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Instrument cluster

2097 Views 3 Replies 4 Participants Last post by  repairman54
I recently purchased a 2011 Malibu, the guy i purchased from had removed the original radio and attempted to put a new one in the told me when i bought it all he needed was a harness to connect the wires while doing that he turned on the anti theft so long so forth my car wouldn’t start took it into the shop to get it checked out because at this time I didn’t know it was on. Now my instrument cluster isn’t working or the gages are dead the lights still light up shows how many miles are on the car says i have low tire pressure and check engine light is on. I told the guy to trash the radio and try to put the replacement in. i’m worried he’s not taking me serious. Is this logical? this all stemmed from the guy I purchased the vehicle from was messing with the wires by the passenger side trying to get the power source to connect the radio
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He may have blown out the BCM. Along with wires to and from components in the car that it controls, there are computer data lines. If any of those CDLs are probed for power, it could burn out that portion of the board, resulting in the need to replace the whole thing.

Your mechanic needs to know how to test for proper operation in order to know if it needs replaced or if something else is the cause.

Not having the radio plugged in will not stop the car from starting and working normally. You just won't have tunes, plus alarms and other sounds may not be heard, such as turn signal clicks.
It's absolutely possible the previous owner shorted out a board trying to power the amp, but it's also possible the cluster died all by itself. I've had it happen. I'd be very surprised if removing the radio will change anything at this point. If that's what caused the problem- the damage is done.
Is your shop equipped to work on clusters? Most independent shops aren't and dealers seem like the only option. I don't subscribe to that kind of reliance so I went looking and Chevrolet Instrument Clusters - Replacement Cluster Panels, Dash Panels, Gauge Clusters, Speedometers for Chevrolet turned out to be super helpful. They literally only deal with clusters, so they know what they're talking about. I got my old bad cluster cloned, mileage and all, avoided the "tampering" pitfalls, and didn't have to pay dealer prices! Definitely would recommend giving them a call, they'll help you figure out if that's where your issue is.
A high end scan of all the cars modules for codes is step one to at least get a direction to go.
Radio hacks cause a ton of issues, it's a computer with tires. Your car, like every car, has over 20 interconnected modules in it including sound system on the cars computer network.
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