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New guy, dashboard bulbs

Discussion in 'A4/S4 forum(B5 Chassis)' started by kriswa428, Nov 28, 2010.

  1. kriswa428
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    kriswa428 Member

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    [Nov 28, 2010]
    Hi,

    Finally got round to signing up. Im a 19 year old guy and a very proud owner of my first audi, 1997 a4 2.8q manual, (and no the insurance isnt like 5k!:) ). Owned it for around 4 months now and ive already spent around 700 on her for various parts. However most of the bulbs have died behind the dials and its becoming pretty unbearable in this weather. Does anyone know what work is involved?

    Thanks,


    Kris
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  3. Fahim
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    Fahim Member

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    [Nov 28, 2010]
    Congratulations on the car and welcome!

    Someone will be around soon to help you, but i'll give it a shot for now.

    I think you have to remove the cluster, which isn't too hard. Should be 2 screws at the front just above the steering wheel, maybe hidden by some plastic cover. Then you have to remove the screws from behind the cluster and from there i think you will have to get an electronic to solder some new leds in place!
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  4. kriswa428
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    kriswa428 Member

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    [Nov 28, 2010]
    thanks for the reply. Yeah i imagined there would be some soldering involved, its something I want to sort asap now its practically dark all the time. What model b7 do you have?
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  5. aragorn
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    aragorn "Stick a V8 in it!" Staff Member Moderator VCDS Map User

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    [Nov 28, 2010]
    Is it the bulbs in the cluster or the bulbs illuminating the heater etc?

    If its the cluster, it comes out pretty easily.

    Pull off the trim that sits just infront of it, above the column shroud, and you'll see two screws. Remove these and the cluster will just pull out.

    Early dashes have twist-fit filament bulbs, later cars have LED's, but the LED's are pretty robust so its probably an older dash. The bulbs are dealer only, but arent expensive.
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  6. kriswa428
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    [Nov 28, 2010]
    yeah its the cluster, rpm/speedo oil etc. its the 2.8 30valve but pre facelift so yes i imagine its not LED. Thanks for the advice, doesnt sound too difficult. Also i have the factory fitted glass sunroof, it tilts open by itself. If i go over a bump that may trigger it, or sometimes it just opens completely out of the blue. I dont think this is an electrical fault, is it likely to be the switch itself?
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  7. aragorn
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    aragorn "Stick a V8 in it!" Staff Member Moderator VCDS Map User

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    [Nov 28, 2010]
    Probably the switch aye.

    They changed to LED in 1997, but you're car might have just missed it.
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  8. kriswa428
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    kriswa428 Member

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    [Nov 28, 2010]
    yeah she's P registered. Ideally i would of liked the 20vTQ but no insurer would touch me. I know theirs not much you can do to the v6, chipped and a militek is the only way I can get a bit more grunt. Any other worthwile mod's?
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  9. aragorn
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    aragorn "Stick a V8 in it!" Staff Member Moderator VCDS Map User

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    [Nov 28, 2010]
    Thats weird, the TQS and 2.8Q are the same insurance group!

    Wouldnt bother with a milltek, get a bespoke system made to your own spec, Milltek is overpriced imo.
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  10. kriswa428
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    kriswa428 Member

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    [Nov 28, 2010]
    yeah its when insurance here turbo and "male under 21" in the same quote. Still lots of lovely torque to play with. Yeah I thought the militek was pricey, what sorta spec system should i be looking at for my one. Do you have your own system on your facelifted avant?
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  11. aragorn
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    aragorn "Stick a V8 in it!" Staff Member Moderator VCDS Map User

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    [Nov 28, 2010]
    The avants stock at the moment.

    I'd go for a dual 2.5" system.

    Theres a cheap system (XS Power) thats often on ebay for the S4 that you should be able to modify to fit your 2.8 and they seem to get decent write ups! It will also benefit from the stock cats being replaced by sport items, again you can buy the parts and have a local exhaust place weld it all together.
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  12. mike-a
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    mike-a Member

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    [Nov 28, 2010]
    Yup,hard to come by are those cluster bulbs.Halfords do a similar one but it's £3.50ish for one.I had one bulb out and got one from Halfords but that caused two older bulls to blow! Just ordered a full set of 10 new orange base ones from local VW dealer (any vag dealer can get them) about £20 I think.
    To add to the info above you should take the top half of the steering column off too,just to give a bit more room and to avoid scratching it.
    more info here
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  13. pjw
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    pjw Member

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    [Nov 29, 2010]
    Hi, theyre not hard to find. I rang Audi and they wanted £2.50 a piece for them. I managed to get a bag of ten off ebay for £5.50 delivered.

    Ill find the seller (im at work so no ebay) and repost it on here.

    To get the cluster out, have a look on youtube theres a really good video posted by a guy who repairs them, for his customers.

    Basically, unscrew the two screws under the column wither side of the sterring wheel. Then pull the plastic cowling on the top of the column (in front of the cluster) away from the top. Its hinged on the bottom. Just clips off.

    After that, you can see a ridged plastic sheet behind it. Peel the top back and you will see the two screws that hold the cluster in. Remove these and wiggle the instrument cluster towards you. Theres a clip on the back on each end.

    Use a small flat screwdriver to pull the blue (or yellow, it differs) clips all the way out, then the plugs just pull out too. Then slide the whole unit out and to the left of the steering wheel. The bulbs are in plastic holder and they unscrew 90 degrees then pop out. :arco:
    Last edited: Nov 29, 2010
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  14. pjw
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    [Nov 29, 2010]
    £4.90 delivered for ten.

    Ebay item number 140396473469.
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  15. mike-a
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    mike-a Member

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    [Nov 29, 2010]
    I've had eBay bulbs.Rubbish quality and loose fit.Only half worked when I put them in due to not making contact on the pcb properly.In bin and vag ones ordered,here tomorrow.
    Just my experience of course.
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  16. pjw
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    pjw Member

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    [Nov 29, 2010]
    Ahh, not tried them yet. Will give them a whirl tonight and see if theyre any good :ermm:
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  17. fARQUARE
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    [Nov 29, 2010]
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  18. kriswa428
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    [Nov 29, 2010]
    thanks guys for all the advice. I will give Audi a call this week and get the parts ordered. I'll attempt it with my dad on saturday. Like everybody else I'm not a fan of the pre-facelift headlights. Do the factory xenon ones just clip right in?
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  19. pjw
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    [Nov 29, 2010]
    I just fitted almost the full bag of cheapo bulbs, all work, no problems, fit fine.
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  20. mike-a
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    mike-a Member

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    [Nov 30, 2010]
    Glad they're a winner! There are also led bulbs with the same base on eBay,here. I nearly went for the led ones but got the dirt cheap ones.Questionable quality,could have prob made them work but don't have time to be taking dash apart all the time so just went with oem stuff.Arrived today so might fit tonight if I get chance.
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  21. pjw
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    [Nov 30, 2010]
    IVe had the LED ones in the past and they were pants, very directional and not too good for the larger dials, more for warning lamps.
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  22. NineNails
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    [Nov 30, 2010]
    LED's sometimes work better if you give the bulb a rough up with some sand-paper. It helps diffuse the light a bit more.
    Glad you are getting somewhere with putting the car right ;)
    Si.
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