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Instrument Panel, Ford 500

I have a 2005 Ford 500, purchased new, with only about 11,000 miles. Lately, from time to time, I will be driving and suddenly every gauge on the instrument panel will fluctuate wildly and then all will drop to zero. They stay at zero for a minute or so and then work again. This does not happen every time I drive but probably once or twice a week.

My Ford dealer doesn’t really know what is causing this but they have recommended replacing the instrument panel. I hate to do that if they are not sure it this will help.

Please let me know what you think. Thank you.

However the power is provided to the gauges would be my top choice to look at first. There may be a control module for the gauges or they may just be powered directly from the battery through the ignition switch. The dealer will have the service data showing the details of the wiring.

There have been reported cases on Fords where a defective PRNDL (prindle) switch can cause the dash instruments to act eratic. The prindle switch tells the computer what gear the vehicle is in.


That sounds like some good info there Tester. You may have nailed it.

I would go with the recommendation to replace the instrument panel. What you describe is a symptom of the computer in the instrument panel crashing and rebooting.

Good thought Tardis. If the power supply to that area proved to be ok then that may be the fix.