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Kludge Fix For Burned-out Needles.


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I've got a "quick", not-perfect, but definitely helpful fix for the burned-out Lexus instrument needles.

What I did was paint the tips of the needles with fluorescent red-orange paint and mount a 12" cold-cathode UV lamp at the front edge of the inside of the instrument panel housing.

This is one of those cold-cathode UV lamps that PC enthusiasts use to mod their PC cases to show off their systems.

The are readily available at computer stores.

I tapped into the 12Vdc on the main white connector of the instrument cluster, after having removed the cluster following the instructions given by Jim Walker of this club who had earlier done an EXCELLENT and FAST job of repairing the flickering dash problem. I mounted the inverter which provides the high-voltage for the tube inside the cluster also.

And I masked the bottom of the "plexiglass" of the display so that the UV light wouldn't distract the driver.

I used black electrical tape so that it wouldn't show, and then lined the inside with another layer of aluminum tape to help reflect the UV light back into the display.

Though the attached picture does not do it justice, it DEFINITELY has helped both my wife and me to see the guages both at day and night, though sunlight diminshes this methods effectiveness somewhat. Still, it is MUCH better than before.

I'll provide more details if someone can briefly explain how to post the details on this sight for anyone who'd like to try this.

Best wishes,




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Excellent fix motjebben....I hope I don't have to do it for awhile though...All of my dash lights are working fine *knock on wood*.... The red colored tip is cool. Don't they help you track the needle during the brighter days? It kind of reminds me of the Acura NSX gauges? Don't they have red tips on the needles? I think my past Nissan 300ZX's had the red tips as well...Nothing is as cool as the Lexus "floating needle" gauges. It's pretty cool when you start your car up at night and look at the needles light up before the foreground dash lights come on. Looks mysterious.....hehe :snoooorrrtttt:

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Thank you!

Yes, the red-orange tips DO make the needles more visible, even in bright daylight. In my description of the fix, however, I wanted to leave the reader with the correct impression that the needles will not be as bright as the original glow of the needles when in bright sunlight, and the UV-glow is also not as effective as it is at night, which is TERRIFIC!

But the "compensatory effect" is that the red does tend to stand out to a certain degree in bright sunlight, because it is on the tip and shows, in contrast, to the blackened needle.

What is really neat, is the look of the dash bathed in a UV-purple glow from the bottom of the display. It is just bright enough to make the dash look different from any other auto, but it is NOT so bright as to be distracting. It's even somewhat "soothing".

-Mike (Michael Otto Tjebben = motjebben)

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