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beyondx4

8th Gen Gauge Swap - Tips On Parts Selection.

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Hi. I've recently purchased a 5sp 1998 Corolla without a tach. Initially, I was thinking of installing an aftermarket tachometer, then I ran across this cool site and found out the possibility for swapping in a gauge cluster from another donor Corolla. I'm already looking on ebay for a donor cluster; however, I've noticed from previous posts that some members (baadpuppy) had troubles with installations that otherwise should've been a plug-and-play swap.

 

The incompatibilities appear to be a non-functional left turn signal and rear-defroster light mix-up. So my question is, are there any way for us to know which donor year is the best to avoid problems? And any physical distinctions between the compatible and noncompatible donor parts? Thanks.

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trap

I am in the same situation and haven't yet figured out how to find a directly swappable tach cluster yet, at least the cheap way. If you order it from dealer, it would be probably cost a couple of hundred dollars and would be perfectly compatible.

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Hi. I've recently purchased a 5sp 1998 Corolla without a tach. Initially, I was thinking of installing an aftermarket tachometer, then I ran across this cool site and found out the possibility for swapping in a gauge cluster from another donor Corolla. I'm already looking on ebay for a donor cluster; however, I've noticed from previous posts that some members (baadpuppy) had troubles with installations that otherwise should've been a plug-and-play swap.

 

The incompatibilities appear to be a non-functional left turn signal and rear-defroster light mix-up. So my question is, are there any way for us to know which donor year is the best to avoid problems? And any physical distinctions between the compatible and noncompatible donor parts? Thanks.

 

I believe (but could be wrong) that the change occurred in either the 2000 or 2001 model year. My best guess is the 2001 model year. I also believe that if the donor vehicle has the rear defrost option and the indicator that it is on is inside the button, then that instrument cluster won't be compatible with the 98. However, if the indicator for rear defrost for the donor vehicle is inside the cluster, then I believe it will work fine in a 98 (and 99, and perhaps 2000).

 

Note that I don't have hard facts to back this up. I don't know where in the manufacturing pipeline the change was introduced.

 

I wouldn't really say I had problems... just got a slightly incompatible cluster the first time.

 

This link has more information that I found helpful.

 

One other thing to bear in mind is the security system option. I've run across references that the security system affects cluster compatibility. I don't know how true that is though.

 

Sitting on a table over here I have a non-tach cluster that will work in a 98, and a tach cluster that will not work in a 98.

 

All that having been said... when you buy a cluster you take your chances if you can't actually look at the circuit on the back. I had good luck buying from a vendor on eBay. Both the clusters I bought from them were fully functional and all the lights worked. It is just that the first one I bought wasn't 100% compatible with my car.

 

It didn't really hurt anything. I could've operated the car with it like that without any real problems other than potentially confusing any other person that drove it. Or I could've cut a few traces and soldered in jumper wires to make it compatible. I didn't like either of those options so I chose option 3: buy one that was 100% compatible.

 

The vendor I bought from was the "CAR PARTS WAREHOUSE" eBay store maintained by hadi05. I also looked at clusters from other vendors. Another option is junkyards. The option of last resort is the dealer. A complete cluster won't be cheap from them.

 

In any case, try to get the vendor you choose to show you the circuit board. If the three lights at the top in the center of the cluster (left turn, highbeam, and right turn) all share a common trace, then it will work in the 98. If they won't let you see it or show a pic of it, then see if they have a reasonable return policy in case it doesn't work for you.

 

If anyone wants one (with tach) known to not match a 1998 corolla, I've got one I'm willing to part with. :lol:

 

I hope this helps,

jim

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Hi. I've recently purchased a 5sp 1998 Corolla without a tach. Initially, I was thinking of installing an aftermarket tachometer, then I ran across this cool site and found out the possibility for swapping in a gauge cluster from another donor Corolla. I'm already looking on ebay for a donor cluster; however, I've noticed from previous posts that some members (baadpuppy) had troubles with installations that otherwise should've been a plug-and-play swap.

 

The incompatibilities appear to be a non-functional left turn signal and rear-defroster light mix-up. So my question is, are there any way for us to know which donor year is the best to avoid problems? And any physical distinctions between the compatible and noncompatible donor parts? Thanks.

 

I believe (but could be wrong) that the change occurred in either the 2000 or 2001 model year. My best guess is the 2001 model year. I also believe that if the donor vehicle has the rear defrost option and the indicator that it is on is inside the button, then that instrument cluster won't be compatible with the 98. However, if the indicator for rear defrost for the donor vehicle is inside the cluster, then I believe it will work fine in a 98 (and 99, and perhaps 2000).

 

Note that I don't have hard facts to back this up. I don't know where in the manufacturing pipeline the change was introduced.

 

I wouldn't really say I had problems... just got a slightly incompatible cluster the first time.

 

This link has more information that I found helpful.

 

One other thing to bear in mind is the security system option. I've run across references that the security system affects cluster compatibility. I don't know how true that is though.

 

Sitting on a table over here I have a non-tach cluster that will work in a 98, and a tach cluster that will not work in a 98.

 

All that having been said... when you buy a cluster you take your chances if you can't actually look at the circuit on the back. I had good luck buying from a vendor on eBay. Both the clusters I bought from them were fully functional and all the lights worked. It is just that the first one I bought wasn't 100% compatible with my car.

 

It didn't really hurt anything. I could've operated the car with it like that without any real problems other than potentially confusing any other person that drove it. Or I could've cut a few traces and soldered in jumper wires to make it compatible. I didn't like either of those options so I chose option 3: buy one that was 100% compatible.

 

The vendor I bought from was the "CAR PARTS WAREHOUSE" eBay store maintained by hadi05. I also looked at clusters from other vendors. Another option is junkyards. The option of last resort is the dealer. A complete cluster won't be cheap from them.

 

In any case, try to get the vendor you choose to show you the circuit board. If the three lights at the top in the center of the cluster (left turn, highbeam, and right turn) all share a common trace, then it will work in the 98. If they won't let you see it or show a pic of it, then see if they have a reasonable return policy in case it doesn't work for you.

 

If anyone wants one (with tach) known to not match a 1998 corolla, I've got one I'm willing to part with. :lol:

 

I hope this helps,

jim

 

 

Thanks Jim. That was very informative. I'll just take it slowly to avoid any problems. Besides, I still got a ton of other problems to deal with on my Corolla, such as finding out what's causing the load engine noise under the hood, refinishing some of the body panels and trim, converting to power door locks with keyless entry, etc. Gosh, I miss my Subaru WRX wagon...but I'll thank the gas savings from the Corolla. Good bye.

 

-Dennis

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By the way, do you guys know which model/year this cluster might have came from? It looks very strange and was advertised on ebay as a 98-01 gauge cluster with tach for Corolla. I'm just curious if it'll fit my '98 Corolla.

 

 

post-10704-1175062157_thumb.jpg

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Doesn't look like any US 8th gen Corolla cluster to me - might be an overseas model or not even a Corolla. Never can tell with eBay - just shoot an email to the seller to find out for sure.

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Rather than starting a new thread, I wanted to ask in this one.

 

I have a '00 Corolla VE. It is a 5spd and does NOT have a tachometer. I am a bit confused as to which year I should be looking for. Does it HAVE to be from the same 98-02 generation?

 

I have found one on Ebay but it is from an Automatic, will it work?

 

http://cgi.ebay.com/ebaymotors/98-02-Corol...sspagenameZWDVW

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Rather than starting a new thread, I wanted to ask in this one.

 

I have a '00 Corolla VE. It is a 5spd and does NOT have a tachometer. I am a bit confused as to which year I should be looking for. Does it HAVE to be from the same 98-02 generation?

 

I have found one on Ebay but it is from an Automatic, will it work?

 

http://cgi.ebay.com/ebaymotors/98-02-Corol...sspagenameZWDVW

 

I seriously doubt that instrument cluster came from a US 8th gen corolla, automatic or otherwise.

 

For one thing, I'm pretty sure the automatic shifter on all US 8th gen corollas is on the floor between the seats, just like the manual transmission shifter.

 

It would be interesting to see if it would fit and function properly. You would want to cover up the shift indicator. In any case, it's a serious gamble to try to use that cluster, and most likely it just wouldn't work at all.

 

Good luck,

jim

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