gauges dont work - Diesel Truck Forum -
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post #1 of 7 (permalink) Old 07-22-2011, 08:51 AM Thread Starter
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gauges dont work

I just got this 90 f250 and I paid 600 bucks for it needed front wheel bearings a power steering pump and now to the major issue none of my gauges work and Im not sure where to start could the cluster be dead? To my belief its all mechanical so is that even possible that its all dead cause the lights still turn on. Could it also be related to the wait to start light cause that doesnt work either lol Im also wondering if it could be the wiring harness.
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post #2 of 7 (permalink) Old 07-23-2011, 11:22 PM
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The Ford clusters from the '70's on are electric with a wire from a sensor to the cluster. A few things are REALLY common problems:

1) Bad voltage regulator on the printed circuit (small metal can with 9v battery contacts)
2) Misadjusted ignition switch - no power while engine is running
3) Poor/no ground to cluster
4) Corroded cluster connections, if it's green and fuzzy it is BAD!

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post #3 of 7 (permalink) Old 07-24-2011, 12:09 PM Thread Starter
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its a 90s
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post #4 of 7 (permalink) Old 07-24-2011, 09:53 PM
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Ford once used a "constant voltage regulator" as John G was refering to. When all guages go out at once it was always the problem. cheap fix.
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post #5 of 7 (permalink) Old 08-03-2011, 04:29 PM
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The instrument cluster regulator was last used in 1986.First off,make sure the ignition key comes back to the run position after starting.If the turn signals and heater motor work then the key is probably going to the run position after starting.If all that works,then check to make sure there is a fuse in the fuse panel for the instrument cluster.If there is a fuse in place for the cluster,then either check the fuse for being burn't out or if you have an extra fuse just replace it.If the cluster still doesn't work,the the cluster will need to be removed and the power and ground will need to be checked and repaired if nec.If you have a good power and ground,then the cluster itself may require replacing.If you know someone with a cluster that works from 1990 truck,you could maybe use it to test before buying a cluster.Hope this helps.

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post #6 of 7 (permalink) Old 09-09-2011, 02:19 AM
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The cluster regulator was replaced by a small slide in circut board if I recall. They used to cost about $18.00. I do not recall the name Ford used for it.
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post #7 of 7 (permalink) Old 10-04-2011, 09:02 AM
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John_g has the full list for normal except that the white powder corrosion will stop them also - either at the wire to connector terminal, the terminal to printed circuit or the fuse block.

When they changed to 12V batteries in the mid 50's the instruments did not change - they added a voltage regulator. The LED stuff uses a resistor for most because the light up voltage is 1.5 to 3.7 v for the common stuff but some of it uses a solid state voltage regulator.

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