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Instrument cluster is dim

Posted: Sat Aug 30, 2014 2:45 am
by Dennis Blewett
Part of the instrument panel in the 2000 Dodge Neon is dim. What bothers me the most is the speedometer. It's dimmer than other areas of the panel. I, at least, don't believe it's an illusion of my mind. It's somewhat dim but not completely dark. It's dim enough to be an annoyance. Any advice would be welcomed.

Posted: Sat Aug 30, 2014 4:13 am
by Gnuserup
replace the bulb ?

The bigger grey plugs...


Posted: Sat Aug 30, 2014 9:56 am
by occasional demons
Bulb could be either burnt out, or near the end of it's life. They can blacken the inside well before they fail.

Also the contacts can get slight corrosion on them, or the tension gets weak, causing poor conductivity. I currently have that issue, as the lights intermittently fail to work, at random locations in the cluster.

Posted: Sat Aug 30, 2014 4:11 pm
by NickKo
It is a very good idea to check and clean the grounds. :!:

Two places to check:

1). The grounds that attach to the upper radiator core support, near the headlamps. Very Important.
These are the grounds for the drivers in the PCM.

2). There is also a ground inside the dash.
On 1st gen Neons, this is behind the radio. I don't know about the 2nd gen Neons, but I assume it is the same.

For the grounds - Be sure to wire brush and clean these down to bare metal - Including the wire lugs/terminals and attaching screws.

After cleaning and re-attaching everything, be sure to use something as a rust inhibitor. At the very least, something like PB Blaster - Or coat these with dielectric grease, or Vaseline, to 'seal off' corrosion.
(Again, you'll only want to apply this after re-attaching everything.)

Be sure to NOT operate any accessories with these grounds disconnected. It may not be a bad idea, to disconnect the battery to prevent any accidents - Until you are done.

After cleaning the grounds on the upper radiator core support on our 2nd gen - I noticed that the dash cluster lights, were (noticeably) brighter.
I noticed the difference, even during daytime. :D I know that this helps.

- Nick