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Back lighting or warning lights ? check engine , ABS , air bags , seat belt , oil light etc... ?
Interior Lamps Dimming
The second group includes lamps which may be dimmed. This group may use a combination of vacuum fluorescent (VF) illumination and incandescent lamps.
• Power window switches
• HVAC control head assembly
• The instrument panel cluster (IPC)
When the ignition switch is turned to the ON position, the vacuum fluorescent (VF) display (radio) turns on at maximum brightness. When the park lamps are ON all incandescent back lighting turn ON at the dimming level indicated by the IP dimmer switch. At the same time all vacuum fluorescent (VF) displays dim to match the indicated dimming level. When the headlamp switch is placed in the PARK position, the park lamp supply voltage circuit provides an input to the body control module (BCM). The BCM then supplies voltage to the instrument panel dimmer switch through the instrument panel dimming lamps control circuit. The setting of the instrument panel dimmer switch determines the amount of voltage that the instrument panel dimmer switch supplies to the BCM through the instrument panel dimming lamps low reference circuit. The BCM then sends a pulse width modulated (PWM) voltage to all the interior lamps. All the vacuum florescent (VF) and incandescent back lighting lamps are provided a specific voltage and are then grounded. When the headlight switch is turned to the PARK or HEADLAMP position, all incandescent back lighting turn on at the dimming level indicated by the IP dimmer switch. When the IP dimmer switch is moved from MIN to MAX, all vacuum fluorescent (VF) displays, as well as all incandescent back lighting respond from Minimum intensity to maximum brightness in response to the IP dimmer switch.
I would have it checked for DTC'S - diagnostic trouble codes stored in the BCM !
DTC B2624 Display Dimming Input Range/Performance
The body control module (BCM) supplies voltage to the instrument panel dimmer switch through the instrument panel dimmer switch signal circuit. The dimmer switch varies the voltage and returns the new voltage to the BCM through the dimmer switch signal return circuit. The BCM uses this voltage to determine the illumination level of the instrument panel lamps.
DTC B2625 Display Dimming Pulse Width Modulation (PWM) Output Circuit Range/Performance
The body control module (BCM) receives a variable voltage from the instrument panel (I/P) lamp dimmer switch. The BCM uses this signal in order to vary the illumination level of the I/P lamps. The I/P dimming lamps output from the BCM is a pulse width modulated voltage supply used to light the I/P lamps. If a malfunction occurs in the I/P dimming lamps output circuit, this DTC is set.
DTC B2662 Park Lamp Switch Circuit Malfunction
The park lamps are controlled by the turn/headlamp switch. Positive battery voltage is supplied to the switch through the EXT LP fuse. When the turn/headlamp switch is placed in the park or head position, battery voltage is supplied to the park lamps. The body control module (BCM) is also connected to the park lamp circuit to sense whether or not the park lamps turn ON when the low beam or high beam headlamps are turned ON. The BCM also uses the parklamp battery positive voltage to power the instrument panel (I/P) dimmer output circuit. If the BCM senses that the low beam or high beam headlamps are ON and the park lamp input is not active, DTC B2662 sets.
Do the park lamps work ?
Turn on headlamps and try to start. Do lights dim? Yes= bad battery connections, low charge on battery, bad solenoid, bad starter. Not dimming? bad solenoid, bad starter switch, bad neutral safety switch, bad starter relay, bad ignition switch. Use voltmeter to see if ignition switch works, and so on.
Test the electrical circuit's ! Look at a wiring diagram so you know what wire's to test . Watch these video's , buy a DVOM - digital volt ohm meter . Learn to test so you don't listen to guesses . Basic Electricity for Service Techs Ohm law Current Flow Opens Shorts Mastering Voltage Drop Testing with Pete Meier and Jerry Truglia Electric Testing Techniques You Need to Know Free wiring diagrams here . http://www.bbbind.com/free_tsb.html Enter vehicle info. year , make , model and engine size. Under system click on lighting ,then under subsystem click headlamps . Click the search button then the blue link's . Right away in the first diagram i see the headlamp / panel dimmer switch is a input to the BCM - body control module . I mite think your first response would be to want to replace the BCM ! Reading a discription of how the lights are suppose to work may shed some light on the problem .
Headlamp ON/OFF control is determined by the body control module (BCM) by a signal on the headlamp switch on input circuit when the headlamp switch is in the HEAD position. When the headlamp switch is in the AUTO position, the BCM determines headlamps ON/OFF by the voltage from the ambient light sensor.
If the headlight switch is left in the ON position, the inadvertent power control feature will turn off the headlights approximately 10 minutes after the ignition switch is turned to the OFF position. If the driver places the headlight switch in the ON position after the ignition switch has been turned OFF, or if the ignition switch is in the ACCY position, the headlights will remain on until turned off or the battery runs dead.
The high beam indicator is illuminated when the instrument cluster receives a class 2 serial data message from the BCM that the high beams are illuminated.
Having the vehicle checked for DTC'S - diagnostic trouble codes , BCM - codes ! Need a professional type scan tool . Part stores can't read body codes , dealer or independent repair shop .
When the body control module (BCM) senses a request for low beam headlamp illumination, the BCM sends a ground signal to the low beam headlamp relay through the headlamp low beam relay control circuit. The headlamp low beam relay will apply voltage to illuminate the headlamps.
When the body control module (BCM) receives a ground signal from the multifunction high beam or flash to pass (FTP) switch commanding to illuminate the high beam headlamps, the BCM will energize the high beam relay by grounding the high beam relay control circuit.
The body control module (BCM) receives a variable voltage signal from the instrument panel (I/P) dimmer switch requesting to illuminate the illumination lamps to a desired intensity. When this occurs, the BCM directly sends a variable voltage based on the I/P dimmer switch position on the instrument panel lamps dimming supply voltage circuit, instrument panel lamps dimming control circuit, and the LED dimming signal circuit.
Voltage for the instrument panel lamps dimming supply voltage circuit, instrument panel lamps dimming control circuit, and the LED dimming signal circuits is from the TBC 2 A fuse in the instrument panel fuse block directly through the BCM to these circuits.
The BCM directly sends a 5 volt reference voltage to the I/P dimmer switch which is then adjusted based on the I/P dimmer switch position and returned as a dimming return and dimming input to the BCM. The BCM uses this signal to directly control the desired level of instrument panel illumination lamp intensity.
Your best bet , take it to a qualified repair shop .
If the battery is older than 3 years or has been totally discharged more than 2 times it is probably time to get a new battery. Of course this has nothing to do with only your dash lights not working unless the battery was dead. Have you checked the instrument lights fuse? Are you sure the dash lights dimmer switch is not turned all the way to totally dim? Sometimes it is the same switch that you use to reset the odometer, and sometimes it is another knob you turn.
Does it go completely black or just dim? Most displays dim when you turn the lights on to make the display darker so its not too bright. GPS and other displays do this. Do you have any problems with any other of the car's electronics?