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E36 General discussion and technical help for (E36) 1992-1999 3 series cars. 318, 323, 325, 328.

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Old 04-30-2012, 01:45 PM   #1
foaxaca
 
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Instrument cluster removal - Any hints?

Apparently, the bulb for the CEL on my daughter's '96 328is is loose or failing. It went on recently as I described in another post when the connector to the intake manifold air temp sensor came off. She reported that it went on for a few minutes and then turned off. I reconnected the air temp sensor, checked codes and cleared the temp sensor code but came up with a code for "check engine lamp".

I figured the bulb had gone out so I ordered several bulbs thinking I would change the ones that get lots of use while I had the cluster out. Tried to pull the cluster out with no success last night. Got the two screws out and was able to pull it out partially but cannot get it past the steering wheel.

I understand that it is possible to get it out even if the wheel does not tilt. I reinstalled it while I come up with a better approach and found that the CEL light was working again! I cleared the check engine lamp code but I still want to get in there and change/tighten bulbs. Any hints for how to get the cluster out without pulling the steering wheel off would be greatly appreciated. Thanks!
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Old 04-30-2012, 05:26 PM   #2
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Old 05-19-2012, 01:18 AM   #3
yeswecan

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hey, I have same problem. There ARE NOT LIGHT BULBS AT ALL on my dashboard! I have no idea who did that and why...Anyway, i went to the junk car market and took off several light bulbs...but, it is really hard to put the bulbs back...
I fix it at BMW, but they don't know how to take the dashboard out since the Sterling wheel is locked and cannot be turned downside. So, the best way is to buy a dashboard on ebay and replace it by finding a BMW repair station.
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Old 05-19-2012, 02:10 AM   #4
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The removal of the instrument cluster is easy. I would never pay the dealer to fix it, not could I or most people afford to.
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