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Toyota Service
Toyota Service, Toyota Expert
Category: Toyota
Satisfied Customers: 4734
Experience:  30+ Yrs of auto experience, Award Winning Svc. Manager; Just Answer Customer's Choice Award Winner
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Tacoma prerunner: .... I recently removed my instrument cluster

Customer Question

Hi.... I recently removed my instrument cluster to access the gauge faces. After reinstalling the cluster, as soon as I turn the key my temperature gauge goes straight up to hot and the fuel gauge stays on full and does not move. I made sure to reconnect all of the other switches like to hazard switch the dimmer switch and the ECT switch. The RPM gauge and the speedometer seem to be working fine. But the temperature gage and fuel gauge are stuck at the top what could I have done wrong?
Submitted: 1 year ago.
Category: Toyota
Expert:  Toyota Service replied 1 year ago.
Hello. Welcome to Just Answer. Please allow me to assist you. The Temp and Fuel gauges work via usage of a ground circuit. The gauge gets power and the sensors provide a portion of ground. When there is no ground, the gauges read all the way up. When the gas tank is half full, you get a 50 percent ground, which allows the gauge to read half. In this case, it sounds like the connector that contains the ground circuit for the temp and fuel gauges is not connected properly, not touching the PC circuit board properly, or something like that. It really sounds like you gauges are not getting the ground signal behind the cluster.
Expert:  Toyota Service replied 1 year ago.
The PC board circuits are rather thin and flimsy where they touch the connectors; this is where I would focus looking first
Expert:  Toyota Service replied 1 year ago.
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Customer: replied 1 year ago.
Thanks for the response...Still no luck. I've disconnected/connected the plugs on the back of the cluster several times. I've tried adjusting the copper leads several times as well to try and make sure they make contact with the metal ends of each wire. Still the same result. I don't believe it could be any temp sensors or other components bc all was working fine before I removed the cluster. And for both the fuel and temp gauge to have the same issue.... It must be related to my removing the cluster. Further assistance would be greatly appreciated.
Expert:  Toyota Service replied 1 year ago.
Look to see if the gauge fuse is blown If not, check to see if the gauge fuse has power
Expert:  Toyota Service replied 1 year ago.
Also check the 7.5 amp ECU-B fuse
Customer: replied 1 year ago.
I checked both fuses and both are good. But I don't know how to check if they are getting power. Can you explain how to do that? I do have a multimeter.
Expert:  Toyota Service replied 1 year ago.
Take your multi meter and set it to 20 volts DC Touch the red lead to the socket of the fuse, either side Hold the black lead to a good metal ground. Test this in the battery first to get the battery reading. Red lead to the POS (red) terminal, Black lead to the NEG terminal You should see 13 or so volts DC Turn the key on, pull the fuses and repeat the test Red lead to the fuse socket Black lead to a metal brace
Expert:  Toyota Service replied 1 year ago.
Whatever the battery voltage was should be indicated on the meter if the fuse socket is getting power
Customer: replied 1 year ago.
Tested battery.... 12.2 volts. Tested both fuse sockets...11.8 volts each. Looks like they are both getting power
Expert:  Toyota Service replied 1 year ago.
That appears correct. This is beginning to sound like the ground circuit of the PC board behind the cluster has a break
Customer: replied 1 year ago.
Is that something I can check?
Expert:  Toyota Service replied 1 year ago.
According to my book, the inputs for the fuel gauge are Solid Orange and Yellow with a black stripe. pins 4 and 8 Verify continunity between the place where the connector meets the PC board and the fuel gauge; The temp gauge input comes from the computer
Customer: replied 1 year ago.
Just to be sure, there are only three connectors/harnesses that go to the back of the cluster correct? The back of the cluster has holes for four connectors but I only have three. Want to make sure I'm not missing one that I should have connected
Expert:  Toyota Service replied 1 year ago.
If there are 4 holes and you have PC circuits in the 4th one that is empty, you might have missed the wire connector. Different styles have different clusters depending on the option content. I cannot tell you for sure if you have 3 or 4
Customer: replied 1 year ago.
I have the cluster out and all I find are 3 connectors. The 4th must have been empty. I don't remember there being 4 connectors. So it looks like I'm stuck. Nothing else really I can check.
Expert:  Toyota Service replied 1 year ago.
I don't think there is anything else you can check. It is possible that both gauges quit. I would probably invest in a new temp gauge at thei point; see if it works. If not, then some heavy electrical diagnosis by a tech is going to be needed.