Dashboard lights go out while driving. Reasons and solutions

As a mechanic, one of the most frequent inquiries you may receive concerns the intermittent failure of dashboard indicators.

The year, make, and condition of the car all play a role in determining the answer to this question. Some of the most typical triggers for this problem are discussed below, along with some potential workarounds and estimated repair costs.

5 Reasons Your Car’s Dashboard Lights Go Out When You’re Driving

1 .Wiring that is damaged or loose

Loose or broken wiring is a typical reason for dashboard lighting failing while driving. These indicators are wired into the vehicle’s electrical system, which is vulnerable to damage from road noise, regular use, and even moisture.

It is possible for the dashboard lights to flicker or go out entirely if the cabling connecting them is worn or otherwise damaged.

Repairing or replacing damaged or loose cables could solve the problem if they are the source. Fixing can be expensive and time-consuming, depending on the severity of the problem and the time needed to repair it. It could cost you between $100 to $500, but costs can be higher.

2. Alternator Problems

When the car’s dashboard lights suddenly stop working, it could be due to a defective alternator. Lights on the dashboard may dim or go out if the alternator, which charges the battery while the engine is running, isn’t doing its job because the alternator isn’t pumping enough power into the circuits to keep the lights on.

If the problem is the result of a malfunctioning alternator, then it must be replaced. Price will be determined according to the vehicle make and model, and could be between $300 and $800 or more.

3. A very weak or defective battery

To the same extent, a dead battery can turn off the dashboard lights while you’re driving. The lights may flicker or go out altogether if the battery is not keeping its charge or is not giving enough power to the electrical system.

When the engine is revved, the dashboard lights may temporarily turn back on if the battery is not giving enough power to the electrical system.

In the event that a dead battery is at the root of the problem, its replacement is the only option. The price will vary with the type of car you have and the cost of a new battery. Prices might go as high as $300.

4. A Dimming Switch

The dashboard lights can be dimmed or go out using the corresponding dimmer switch. During driving, the lights may flicker or go off altogether if the switch is broken or not set properly. The problem may be resolved by just adjusting the dimmer switch.

If a defective dimmer switch is at fault, fixing or replacing it may solve the problem. A repair like this can be reasonably cheap, costing anything from $50 to $150 or more.

5. Problems with the Fuses

Finally, the lights on the dashboard can go out if a fuse blows. To prevent damage to the electrical system in the event of an overload or short circuit, fuses are installed in each individual circuit. A blown fuse for the dashboard lights will cause the lights to flicker or go out entirely.

If a blown fuse is the problem here, replacing it should fix the issue. A new fuse and the time it takes to install it can add up to $20 – $50 to the total price of this repair, but it is still a straightforward and affordable one.

It’s important to note that the problem’s location is also a factor in determining how much the repair will cost.

Prevention of this issue appearing in the future

Maintaining your vehicle regularly will ensure that your dashboard lights don’t suddenly turn off while you’re driving.

Maintenance should not be neglected and should consist of things like oil changes, tire rotations, and checks on the car’s electrical system.

It’s also crucial that you don’t use too many gadgets at once, as this could cause an electrical surge.
Signs that something is wrong with your car’s electrical system or other parts should not be ignored.

Flickering lights, a slow cranking or starting time, strange noises, or sensations are all potential danger indicators. Any of these should prompt you to take your car in for a checkup at the nearest mechanic’s shop.


We discussed the potential causes for the dashboard lights to go out while driving, such as loose or damaged wiring, a bad alternator, a dead battery, a broken dimmer switch, or a blown fuse.

Depending on the origin of the problem, fixing it could cost anything from a few dollars to several hundred. The dashboard lights can be kept from going out while driving by performing routine maintenance and paying attention to warning indicators.

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