Some Things Don't Work When Cold


Dec 5, 2009
Hey guys,

I noticed the other day (since I don't drive this much yet) that the Gas, Temp, Wipers, and Turn Signals will not work when it's cold outside.

Once it's warmer outside or the vehicle warms up they work.

I'm not sure what could cause this, as if it was a ground they wouldn't work ever.

One thing in particular is the turn signal bulbs (on the dash) will stay barely lit, like they DO have a weak ground or something to them. But, the multifunction switch is broken and taped together, so I was gonna replace that at some point, so that may explain the problem. It's funny because the as I push the lever to turn on left or right signals, the light goes away for a second, then starts blinking normally.

I know it sounds like this thing has alot of problems, and probably does. But I think it's all small stuff, and I love the challenge since I learn in the process!

Also, is the Voltage gauge a dummy gauge? I never see it move haha.


- Brandon
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I think that you have Crumbling Cluster Syndrome (CCS)! ;)

Seriously, once the cluster plastic starts to soften and crumble, the flexible curcuit that provides the electrical signal to the instruments and lights just doesn't make contact very well. I personlly don't recall it being temperature sensitive, but its a possibility.

Once you pull your dash apart, you'll see how the circuit is pinched by the light sockets to the cluster backing and will understand the issue. I built the back of my cluster up with styrene model cement years ago and that fixed the circuit issues for years. But eventually the cluster backing crumbled too much to fix.

The Amperage gauge doesn't move much. Usually you have to be running your headlights, AC, and a big stereo all at the same time to get it to move.

There is a voltage regulator on the flexible circuit, but I've never seen it fail, so I would check for CCS first.
The wipers are what doesn't fit. The cluster would be one thing, the wipers another. Far as I know.

What Bernie said about the cluster, and I also don't know what could be temp sensitive there. The wipers ... :shrug:

Far as the rest of what you describe, bad connections and grounds.

It's not so much the wiring in these cars are 30+ years old, its more that in their lifetime who knows what ham fist has been cutting into the loom and causing God knows what problems.

Have Fun!
Yeah alot of stuff has been tampered with that I'm noticing. I did put my cluster out, and it wasn't broken, the race track looked intact, and I pulled a few of the 194 sockets to make sure there wasn't alot of corrosion. Everything looked pretty clean so it confused me.

- Brandon