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BMW 3-Series (E90 E92) Forum > BMW E90/E92/E93 3-series General Forums > Regional Forums > UK > UK Technical Forum > Instrument cluster displays, worth repairing or buy new?



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      01-17-2015, 11:26 AM   #1
DanMZe90
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Instrument cluster displays, worth repairing or buy new?

Hi,

Just came back off a weeks holiday and fired my 2006 330D up for the first time in 7 days. Everything normal apart from the instrument cluster is completely dead. I also cannot save a new time/date from the radio even though it allows me to alter the values.

After going through various similar threads I have

1. checked fuse 58 for the dashboard (OK)
2. swapped fuses with another 5 amp fuse to be sure and still nothing.
3. Have checked battery voltage 12.65 standing, 14.65 running so 'normal'.
4. Have disconnected battery for an hour the reconnected and still no change.
5. Have unplugged the instrument cluster and replugged it in and still nothing.

Am taking it into my local indie on Monday who I'm betting will declare the cluster unit dead but want to be prepared. Has anyone tried these online repair services with any success or do I steer clear? How much are instrument clusters for the e90? I'm guessing you can't buy secondhand as I've read it needs to be programmed to your car but wouldn't a new one have to have the same reprogramming work?

Thanks

Dan
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      01-17-2015, 01:05 PM   #2
Sensible_
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1st port of call is to read what fault codes the car is throwing. If the KOMBI is completely dead - no signs of power at all? LEDs lighting up? - then a fault code will be thrown.

Once we see the codes we can diagnose the problem.

If the KOMBI is knackered.

You can get a used one off eBay for around £50. However it's not as simple as just 'programming' the EEPROM needs to be 'virginized'. Otherwise you'll see a TAMPER dot on the screen re vin mismatch. Also mileage needs to be corrected.

PM me if you need help with a used KOMBI. I offer this service free of charge. (And it's not dodgy before anyone says so as BMW store mileage in multiple modules you cannot lower vehicle mileage by lowering just KOMBI mileage)

A new uncoded KOMBI from dealer is plus £200 last time I checked.
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      01-17-2015, 01:44 PM   #3
DanMZe90
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Thanks, I don't have a code reader and nothing whatsoever is showing on the dash at all, no gauges flash up or work, no LEDS light up at any point...it appears completely dead.

Excuse my ignorance but what is a KOMBI...is that a part of the instrument cluster unit or the unit itself? I take that if I buy a used or a new one I then would have to get/pay the indie/BMW/someone else to virginize it and form that point it should work as before?

Many thanks

Dan
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      01-17-2015, 02:07 PM   #4
Sensible_
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Sorry, KOMBI is technical name for instrument cluster.

A very much doubt a dealer or Indy will be able to program a used cluster as it requires specialist flash chip reading tools and sometimes soldering depending on chip version.

There are people that will do this for you and send you the cluster back already programmed for your car. I am one of these people.

However there is not point doing all that if the problem is located elsewhere. That's why an electronical diagnosis is required first.
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      01-17-2015, 02:21 PM   #5
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Also, is fuse 58 specific to your model for instrument cluster. Have you tried 72?

Also can you check voltage at the cluster connector with a multimeter? Off top of my head pin 9 is positive and 18 negative.

Or, take the cluster out and attach a 12v power supply to the connecter like my picture.

Push the mileage reset button and the screen should light up and display mileage, as if first stage ignition was on.

This way we can see if it's a power issue or cluster issue.
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Last edited by Sensible_; 01-17-2015 at 02:34 PM.
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      01-17-2015, 04:44 PM   #6
DanMZe90
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Thanks, I was thinking of checking power to it but didn't know which pins were positive/negative. I'll see if I can check with my multimeter tomorrow. Don't think I have a 12v power supply to do the alternative test. I take it you mean hit the mileage reset once the alternative 12v is attached as at the moment it does nothing.

Fuse 58 according to the fuse pictorial is the dashboard and my fuses only go up to 70! It is exactly the same layout as from the three pictures in this post:

http://www.e90post.com/forums/showpo...0&postcount=14

Thanks

Dan
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      01-17-2015, 04:52 PM   #7
whiteblue
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Sensible_ View Post
Sorry, KOMBI is technical name for instrument cluster.

A very much doubt a dealer or Indy will be able to program a used cluster as it requires specialist flash chip reading tools and sometimes soldering depending on chip version.
I second that in any respect. The dealer has no clue for this kind of work.
In my country I only know one person who can do it. He has customers that drive 500 miles and more to get the work done properly.

KOMBI is short for the German term (Kombi Instrument)
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      01-17-2015, 04:58 PM   #8
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Do you have rodents where you live?

If the cluster is totally dead it could be a faulty ground.
Remove it and unplug it. Spray some Caig Deoxit to the pins. Maybe it helps
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      01-17-2015, 05:20 PM   #9
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Quote:
Originally Posted by DanMZe90
Thanks, I was thinking of checking power to it but didn't know which pins were positive/negative. I'll see if I can check with my multimeter tomorrow. Don't think I have a 12v power supply to do the alternative test. I take it you mean hit the mileage reset once the alternative 12v is attached as at the moment it does nothing.

Fuse 58 according to the fuse pictorial is the dashboard and my fuses only go up to 70! It is exactly the same layout as from the three pictures in this post:

http://www.e90post.com/forums/showpo...0&postcount=14

Thanks

Dan
Correct re 12v supply.

I only asked about fuse 72 as there are different variants of fuses.
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      01-17-2015, 05:27 PM   #10
DanMZe90
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Thanks, there might be rodents but they are usually presented to us dead on the doorstep by a 'helpful' local cat! I'll have a bit more of a play around tomorrow....according to the post I pointed at, fuse 58 is for the dash right? Just want to rule out idiocy on my part...!
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      01-18-2015, 08:47 AM   #11
DanMZe90
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Eeerrmm....not sure if this is coincidence but we just went out in my partners car to a discount store where I picked up a relatively cheap Haynes manual for the beemer. Came back home and fired up the car with a view to checking power to the KOMBI and lo and behold, as soon as I put the key in, the lights on the dash are all there and now working. The date was a couple of days out as was the time but it appears to be working normal.

Now, did the buying of the Haynes manual somehow force the car to 'get a grip' and start working? Or am I lumbered with an intermittent fault that's going to be challenging to find...or does any of this behaviour point at anything in particular e.g. battery?

Thanks, Dan (pleased yet confused)
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      01-18-2015, 06:30 PM   #12
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Hmm, sounds like a dodgy connection somewhere. Did you go over a large speed hump or pot hole lol?
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      01-19-2015, 03:29 PM   #13
DanMZe90
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About a year ago I think there was a pothole incident but nothing major.

It went in today for an oil change and I got them to stick it through the diagnostic and for 60 it helpfully said it had lost communication with the dash...lol. The technician couldn't find anything obvious and said he had recoded it to the car, whatever that means, I'm guessing a reset??

Anyway, its working and the only thing that could be obviously suspect is the now 9 year old battery which is due for a change!

Dan
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      01-19-2015, 04:26 PM   #14
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Battery can indeed cause cluster problems.

After everything you've said my money is on that. If the KOMBI was played around with by the tech then it's 100% ok. So it must be a power issue of sorts.

Keep an eye on your battery voltage via the hidden menu.
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      01-19-2015, 06:23 PM   #15
DanMZe90
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Thanks, I didn't know there was an accessible hidden menu but I'll google that!
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