Do Not Sell My Personal Information Jump to content

Dash Lights Went Out!


cyberdiver
 Share

Recommended Posts

Have a 99 RX300 and last week the right half of the dash lights went out for me. Prior to this, for about 2 days I was smelling an electrical smell when I was driving. My wife told me they went out a few days prior, but came back on.

Anyone have this problem? Any ideas on a fix?

BTW, it's the entire right side of the instrument panel.

Thanks in advance,

Rick

Link to comment
Share on other sites

Do you mean the right side of the gauge cluster (with the tachometer, speedometer, fuel and temp meters)? Can you take a picture?

I'll be able to tell you what you need to do. <_<

Link to comment
Share on other sites

Do you mean the right side of the gauge cluster (with the tachometer, speedometer, fuel and temp meters)? Can you take a picture?

I'll be able to tell you what you need to do. <_<

Here is a picture. It is the whole left side of the cluster. Hopefully the picture shows it well enough for you, I took it in the daylight. If not, I can take another one at night if that would show it better.

Thanks

photo.jpg

Link to comment
Share on other sites

Ah yes, you've definitely got a blown out CCFL. The gauges are illuminated by a single CCFL tube, basically a miniature flourescent lamp. It runs horizontally from the "7" on the tach left to the "40mph" mark, then curves 45 degrees down and runs past the "c" on the temp meter down to the "e" on the fuel gauge. Apparently the right side of the lamp blew out.

I would look for a used cluster on eBay. The clusters have two circuit board panels, the one further back containing your mileage. You can remove that smaller circuit panel from yor cluster and connect it to the new cluster. Ebay has used 99-00 clusters for less than $100.

I'm out at the moment but when I get home ill take some pics (I have some rx300 cluster parts laying around) and find a good used one on ebay for you!

Link to comment
Share on other sites

Since your RX300 is a 1999, you'll need to make sure the replacement is from either a '99 or '00. The 01-03 clusters may appear the same, but they are not...

Here's one for $49 plus $15 for shipping, probably the cheapest you'll find on eBay...

http://cgi.ebay.com/ebaymotors/99-00-LEXUS-RX300-SPEEDOMETER-CLUSTER-THRU-6-00-MPH-_W0QQcmdZViewItemQQhashZitem35b2c4f36cQQitemZ230632518508QQptZMotorsQ5fCarQ5fTruckQ5fPartsQ5fAccessories

Once you get it, you can switch out the rear circuit board piece (i can show you how, it's VERY simple) so that you'll have your original mileage. <_< Then you'll be all set!

This is the first time i've heard of the CCFL going out in the Rx300 clusters, so i wouldn't worry that another used cluster might have the same problem...

Link to comment
Share on other sites

Since your RX300 is a 1999, you'll need to make sure the replacement is from either a '99 or '00. The 01-03 clusters may appear the same, but they are not...

Here's one for $49 plus $15 for shipping, probably the cheapest you'll find on eBay...

http://cgi.ebay.com/ebaymotors/99-00-LEXUS-RX300-SPEEDOMETER-CLUSTER-THRU-6-00-MPH-_W0QQcmdZViewItemQQhashZitem35b2c4f36cQQitemZ230632518508QQptZMotorsQ5fCarQ5fTruckQ5fPartsQ5fAccessories

Once you get it, you can switch out the rear circuit board piece (i can show you how, it's VERY simple) so that you'll have your original mileage. <_< Then you'll be all set!

This is the first time i've heard of the CCFL going out in the Rx300 clusters, so i wouldn't worry that another used cluster might have the same problem...

Wow, that's awesome! Sure beats what I was expecting to pay if I took it to the dealer! Next question is, how easy is it to swap out the old one with the new one?? I'm not all that mechanically inclined. I'm pretty good at doing basic stuff, but I'm always a little freaked out trying something I've never done before. Does the dash have to come apart to do this repair??

Thanks for all the info.... Rick

Link to comment
Share on other sites

Actually it's not that difficult to remove the cluster, it only requires a philips screwdriver (preferably a short one as you need to maneuver it in a small area) and flat-head screwdriver. I did it about a hundred times on my old Rx300 working on various cluster projects, so here's the how-to from memory :)

You first need to move the steering wheel to the lowest position.

Then you will need to pry out the two plastic dash panels adjacent to the steering wheel column (the right one surrounding the ignition spot, and the left one that contains the security and seat memory buttons) with a flat-head screwdriver. They're just held in place with clips, so just pry out until they come.

wunwqq.jpg

vrvhpg.jpg

You can unplug the plugs that feed the memory seat, mirror controls and security light if you want, it may give you more elbow room (but is not needed).

Next you will need to remove the two philips head screws holding the black bezel to the dash upper dash. You'll need a short screwdriver as a long one will get in the way. A screwdriver less than 4" in total length will fit.

16786757.jpg

At this point, the black bezel still won't move, as it's also held in by two clips on the lower left and right. You will need to pry out the black bezel with a flathead screwdriver (or you could try pulling by hand). Then pull the bezel towards you a little, and unplug the plug leading to the dimmer switch. Just press the little tab at the top while pulling, and it will come out.

10197868.jpg

To remove the black bezel from the area, just rotate the top down and towards you, and slide it out of the area (pull left towards the drivers door)- i remember it was a tight fit, so just take your time. It'll seem impossible, but it isn't :)

Now you will be facing the cluster, and be able to see the three screws holding it to the dash frame. There should be one screw at the bottom left and bottom right, and one at the top.

hs7qc2.jpg

Remove the philips screw at the top first. The other are tricky since they're so deep. Take your time removing these two, because as soon as they're out, they'll want to fall into the annex of the dash. You might need a pair of thin fingers to reach in there and take the screws out once they're un-screwed :)

Now the cluster will be free. You'll need to flip the bottom of the cluster upwards, and then pull the cluster out a few inches. The wires that lead to the back of the cluster are too short, so you'll need to remove the three plugs in the back while the cluster is still in it's cubby area. You'll need to stick your hands behind the cluster blindly and remove the plugs. Just press the little clip at the top of each plug while pulling, and they'll come out. When the three plugs are removed from the back of the cluster, you can freely remove the cluster from the cubby. To remove the cluster from it's cubby, rotate the bottom of the cluster to the top, and slide out. I remember it wouldn't come out facing you... you need to flip it. And no need to remember which plug goes where, as they're all shaped differently so it'll be easy upon re-installation.

Once you've got the cluster out and have the new cluster with you, you can swap the rear circuit board so you can keep your mileage. On the back of the cluster you'll see a milky white plastic cover, which needs to be removed. With a philips-head screwdriver, remove the screws that attach it to the circuit board. Not sure how many there are, but you'll see them. Here's a diagram; note there are screws not visible in the picture, but if there are any appear to be holding the plastic cover in place, remove them.

6gvb0w.jpg

Once this cover is removed, you'll be able to see the smaller circuit board i'm talking about. I don't have any pictures of it, but i made a quick diagram to show you. The smaller board (containing mileage) is attached to the main board via two (maybe 3?) pin connector looking things, simply made of a plastic frame with wires going through it. The plastic frame holds it together while the wires connect the various electronic circuits between the main and smaller boards. These connectors may be rotated (in my diagram i have them running horizontally but they may be vertical) but it doesn't matter... Simply pull the smaller board away from the main board. The pin connector pieces may also come off, but that's OK; just simply friction fit them back onto the main board.

33bhmix.jpg

2hfswsn.jpg

Simply remove the smaller board from your cluster and install it on the new cluster you get. That way you'll maintain your mileage! After the new board is installed, put the milky white plastic cover back on, and re-install it into the car in the reverse order you took it out.

Link to comment
Share on other sites

And just for fun, here's the inside of the cluster, showing the CCFL tube that blew out in your cluster.

idw2fs.jpg

29nfref.jpg

2091z7l.jpg

Since the tube is so fragile, i wouldn't recommend trying to replace this part only. It's easier to simply use the new cluster as-is while only replacing that smaller circuit board to maintain your mileage.

Also note, since you'll be buying a used cluster from a 99-00, it may have a burned out "D" light (as in Park, reverse, neutral, drive...). It's a common problem... If this is so, you can swap out the bulb for one of the ones in your cluster. Once you have the milky plastic cover removed, you'll be able to see the base of the bulbs for the P-R-N-D-2-L. Find the one for D (the 4th one down from the top, note they're staggered ie not in a straight line) and twist it counter-clockwise with a flathead screwdriver, and pull out. Here are the bases for the P-R-N-D-2-L bulbs. Also note the small philips head screwdriver, the perfect size you'll need to remove the screws on the black bezel around the cluster on the dash.

8wfwo6.jpg

This may all sound confusing, but it's not, just a lot of words! Once you get the new cluster if you get lost i can help clear things up a bit. <_<

Good luck! :cheers:

Link to comment
Share on other sites

This may all sound confusing, but it's not, just a lot of words! Once you get the new cluster if you get lost i can help clear things up a bit. <_<

Good luck! :cheers:

Wow..... those are some amazing instructions! Heck, I don't feel like it's so out of reach now! I'm going to go ahead and order that cluster that you found for me on ebay. Hopefully tackle the job next week sometime. I'm actually looking forward to digging into it! LOL.....

Thanks for all the help!! I really appreciate it! I'll let you know how it turns out, or if I run into any issues during the install!!

Rick

Link to comment
Share on other sites

  • 2 weeks later...

No problem! Definitely let us know how it goes. <_<

Received the part yesterday, decided to tackle the job today since I'm off work. I can't believe how easy this was with your awesome instructions! It took me all of 40 minutes to complete, and that was with spending 10 minutes searching for a bandaid after not reading your instructions about the screw falling into the dash, then running my hand under the dash trying to find the screw! OUCH! LOL.

Truly fantastic instructions! Once again, these forums have managed to not only save me a pile of $$, but also gave me a sense of accomplishment by repairing this on my own! Oh and not to mention my wife now thinks I'm a stud! LOL

Thanks again! I really appreciate all you're help! Guys like you make these forums awesome!

Rick

Link to comment
Share on other sites

No problem! Definitely let us know how it goes. <_<

Received the part yesterday, decided to tackle the job today since I'm off work. I can't believe how easy this was with your awesome instructions! It took me all of 40 minutes to complete, and that was with spending 10 minutes searching for a bandaid after not reading your instructions about the screw falling into the dash, then running my hand under the dash trying to find the screw! OUCH! LOL.

Truly fantastic instructions! Once again, these forums have managed to not only save me a pile of $$, but also gave me a sense of accomplishment by repairing this on my own! Oh and not to mention my wife now thinks I'm a stud! LOL

Thanks again! I really appreciate all you're help! Guys like you make these forums awesome!

Rick

Hey glad it helped! :cheers: I too have cut myself on that metal panel below the steering column, it's sharp!! Did that do the trick to get the lights back on?

Link to comment
Share on other sites

  • 5 years later...

Hey, I'm a little late to the party, but is there any way to improvise this fix? I'm having the same problem. I mean like inserting a led lo light the instrument panel? Maybe wired and powered by the cig lighter?

Link to comment
Share on other sites

Join the conversation

You can post now and register later. If you have an account, sign in now to post with your account.

Guest
Reply to this topic...

×   Pasted as rich text.   Paste as plain text instead

  Only 75 emoji are allowed.

×   Your link has been automatically embedded.   Display as a link instead

×   Your previous content has been restored.   Clear editor

×   You cannot paste images directly. Upload or insert images from URL.

Loading...
 Share

×
×
  • Create New...

Forums


News


Membership