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Dashboard Lights and Gauges
Ford Escort
Ford F-150

How do you replace the dash lights in a 1997 Ford Escort?

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2011-06-26 21:30:08
2011-06-26 21:30:08

If none are illuminating, it is not going to be the dash lights. Check to see if you have running lights. You will find that there is a blown fuse, and the problem(s) will be within the running lights wiring. And, some fuses just "blow" for no apparent reason. If it is that you only have one bulb out behind the instrument cluster, then, You need to go to a car parts store, and get a repair manual for your car. They cost about $16.00 Or, go to a Public Library.

1997 Ford Escort dash light replacement:

Disconnect negative battery cable.

Remove U shaped plastic dash panel that goes around the bottom and left and right sides of the steering wheel column. It's held on with one screw (7mm) on the lower right side and hidden snap-in holders. You will have to remove the hood latch handle that is attached to this piece (loosen the nut in the back and slide off).

Next, remove the 5 screws (7mm - 3 on top & 2 on bottom) that hold the dash panel that goes around the gauge assembly. Two of these screws can only be accessed by removing the U shaped panel (see above). This piece consists of 3 heater/air conditioner ports and runs all the way to the air bag panel on the passenger side.

Move the tilt steering wheel all the way down. Right above the top of the steering wheel column where it enters the dash is a small rectangular (about 8 inches wide) flat piece that will detach from the main piece. Put your fingers up under the left side of it and push the tab in towards the steering wheel column and push up at the same time. It should pop out.

Carefully work your fingers around the gauges, etc... Work it off carefully to unlatch the hidden snap-in holders. Remove panel. Now the actual gauge assembly will be exposed.

Remove the 4 screws (7mm - 2 top, 2 bottom) that hold the gauge assembly to the dash.

Carefully pull the gauge assembly partially out. There are 3 plugs attached to the back. You can remove these by pushing the tabs in and carefully pull them out of the flexible circuit board. Remove gauge assembly.

There are two types of bulbs screwed in the back. The larger black plastic bulb holders are for the basic gauge illumination and the smaller tan plastic bulb holders are for the warning indicators. To remove the bulb holders you have to depress the lock tabs on the left and right sides with needle nose pliers, etc. - turn counter clockwise and pull out. Pull glass bulb straight out of the holder and replace with new one.

Reassemble in reverse order

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