Common Questions and Issues GM 2003-2006

Categories: Instrument Clusters (ICP)


This section outlines the common questions and issues with individual gauges and is written specifically for General Motor (GM) vehicles 2003-2006.


Gas Gauge

GM units of this era may suffer from faulty fuel level sending units inside the fuel tank;
this is a very common problem just like fuel gauges not working. 


If your gas gauge is the only gauge not working it is recommended to
diagnose the Fuel Level Sending Unit first as a possible cause of faulty fuel level readings on the gas gauge.
This sending unit is part of the larger fuel pump assembly. 


If the sending unit checks out then you know the gas gauge is bad and needs a rebuild.
However, if you have a bad gas gauge and are encountering other instrument cluster problems you will need a full instrument cluster rebuild.



Here is a link to Amazon where you can purchase fuel pump assemblies, make sure
you check to make sure it fits your vehicle before you buy:



Oil Pressure Gauge


If your GM instrument cluster (2003-2006) oil pressure gauge is pegged out, has unusual fluctuations or is reading high it can be caused by one or two problems. The most common cause is a faulty oil pressure sensor which is mounted on the engine.
This is another common issue with 03-06 GM vehicles. Replacement sensors are fairly inexpensive and are widely available online.  If your oil pressure gauge is the only gauge not working, we recommend you to diagnose the Oil Pressure Sending Unit first as a possible cause of oil pressure gauge fluctuations.


If there are no issues with the Oil Pressure Sending Unit, we can assume that the oil pressure gauge is bad and needs a complete rebuild.


However, if you have a bad oil pressure gauge and are encountering other instrument cluster problems, you will need a full cluster rebuild.



Here is a link to Amazon where you can purchase the oil pressure sensor, make
sure you check to make sure it fits your vehicle before you buy:



Speedometer Gauge


Silverado speedometer problems are some of the most common ones reported because it can be difficult to diagnose where the issue stems from.


You might be curious if your Silverado speedometer problems are caused by a faulty speed sensor or speedometer cable. 


Since these instrument clusters are fully electronic there is no traditional speedometer cable as there used to be in older vehicles so you can rule that out.  The speed sensors in modern vehicles are actually very reliable and rarely go out, but it is possible. 


To test if your speed sensor may be the cause of your speedometer problems, you simply need to pay attention to how your automatic transmission is behaving.


The automatic transmission depends on the signal from the speed sensor to determine shift points and shift hardness so if your transmission is shifting normally, you can be sure the speed sensor is not the cause of any speedometer gauge problems.


Ruling out the speed sensor gives you the certainty that you need a full cluster to fix the issue. 



Tachometer Gauge


If your Silverado tachometer stopped working you can be certain that the cause is
a bad gauge in the instrument cluster caused by a failing stepper motor.



Battery Voltage Gauge


If you have voltage gauge fluctuation problems or see your voltage drop,
with no other sign of battery drain or alternator issues, then you can be
sure that your voltage gauge has a failing stepper motor and will need gauge repair.



Temperature Gauge


If you have a temperature gauge not working or reading correctly,
you should first make sure you have plenty of coolant in your radiator first.


Otherwise, the only likely culprit on a GM (2003-2006) would be a failing stepper
motor on the temperature gauge which requires gauge repair.




Transmission Temperature Gauge


Silverado 2500, 3500 and 1500HD models have a factory transmission temperature
gauge from the factory while all other models do not.


The transmission temperature gauge suffers from the same stepper motor failure.


Q & A


Can I still drive my vehicle while the instrument cluster is out for repair?


GM vehicles of this generation will still start and run like normal with the instrument cluster removed
and will not harm the vehicle or the gauge cluster in any way.


How much does it cost to have a GM instrument cluster repaired?


Dealers typically charge anywhere from $500-$1,000 for the full job including
parts, labor, and programming.


We offer the repair for $119 for a full rebuild of any power issues, errors, gauges, etc. and $30 extra for exotic LED lights.


Does my gauge cluster have to be re-programmed when it’s repaired?


If you have your gauge cluster rebuilt it will not need to be re-programmed.  However, if you swap your original gauge cluster with a replacement, then it will need to be re-programmed otherwise the odometer display will read incorrectly.


It will read the mileage of the vehicle that that gauge cluster was taken from.
The odometer reading is stored inside the instrument cluster not the computer
BCM for the 2003-2006 GM vehicles.