Q: Smoke from the dashboard, parking lights won't turn off

asked by on September 08, 2016

My car has gone 136,000 miles. Yesterday I was driving and noticed a bit of smoke that was coming from the dashboard on passenger's side. The smoke disappeared after I turned the car off and took the key out. The parking lights stayed on, so I had to disconnect the battery. I checked the fuses and they are fine. What could cause this?

Hello. It sounds like there is a short in the wiring harness of the car. If the wiring comes into contact with other wiring, this may cause a short and smoke from the dashboard. This sometimes happens due to old age of the wiring, or because damage has been done to the wiring. This is considered a serious problem as shorted wires can cause a fire. Take the car to a shop that specializes in electrical work and have the car checked and rewired.

The statements expressed above are only for informational purposes and should be independently verified. Please see our terms of service for more details

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

What others are asking

Porsche Cayenne S 2005 has code P0349 read on scanner.

Hi there. The Camshaft Position Sensor tone ring could be damaged or there could be an electrical problem with the electrical circuit with the camshaft position sensor harness. I recommend replacing the camshaft position sensor. If you need further assistance...

Dashboard lights come on while driving and all my gages go down to 0, then I hear ticking noise inside the dashboard.

Hi and thanks for contacting YourMechanic. The fact that the indicator lights are operational proves that the instrument cluster panel is properly grounded. With the key in the "On" position, take a test light and check the feed wire at...

I have no idea what's wrong with my car

Hi there. From the description you have provided, there are many possibilities for your vehicle's drivability problems. It could be a fuel delivery problem, such as a faulty fuel pump not having the correct fuel pressure or no rest pressure....

how many catalytic converters do it have

Your vehicle has two catalytic converters. These two converters are assembled, along with a muffler and some pipe, as one integral piece. The OEM Infiniti part number, if you require replacement of these converters, is 20020-CR91A. If you do a...

How do I replace the battery on the master key?

Your Accord’s master key (the one with the built-in key fob and lock controls) needs a battery to operate. If you notice that it takes several presses of the button to get your doors to lock or unlock, it’s time...

reduced power and a question with the throttle body.

You got a loss of power due to a fault with the system closing the throttle as a built in safety factor. The reduced power indicator is telling you that it went in to a failure mode and caused the...

Issue with throttle position sensor and Check Engine light is on.

I'm not quite sure what to make of this description, but I'm guessing you are trying to say the check engine light goes off and on intermittently with a code stored for the throttle position sensor (TPS). I do not...

Dashboard doesn't light up properly

Hello there, thanks for writing in. Sounds like you have a few things going on with your 1993 Porsche 968. If the rheostat is working properly, then there could be a few other faults. If just a few lights are...

Car was struck by lightning and won't start

Hello, thank you for writing in. Unfortunately, there is not a cut and dry answer for your problem. Lightning strikes are not created equal, nor is the damage they cause. You most likely have electrical issues, rather than something mechanically...

Related articles

How a Battery Works With a Car's Electrical System
Have Have you ever wondered how your car’s electrical system works? It all starts with your car battery. Your car's electrical system operates on a closed circuit, with the main power system being the automotive battery. It uses less than...
How to Attach a Car Battery-Mounted Power Cut-off Switch
Many Many people who store their vehicle for a length of time like to disconnect the battery from the electrical system of the vehicle. This prevents the vehicle from unintentionally draining the battery. With the battery disconnected, the risks of...
Symptoms of a Bad or Failing Auxiliary Battery
If you have multiple batteries in your vehicle, you may have to replace one if the vehicle won't crank, fluid is leaking, or the Battery Light is on.