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Discussion Starter #1
Hi,

The interior night lighting on my Prius has stopped working. The screen and speedometer lighting does not dim when I turn on the headlights, and the dimmer switch does not work. I thought I had remembered a night setting software button too, but am not sure of that. I took the prius in to have them check the brakes just before the 36,000 mile warranty went out and noticed the problem a couple of weeks later. Unfortunately I drive over 3K miles a month, so the warranty is expired.

Is there some switch or setting somewhere that is overriding the night lighting settings, or am I now wishing I'd gotten the extended warranty?

Stephen
www.eaglesroost.net
 

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The 'night' setting you are thinking of is only on the MFD. And it only applies when the lighting dimmer is *NOT* on the 'daytime' setting.

First, make sure your headlights are on. (Kind of obvious, I know; oh, and 'headlights' also means the 'parking lights' setting everywhere I use it.)

Second, turn the dimmer wheel all the way up, past the little click. Then turn it down until it clicks (a slight amount.) If your dash lights haven't dimmed, then something is wrong. Keep turning it down until it won't go down any more. At this point, the speedometer should have dimmed to the point of being off. None of the warning lights will dim, though, only the CRT that shows the speed, odometer, shifter status, gas tank state, etc.

Once the dimmer wheel has gone down below the click, the MFD should have dimmed a slight amount, and switched to its 'night' mode. At this point, if you hit the 'DISPLAY' button, there will be a 'DAY MODE' button in the upper right. If that is toggled on, then the MFD will be dimmer than daytime, but with the same contrast setting as with your headlights off (or dimmer wheel all the way up.) If the 'DAY MODE' button is toggled off, then the night mode contrast takes over. Note that if you set your contrast to match the 'daytime' contrast, you won't see any difference. By default, the night mode is LESS contrasty, so that the difference between light and dark is less glaring.

To recap: there are three different 'sets' of lights that are controlled in the cabin. The speedometer CRT is controlled by the dimmer wheel only when the headlights are on. The MFD's day/night setting is independently controlled, but is only engaged when the dimmer wheel is NOT on its highest setting, and only when the headlights are on. The third are the 'warning lights' in the center of the top dash. Those have only one brightness, no matter what any other setting in the car is on.
 

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Discussion Starter #3
Well, looks like something is wrong. I have already done as you suggested and nothing happens when I turn the wheel down, past the click and then down to where the speedometer light should be off, WITH the lights on, or off for that matter.

I do not get the day mode or night mode button ever, although I do remember it from long ago. It's summer here and not much night driving goes on, so I don't know how long this has been a problem. It DID work at one time.

Stephen
 

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stephend7 said:
Well, looks like something is wrong. I have already done as you suggested and nothing happens when I turn the wheel down, past the click and then down to where the speedometer light should be off, WITH the lights on, or off for that matter.

I do not get the day mode or night mode button ever, although I do remember it from long ago. It's summer here and not much night driving goes on, so I don't know how long this has been a problem. It DID work at one time.

Stephen
Sounds like your dimmer wheel is stuck in the highest setting. Take it out and play with it. It's possible that the physical 'wheel' you move has separated from the actual control.
 

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I'de start worrying about the lack of an extended warranty when you've sunk $900.00 into your car.
Take this one to the dealer or even the guy down the street should be able to get the switch working properly for an hours pay for labor.
Unfortunately these cars have about a thousand small electrical parts in the design, very few covered after that magic 35,000 miles!
 
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