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Pelican Technical Article:

Instrument Cluster Removal

Steve Vernon

Time:

1 hour1 hr

Tab:

$200

Talent:

*

Tools:

T20 Torx, small flathead screwdriver

Applicable Models:

VW Golf (1999-05)

Parts Required:

New instrument cluster

Hot Tip:

Slide the steering wheel as far away from the dash as it will go

Performance Gain:

Reliable, bright gauges

Complementary Modification:

Clean everything while you're in there

Removing the instrument cluster on your GTI Mark4 is not a difficult job; you can even do it without removing the steering wheel, though we did you remove the wheel to allow for better pictures in this article.

The instrument cluster is a self contained sealed unit. There is very little work you can do on it other than clean the contact points or replace it. Note: If you are replacing the instrument cluster you will have to have the new cluster coded after you install it.

Disconnect the negative battery cable (yellow arrow).
Figure 1

Disconnect the negative battery cable (yellow arrow). Make sure it can't make accidental contact with the battery.

Using the steering column adjustment (red arrow) pull the steering wheel away from the dash (yellow arrow) and lower (green arrow) it as far is it will go.
Figure 2

Using the steering column adjustment (red arrow) pull the steering wheel away from the dash (yellow arrow) and lower (green arrow) it as far is it will go.

Pull the center trim piece (red arrows) straight back from the cluster (yellow arrow).
Figure 3

Pull the center trim piece (red arrows) straight back from the cluster (yellow arrow).

The trim piece is part of the upper steering column cover and can not be completely removed with out removing the entire piece.
Figure 4

The trim piece is part of the upper steering column cover and can not be completely removed with out removing the entire piece. Just rest it on the column. This photo illustrates the two glide clips (red arrow) and the center clip (green arrow) for the trim piece and the two T20 Torx screw (yellow arrows) holding the cluster in place.

Use a long handled T20 Torx and remove the screws (red arrows).
Figure 5

Use a long handled T20 Torx and remove the screws (red arrows).

Slide the left side of the cluster out of the dash (red arrow).
Figure 6

Slide the left side of the cluster out of the dash (red arrow).

Use a small flathead screwdriver and slide the hinge (red arrow) on the harness back away from the cluster.
Figure 7

Use a small flathead screwdriver and slide the hinge (red arrow) on the harness back away from the cluster.

The hinge will push the harness out from the cluster so you can unplug it.
Figure 8

The hinge will push the harness out from the cluster so you can unplug it.

There is less room to work on the right side so use care and slide the hinge away from the cluster (red arrow).
Figure 9

There is less room to work on the right side so use care and slide the hinge away from the cluster (red arrow).

Installation is the reverse of removal.
Figure 10

This photo illustrates the two wiring harnesses (red arrows) that need to connect to the back of the cluster Installation is the reverse of removal.

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Comments and Suggestions:
UKGolfMk4 Comments: My mechanic is saying that he cannot replace the faulty instrument cluster fuel gauge needle constantly beyond full because it needs coding to the ECU which isn't possible. Looking at the above it seems like he either doesn't know what he's talking about, or he's not telling me the truth.
April 15, 2016
  Followup from the Pelican Staff: The cluster is replaced as a unit.- Nick at Pelican Parts  
Tortilla King Comments: I finally was able to remove the cluster. The cluster had a plug at the bottom and no wire connections. Upon separating the cover, the unit look to be solid state with no access of lights. The odometer and clock was a single rectangular module that I did not want to investigate. I will look into installing an entirely new cluster and the cost. Thank you for the response
February 15, 2016
  Followup from the Pelican Staff: Thanks for the follow up. We appreciate it.
- Nick at Pelican Parts
 
Tortilla King Comments: have had trouble removing panel, yours is the first time a center clip, green arrow was referred to. Hope that solve problem as clock and odometer lights not allowing mileage or time to be seen, thanks
February 12, 2016
  Followup from the Pelican Staff: Let us know how it works out. - Nick at Pelican Parts  

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Page last updated: Fri 12/9/2016 02:35:00 AM