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Old 05-22-2007, 11:39 AM
dproudfo's Avatar
Registered User
Join Date: Jul 2006
Location: Saint Paul, Minnesota
Posts: 138
W140 Dash Light Replacement (Not instrument cluster)

Hey everyone,

I have a '94 S500 Coupe and the center dash back lighting for the vent adjustment wheels has gone out. What is the process for accessing these bulbs? I'm assuming it's fiber optic but I'm not sure where the actual bulbs are located. I've searched the forum and the only bulb replacement posts that I can come up with pertain only to the instrument cluster, not the dash. Any help would be much appreciated. Thanks again!!

1995 E420
1998 SL500 Sport
2009 E350 Sport
1995 S500 Coupe
1992 500 SEL
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Old 02-11-2008, 12:45 PM
WANT '71 280SEL's Avatar
I'll Go Upside Your Head!
Join Date: Jan 2003
Location: Dallas, TX
Posts: 3,378
Did you ever figure this out? Also, where is the bulb for the shift gate?


2000 Honda Accord V6 137k miles

1972 300SEL 4.5 98k miles

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Old 02-11-2008, 01:30 PM
bobs's Avatar
Registered User
Join Date: May 2007
Location: Richmond, VA
Posts: 310
No fiber optics. There are two bulbs that light the four dials. I just did this on my '97, and its a super easy fix. I imagine yours would be close.

1. Remove the glove compartment lock. You will need to turn the key 45 deg and insert a small pin into the hole at the edge of the lock cylinder to release it. WARNING: Keep the key in the lock when you do this or all of the tumblers will shoot out when you pull the lock cylinder.

2. After the lock cylinder is out, look straight down the hole and you will see a philips screw in the very bottom. Unscrew it. It may or may not come completely out. Don't worry about it.

3. Pull the whole lock/pushbutton assembly out and let it hang off to the side.

4. Look in the back of the "spectacle compartment". There are two screws there. Take them out. If your car is wired for the cell phone, this will be a false bottom. Pull it out, disconnect the wires, and pull out two more screws. Now the entire spectacle compartment should be loose. Grab hold and gently pull it out.

5. Now, look on top of the center vents. You will see two small phillips screws. Pull them out.

6. Look inside the vent at each bottom corner. You will see two small latches. Push them downward with a screwdriver and the whole vent assembly should now pop right out. Be careful of the wiring harness on the left side. You can disconnect that once you get the vent clear.

7. Now once the vents are out, look at the top of the flapper controls. You will see two small grey caps. These are the bulbs. Simply unscrew them 1/4 turn with a small pair of pliers or a socket.

8. Reverse the procedure and you're done! It took me about 30 minutes tops.

"It's not about how fast you can go, but how well you can go fast."

Bob in Richmond

'97 S320 (LWB), Ruby Red Metallic, 73k miles
'97 S420V, Smoke Silver Metallic, 155k miles
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