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Auto dimming cluster?

Discussion in 'A3/S3/Sportback (8P Chassis)' started by welshwoody, Mar 25, 2011.

  1. welshwoody
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    welshwoody Member

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    [Mar 25, 2011]
    Call me slow but Ive never noticed this until my girlfriend pointed it out today. When i drive through a tunnel, or a multi-storey car park as I did today, the lights on the cluster automatically dim after a few seconds, then once out of the darker area they come back up to full brightness after a few seconds.
    I didnt think this would happen as I have the most basic A3 ever made??
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  3. DJAlix
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    DJAlix Member

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    [Mar 25, 2011]
    It's a feature which is meant to propmt you to turn on your lights.
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  4. paddy
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    paddy Audi=No fault code, no idea

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    [Mar 25, 2011]
    Cant be that basic...mine doesn't do that. If i go into a dark place...its dark. :)
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  5. Rhyso
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    Rhyso Active Member VCDS Map User

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    [Mar 25, 2011]
    You can code the cluster do it doesn't dim :)
    #4
  6. welshwoody
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    welshwoody Member

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    [Mar 25, 2011]
    Ah I see, I just hadnt noticed it before, but now i know it does it, I like it...
    #5
  7. mike foster
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    mike foster Fossie VCDS Map User

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    [Mar 25, 2011]
    You can check it's working ok by sticking your thumb just under the 80mph position on the speedo when in bright sunshine.

    The cluster will go dark 'cos the sensor is now under the thumb, so to speak !! (wait for the jokes !!!) lol
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  8. sub39h
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    sub39h Active Member

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    [Mar 25, 2011]
    I'd never noticed this, but both my 8Ps had auto lights so it'd have no reason to warn me because it switches it's lights on itself.

    Cool feature tho.
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  9. NHN
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    NHN Retrofitter - Audi - VW - Skoda - Seat Site Sponsor VCDS Map User

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    [Mar 25, 2011]
    The sensor is actually just under the 160mph or whatever max yours is, get a torch & you can see the fascia there has a small round almost transparent piece there where light is detected, just checked my old tdi red one & its there too aswell as my white version.

    There is some cluster coding available yes.
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  10. paddy
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    paddy Audi=No fault code, no idea

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    [Mar 25, 2011]
    Presumably you have to have the cluster lights on permanent option which is why mine dosnt do it.
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  11. audicruiser
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    audicruiser Audi Heaven

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    [Mar 25, 2011]
    Oh yes!! Had mine coded by a wise man with a laptop!! :salute:
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  12. paddy
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    paddy Audi=No fault code, no idea

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    [Mar 25, 2011]
    I am a wise man with a laptop..and VCDS :)
    #11
  13. FranA3
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    FranA3 events moderator Regional Rep

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    [Mar 25, 2011]
    i noticed that the other day after 3 and a half years of ownership lol i like it tho usefull little feature
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  14. 1animal1
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    1animal1 The Clar!! it mouves!!! VCDS Map User

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    [Mar 26, 2011]
    i like this feature and also get annoyed on occasion because of when it does dim, which isnt always at the right time....that said its a nice feature to have and i wont be sticking it on permanent cos think its quite cool :)
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  15. audicruiser
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    audicruiser Audi Heaven

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    [Mar 26, 2011]
    It's a bit pointless though when you have Auto lights as the lights come and the dash lights up anyway....
    #14
  16. slade777
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    slade777 Member

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    [Mar 26, 2011]
    Also when mine is set to DRL it doesn't dim only if I have the switch set to off. whereas I think it should to tell you to put either side lights or headlights on as DRL are designed to be on all the time hence me not realising this till the other day
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  17. welshwoody
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    welshwoody Member

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    [Mar 26, 2011]
    Mines always on DRL during the day and thats when I was shown it, so it does work with DRL`s on.
    #16
  18. 1animal1
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    1animal1 The Clar!! it mouves!!! VCDS Map User

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    [Mar 26, 2011]
    yup mine too, DRL's are on constantly and the dimming works as per
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  19. benr
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    benr Member

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    [Mar 26, 2011]
    Its meant to prompt you to put your lights on? I doubt that was the thinking behind it.

    It makes it a nicer place to be and places less stress on the eyes. Basics really you don't want bright light in the pitch black but you will want it brighter when there is residual light.

    Notice it also dims the stereo etc too.
    #18
  20. slade777
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    slade777 Member

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    [Mar 26, 2011]
    Mine must be coded wrong. Just been in my dads s3 and like yours his dims when on DRL
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  21. FranA3
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    FranA3 events moderator Regional Rep

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    [Mar 26, 2011]
    do this on mine too , on my car the drl's are the headlights it dims auto so its working properly :)
    #20
  22. audicruiser
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    audicruiser Audi Heaven

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    [Mar 26, 2011]
    We have a MY10 S-Line and the dials are lit all the time and don't dim so Audi must of changed the set up. It does have Auto lights though...
    #21
  23. NHN
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    NHN Retrofitter - Audi - VW - Skoda - Seat Site Sponsor VCDS Map User

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    [Mar 26, 2011]
    Probably coded as such.
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  24. audicruiser
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    audicruiser Audi Heaven

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    [Mar 26, 2011]
    Must be but it is as it came from the factory as we had it new...
    #23
  25. A3Kent
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    A3Kent Different Gear

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    [Jun 29, 2012]
    I've just noticed this on mine this morning which prompted me to do a search for the subject on here as I found it confusing to be honest. I don't have auto lights, I do have DRL's though. I left for work this morning with my DRL's switched off (so everything off) and it's not the brightest of mornings, no sun! (not much difference there then!) and I go through an area where there are loads of trees which makes a tunnel effect and basically makes the road pretty dark, espeically with no sun out as well. I noticed that I could barely see the numbers on my cluster, only the red speedo arrow (or whatever its called!) which was lit. I thought that was strange and as I came out into better light I noticed the cluster light coming back on again. Why isn't it the other way around I thought to myself? Would make more sense surely.

    Anyway, I carried on my journey to work and I was paying particular attention to this area and suddenly noticed that the dimming had reversed. I got to a tunnel and the cluster remained fully lit... Very strange, whats right and whats wrong? I'm confused.

    This will eventually lead me to ask that can this system be linked to setting up auto lights?
    #24
  26. adamroutley
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    adamroutley Member

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    [Jun 29, 2012]
    this has answered a question for me!

    noticed mine doing this a couple of times and just assumed it was a fault. I live down a lane where the trees offer good coverage (dark areas then light)

    coincidentally i noticed that on my dials below the 160 there is a circle which i assumed was just dried water inside the cluster which now has been revealed as a sensor!

    new feature i never realized i had :D
    #25
  27. Ash187
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    Ash187 Audi-Retrofits.co.uk Site Sponsor

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    [Jun 29, 2012]
    In VCDS on the instruments cluster (17) code the last digit (not documented) to 3 to have the auto dim on or to 4 to have it on all the time. I have mine on 4 as its on during the day which helps me in low light conditions where its not dark enough for the auto lights to switch on
    #26
  28. A3Kent
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    A3Kent Different Gear

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    [Jun 29, 2012]
    I'm still confused as to what the normal behaviour of this auto dimming of the cluster should be?

    I would have thought that it should auto dim when the cockpit is bright, not when it gets dark? Having said that if you are stupid (like some people on the roads are) and forget to turn your lights on when its dark then you would think you had your lights on if the auto dimming feature lit your cluster up in the dark making you think you had your lights on...
    #27
  29. batch
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    batch Active Member

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    [Jun 30, 2012]
    The manual for my new S3 states that, for cars WITHOUT the auto lights function, the instruments will progressively dim as the light level drops, until they go out completely, to signal the driver that they need to switch on their lights. It happened on my car once when I had switched the "Auto" function off. Could this be what you mean?
    #28
  30. A3Kent
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    A3Kent Different Gear

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    [Jun 30, 2012]
    Yes thanks batch. That's the info i'm after. Where about's in your S3 manual does it state this as I can't find it in my A3 Sportback Manual.
    #29

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