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Caprice Classic (1996) digital speedometer fix

Picture of Caprice Classic (1996) digital speedometer fix
Caprice Classic Digital Speedometer has GONE DARK!!
Now how fast am I really going?!
(OK so the picture shows it working, because I took the pictures after fixing the problem)

Sometimes it starts working again at random, most of the time its black.

Don't bother taking it to the garage. Don't fear having to completely remove the dash to fix it.

In about an hour (or less) you can fix it yourself, no need for parts, no special GM tools!

You will need:
T15 Torx screwdriver
7mm nut driver
soldering gun (optional)
solder (optional)
Petroleum jelly
rubbing alcohol
cotton swabs
napkins/paper towels
pose-able thumbs
1.5 elbows in each arm (or just one arm will do)
pillow
 
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Step 1: Remove gauge bezel

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Remove two screws with 7mm nut driver.
Pull bezel to remove (bottom has spring clips)

Step 2: More screws!

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Remove gauge cluster screws (four) using 7mm nut driver.

Step 3: Remove even more screws

Picture of remove even more screws
light cover bezel dressing.jpg
tinted lens installed.jpg
tinted lens.jpg
Now remove the perimeter screws (eight) holding the gauge cluster lens.
(This step eliminates the need to remove the entire lower dash panel)
Then the cluster ring/trim
Then the gauge face trim.
Then the tinted speedometer lens

Then you can remove the cluster itself through the dash opening.

Step 4:

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Remove the shifter indicator clip from the steering column collar under the dash.

Step 5:

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remove screws.jpg
Once the cluster is out:
Remove the four screws to remove the display.
Be careful it is actually made of GLASS.
Don't make them like that anymore.

Step 6:

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bad contacts 2.jpg
bad contacts.jpg
base contacts.jpg
Once the display is out, flip it over.
There it is!
The little spring contacts has driven right into the solder contacts on the back of the display circuit board.

This loose connection causes the digital display to be faded or completely blacked out.

The next steps will be what I did to repair them. You could try just cleaning them or slightly sanding them but the material is missing and in my opinion the best way would be to build up the contact points to press down the spring contacts in the cluster base making a better connection.
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