"The instrument cluster is actually fairly simple to remove and replace(10-15 minutes)" -
That seems amazing. It took a whole lot longer just to remove the fuse block to allow GEM replacement. Does the whole dash have to be pulled. If I search this site will I find a thread that has the directions to do this.
"The light switch must be removed to get to a screw that is located behind it which is probably the hardest part of the remove/install" -
What light switch- headlights?
Do you have an idea what the instrument panel sells for?
I thought they were the same myself and found out the hard way that they were different, he hardest part is the headlight switch removal and it has to come out as there is a screw behind it that holds the bezel in place, You can actually gently spread the bezel away from the dash in that area and slip a screw driver in and depress the detent that holds the headlight switch in place .
The whole dash not have to be removed, Just the bezels surrounding the cluster
Yes the headlight switch is the switch I am referring to as there is a screw behind it that has to come out
I paid $60.00 for a 98 cluster only to find it was wrong then hunted around and found a 97 cluster for $35.00
The photos will def help, It is not a hard job and unlike the GEM you do not have to lay upside down and backwards to get to it, You can do it all sitting in the drivers seat, I forgot to mention that I would recommend disconnecting the battery cables and that it helps if you put the truck in 1st gear(if its an automatic) which helps lower the shifter out of the way and don't forget to set the parking/emergency brake, I would also recommend replacing the bulbs with new so you do not have to take it apart again to replace a dead bulb later down the line, Overall it is one of the easier projects I have had to do on my truck, Once you have done it once(or twice in my case)it can be done in less than 15 minutes when you have the correct tools handy.
Good luck and let us know how you make out
No instrument readings and no overdrive. Looked at all the fuses, looked good. Took to Ford dealership, $106.00 later fuse f29. Change your fuses that are involved with instrument panel and save some money.
I have had the same cluster problem. Some of the lights will work and the other times it won't light up anything. So I started tapping on the back side of the cluster and half the gages came to life, but the fuel pump would not run. So at this point you have 2 choices replace it or have it repaired. I had my repaired and it cost me about 75.00 with the shipping. So remember if you replace the cluster you will have to take it to a shop or (Ford dealer) that can flash the new or used cluster to work with your ECM and PCM. All 3 work together on 97 and up Ford truck F-150 thru F-650, and it does not matter whether is Gas or Diesel. If you have your cluster repaired most likely it will not need to be flashed.