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Fixing the Dome light problems


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#1 Aman

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Posted 04 October 2013 - 09:17 PM

Bear with me here, I'm not sure if this is the right thread for this.


I'm not sure if I'm the only one with this problem, but it couldn't hurt to help others with the same problem. The problem I'm addressing would be the dome light buttons. When you go to turn on the map light, you have to fiddle with the button to get it to work. Maybe those buttons don't work at all. Well, here's how to fix it. First, you take the dome light out. I didn't take pictures of this process, but you basically take the cover off toward the front of the dome light, and there are three screws holding the rear-view. Take those out, and take the two out that fasten the dome light in. The dome light will come out if you slide it forward. Make sure not to rip the connector off of the wiring harness ;) Disconnect the harness, and pull your dome light out. There will be two screws holding the reflector in, and two screws holding the button assembly in. Take those four out, and then gently take it all apart. I left my ground cable in mainly because you can pull most everything out without removing that. Then, there are four screws in the button assembly.
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Take those out, and then you have to pry it to get this.
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Take note of these notches in the board, they'll try to hinder your progress or scare you.
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You should have this now.
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Those 3 center jumpers come out, make sure not to lose those little springs, you'll hate life after that!
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Mmmm take a look at that delicious 26-year-old di-electric grease.
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I took 2000 grit sand paper and rubbed the jumpers on it.
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Compare the one on the right to the left two, it looks significantly better after light sanding.
Now, this sounds tricky, but I promise, it's not. To get the map light buttons out, you have to press the button, and the pull the contact out.
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I cleaned one lightly with sandpaper, here's it next to a dirty one.
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After the sandpaper, I used an alcohol prep pad to get the old grease off. Then I put that back together.
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Alll shiny :D  Then I wiped that gross board down with the same prep pad, it should come out nice and shiny:
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I sanded in after to make sure I was at bare metal.
Then I applied new di-electric grease to the board. It doesn't take a ton, be gentle with it. We don't want any of the grease touching each other and causing a short.
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Re-assembly is exactly the way it came apart. Put it all together, and give yourself a pat on the back, because now all of your dome light buttons work!
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#2 vbrad511

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Posted 04 October 2013 - 10:14 PM

I've got same Harbor Freight green handled screwdriver.

Oh, and good write up too....  :)

#3 button

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Posted 04 October 2013 - 10:48 PM

IMHO you shouldn't sand the contacts. Just use paper, or cardboard to clean them. (Not everyone has 2k grit sandpaper around, but they have paper.)
The greese will help protect the contacts, but sanded contacts will "burn up" faster than smooth contacts.
I learned this from the mechanical arcade industry.

Very helpful writeup though.

Edited by button, 04 October 2013 - 10:49 PM.

-Jay

#4 Aman

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Posted 04 October 2013 - 11:04 PM

Hopefully it'll take a while for mine to burn up <_<

#5 Aman

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Posted 04 October 2013 - 11:05 PM

vbrad511, I feel that most people on this site have a lot of similar tools due to harbor freight ;)

#6 JohnnyWadd

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Posted 05 October 2013 - 02:46 AM

Cool. Mine still work good. Cleaning the electric contacts is a sure way to make stuff work better.

#7 Aman

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Posted 05 October 2013 - 03:31 AM

ESPECIALLY on these cars. I have had a lot of electrical problems that have been sorted out just by cleaning.

Edited by Aman, 05 October 2013 - 03:33 AM.


#8 Dad

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Posted 05 October 2013 - 07:11 AM

Autozone just got a new brand of LED bulbs that work great in the dome and doors.

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#9 ColdScrip

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Posted 05 October 2013 - 09:13 AM

Dielectric grease can't cause a short by touching grease over other circuits can it?
Follow my '87 restore here.





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