Question about 2004 Nissan Maxima

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2004 nissan maxima dash lights dont work while headlights are on

Dash lights work while headlights are off but do not work while headlights are on so when driving at night you cannot see the speedometer, fuel level, odometer, etc. Radio lights work at all times, Is this a fuse problem or an electrical problem?

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  • mtfranzi Dec 08, 2008

    The dash lights work do not work when using the AUTO feature either

  • mtfranzi Dec 08, 2008

    The radio does not dim and lights do not dim when headlights are off

  • mtfranzi Dec 08, 2008

    for clarification- the dash lights do not dim when the headlights are off- otherwise dash lights do not work at all

  • mtfranzi Dec 08, 2008

    Battery is new- ALL other electrical items are working including heated steering wheel, heated seats,cd player. Owners manaul does not address which fuse is for the dash lights- how do I find this out?

  • mtfranzi Dec 08, 2008

    Is the fact that the dimmer switch not working connected to the dash lights not working?

  • mtfranzi Dec 08, 2008

    what and where is the cluster? What is the spedo? What type of mechanic am I goung to have to take car to?

  • mtfranzi Dec 08, 2008

    Okay- is the faulty dimmer switch the reason the dash lights are not working? If yes, where do I get a new dimmer switch installed? (This is not addressed in the owner's manual) if NO- what is the problem with the dash lights and where (other than the dealer) can I take the car to have this fixed?

  • mtfranzi Dec 08, 2008

    Radio lights always stay on. Dash lights work ONLY when the headlights are OFF- when they are on or on AUTO dash lights dont work

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7 Answers

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This sounds like a dimmer switch problem. If I am thinking correct your dash lights will not dim with lights off correct? if so then replace the dimmer switch this cuts down the power and if it goes out it causes an open circuit

Posted on Dec 08, 2008

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  • TripleTauto
    TripleTauto Dec 08, 2008

    does radio dim with dimmer switch when lights are on?

  • TripleTauto
    TripleTauto Dec 08, 2008

    Trying to bettwer understand your problem,when you cut lights on or thy come on auto dash lights go out. does radio illumination go out also when lights on? if so dimmer switch is bad if not it is a problem in cluster

  • TripleTauto
    TripleTauto Dec 08, 2008

    when I say dimmer switch I mean the knob that controls the brightness of interior lights not headlight dimmer

  • TripleTauto
    TripleTauto Dec 08, 2008

    I understand your problem. the radio display also works off of the dimmer switch so if when lights are on radio stays lit upo and you can adjust the brightness on it this eliminates the dimmer. and points to a fault in the cluster itself or the feed circuit. the dimmer switch is only available thru dealer

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Doesn't sound like you have a fuse problem... It sounds like you have a short in one of the switches. If your car has an automatic light senser that burns out you will experience the same problem. Moreover, the dimmer switch is usually bypassed when your lights are off. Obviously you can take it back to the dealer so they can trace the electrical short, but any mechanic will be able solve the problem with a multimeter. If you plan on doing the work yourself, the dimmer switch usually has to be purchased from the dealer; it's hard to find specialty nissan parts at a auto parts store.

Posted on Dec 08, 2008

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HI
Sounds as if your getting a back feed. Most likely from the brake light bulbs (part number 1157). Take out the brake light bulbs and see if the dash lights still come on when you step on the brakes. If so check the lead contacts on bulbs, sometimes they get squished/corroded and jump both contacts, replace bulbs with new and recheck. Hope this helps.

Posted on Dec 08, 2008

  • ABHISHEK.C
    ABHISHEK.C Dec 08, 2008

    For some time Auto makers have been putting your taillights on the same fuse as your dash lights as an automatic indicator that they are out. I would read through your owners manual and decided where and what fuse will supply power to the taillights and dash lights. If indeed all fuses in connection with the dash lights are good I would suspect the automatic starter. 


  • george noble
    george noble Jun 09, 2014

    the dash lights come on when the headlights are turn off.

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Bad dimmer switch

Posted on Dec 08, 2008

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There should be a relay when you turn your lights on that enable your dash back light cluster asswell, could be fault causing the power to cut from the dash lights, I also think you should remove the spedo and clean the contacts on the back of the cluster this could also cause funny problems like yours

Posted on Dec 08, 2008

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you will have to check out the above things to locate the problem.1)Check your fuses. -------- 2) If theyre all ok(look in the owners manual to see wich ones to check)theres a wireing problem. If thats the case youll have to take it to someone to fix it.--------- 3) You could also check your batery to see if it has enough life in it to handle to juise it takes to run those things.--------- 4) You could also have a bad alternator, but in this case it would drain your batery completly and leave you stranded. ======

Posted on Dec 08, 2008

  • masterexpert Dec 08, 2008

    Usually there is a fuse for it. It might be located on the driver side, when you open the door, there should be a panel that opens on the side of the dash board. If not, try the other side. 


  • masterexpert Dec 08, 2008

    the fuse for wipers --------Under the hood, there is a plastic panel covering the left wing. Under that panel there is a fuse box by the windsheild container. The fuse is a 20 amps. 
    --------------
    the fuse for lights---------They are tied to either the brake lights or the tail lights-----------
    ----------if abs light is on, there is a problem in your brake system if the problem has already been repaired, disconnect battery for 5 minutes to cancel signal in computer. if problem has not been repaired, get it fixed otherwise signal and light will just keep coming back,not to mention your brakes will fail right when you need em most 
    --------------to replace the bulb-------
     Rear bumper area just look for screws on the outside of the light, if you don't see any, open the trunk and see if you find some plastic knob like screws and then undo them all until you can pull the light out of the case if that needs to be done, otherwise look for wiring in the trunk at the back where the light would mount and see if there are any wires there with a big plug on them that you turn and pull out of the light itself. One of these is the way to do it, then go get your bulb from the Auto parts store, and if you don't understand what I am talking about, go to your local autoparts store and talk to someone there for assistance, most times they will help you install it, FREE. 

    -----------------to replace the fog light bulb--------------
    driver's side: remove airduct that connect to your airfilter box.... then remove air/filter box and intake tube.... takes about 5 mins.... if that. 
    from there you have plenty of space to access both the headlight and the fog light. 


    Passenger side: Remove the windsheild wiper snorkle and the coolant resevior.... this also take about 5 mins if that.... and it gives you enough room to access the head light and fog light.... the space is a bit more tight to work in but its still enough to get the job done.

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There is a switch that controls the brightness of the dash lights only while the headlights are turned on,is it working? have you tried moving it from dim to bright and back and forth a few times and see it anything happens? if there is not reaction then most likely the switch is bad

Posted on Dec 08, 2008

  • yadayada
    yadayada Dec 08, 2008

    I know u can not dim the dash lights with the headlights off, but u can with them on, have you checked the dash light dimmer switch, 99% of the time the dash light dimmer is defective, also many times times people turn them off and don't even know they have a dimmer, complaint? my dash lights don't work with the head lights on. This is from new car dealer experience

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