Gauges Not Working - MR2 Owners Club Message Board
 
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post #1 of 8 (permalink) Old March 18th, 2019, 16:54 Thread Starter
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Gauges Not Working

This might be a tough one....

Background:
Car is a 93 NA that was converted to a 3SGTE by original owner. During the conversion the original owner replaced the gauge cluster with an electronic speedometer JDM turbo cluster. To add to the confusion I just finished a k24 swap in the car, but now none of my gauges register anything. I have backlights, my airbag light illuminates, turn signals work, and my boost gauge goes max with the ignition on. None of the other gauges do anything.

What's interesting is that the car is also swapped with an automatic climate control that reads in Celsius and it looks as if my fuse panel in the drivers side kick panel does not match the 93 owners manual diagram I have. It has no fuses across the bottom row. Is it possible the guy converted over the entire JDM dash harness and fuse panel and therefore didn't have to swap all the pins at the back of the cluster? What could be causing none of my gauges to register, but the backlights and indicators to work?

I know the fuel level is essentially separate from the body harness, so i would expect it to at least work regardless of what was done with the body harness to merge the k24 engine harness.... I know the others could be a bit more difficult to track down I just find it odd that none of them work.

Where's a good place to start?
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post #2 of 8 (permalink) Old March 18th, 2019, 18:09
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Yikes, that is a tough one. It's possible but unlikely that someone swapped the entire dash harness, as a JDM harness would be for a RHD car (unless your car happens to be RHD as well). Unless they took the harness apart and rebuilt it for a LHD.

Did the gauges work before the K swap? If so that narrows it down a lot.

Tach probably needs a resistor changed out to read the tach signal from the Honda ECU (assuming the new ECU puts out a 12v square wave as most modern systems do). The original tach is expecting a higher voltage pulse off the coil.

Speedo, should work, unless something didn't get wired right or got cut while doing the swap.

Temperature gauge, did you somehow install the Toyota temp sensor in the swap?

Boost gauge, besides the stock gauge being completely useless anyway, I think reading full is it's default behavior if it's hooked up, but not connected to it's normal sensor. Take it out and throw it away, it's useless.

Fuel gauge, I'm really not sure. The fact that none of them work does point to some bigger problem effecting all of them. Gauge fuse isn't blown is it?

Bottom line, going to have to spend some quality time with the wiring diagrams and a multi meter to figure this one out.


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post #3 of 8 (permalink) Old March 19th, 2019, 06:08 Thread Starter
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Thanks for the detailed response! Answers below:

Quote:
Originally Posted by Alex W View Post
Yikes, that is a tough one. It's possible but unlikely that someone swapped the entire dash harness, as a JDM harness would be for a RHD car (unless your car happens to be RHD as well). Unless they took the harness apart and rebuilt it for a LHD.

True the harness to the gauges would be much longer as the RHD cars also had the fuse panel on the left which would result in hacking and shortening the harness right? Doubt this was done. Is it obvious if an OEM connector has been repinned by someone? My fear is that the cluster wasnt properly swapped in and that's why nothing works.

Did the gauges work before the K swap? If so that narrows it down a lot.

I was told they worked just fine by the previous owners....

Tach probably needs a resistor changed out to read the tach signal from the Honda ECU (assuming the new ECU puts out a 12v square wave as most modern systems do). The original tach is expecting a higher voltage pulse off the coil.

I know theres guys who do the resistor mod for the newer Gen 3SGTEs so I'm familiar with this. I'm not sure what gen 3SGTE the car had before, but if it was a newer gen this may have already been done. Would the tach not work at all without the resistor mod or would it just read incorrectly? Mine does nothing even up to 3K RPMs.

Speedo, should work, unless something didn't get wired right or got cut while doing the swap.

I wired the speedo into the supplied harness using the correct connector at the trans/sensor. I'll double check the wiring. Is there a way to test the electronic speed sensor?

Temperature gauge, did you somehow install the Toyota temp sensor in the swap?

I have the toytota sensor plummed into the honda motor with the single wire running through the harness. I believe you can ground the single wire and the gauge should read full hot if it's working right?

Boost gauge, besides the stock gauge being completely useless anyway, I think reading full is it's default behavior if it's hooked up, but not connected to it's normal sensor. Take it out and throw it away, it's useless.

Yeah I got not use for it just wanted to add that it is functioning while none of the others seem to be.

Fuel gauge, I'm really not sure. The fact that none of them work does point to some bigger problem effecting all of them. Gauge fuse isn't blown is it?

Fuses have been checked and replaced. I believe since I don't have a specific gauge fuse my car uses the same fuse as the tail lights correct? This fuse was blown when I got the car. I noticed that this fuse blew when I pushed the "econ" mode on the climate control.....

Bottom line, going to have to spend some quality time with the wiring diagrams and a multi meter to figure this one out.
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post #4 of 8 (permalink) Old March 24th, 2019, 15:13 Thread Starter
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Update:

For tach I’ll have to do the resistor mod.

Nothing from speedometer.

I grounded the yellow/black wire going to temp sensor and the gauge pegged out. Confirms the gauge works.

I shorted the outer wires in sending unit to gauge and the fuel gauge pegged out. It works.

When I drive the car around none of the gauges are working at all except back lights. What would cause gauges to register when grounding/shorting but not work when car is running? What resistance should the fuel sending unit be reading at full and at empty?
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post #5 of 8 (permalink) Old March 24th, 2019, 16:28
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Quote:
Originally Posted by SejRamkas View Post
... What would cause gauges to register when grounding/shorting but not work when car is running?

...What resistance should the fuel sending unit be reading at full and at empty?
Since the gauge cluster was replaced, maybe the gauges are no longer matched to the senders. I would try to find the manual for the car that the cluster came from and look up the specs for the sensors that it is expecting to see.

That is my point. You need to find this out for the gauge that you are actually using now. Then you can compare with the sensor that you actually have.
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post #6 of 8 (permalink) Old March 24th, 2019, 19:52 Thread Starter
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Quote:
Originally Posted by rmeller View Post
Quote:
Originally Posted by SejRamkas View Post
... What would cause gauges to register when grounding/shorting but not work when car is running?

...What resistance should the fuel sending unit be reading at full and at empty?
Since the gauge cluster was replaced, maybe the gauges are no longer matched to the senders. I would try to find the manual for the car that the cluster came from and look up the specs for the sensors that it is expecting to see.

That is my point. You need to find this out for the gauge that you are actually using now. Then you can compare with the sensor that you actually have.
Yes but I have contacted the previous 3 owners all who say gauges worked. The thing is the fuel sending unit and wiring was untouched in the engine/gauge swap.

Fuel level sender shows open when touching ground to center terminal and 120-130 ohms when touching ground to outer terminal. I believe this is pointing to the sender being the issue? I put 4 gallons of gas in the tank.

I believe my coolant temp is not properly grounded. It’s a single wire sensor so I believe the thread/body must be grounded and in my case I don’t think it is. Is there a difference between 91/92 and 93+ coolant gauge sensor aside from the connector? Meaning do they have actual difference in resistance values? I realized I put a 91/92 sensor in a cluster that is 93+. Cold I am showing about 70 ohms between the terminal and threaded ground.

Still got no idea on the speed sensor which was working before same exact gauge cluster and trans/sensor.

Last edited by SejRamkas; March 25th, 2019 at 06:35.
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post #7 of 8 (permalink) Old March 27th, 2019, 11:02 Thread Starter
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Fuel sender is sorted. I attributed my high impedence reading to corrosion that built up inside the fuel sending unit due to the car sitting for a long period of time. I took it out and cleaned the sending unit by liberally dousing it in PB blaster and allowing it to sit and also functioning full open/closed many times. After this I rechecked and it was reading within spec (115 ohms empty, 5 ohms full). Confirmed by hooking it back up and watched the needle rise.

I'm hoping to fix my temp sensor as well after confirming that the housing the sensor was threaded into was not grounded. I will relocate the sensor into the intake manifold coolant port which is most definitely grounded and see if this fixes this condition.

Will be attempting resistor mod on tach very soon.

Still unsure on speedo, but need to double check wiring. Does anyone know a good easy way to test the electronic 3 wire speed sensor?
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post #8 of 8 (permalink) Old March 27th, 2019, 14:28
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Quote:
Originally Posted by SejRamkas View Post
Does anyone know a good easy way to test the electronic 3 wire speed sensor?
You can run it wired up to a oscilloscope, or a cheap store-bought tachometer. If you don't want to run it in the transmission, which requires running the car with the wheels in the air, you can jimmy it up somehow to a hand drill or a hamster wheel with a live hamster or anything else that will make it spin. And here's the wiring scheme:

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