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Repair Questions and Answers.

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 #393702  by rustybronco
Is there an aftermarket EL module available for the 300M that gets power from the cluster alone? I've a replacement cluster coming for my 02 base model but I was wanting one as a spare for the 300M special just in case it goes bad.
 #393703  by rustybronco
Well the cluster backlight is working again in the '02. I went and checked the '03 and wouldn't you know,? the backlights inop. (Clock and all other lights work.)
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 #393714  by FIREM
I have not had to repair a cluster for a 300M (yet)
Wife’s Sebring is another story, apparently a common issue.
This is what I used based on you tube video.
Connected the power wires to the clock light, eliminated the on board power supply and connected the inverter to the dash. Worked well, $10 fix rather than a replacement panel.
 #393721  by rustybronco
How was the illumination level using that kit?

I think the plan going forward is to remove the defective module '02 and reverse engineer it. I can't seem to find a suitable replacement that controls light levels via the panel dimmer/
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 #393722  by FIREM
Illumination is as good, maybe even a little brighter than original. Tied into clock lamp wire so it dims with the panel control.
 #393725  by rustybronco
FIREM wrote:Tied into clock lamp wire so it dims with the panel control.
Did not think that was possible with one of those units. Good to know.
 #393765  by rustybronco
Today I went and disassembled the gauge cluster for the second time. The intention was to I.D. some of the components on the inverter board. After removing the two screws retaining the brown cover and prying it off, but before putting it all back together, I decided to inspect the six solder joints. I used my 7X eye loupe instead of my boom stereo microscope as I didn't want to drag it upstairs and assemble it. Two of the joints looked to be poorly soldered circularly around the pins. Fired up the Hakko 936, put a drop of liquid flux on each of the two joints and reflowed both connections. (For sure pin six and I believe the other was pin five.) Cleaned the excess flux off the board, reassembled the cluster and installed it back into the special. Worked perfectly!

If the solder reflow fixed it, that's one more thing checked off the list of many.

See this thread for some info on the subject... viewtopic.php?t=33861&sid=cf4869ce582dc ... ba240ec664
 #393790  by rustybronco
I pulled the cluster on the '02 base model today. Same issue. Number 6 pin (5V) had a bad solder joint with number 2 (ground) not far behind. Reflowed both connections and put it back together. Worked perfectly.

Yesterday I received the cluster I bought off Ebay. One of the white tabs was broken off and the lens was all scratched up. The seller refunded me the entire amount. I took the board off the back of the cluster. It didn't show any signs of cracking so It will go on the shelf as a spare.

Old cluster in the -'02 ended in AD the new broken replacement was AE. That is the latest revision. Maybe they fixed the issue.