Skip the auto shop - Our mechanics make house calls

Q: Bad instrument cluster

asked by on

Hi, I have a 04 qx56. I have had issues with the instrument cluster. I have had it repaired 4 times. I have problems with the gauges getting stuck. I have a dash light flickering. This happens sometimes when I turn on the car. It seems like everytime I send it for repairs it's only good for 3-4 months. For the past week I have been having the dash lights flicker. The right signal light won't display on the dash. I could hear it but it doesn't appear on there. The RPM gauge is stuck. And the gas one will be low when I know I have more than that. The shop where I was having it repaired is refunding my money back because they were not able to help me after 4 attemps. I would like to know if I should replace the unit with a new one or could it be something else that is causing the unit to go bad? Thanks in advance for your help.

My car has 149000 miles.
My car has an automatic transmission.

With a reoccurring issue like this, you can almost guarantee that another malfunction is causing the failure. If this cluster has failed, you will end up needing another one. But do not replace it until you know what the main source of the problems are. Tracing the issue may require a print of the instrument cluster circuit. This will show you every component that’s related and may be wearing down the clusters. The issue is likely electrical.

If there is a short in the system that is sending the cluster too much power, the cluster will burn out prematurely. There may also be a loose connection with the wiring harness terminal. If this is adjusted well when the system is installed, and then slowly comes back out, the connection may fail after a matter of time. I recommend getting help from someone who is great at tracing down electrical problems to have this resolved.

Was this answer helpful?

Need advice from certified mechanic? Get help now!

Over 1000 mechanics are ready to answer your question.
The statements expressed above are only for informational purposes and should be independently verified. Please see our terms of service for more details

Ask a Mechanic
(100% Free)

Have a car question? Get free advice from our top-rated mechanics.

Ask A Mechanic
Over 10,000 questions answered!

Get an instant quote for your car

Our certified mechanics come to you ・Backed by 12-month, 12,000-mile guarantee・Fair and transparent pricing

Get a quote

What others are asking

Q: My 2000 Honda Accord instrument and panel lights are out.

Claimed by John Hege

Q: No power to dash when you turn key but will crank.

Check for "codes" (PCM, ECU, BCM) to see if any read out. If no codes, this is a switch (ignition), fuse, relay, and/or wiring problem which has to be tracked down systematically.

Q: Wiring nightmare

This is an extremely difficult task, and involves taking wiring diagrams from the '03 vehicle, and the '06 drivetrain. Then mapping electrical power paths - power in "Start" position only, power in "Run/Start" etc. Then mapping sensors for the computer...

Related articles

How Long Does a Heater Control Valve Last?
Keeping the right amount of coolant in a car is essential in keeping the engine at the right temperature. Failing to have the right amount of coolant or even bad elements...
P2428 OBD-II Trouble Code: Exhaust Gas Temperature Too High Bank 1
P2428 code definition A P2428 trouble code signifies that the PCM has detected a problem in the exhaust gas temperature sensor circuit in bank 1, which subsequently contains the number one...
How Much Does a Mechanic Make in Vermont?
Automotive technician jobs in Vermont have an average mechanic salary of $37k, with some mechanics earning a salary of $53k.