Cluster Bulbs

The dash light bulbs on an 86 vette can be interesting to deal with. I had read several places on the net dealing with this topic and all made it sound like I was in for a nightmare:) Luckily I decided to explore the repair myself and started with the removal of the face plate around the gauges first.



Here you can see the 2 top screws for the face plate.



Here are the 4 side screws, even after removing all the screws the face plate is a pain to get out. You need to grab the the plate by reaching inside the round a/c duct hole you see to the left here and press outward and downward.



This is the view with the panel out and b4 the new steering wheel too:) I can’t find my pics yet for the actual bulb replacement but will post them as soon as I locate them. If you notice the top center shows the 2 silver caps for the top 2 bulbs and below and more inward you can see one of the bottom ones. Also notice the top left cap is out a bit. I wasn’t able to purchase but 3 correct bulbs and 1 almost correct bulb:) The top left one is a little to large but works. Also NOTE : DO NOT TOUCH the NEW bulbs with your fingers. Always use a rag or something. The bulbs are halogen and touching them with your fingers will shorten the life of the bulb BIG time. This can cause the bulb to burn out with as little as 5 minutes of use. Now for the removal. The caps don’t unscrew they just turn a small amount and then you pry them off with a small screwdriver. Now gently rock the old bulb back and forth to get it unseated from the socket. Then remove the loose bulb with  a pair of needlenose pliers. Now using a cloth to insulate the bulb from the pliers insert the bulb into the socket. Then use the end of the rag to apply pressure to the top of the bulb to insure its seated good. Now reinstall the silver cap. Repeat for as many bulbs as needs replacing:) After this reinstall dash panel and screws.



This shows the new bulbs in place. Too bad I didn’t take a pic b4 I fixed it:) Oh well….

Be sure to check out ken’s Tip below concerning this fix.


Hey Crowz!

A tip on replacing those dash lights (’cause you KNOW you’re going to
have to do it again 😉

I’ve done several, but have never removed the dash pad. If you take the
bezel off (the way you described on your web page and take the steering
wheel tilt handle off, too… it makes it easier (or possible) to get
the bezel off), you can take off the metal covers, and pull the bulbs
out of the socket. I’ve used tape rolled up around my pinky finger then
squeezed onto a bulb and pull it out.

I then use latex gloves to keep from getting any skin oils on the bulbs
and it makes it easier to hold on to the bulbs, too. I just take one of
the bulbs and carefully stick it back into the socket that’s still in
the dash. This way, you never have to get to the back of the dash.

Thanks for the photos on your web pages… it’s nice to get the inside
view of some things.

Thanks for the photos on your web pages… it’s nice to get the inside
view of some things.



Digital Cluster Restore


Back to Previous Page


Back to my vette


The Nest – All things crowz….