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Gauges quit working...?

Discussion in 'GM Electrical Tech' started by offroadaddict, Jan 12, 2010.

  1. offroadaddict

    offroadaddict Rockstar

    Hell yea, I'll be getting one with a trans temp gauge when mine completely takes a dump, thanks. So far I have been able to beat the dash/cluster and make the speedo start working again.. its only a matter of time.

    And my truck is just over 91,000 so I'm past all the recall stuff.
    Last edited: Mar 8, 2010
  2. 99'HEARTBEAT

    99'HEARTBEAT Epic Member Staff Member 5+ Years ROTM Winner 1000 Posts Platinum Contributor

    I Really like having the Esky Cluster, not only in getting the Transmission Temp Gauge, but it's a Better looking Dash Cluster,

    [​IMG]
    Last edited: Oct 16, 2013
  3. offroadaddict

    offroadaddict Rockstar

    if you don't mind me asking, how much was that?
  4. 99'HEARTBEAT

    99'HEARTBEAT Epic Member Staff Member 5+ Years ROTM Winner 1000 Posts Platinum Contributor

    Last edited: Oct 16, 2013
  5. Dallasman999

    Dallasman999 New Member

    I just got mine done by a guy in texas, cost me 75$ plus shipping and they replace all the motors. Here is the link if anyone wants it.

    http://gm-cluster-repair.weebly.com/
  6. ibmoses

    ibmoses Rockstar 100 Posts

    What is involved in swapping out the cluster?
    I searched around and so far have not found a write up. My truck is past the mileage on the recall...

    Bert
  7. Dallasman999

    Dallasman999 New Member

    Well basically all i had to do was remove my cluster and ship it to them. I have a silverado and first i put the e-brake on, put my gear selector in first, removed the bezel(it is held in by snap in clips) you just pull on it and it pops out. Then the cluster itself is held in by 4 7mm screws, and then there is one electrical plug on the back. Once i mailed it in i got it back in 6 days.
  8. GaugeDoctor

    GaugeDoctor New Member

    Just a word of warning to those who would be so inclined to send their cluster out for repairs. Use caution when choosing who you deal with. In my line of business as evident in my screen name, I've run into fried circuit boards, static zapped chips, burned out displays and clusters that wind up FUBAR'd from some of the stepper motor changers. Instrument cluster repair properly done involves more than just changing out stepper motors. The use of proper equipment and procedures ensure the quality of repair for your cluster. Or choosing the person to do your cluster repair.

    I've run into problems when people have caused themselves grief because of misplaced trust or well-intentioned thrift. In trying to save a buck, wind up spending more to fix the original issue. For example, DONT buy a cheap soldering iron thinking it can't hurt. Buy at least a decent 35-40W GROUNDED iron so that it would at least apply enough heat to the pads for the solder to attach properly to the circuit board and not come apart after so many hot/cold cycles and a few miles of vibration. Mind you, these joints look good under any cursory visual inspection but are a nightmare. A grounded soldering iron will hopefully prevent semi-conductors from getting fried by stray voltages coming off some cheaper irons. Any hotter, higher wattage soldering guns should be used by experienced hands only. Overheating the pads result in burnt, broken, brittle traces of the circuit board that are a PainInTheA$$ to fix. Another, is to make sure to discharge static by touching a grounded metallic object, otherwise you stand the chance of discharging it into the chips on the board. Do this and it's bye-bye cluster. This only to serve as a guide in the hopes that I would not have to tell anyone sending in a cluster that it can't be rebuilt. I hope that you will take note and save yourself a lot of preventable headaches should you chose to do it yourself or send it to a budget-priced stepper motor swapper.

    For those so inclined to DIY, I salute you. Please take these recommended precautions. It will save you a lot of grief.
    Here's a link to a how-to for beginners learning to solder. http://www.aaroncake.net/electronics/solder.htm
    This a from a well respected guru of an RX7 club forum I used to belong to.

    There's a reason why professional instrument cluster rebuilders charge a little more for their services. It's not just the equipment cost used to repair or for the calibration of the gauges but also what goes into the to replace backlight bulbs with longer lasting oem type bulbs. Or the quality of the parts used in the repair. It's not that uncommon for me to run accross a so-called rebuilt or repaired cluster that had stepper motors replaced that were of the original defective design (which caused the problem to begin with)only to fail again. Or the fact that in order to repair dim, dead or intermittent odometer/gear selector displays involves a little more than the average stepper motor swapper can handle(Believe me, we get plenty of calls for these).
    Or the fact that most reputable rebuilders will, as a standard procedure address the common circuit board issues that cause clusters to flicker, bounce or cause parasitic power drains. I can't account for what stepper swappers do out there but I definitely would be leery of some of cheap-priced jobbers out there.
    Don't get burned:grrrrrr:
    Just food for thought.
    Rant Over.

    John 8:32
    Then you will know the truth and the truth will set you free.
  9. Custom04Chevy

    Custom04Chevy Rockstar 100 Posts

    Anyone know where I can get the stepper motor? is there more than one that needs to be replaced? I would like to do it myself, but I don't know where to get the parts. I am confident that I could replace it if I could find the part. I would also like to replace the bulbs. Any idea where i can get those?
  10. 99'HEARTBEAT

    99'HEARTBEAT Epic Member Staff Member 5+ Years ROTM Winner 1000 Posts Platinum Contributor

    Buying new Stepper Motor's.....E-Bay is the place to get them from, you need 1 Stepper Motor for each Gauge,


    E-Bay Stepper Motor's,
    http://motors.shop.ebay.com/i.html?_kw=Chevy&_kw=stepper&_kw=Motor&_kw=Silverado&_kw=Cluster

    Last edited: Oct 16, 2013

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