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Installed new light switch, still no gauge lights

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  • Installed new light switch, still no gauge lights

    I had no gauge lights. Installed new switch today, the light in the middle glove box works, the map light works, all exterior lights work.
    Just no instruments cluster lights still. Checked fuses all fine
    I peeked best I could while I had the the switch out, didn't see anything obvious would have been a problem.
    Tim
    1962 Conv Tbird
    1993 Miata LE
    1994 Miata

  • #2
    Installed new light switch, still no gauge lights

    If the Bulletbird is anything like the Squarebirds, you probably can rotate the knob on the Headlight switch. Try turning the headlight knob to the right and see if the lights come up. Or turn it back and forth, counterclockwise, clockwise, and see if you get any lights. On the Squarebird, the headlight switch knob controls the dimming and brightening of the instrument lights. There is a rheostat on the Squarebird light switch that over many years becomes corroded, which prevents the brightening or dimming of the instrument lights from occurring. For us Squarebird owners, that usually means taking out the headlight switch, and cleaning that rheostat and it's contact points... Check out the TRL regarding the Squarebird headlight switch, it's connections, fuses, etc...

    IF your gauges are not indicating anything, amount of fuel in the tank, temperature readings, etc., then perhaps you have a problem with the gauges not getting any voltage to them. However, since the other lights are working, that may not be a problem with the Constant Voltage Regulator (CVR) unit...

    Ray Clark - Squarebirds Administrator
    '59 Tbird "The Yellow Rose Of Texas" aka "Tweety Bird"
    "It's Hip To Be Square"
    Thunderbird Registry #33025 VTCI #11178

    Contact me via Private Message for my email address, or (Cell) 210-875-1411 (Home) 210-674-5781

    http://www.squarebirds.org/picture_gallery/TechnicalResourceLibrary/trl.htm

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    • #3
      temp gauge works, gas gauge was working with the new sending unit I had in it for a bit, see other thread on that one. Clock never worked, no idea if the radio has a back light.
      With the old and now the new I have turned the switch back and forth, no illumination of the lights for instrument panel.
      I found a thread on another site, the 62 has a termination fuse for the cluster lights I am going to replace that fuse.
      Tim
      1962 Conv Tbird
      1993 Miata LE
      1994 Miata

      Comment


      • #4
        Did your new switch come with a new rheostat, or did you use the old one?
        My latest project:
        CLICK HERE to see my custom hydraulic roller 390 FE build.

        "We've got to pause and ask ourselves: How much clean air do we need?"
        --Lee Iacocca

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        • #5
          All new switch, I used no old parts. I have read that I should try to ground the gauges see if that works.
          Tim
          1962 Conv Tbird
          1993 Miata LE
          1994 Miata

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          • #6
            what sucks, ha ha ha, I need reader glasses to see up close, looking under that dash is hard as ****, my readers don't do well
            in those close quarters. Then through in all the diff color wires, arrrg
            Tim
            1962 Conv Tbird
            1993 Miata LE
            1994 Miata

            Comment


            • #7
              For what it is worth anyone reading this, doing a light switch replacement on what I assume is the same for 61-63 you do not have to remove any of the gauges. There is space (opening) right under the switch that allowed it to slip down enough to connect it to the wiring harness. It was tricking holding all the parts with one hand and attach it back, that took many tries.
              Tim
              1962 Conv Tbird
              1993 Miata LE
              1994 Miata

              Comment


              • #8
                Originally posted by blue62tbird View Post
                All new switch, I used no old parts. I have read that I should try to ground the gauges see if that works.
                Ok, do you have a multimeter? If not, Harbor Freight sells them for under ten bucks.

                Resistance checks will tell whether your dash is grounded. It will also tell whether a fuse is good, out of the circuit.
                Voltage checks will tell whether your new switch is putting out 12-VDC.

                Sometimes a mirror helps if you can't see close. So does a cell phone (in picture mode). - Dave
                My latest project:
                CLICK HERE to see my custom hydraulic roller 390 FE build.

                "We've got to pause and ask ourselves: How much clean air do we need?"
                --Lee Iacocca

                Comment


                • #9
                  other than the light switch and the gauges and wiring to them, should I look at anything else?
                  Like I said everything else that runs off the switch is working.
                  Tim
                  1962 Conv Tbird
                  1993 Miata LE
                  1994 Miata

                  Comment


                  • #10
                    According to the shop manual not only is there a fuse in the fuse box but there's also an in-line cartridge fuse that control the dash lights. I've never seen it but it has to be near the headlight switch.

                    John
                    John Pizzi - Squarebirds Administrator

                    Thunderbird Registry #36223
                    jopizz@verizon.net 856-779-9695

                    http://www.squarebirds.org/picture_gallery/TechnicalResourceLibrary/trl.htm

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                    • #11
                      I found that inline fuse. It looks good. I guess I can change the fuse. It is a fuse holder that is a terminal end. One wire going in, nothing comes out of it. I saw it on another post on some site last night. Same thing I posted a pic of here at some point asking about it. One guy said he changed the fuse in his and still no lights. He changed the fuse holder then the lights came on.
                      Tim
                      1962 Conv Tbird
                      1993 Miata LE
                      1994 Miata

                      Comment


                      • #12
                        This pic has the black fuse holder, I found mine some time back, didn't know it was a dash light related item. See yellow arrow...

                        https://www.google.com/search?q=1962...0n26-ZwbxhNyM:
                        Tim
                        1962 Conv Tbird
                        1993 Miata LE
                        1994 Miata

                        Comment


                        • #13
                          If changing the in-line fuse doesn't fix the problem I would check the fuse holder with a voltmeter. If there's no voltage there then I would put the voltmeter on the fuse in the fuse box.

                          John
                          John Pizzi - Squarebirds Administrator

                          Thunderbird Registry #36223
                          jopizz@verizon.net 856-779-9695

                          http://www.squarebirds.org/picture_gallery/TechnicalResourceLibrary/trl.htm

                          Comment


                          • #14
                            Originally posted by blue62tbird View Post
                            This pic has the black fuse holder, I found mine some time back, didn't know it was a dash light related item. See yellow arrow...

                            https://www.google.com/search?q=1962...0n26-ZwbxhNyM:
                            Looking at the electrical schematics, all power going through the inline fuse for dash lights comes through / from the rheostat .

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                            • #15
                              Hum, unless my new switch is bad, otherwise it is doing just what my old one was ding, working everything but the dash lights. I will replace the fuses and that black fuse holder.
                              Tim
                              1962 Conv Tbird
                              1993 Miata LE
                              1994 Miata

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