92 XJ 40 instrument cluster dead

1992 XJ 40 Sovereign, Canadian market, left hand drive, in Alberta, western Canada. I bought from the original owners estate a couple of years ago with about 35,000 kms (about 21,700 miles). Had been sitting for several years after the owner died. I went through the car, new battery, fresh fuel, most new rubber bits, new brakes, new tires, all fresh fluids, etc., etc…

Not a daily driver, but my wife and I have put about 30,000 kms on it since I got it up and running, now has about 65,000 kms (about 40,400 miles) and the car has been flawless, until now.

Car was put away for the winter, in unheated storage. Car sat for about three months. The battery went dead. I put a “smart” charger on the battery still connected in the car, brought the battery back to 100%. Unhooked the charger, started the car, fired right up, but the entire gauge cluster is “dead”. None of the gauges work, tach, speedo, fuel etc… I am positive I did not reverse polarity on the charger, and the charger is supposedly “smart” enough to not let you do that anyway.

I tried to identify a fuse for the guage cluster from the fuse chart in the owners manual. I have pulled and checked all the fuses in the center console, and all the fuses in the drivers footwell so far, still have to check the passenger footwell fuses. At the moment it is roughly minus 25 Celsius outside and I have come inside to thaw my fingers out.

does anyone know if there is one master fuse for the entire gauge cluster? If there is one master fuse, is it one of the fuse clusters or is it in the gauge cluster itself, if so, where?

anything else I can check or try? Thanks for any help, will be greatly appreciated.


Fuse #6 (5 amp) in the center console fuse panel feeds ignition-switched power to the instrument cluster. With ignition on you should have ~12 volts on the white/orange wire, pin 2 in the black 24-pin connector at the back of the instrument cluster.

thanks so much Mike! Still too cold to get back to fault finding, going to wait now for a bit of a break in the cold weatehr… then will report back.

finally got a break in the cold weather, checked the fuse in the center console between the seats, power to the fuse terminal and fuse is good. Replaced the fuse anyway. The Gauge cluster still dead.

I guess next step is to pull the gauge cluster and check for power at the back of the cluster? Is there anything else to check?

another question, is the odometer memory in the gauge cluster or elsewhere? I do have a spare used gauge cluster from a much higher mileage car, if I wind up installing the used gauge cluster it would be nice to somehow have original and much lower mileage showing…

I believe that would be a reasonable next step.

In the cluster, according to this:

I do not know whether the odometer ‘brain’ could be transplanted from one cluster to the other.

I had an issue with my cluster not working and was told my a local mechanic to disconnect the battery cables and touch them together. It was supposed to be some kind of reset. In any event, it worked and the cluster has been fine every since.