if all your dash lights are out that might mean you have no tail lights turn them on and see. If so check that fuse
Glad to hear a solution worked for you. I'm not mechanically inclined nor auto savvy. "I don't know nothin' 'bout birthin' no babies."My 2005 Element had developed the same problem and I have been following this thread for about a year. I managed to fix the problem this afternoon. My dashboard backlight along with the radio and hvac controls would go off when I put my headlights on. Occasionally I would get them to turn back on with a quick strike to the dash, but it finally got too irritating to deal with.
Directions for removing the dash and gauge cluster can probably be found elsewhere so I'll skip those directions.
The problem was with the A connector (the larger connector) on the back of the gauge cluster. With the headlights on I found that if the connector was flexed upward (not much just light pressure) the dash-lights and radio/hvac controls would light up properly. I used a wooden shim wrapped with electrical tape to flex the female connector on the back of the gauge cluster upwards (on the back of the gauge cluster there is a plastic overlay protecting the circuit board and is what gave me the leverage against the connector). I forgot to take pictures but if you have any questions I'll keep an eye out for replies to this.
I seriously doubt you burnt the bulbs out...is it possible i burnt all the bulbs out of my cluster...
yeah... well im sure what ever i burnt out is the exact same problem as the the OP is having... i guess it is very possible i burnt out the cluster; like the OP's dealership has told them...I seriously doubt you burnt the bulbs out...
Monkeying with the wiring and all makes it right at impossible to offer any real constructive ideas.
You are going to need a good electrical guy to take a look-see at this. :|
Beating the hell out of my dash never did a thing to make the thing illuminate.I've got a 2003 Element having the same dash issue, popped up this summer and seems to be happening more frequently.
IIRC, the HVAC and radio also go out, I only get the airbag and "BRAKE" light illuminate on my cluster.
I good thump on the dash used to fix it.
Since the weather has warmed up a little, I'm going to open up the dash and see if I can see anything loose.
G, drop your glovebox down and wiggle the wires at the ground located just behind the brace on the right side while the headlamp switch is in the 'park' or 'head' position while watching your dash lights.
Be careful around the brace, it's a little sharp.
View attachment 65600
View attachment 65601