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I replaced the battery with a new one on my 2007 Elise. But before doing so, I had connected one of those 9 Volt battery to 12 Volt accessory outlet between the seats to retain the radio memory, alarm system settings, etc. so that nothing would go crazy and it worked.:clap:

Now for the craziness!:crazyeyes I decided to take the car for a drive. Turned on the lights and the lights (illumination) around the HVAC Controls don’t work. All the switches and functions operate normally but the light. The instrument cluster illumination does work and the dimmer switch works. Illumination goes dim and then bright only on the instrument cluster but nothing on the HVAC Control Assembly. Before the battery swap everything was working perfect. I removed the assembly to see if something was loose but everything was intact. Since it is an electroluminescent system (see picture) I wiggled the ribbon that goes from the transformer (black square box) to the panel and everything was secured.

Would hate to buy a new panel (about $180):wallbang: so if anyone has had this issue to found a solution, I would greatly appreciate it.:bow:
 

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If you have a multimeter, this shouldn't be too hard to figure out.. In your picture, looking into the black 8-pin connector, the bottom left pin is GND, and the pin next to it is the 0-12v "illumination" signal. If you check the wires coming out of the mating plug, you should see some voltage on the 0-12v wire when the dash lights are on.

Alternately, if you supply a voltage (9v will work) to those 2 pins, the panel will light up. I've taken a picture of 2 wires connected, with the board and panel showing. The blue wire would be the (-), the red wire the (+).



If you give the panel connector voltage and the front doesn't light up, it would either be the black transformer on the right, or the electroluminescent panel itself.. The transformer has no markings on it, so would be hard to find a direct replacement. The EL sheet I'm sure you can't get separate as it's very custom. Used panel time in that case...

As for why it would choose battery swap time to die, no idea!! :)

Hope that helps!
 

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"Riceburner98"

Thanks for your help.:bow: I will give it a try this evening and see if I can get it to work. Hard to believe that the EL panel or the transformer would die so early. :(
 

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The variable voltage itself is generated by the cluster, so there's always a (hopefully slim?) chance something happened there too.. It looks like the output goes only to the AC controller, the cluster lighting is separate.. Another place to look I guess if the controller checks out OK. It would be the same color wire as what goes into the AC control, looks like pin C5 (hard to read the scanned copy), and color is "RO", not sure what that translates to. :) My car's still in the body shop or I'd take a look..
 

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Sorry for reviving an old thread. But I am having the same issue. Dimmer switch works and so do all other lights except the backlighting on the HVAC controls.

Is my EL panel faulty or could there be another issue? I tried wiggling the wires to see if it would do anything but I got nothing out of it. Also if i put my ear really close, i can hear a faint buzzing noise coming from it. I saw in another thread that you can test the panel with a 9v battery. Any idea how to do that?
 

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I have the same issue myself, and was hoping to find a solution on the forum. Everything with the HVAC controls works greats, but was hoping to use this time to do some maintenance on the Elise.
 

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I would also like to know if this or some other fix worked. mine quit lighting so I replaced with a new one and it quit also. blue A/C and recirculate lights work.Guess i'll experiment on the old one
 
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