combination meter repair - DIY

Discussion in 'Gen 2 Prius Care, Maintenance and Troubleshooting' started by Ultanium, Jan 20, 2016.

  1. chronon

    chronon Active Member

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    utube has some stuff on this - basically u heat one pad and carefully lift up on that side of the component, when u heat the other pad the cap will pop off almost -- clean pads / prime / presolder pad for new component (in my case i took a legged cap, trimedd the 220 cap legs to reasonable length, bent leads so they had a 'foot' to stand on the pad, i did not fool with sticking another SM cap in place ...
     
  2. edthefox5

    edthefox5 Senior Member

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    Nope thats not how you do it.
     
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  3. chronon

    chronon Active Member

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    just like there's many ways to skin a cat, that's how the text book would do it .. come to recall that i followed someone elses direction to
    just twist the capacitor head off .. then u clean up what's left over to prepare for the replacement.
     
    #263 chronon, Jun 9, 2020
    Last edited: Jun 9, 2020
  4. M67v

    M67v Junior Member

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    Aye y’all come look at this
     
  5. valde3

    valde3 Senior Member

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    Seems like there's bad connection in the combination meter or at the wires going to it. You (or somebody else) could take it apart and see or measure) if the bad connection is in the circuit board or at the connectors. Replacing the capacitors at the same time would be a good idea as your already in there.
     
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  6. VFerdman

    VFerdman Senior Member

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    Smacking the dash, unplugging the battery, doing the rain dance, praying to your favorite diety, all those things may work for a while. But they will not replace a capacitor going bad in the meter circuit (C3) and it will eventually fail to the point where above remedies don't work. Just replace the cap or the whole meter with a refurbished one. It's neither expensive nor difficult. But, hey, if half measures are your thing, then do those, you are a free human being.
     
  7. valde3

    valde3 Senior Member

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    Do you think that smacking the dash (temporarily) helps for a problem caused by bad cap? To me a bad connection somewhere seems more likely. Especially as it probably works every time because M67v made that video.
    But yes of course you should replace he capacitor at the same time your looking for that bad connection. And yes of course smacking the dash to get it working is not a good option in the long run.
     
  8. VFerdman

    VFerdman Senior Member

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    The C3 cap value has been under - designed. It's 100uF and is probably on the verge of what's needed. Most of these caps are +/-20% tolerance and as they degrade and cross that line of being lower enough than 100uF to stop the circuit from powering up. The way these electrolitic caps degrade is usually by drying up the dialectic. An impact may shift the drying dialectic just so as to get to a proper value. It's a theory and I'm not proposing it as gospel. That cap needs to be 220uF anyway to ensure long lasting meter. So when this problem happens just replace it with a 220uF one. If it was a bad connection as your suggest, it will be taken care of in the process of replacing the cap, which will eventually fail, so it needs to be done. I've done this on my car and honestly, the connectors on there are rock solid and I really don't think that they could have loosened up. Almost 100% of these dark dash problems is the cap. I have never heard of a loose connection. But it's not our of realm of possibilities. I'm just saying go in the to replace the cap and if there is a loose connection, we'll take care of that too. But replace the cap first and foremost.
     
  9. valde3

    valde3 Senior Member

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    Yes that might be possible. But when I used to work in electronic repair shop you mostly just heat up the electrolytic capacitors to get device to work and not try to hit them. Of course hitting can have effect too but could it really be that consistent.

    Rest of the post is exactly what I meant and what is mentioned in this topic many times already.
     
    #269 valde3, Aug 23, 2020
    Last edited: Aug 23, 2020
  10. M67v

    M67v Junior Member

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    I might end up doing it later, but on the contrary, replacing the combo meter IS expensive, difficult, and inconvenient. I have already done it before to solder in a new capacitor, and right now I’m not in a position to do that.
     
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  11. M67v

    M67v Junior Member

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    I used a 220uF capacitor as well.
     
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  12. VFerdman

    VFerdman Senior Member

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    As I said, you are free to do what works best for your situation. I am just saying that smacking the dashboard (aka "percussive maintenance") is a band-aid at best and could do harm at worst as the dash really was not designed to be smacked all the time and some other problem may crop up as a result of such abuse.

    For me the job of removing the combination meter and replacing the C3 cap with a 220uF one was very easy, though time consuming. I;ve done much harder things to cars. But everyone is different and if you think smacking is the way to go, then more power to you.
     
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  13. chronon

    chronon Active Member

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    8888****8888
    The only problem is the age on the plastic, most often removing the dash vents the 1st time without a huge amount of care ends up cracking and breaking plastic of the vents .. so it can be glued back and a bit unsightly ,but your not driving a 15 yr old car for the great looks of a new car .. ... if garage kept / tarp covered, plastic may not be as brittle ....
     
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  14. Jmack111

    Jmack111 Member

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    Any one try adding a big cap on the supply voltage line to filter it before it enters

    Posted via the PriusChat mobile app.
     
  15. lunacyworks

    lunacyworks Member

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    I know this is old, but I had to comment as I am again reading a long thread to fish out specific information. Coming at this thread not knowing either Matt or Texas Native, I end up feeling sorry for how Matt was treated here. I have felt Texas Natives issue and agree it would be nice to say every x many pages or comments that someone new to the thread creates a summary. That is where the new person to the thread has an opportunity to contribute. This is what I think TN was trying to accomplish but ended up coherencing a fellow poster into helping, which isn't polite. Either way, it's 4 years down the road and I am benefiting from your info, so thanks to both Matt and TexasNative.
     
  16. lunacyworks

    lunacyworks Member

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    I had to take out part of the dash because someone managed to dropped a credit card down behind the dash. Anyway I was dreading doing the job and explained to my wife, its easy to do, but I dread the sound of breaking plastic as I knew the vents would break. Sure enough, 2 of the just crumbled. The one drawback to these cars is we will run out of used cosmetic parts before the rest of the car breaks down. :(
     
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  17. VFerdman

    VFerdman Senior Member

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    If you go to a boneyard you will find a few of these there on most days. Once you figure out how to remove the vents without breaking them (it's possible and only a matter of practice), you can pick these up for not that much money at those pick-and-pull places. I have had very good luck finding dash parts last year. Haven't tried this year because pandemic and luckily I did not have to replace any. I did the combination meter a while back and managed not to break anything in the process. It just requires a bit of practice and attention to how the parts are held in there. Once you know, you will be able to pull them without damage in a matter of seconds.
     
  18. lunacyworks

    lunacyworks Member

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    I feel the need to explain my comment a bit more. I was expecting that the more experienced Prius repair individuals on this forum have noticed how the plastic parts have significantly begun to deteriorate even on well-maintained cars. This has two results
    1. No matter how gentle or careful you are, the part will break. In fact most have already broken, you just don't see the break (common with the air vent covers)
    2. All used parts unless they were stored in a controlled environment may have lost their strength and will fail in normal use.

    This is important because this means many repairs can become much more costly since you will need to source newly manufactured parts. We do a disservice to forum members if we advocate a repair such as a combo meter, without warning that due to age and supply issues (ie Plastic trim pieces) in the near future it might become a very expensive repair (not $150 DIY repair).
     
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  19. VFerdman

    VFerdman Senior Member

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    Your comment is valid. When I undertook this repair of the combo meter I was fully aware of the risk of plastic bits breaking. Why? Because I have been warned in many if not most of the posts about that it is a very real possibility. However, as I was very much forewarned (in threads and on videos), I took it real easy and my 2007 car with 230K miles on it, did not have a problem breaking things. As well, I went to a bone yard beforehand (again, because I was forewarned in comments and videos) that I may break some vents. At said boneyard I have picked through no fewer than three Gen 2 Prii and harvested almost two complete sets of dash parts with no breaking of anything. Some of these cars were in sorry shape, but the vents came off without a problem. It may be because I knoew how to take them off after examining the first one I took out. Yes, the plastic gets brittle, yes it may break, but this repair will save an owner close to a thousand dollars at the dealer. Or hundreds at an indie shop, who will also likely break things (and will take no responsibility). This is not even a $150 repair. For those with the most basic of soldering skills it's a $0.30 repair (the cost of the capacitor) or $0.00 repair for those who have salvaged caps. Surely at these savings one can afford a used unbroken vent off ebay. I sold my vents on ebay for pretty cheap after I ended up not needing them. They were in perfect shape no broken bits whatsoever.

    So, to sum it up

    * The savings will more than make up for a possibly broken vent.

    * The break may be at a place where it does not need to be addressed

    * Most sources for this repair DO warn against possible breakage
     
  20. Patrick Wong

    Patrick Wong DIY Enthusiast

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    A new vent part will cost ~$100, by the way. I had to replace the left center vent (next to the MFD) on the 2007, when the vent broke as part of the dashboard removal process.
     
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