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Jerry Newton
Jerry Newton, Chevy Technician
Category: Chevy
Satisfied Customers: 4413
Experience:  ASE Master Technician, L1, Master GM Technician. Over 20 years of bumper to bumper GM experience.
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2001 Impala Instrument Panel Cluster back lighting, bulbs burned

Customer Question

2001 Impala Instrument Panel Cluster back lighting, bulbs burned out. I removed IPC. How do I get it apart? Do the guage pointers pull off easily?
Submitted: 7 years ago.
Category: Chevy
Expert:  Jerry Newton replied 7 years ago.
The bulbs are generally accessible from the back side of the cluster. Look for little blue or green sockets that you turn 1/4 turn and remove. Some clusters do not have serviceable bulbs, but I believe the Impala had removable bulbs. What ever you do, don't pull the gauge needles off.
Customer: replied 7 years ago.
Nope, I am famaliar with what you describe, and the 2001 Impala doesn't have the bulb retainers. There is a printed circuit card, held in place by a plastic snap-on retainer, on the back side. On the front side there is the back-lighted bezel with gauges, held in place by a plasticsnap-on fascia. The only way in appears to be removing the needles. Is this a non-repair item?
Expert:  Jerry Newton replied 7 years ago.
I would say that this is definitely a non-repair item. If you pull the gauge needles off, they'll never be right again.
Customer: replied 7 years ago.
I'm going to a speedo shop tomorrow to see what they have to say. I will "accept" after I hear what they have to say.
Expert:  Jerry Newton replied 7 years ago.
OK. I'm sorry I can't speak specifically to your model. I spent some time looking through GM and other service information, and there are no pictures or mentions of replacing bulbs in the cluster.... but that's not uncommon, unfortunately. Many times, the only way I know for sure whether they're serviceable is to take the cluster out and have a look.
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Customer: replied 7 years ago.
First message said I had pulled the cluster and had a look. I also had checked my service manuals and found nothing. I had to take it to a speedo shop and they recommended a rebuilt cluster for $300. I'll bet those needles pull off! Has to be, as the rest of the disassembly is so easy. I'm accepting because of the time you spent.
Expert:  Jerry Newton replied 7 years ago.
Thank you, XXXXX XXXXX your integrity. Those needles may pull off, and if you're faced with buying a rebuilt cluster anyway, maybe you can give it a try. I just didn't want to lead you down the path of ruining your cluster. Good luck with it, and thanks again.