1990 Buick Riviera electronic instrument panel problems


Old 04-02-05, 05:21 PM
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Question 1990 Buick Riviera electronic instrument panel problems

My daughter has a 1990 Buick Riviera, whose electronic instrument panel works intermittently. Basically, the tachometer, speedometer ,odomether and other guages stop and start displaying at their own will. I understand that the wiring to these things are called 'ribbon wires' or something to that effect; and that they have a tendency to bend and intermittently short out. Is there a way to repair/replace this wiring assembly with replacement wiring? If not, what is the usual course of action when these things go bad? I was going to put a wind speed anemometer on her car roof so she could at least judge her speed from that, however a strong head or tail wind might just throw things off a bit! Thanks for any helpful ideas. Tom
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Old 04-02-05, 06:33 PM
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Do you think that it may be the cluster is bad?That's what I usually put in them to fix them.
Old 04-03-05, 07:17 AM
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IT could be the power supply or the cluster.........or something else.
There's a myriad of bulletins that address this issue. Not sure if alldata or someplace like that will provide access to the technical information GM has to offer about it.
One thing to do, would be to monitor the available power and ground to the cluster, and see if you are missing either of these while the cluster is in a failed state. That would mean accessing the connector to cluster, and using two test lights, to monitor the grounds and power supply. Not an easy, nor desireable thing to have to do.
Old 04-03-05, 04:03 PM
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Thanks for the feed back. I'll see what I can do! Tom
Old 04-05-05, 07:59 AM
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I used to have a 1991 Riviera that had the same problem. I had to put a cluster in it when I bought it, again about two years later and again before I sold it to my brother. Now he's had it for about two years and it went again. You can have them repaired at a speedometer shop or buy a used one. The shop I checked with wanted $275 to fix it and would only warranty it for thirty days. I found used on online for $185 that was warrentied for 60 days so I went with used. We even have an electronic repair shop where I work. They were able to tell what burned out in it but couldn't get the parts. They were Motorolla diodes inside with numbers that are GM specific so Motorolla couldn't even cross reference them.

You will have to get the one for your specific year as the plugs won't match up. This is one of the places I found that had them. http://www.instrumentclusters.com/?source=overture

Good luck
Old 04-12-05, 05:05 PM
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Cluster, thanks for the feedback. I was out of town for several days and just saw your post. A belated thank-you. Tom

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