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HOW-TO-> fix 03-04 SVT Cobra Gauge lights

Discussion in 'How-To' started by caveeagle, Jul 20, 2012.

  1. Lefty10

    Lefty10 ....Slow.... Established Member

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    Worked like a charm. Thank you sir :beer:
     
  2. Bowsman

    Bowsman New Member

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    Atlanta GA
    I am new to this site as I just purchased my first Mustang so bare with me but I would like to thank everyone in advance for their comments.

    I have a 2003 cobra and the back gauge lights do not work. From reading previous posts I took everyones advice and went to speedhuts web site and ordered the inverter. Well looking back at this forum I realize that I ordered the -03 inverter for a single gauge instead of the -04 inverter for multiple gauges.
    Well I tried the inverter and wired it up and it did not work.

    Now I am wondering if I should throw another 20 bucks at it and order the correct inverter or if I should cut my losses and send the gauges in to be repaired.

    Anybody know if the -03 inverter is a different output than the -04?
     
  3. Alexlopez

    Alexlopez Member Established Member

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    Apple Valley, CA
    Here's what I did with the original inverter.
    Broke off the front piece and used the rest to hold the replacement inside of it.
    A94633AB-8397-4D8E-82DD-D07FFC114E4B-15991-00000B557C398C9A_zpsdc2ead35.jpg
     
    Last edited: Nov 9, 2013
  4. Mysticobra

    Mysticobra Member Established Member

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    Location:
    Qu├ębec Canada
    Again, here is another satisfied customer. It's been two years since my cluster panel lighting went off.

    With your detailed explanations, I was able to fix my cluster panel lighting. It did not work the first time I put together all the layers and inserted it in the dash. I disassembled the layers and proceed to do a test on the bench with just the electroluminescent part of the panel (without the main circuit board layer) and a 12V source. It did light up to my relief. I re-assembled everything and re-plug in the car and there you go.

    I live in Canada and the only small negative thing is that for a part worth $10, they charge $25 of S&H. If you include the custom charges and traxes, the job is costing $55 which is still cheap to have almost as new cluster panel.

    Thanks for the very good write up Caveeagle. Now my car can sleep at ease for the winter.

    Here it is glowing better than new:

    [​IMG]
     
  5. caveeagle

    caveeagle Currently Decompressing Established Member

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    Location:
    High Springs, FL
    I like this approach! Whats the year & build date of your cobra? The stock inverter in my (late build '04) is white. I am just curious about when Ford changed the inverter type or supplier.
     
  6. Alexlopez

    Alexlopez Member Established Member

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    Apple Valley, CA
    Mine was built August of 02.
    I noticed that when I was looking at this guide I stopped and thought it had already been fixed but it was stock. Nothing had been done before.
    Do these inverters come faulty sometimes?
    I fixed mine, then they went out again the next day :(
     
  7. caveeagle

    caveeagle Currently Decompressing Established Member

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    Its a very common failure on the 03/04 cobras. Are you the original owner? Are you sure this is the original cluster for your car? Maybe its a dealer replacement part?? I personally have never seen a black stock inverter. Buts its not too hard to beleive ford may have had more than one source for this part.

    Never heard of one failing on a super low mileage car. So I suspect the inverter just has a 'burn out' factor.

    Was it the speedhut inverter that burnt out (next day)?? ....please explain..
     
  8. Alexlopez

    Alexlopez Member Established Member

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    Apple Valley, CA
    Yep, the speedhut inverter is the one that went out again. I ordered another one already so imma swap it out again an hope for the best.
    I have no clue if my cluster was ever replaced but I'm considering just buying another at this point.
     
  9. 03sm3341

    03sm3341 Active Member Established Member

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    I have seen black OE inverters. The ones ive seen where in 2003 cars the 2004's ive seen are whiteish. I had a speedhut inverter go out on me. I upgraded to the bigger unit on my car that DOES NOT fit in the cluster. I ran its wires into the cluster and the inverter is mounted inside my dash. It also changes color from blue to green.

    After my first speedhut unit went out I bought a used OE cluster for $250 and stole it's inverter. It worked 2 weeks........I was pissed. $250 bucks is alot of speedhut inverters.
     
  10. Alexlopez

    Alexlopez Member Established Member

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    Would you happen to have the link to the part from speedhut that you ended up using?
    I'd appreciate it.
     
  11. Gkstang

    Gkstang New Member Established Member

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    Teneessee
    Thanks

    Big thanks to cave eagle fixed my instrument cluster and saved a ton of money. You the man
     
  12. worldcat

    worldcat New Member Established Member

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    Ft.Myers Florida
    I know this is an old post but I just followed this step by step and my gauges are fixed! 10/10 post
     
  13. spray'n mach 1

    spray'n mach 1 New Member Established Member

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    I just ordered mine to fix my non working lights. the fuses are fine so i guess it has to be the inverter. fingers crossed.
     
  14. spray'n mach 1

    spray'n mach 1 New Member Established Member

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    go figure I installed a new inverter and mine still doesn't work...my damn luck
     
  15. Nate14120

    Nate14120 Active Member Established Member

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    Iowa
    Just wanted to say thanks. Been dark around 4 years...I don't drive at night much.

    I pulled the circuit off the old inverter and used the case to hold it down. Awesome idea from an earlier post.
     
  16. caveeagle

    caveeagle Currently Decompressing Established Member

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    Did you ever get it fixed?
     
  17. hex99CobraConv

    hex99CobraConv Member Established Member

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    Location:
    Granite Fall, NC
    My 2003 10th Anniverdary cobra cluster isn't lighting up recently after being intermitant the last few years and I'm wondering the longevity of the speedhut inverter fix as I've heard some feedback about it possibly damaging the cluster since it's not the exact replacement part? Something about over ballast amperage...

    Have you guys that have done this seen a permenant fix without any failures?

    Speedhut told me today they didn't endorse using their invertor, but that's what they have if I want to order it....

    Any reasons I shouldn't follow this procedure?

    Thanks guys!



    Rick
     
  18. Black_Snake

    Black_Snake New Member Established Member

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    Fort Hood, TX
    Just tried this with no luck. Double and triple checked all the connections. Any idea what else it could be???
     
  19. SJ SNAKE

    SJ SNAKE Venomous Established Member

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    San Jose & Sacramento, CA
    Any updates?

    Some people have said the motherboard itself was the culprit. The fix was to get a new cluster.
     
  20. hex99CobraConv

    hex99CobraConv Member Established Member

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    Another satisfied customer! Just did the speedhut inverter install tonight and my dark cluster is now back to looking like it used to.

    Thanks guys!
     

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