Skip the auto shop - Our mechanics make house calls

Q: Dashboard lights flash and then go out

asked by on

Two weeks ago my car developed a problem in the instrument panel. While driving, the dashboard lights would go out, but then after I turned off the car and restarted it, they would come back on. A few days later, the left-side lights started flashing (mileage, temp, and volts) and then went out. Next the center speedometer light started flashing and then went out. Then the right side with the oil, gear, and fuel lights flashed and then died out. Except for the tach area (which works fine), the whole dashboard area flashes but never comes on properly. What is the cause of this and how can I fix it?

Hello there, thank you for asking about your 1987 Oldsmobile Toronado. This is something that would require first hand inspection for complete diagnosis. However, there is a technical service bulletin (TSB) that may pertain to your issue. The TSB is number 92-T-141A and it deals with erratic lighting and instrument cluster operation, as all as "System Problem" message as you’ve described. According to the TSB, this problem is caused by either a short on the data bus or a faulty component on the bus - possibly the body control module or instrument cluster itself. I recommend contacting the professionals at YourMechanic to diagnose your electrical problems and repair your Oldsmobile.

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!
  1. Home
  2. Questions
  3. Dashboard lights flash and then go out

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: Slipping tranny, takes about 40 seconds to shift into drive but if I put it into1st takes 5 to 10 seconds.

Unfortunately, yourmechanic is not set up to provide video training and/or advice via video chat. The transmission issue sounds like the transmission may be due for a rebuild. You can try doing a transmission fluid service but odds are, the...

Q: Performance Restricted Warning and Check Engine Light - 2004 Jaguar XK8

Hello. The engine knock sensor is retarding the ignition timing to match what the lower octane fuel can support in terms of “timing advance.” There is nothing to worry about. The engine computer is just operating the engine so as...

Q: 2002 Jeep Liberty Limited 3.7 misfire bent spark plug tip with rough idle

I can't find any information suggesting there is a recall for your vehicle. Either way, you need to figure out what has failed in cylinder number two. Replacing all the injectors is not going to fix the problem in cylinder...

Related articles

What Causes Hoses to Leak?
While the largest part of your engine is mechanical, hydraulics plays a significant role. You’ll find fluids at work in a number of different areas. Your car's fluids include: Engine oil Transmission...
How Long Does a Distributor O Ring Last?
The distributor is part of the ignition system in your vehicle and its purpose is to route high voltage from the ignition coil to the spark plug. The spark plug then...
P2103 OBD-II Trouble Code: Throttle Actuator Control Motor Circuit High
P2103 means there is a fault with the throttle actuator control motor circuit, likely due to a defective electrical component or part.