Starter
JDennis
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Quote:
Originally Posted by mukluk View Post
Quote:
Originally Posted by JDennis View Post
I bought my TJ a month ago and been tracking down why the gauges randomly work. I did all the tricks mentioned online and searched the grounds I could find. And they were all tight.

I tracked it down to if my gauges don't work, if I press the defrost button they will start working. Everytime. What else should I check?

Also my blower motor intermittently works, I did the fan switch, blower motor resistor and checked all connections. It all checked out.
Saying you did all the tricks mentioned doesn't tell us much as to what you actually did, please clarify what you have done.

TJ's don't have "defrost buttons", what are you pressing to get the gauges to work?

Is the blower motor intermittent in all speeds, only certain speeds, and is there anything common to how/when it quits?
Mine was a factory hard top, and has the rear defrost and rear wiper buttons. That is the defrost button I am pushing. I did replace the blower fan resistor and switch and the blower motor worked for a day. Now it doesn't work at all. I checked the plug and cleaned up the plug at the gauges, checked the ground down by the did box behind the glove box. It was all good. Also the plug to the climate controls look good.
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post #9 of 21 Old 05-07-2018, 01:39 PM
mukluk
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The rear window element is called a defogger, not a defroster, hence the confusion.

Pressing the rear window defogger switch completes a ground circuit sense, triggering the instrument cluster to provide a ground path for the defogger relay control coil. Since the gauges consistently work once the defogger switch is depressed, it's possible the defog relay's power from the fuse block is backfeeding through to the instrument panel and allowing the gauges to work. I'd echo Jonny Jeep's sentiment that you need to check for a bad IOD fuse (PDC fuse 20) and verify you are getting good battery power to the instrument cluster at C2 pin 9 (blue connector, PK/WT wire).

For your blower motor issue, start by checking PDC fuse 11 and fuse 8 in the fuse block. Also, see if your blend door actuator motor is working when you turn the temperature from full cold to full hot with the key turned on.

2000 TJ SE
2005 LJ Rubicon
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post #10 of 21 Old 05-10-2018, 12:33 PM Thread Starter
JDennis
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A little update on the Gauge Issue. Gauge cluster test checked out perfect evrything cycled. I checked all the fuses, replaced them, and cleaned the terminals. Also went under the dash and undid every ground cleaned and screwed back in. Even the ones behind the speaker grills. No change on gauges intermittently working. I pulled the cluster again and twisted the tabs a bit to make sure they are making good connections and the guages worked after i put it back together. Took it for a drive and the gauges died within 10 miles. When I had the cluster out, I did check the resistance of the ground circuits (the black/grn striped wires on each plug) and they measured 3.1-3.4 ohms. I am stumped. Would there be anything wrong with using a quick splice on the ground wires close to the cluster plugs in the harness and connecting them to a secondary ground?

Last edited by JDennis; 05-10-2018 at 08:44 PM.
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post #11 of 21 Old 05-10-2018, 12:49 PM
JEK3
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Quote:
Originally Posted by JDennis View Post
Would there be anything wrong with using a quick splice on the ground wires close to the cluster plugs in the harness and connecting them to a secondary ground?
Can't hurt to try it.
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post #12 of 21 Old 05-10-2018, 02:27 PM
mukluk
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Does your odometer continue to accrue mileage as you drive when the gauges go dead?

Also, does the defogger switch trick still work to get the gauges functioning again if the defogger relay is removed?

2000 TJ SE
2005 LJ Rubicon
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post #13 of 21 Old 05-10-2018, 06:31 PM Thread Starter
JDennis
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Originally Posted by mukluk View Post
Does your odometer continue to accrue mileage as you drive when the gauges go dead?

Also, does the defogger switch trick still work to get the gauges functioning again if the defogger relay is removed?
The odometer does accrue mileage but the past few days the defogger trick has not worked. That is why I went full bore on trying to resolve it. I haven't even tried to tackle the blower motor yet. Since everything has been replaced except for the blower motor and it worked when I replaced the resistor and switch that day, I am guessing the motor might be the culprit. But where I got the blower motor, I also had to get a mopar pigtail for 80 bucks...

Last edited by JDennis; 05-10-2018 at 08:44 PM.
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post #14 of 21 Old 05-10-2018, 06:53 PM
mukluk
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With the odometer still working when the gauges are dead, that leads me to believe the CCD bus is continuing to work. Your ground ohm reading seems a little high for no longer than the wire run is, but isn't terribly out of line either. The instrument cluster sounds like it's passing the self test but it may just be the test is being done when the reason for failure isn't present. One thing that hasn't been expressly determined is if you are seeing proper voltage at the blue cluster connector: pin 9 for fused power (always on), and pin 8 for switched power (present with ignition in run or start).

Two things I'd be curious to know for when the gauges are actively failed: does turning the ignition off then back on get the gauges working again, and if that answer is no, does the instrument cluster still pass a self test?

2000 TJ SE
2005 LJ Rubicon
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post #15 of 21 Old 05-10-2018, 08:41 PM Thread Starter
JDennis
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Quote:
Originally Posted by mukluk View Post
With the odometer still working when the gauges are dead, that leads me to believe the CCD bus is continuing to work. Your ground ohm reading seems a little high for no longer than the wire run is, but isn't terribly out of line either. The instrument cluster sounds like it's passing the self test but it may just be the test is being done when the reason for failure isn't present. One thing that hasn't been expressly determined is if you are seeing proper voltage at the blue cluster connector: pin 9 for fused power (always on), and pin 8 for switched power (present with ignition in run or start).

Two things I'd be curious to know for when the gauges are actively failed: does turning the ignition off then back on get the gauges working again, and if that answer is no, does the instrument cluster still pass a self test?
I have become a faithful user of the self test on the gauges. The test never falters. Even if the gauges are not working and I test, they test fine, then continue not to work. I will have to try the pins. My expertise is not electrical. Usually I have either corrected previous owners blatant idiocracy or just hooked up things following directions and it works.

Turning the ignition off then back on does not affect the gauges working or not. I can tell you the one thing that has never worked has been hitting the dash. That was the first thing I saw when I bought it and googled the issue. Lol
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