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Instrument Cluster Replacement
 
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Pelican Technical Article:

Instrument Cluster Replacement

Kerry Jonsson

Time:

4 hours4 hrs

Tab:

$900

Talent:

***

Tools:

T25 Torx driver, plastic door removal tool

Applicable Models:

Mercedes-Benz W211 (2003-09)

Parts Required:

Instrument cluster

Hot Tip:

If levering off the glass use a rag to protect the plastic

Performance Gain:

Have a fully functional instrument cluster

Complementary Modification:

Upgrade to AMG face gauges

The instrument cluster is where the driver receives all the information about the car. If there is a malfunction in the system there is an information display screen in the middle of the speedometer. There are also warning lights, turn signal indicators and of course a few gauges, such as speedometer, tachometer, fuel level and engine temperature. There is also an analog clock on the left side of the instrument cluster gauges. If the information display screen or any of the gauges malfunction, the driver would not be informed of serious problems with the vehicle. The information display screen also displays information about required service to the vehicle. Without the display the driver would not have an odometer and also no maintenance required information. This would make keeping track of required service very difficult and effect performance and longevity of your vehicle. In this tech article we will go over all the steps to replace your instrument cluster.

This instrument cluster does not have any serviceable parts, such as bulbs. The unit must be replaced as an assembly only. Mercedes Benz does not recommend opening up the instrument cluster as static discharge from your hands can damage the electronics inside.

You do not have to remove the steering wheel to perform this job but it will be much more difficult to remove the instrument cluster with the steering wheel in place. See our tech article on Steering Wheel Removal for further instructions.

This picture illustrates the instrument cluster with the steering wheel removed.
Figure 1

This picture illustrates the instrument cluster with the steering wheel removed. Use your fingers to pop out the top of the instrument cluster bezel from the dashboard. Carefully pull away from the instrument cluster to detach the trim piece at the top. See the next step for further removal instructions.

The bottom is a bit harder to grab.
Figure 2

The bottom is a bit harder to grab. So I use a plastic door removal tool; work your way around the bezel until the entire part is popped out of the opening in the dashboard. Remove the bezel completely. If you are worried about scratching the clear plastic of the instrument cluster you can cover it with a rag where you are levering from.

Remove the four T25 Torx fasteners (green arrows).
Figure 3

Remove the four T25 Torx fasteners (green arrows).

You can use a T25 Torx driver to remove the fasteners.
Figure 4

You can use a T25 Torx driver to remove the fasteners.

Pull the instrument cluster out of the opening by pulling the top out first.
Figure 5

Pull the instrument cluster out of the opening by pulling the top out first. You will not be able to completely remove the unit until you disconnect the electrical connector. Pull it out as much as you can to expose the electrical connector.

While pushing in on the locking tab (green arrow) slide the locking lever (yellow arrow) in the direction of the blue arrow.
Figure 6

While pushing in on the locking tab (green arrow) slide the locking lever (yellow arrow) in the direction of the blue arrow.

With the locking lever in this position you can now unplug the connector from the instrument cluster and completely remove the instrument cluster from the car.
Figure 7

With the locking lever in this position you can now unplug the connector from the instrument cluster and completely remove the instrument cluster from the car.

There are no serviceable bulbs on this instrument cluster.
Figure 8

There are no serviceable bulbs on this instrument cluster. It must be serviced as a complete assembly. Mercedes Benz does not recommend opening the assembly as electrostatic discharge can damage the electronics in the instrument cluster. If you do open the unit to change the gauge faces use an anti-static wrist strap to prevent electrostatic discharge. Installation is the reverse of the removal steps. Plug in the electrical connector to the receptacle in the instrument cluster and move the locking lever towards its locked position. Fit the instrument cluster into the opening in the dashboard and tighten down the four fasteners. Fit and snap the bezel into place. Install the steering wheel according to the instructions for Steering Wheel Removal. Turn on the ignition key and make sure all the gauges and the information display screen works properly.

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Comments and Suggestions:
moshe Comments: Can I source and replace the dimmer of the instrument cluster? if so, what is the part number/source?
November 5, 2016
  Followup from the Pelican Staff: I’m not the best with part numbers.


Give The Pelican Parts parts specialists a call at 1-888-280-7799. They can figure out what part or repair kit you need.


- Nick at Pelican Parts
 
moshe Comments: My 2008 E200 CDI ex-taxi, 500K on odometer! cluster backlight speedo, tacho, etc are very dim even when I rotate the dimmer all the way to the right it changes from complete dark to very dim light
Is there anything to do to get it repair it? It seems a waste to replace the complete instrument cluster due to washed out light bulbs/LED..
October 31, 2016
  Followup from the Pelican Staff: Sounds like the dimmer is faulty. Try replacing it. - Nick at Pelican Parts  
JD Comments: Hi is the car mileage saved on the cluster or somewhere else ? if i change cluster will the car give me same current mileage or show different ?
September 19, 2016
  Followup from the Pelican Staff: Usually saved in the cluster, the engine computer and theft ecu. - Nick at Pelican Parts  
amer Comments: My fuel lvl is not working properly, my gauge shows reading until it reaches the middle, it will show middle for anything less than ahalf of a tank. I already had unexpected stops and i had to top up with fuel to continue.
Do i need to change my instrument cluster on my 2004 e320 4matic??
May 9, 2016
  Followup from the Pelican Staff: I would suspect the fuel level sender first. Check if it is faulty, resistance should change along with fuel level, increasing as level increases. - Nick at Pelican Parts  
NSP Comments: Joe Comments: My 2006 E320 CDI mfr 03/06 lacks a working
Like Joe above, I just failed inspection in NJ for a faulty MIL / CEL light. Is the only fix to replace the entire instrument cluster?



MIL light check engine light needed to pass VA emission inspection. Apparently, it's an LED in the cluster! Is it possible to tap a wire somewhere to get the indicator signal and make my own lamp, or is this cluster available bummer for just one LED? Thanks
December 4, 2015
  Followup from the Pelican Staff: Not that I know of. You will need a new cluster. Unless you can send it to a repair facility. - Nick at Pelican Parts  
Joe Comments: My 2006 E320 CDI mfr 03/06 lacks a working MIL light check engine light needed to pass VA emission inspection. Apparently, it's an LED in the cluster! Is it possible to tap a wire somewhere to get the indicator signal and make my own lamp, or is this cluster available bummer for just one LED? Thanks!
September 4, 2015
  Followup from the Pelican Staff: No. you will have to replace the cluster. - Nick at Pelican Parts  
Hanna Comments: Thank you for your email
I am waiting your valued reply when you check the wiring diagram.
July 10, 2015
  Followup from the Pelican Staff: I don't have the wiring. You will need to buy a repair manual with the wiring. - Nick at Pelican Parts  
Hanna Comments: Kindly can you help us to locate the speed signal pickup
For Mercedes 2004 c320 to install a taxi meter

Thank you in advance
July 9, 2015
  Followup from the Pelican Staff: You may have to grab it from the bus system. Not 100% sure. I would grab a repair manual. It will have the wiring diagram.

Give our parts specialists a call at 1-888-280-7799. - Nick at Pelican Parts
 
Al Comments: I wanted to report that I successfully swapped the PCBs on my Mercedes W211. There are 5 ribbon cables that need to be disconnected and then the PCB could be moved to your target instrument cluster. Pictures could be found on the MBWORLD.ORG, under W211 forum, under thread titled: AMG Instrument Panel Swap.
June 1, 2015
  Followup from the Pelican Staff: Thanks for sharing your installation process and experience. These type of comments add so much to the Pelican tech community.
- Nick at Pelican Parts
 
Al Comments: Do you have to disconnect battery while removing cluster?
May 12, 2015
  Followup from the Pelican Staff: Mercedes-Benz suggests doing do, yes. - Nick at Pelican Parts  
Al Comments: I've got a Mercedes E320 2005. Yesterday, I picked up a used AMG instrument cluster to replace my stock factory unit.

Could I just swap PCBs between my stock cluster and the AMG cluster in order to maintain current info and avoid costly dealer programming?
May 12, 2015
  Followup from the Pelican Staff: I am not sure, I have never tried. Give it s shot and report back. - Nick at Pelican Parts  

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