Tach issues | Ford Escort Owners Association (FEOA)
  1. Wash your hands and do not touch your face, keep it safe and clean. Long live Feoa!

Tach issues

Discussion in 'ZX2 1998-2004 2.0L DOHC' started by coonmanx, Feb 24, 2020.

  1. coonmanx

    coonmanx FEOA Member

    Messages:
    71
    Likes Received:
    10
    Trophy Points:
    8
    Well my "new" used 1999 ZX2 that I recently purchased has tach issues. At idle the needle drops way down to 200 or even zero. It is running fine so the tach is messed up. Also I have seen it jump around a bit while driving at times. It does not do it all of the time but I want to fix it. My old car had tach issues as well. Do these tachs just suck and have issues?

    So last time I went to the junkyard and pulled an entire cluster and just swapped it. But that means that the odometer mileage changes. Last time I swapped a cluster that had an odometer reading of 189,000 to one that read 122,000. So I magically lost 67,000 miles. But I don't believe that the one that was in there was original either since it appeared to have some junkyard markings on it. The only thing I can be certain of is that I have put over 200,000 miles on the car.

    The options are to once again get a used cluster and they are readily available on Ebay. Also there are a couple of new old stock tachs for sale. Ford part and brand new. But either way if I want to keep the mileage the same I need to swap the actual tach out of the cluster. Is that fairly easy as last time I did not do that? I believe there are a few screws and it simply unplugs. I like the idea of putting in a new one.

    But why are these tachs so flaky to begin with or did someone mess up when they got into the cluster and break something? I have now had two ZX2's with the same exact issue. And I can see by the slightly broken dash panel that someone has been in to this cluster before as well.
  2. ShakeZilla19

    ShakeZilla19 My name is ^^^

    Messages:
    3,172
    Likes Received:
    666
    Trophy Points:
    363
    The tachs are just bad. My Zx2 has an intermittent tach and the reading is not reliable when it does work. I looked over the tach, PCB on the cluster, and ohm'd all wires to the tach; no corrosion and continuity on everything. I think it is the tach itself but could be the signal wire coming from the ECU. If that signal were to be damped or suppressed some how the tach wont work.
  3. coonmanx

    coonmanx FEOA Member

    Messages:
    71
    Likes Received:
    10
    Trophy Points:
    8
    Interestingly enough when I swapped out the cluster in my old car the problem did go away and never returned at all. The tach in that car never gives me any problems. With this one I get bad tach readings at idle and then sometimes they just go down and then jump back up. Maybe I will try to install a new tach. But if the problem is elsewhere it won't make a difference. Has anyone here actually disassembled the cluster and removed the tach from it? Because that is what I wish to do in order to not change the mileage.
  4. Joey_Twowagons

    Joey_Twowagons FEOA Member

    Messages:
    2,635
    Likes Received:
    1,256
    Trophy Points:
    413
    Location:
    Vancouver Island, Canada
    Was your "old car" a second gen?
    I've never had a problem with the tachs on them, nor on the cars that my friends had over the years.
  5. coonmanx

    coonmanx FEOA Member

    Messages:
    71
    Likes Received:
    10
    Trophy Points:
    8
    Nope. ZX2. Two different cars with the same issue. One worse than the other. Obviously somewhere they put in a crappy part.
  6. coonmanx

    coonmanx FEOA Member

    Messages:
    71
    Likes Received:
    10
    Trophy Points:
    8
    I need to get in there and take a look because someone has obviouosly already been in there. There is a crack in the dash in the part that gets removed when you pull the cluster. But nobody is answering my question about how to only pull the tach itself out of the cluster. So nobody here knows?

    I actually threw away the old cluster from the old car. I thought I would not need it but now it would have been useful to look at and determine how everything is put together. Then I could simply put in a brand new part...

    https://www.ebay.com/itm/FORD-OEM-T...121198&hash=item3b33de7240:g:wiUAAOSwatda2opn
  7. coonmanx

    coonmanx FEOA Member

    Messages:
    71
    Likes Received:
    10
    Trophy Points:
    8
    Head to the junkyard, get a spare cluster and swap it in and see what happens. Or if you can figure out how to remove the tach from the cluster do just that and then the mileage won't change. Last time I just swapped the entire cluster.
  8. pextor

    pextor Moderator Staff Member

    Messages:
    6,034
    Likes Received:
    858
    Trophy Points:
    413
    Location:
    Lancaster, pa
    Disassembling the cluster is easy. Swapping the speedometer section to retain the correct odometer is easy.
  9. coonmanx

    coonmanx FEOA Member

    Messages:
    71
    Likes Received:
    10
    Trophy Points:
    8
    Good to know this. I may just grab a brand new tach and that way I know I will have a good unit. Unless there is something wrong with the cluster somehow. This is what is so hard to figure. I can basically get a used cluster for 50 or 60 bucks or a brand new tach for arouond 85 bucks. Still not sure which way I want to go... Some of the used units do claim to be fully tested.
  10. pextor

    pextor Moderator Staff Member

    Messages:
    6,034
    Likes Received:
    858
    Trophy Points:
    413
    Location:
    Lancaster, pa
    my local junkyard charges $20 for a cluster.

Share This Page