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Old 08-22-2005, 10:40 PM
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1985 Corvette

I have a low milage Vette that has some electrical problem;
1. Washer motor will not work but switch/fuse/motor are ok. It appears to not have a hot wire to it.

2.While still dealing with this the dash lights will dim but if you turn the ignition key a certain way they will work and stay on.

So basic question are the two related via the ignition switch, two seperate problems or a short somewhere in the car. I really just need somewhere to start at this point. Thanks for any help. Steve.

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Old 08-23-2005, 04:48 AM
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Column

Doc here,

Kinda of a common problem for Corvette due to the multi adjustment settings/locks on the column.

Since they both stem from the same area I would tend to lean to the fact they are related..Short inside the column..

Thing to do is pull the column plug at the bottom and the wheel off the top, and ohm the harness out on an R x 1 scale..you may want to move the harness about while measuring the circuit...see if the readings change..

If this is the case you either can repair the frey's OR.. install a new short harness..which ever you feel MOST comfortable with.

Doc
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Old 08-24-2005, 10:17 AM
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thanks doc

A have now been told that the dash cluster is going out as that is what they usually do when they start to crap out. I will have a look again today after I regroup and try and isolate the problem. Thanks Steve.
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Old 08-24-2005, 01:34 PM
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Check your grounds as sometimes that can be an issue..I have gotten continuity but the ground was not good enough to allow the item to work..

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Old 08-25-2005, 12:35 PM
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thank you!!!!

OMT you are the man!! The negative terminal on the battery had worked itself slightly loose. Just enough to not run the dash cluster even though the volts were regular.Thanks for everyones input.Highly recommended site.
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Old 02-19-2006, 01:07 AM
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Sorry if I'm bringing up an old post, but, I'm having the same sort of problem with an 87 vette I'm working on. The gauges work, but no lights to see them. All the bulbs are ok, The heater and console lights work and dim. I have everything short of the dash itself out, and I can't find a fault. I fear a new gauge cluster might be a little costly.

Thanks
Steve
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Old 02-19-2006, 05:02 AM
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Doc here,

What fuses have you checked?

Dose the Dome and Courtesy light work?

Pull a lamp, and with a DVOM, measure between it and ground at V X 50 or auto range on your scale, you should read 12 volts, If not move the dim up and down, see if you get a reading. If you do..you have a missing ground.

If you don't you have an open fuse, switch or wire..Check all the lower amp fuses 10 amp and down with your DVOM set for R X 1 , Calibrated, on Ohms scale , don't just do a visual, fuses can blow where you can't see the open link. Pay special attention to the Courtesy, Instrument, DIC fuse, and the Dome , Tone Generator Fuse.

If that's good out from there, you'll need to pull the cluster and DIC..to look for Either a bad ground or power on the laminate card..

Be advised, the DIC is a Static critical Component , with HMOS / CMOS type Semi conductors..You may want to leave that part up to a service center If you have never worked on Static Critical components..

ALSO the airbag system runs through there..be sure to pull the fuse and disconnect the battery, or you can false trigger the Airbag deployment system.

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Old 02-20-2006, 11:40 AM
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Thanks doc. everything checked out good, when I pulled the cluster I found that someone had soldered two of the pins on the plug that links the two boards together, and done a poor job of it. I also found that the plug for the odometer motor had come undone from the board. I fixed those up, checked all my grounds, and bang, Everything works. Thanks again.

I hope you don't mind if I bug you again, but while going through all the fuses, I found I was missing one of the circuit breakers on the right, Fourth one down, not sure what it does, and I'm waiting for a helminc manual, as the seats and mirrors are non functional aswell. I tried a 30A fuse and she burnt as soon as she went in.

Thanks for your help doc, it's greatly appreciated.
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Old 02-20-2006, 03:05 PM
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Doc here,

Here is the layout for an 87 Corvette Fuse panel.



Is this what your looking for, or the Courtesy Center?

A fuse won't work where a Breaker came out, (It won't take surges) So There may not be anything wrong, but If you locate the Circuit, you may want to test it for shorts to ground before fusing it up again.

Try and see if there is another 30 amp breaker you can substitute from elsewhere for testing and see if it trips.

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Old 02-20-2006, 04:05 PM
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Awesome doc, that's exactly what I needed. I'm gonna check it out right now and see if I can get the seats workin.

Thanks man
Steve
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Old 02-20-2006, 04:10 PM
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Doc here,

KEWL, let us know!


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Old 02-20-2006, 04:50 PM
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Ok, I pugged the seats in and put a 30a breaker in, and the seats work, and the drivers door lock works, but... there's a draw on the battery on that curcuit. There's also a draw on the battery on the 11th fuse panel curcuit. 5a fuse labeled LCD.

I'm going to go back out and check the pass. side door lock as I'm thinking maybe that's where the short is, but the LCD one? any ideas would be appreciated.

back in a few.
Steve
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Old 02-20-2006, 04:57 PM
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Doc here,

What do you consider Draw?

On the LCD, you will have a slight one to keep the DIC alive..

If the seats have been immobile for some time, pull the front bolts (if you can) and tilt them back slightly, clean out the debris and lube the tracks and the worm drive as best you can...

Those seats and windows are real power consumers even when running right..you'll notice the lights dim when you use them...

The nest check , of course would be the relays.

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Old 02-20-2006, 07:32 PM
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I never checked the volts, now that I think about it. I just disconnected the neg. from the battery, and put a light tester in series. The LCD is very dim. and the seats are very bright. I was wondering if the lcd would darw power for memory or some thing. But for the seats, I found two of the switches don't work right, and one started to smoke and tripped the curcuit breaker when I fiddled with it. So I'm gonna look at that next.

Thanks again doc
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Old 02-21-2006, 09:47 PM
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The pass side seat switch lit on fire in my hand, so the power seat short has been found and resolved, and I tested the draw across the battery for the LCD curcuit and found only .01A draw which I'll assume that's normal. So I'm down to horn, and heater fan low speed.

Hey doc, any idea what the switch and 3 buttons on the right side of the seats do?

Thanks
Steve
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