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Can You Change Your Car Dashboard?


If you have a car, you have the liberty to customize it whenever you please. Enthusiastic vehicle owners often like to turn the car inside out to make them look how they imagined their dream car to be. From changing car seat covers to the seat themselves along with the body of the entire car, everything’s possible. But can you change your cash dashboard as well?

Fortunately, your car dashboard is changeable, along with the entire interior. However, dashboard replacements tend to be extremely costly, time-taking, and demand highly experienced and skilled individuals to carry them out.

If you have the money and the patience to get individual parts, there’s nothing stopping you from getting your car dashboard changed!

What does a Car Dashboard consist of?

 A car dashboard consists of several gauges to communicate real-time data to the driver. For instance, the speedometer helps the drivers comply with the road speed limit, the fuel tank helps him ensure he doesn’t get stranded in the middle of nowhere, and a temperature indicates if the vehicle is overheating.

Along with that, several lights displayed on the dashboard indicate which part of the vehicle needs attention. For instance, if any of the doors are not properly closed, a dashboard light will turn on, signaling the driver.

car dashboard

Benefits of changing Car Dashboard:

Upgrading your car dashboard to a new one means an extra bit of information displayed, helping you monitor your car perform well. One such upgrade is a digital dashboard.

Digital display dashboards are quite common these days, and if you wish to upgrade to one, don’t hesitate! These dashboards provide exact readings, unlike their analog counterparts. Furthermore, they can be corrected at a glance due to the display of numbers instead of a moving needle.

Moreover, a newer dashboard can also provide better media controls and makes the overall appearance more appealing. With a cool-looking car interior, the resale value of your car also gets a boost.

How long does it take to remove a Car Dashboard?

Changing a car dashboard involves removing it first. The task should be attempted by an experienced mechanic or a professional. However, if you have some background repair knowledge, you should be able to do it yourself.

Generally, a skilled mechanic can easily remove a car dashboard in a couple of hours. However, if you lack experience, it may take several hours to a day.

Changing a Car Dashboard:

You should always hire a skilled professional when it comes to handling your car. However, if you are willing to risk it home, here are the steps to change your car dashboard:

  • Disconnect Power:  Begin by disconnecting your car battery to avoid risking an injury or electricity malfunction.
  • Remove Dashboard Components and Attachments:  Your dashboard consists of a glove compartment, instrument cluster, steering wheel, display components, and many screws. Remove them all and ensure that the display components are completely detached. Also, remove the trim pieces running up the windshield glass.
  • Take out the Dashboard: Carefully and slowly pull out the dashboard, using a flathead screw to dislodge it. Pulling it out hastily might break plastic tubs or connections you missed from behind, leading to unnecessary replacements.
  • Attach VIN to the new Dashboard: Lay down the two dashboards together, new and old, and see if you can salvage anything from the old one. Attach these clips and brackets along with the vehicle identification number of the new dashboard.
  • Install the new Dashboard: You might require help replacing the new dashboard in your car. Insert it inside the hollow space and adjust it until it slides in properly.

How much does it cost to change a Car Dashboard?

Changing a car dashboard is a costly affair. However, costs may vary depending upon your current location and the price of labor. Similarly, individual parts might be costlier or cheaper, depending upon your specific region.

Modern Car New Dashboard

In general, changing a car dashboard costs a little over $2000, with the labor costs ranging between $500-%700 approximately.

A new car dashboard requires you to gather many individual parts. Collectively, these parts might cost about $1500. Moreover, if you have any damage to the dashboard area, you might require repairs and replacements of some components that will add up to the overall costs.

Also, taxes and other hidden charges might hike up the total costs of a dashboard replacement. So, make this decision very wisely and make sure you factor in all the finances needed for it.

Cons of changing a Car Dashboard:

If you are deliberately changing your car dashboard, despite the old one having no malfunction or issues, you need to consider the downsides as well. Here are some of the downsides of upgrading your car’s original dashboard:

Resale Value:

Upgrading your dashboard might help boost your car’s resale value on one side, yet there’s always a chance that it will decline.

Most buyers in the mainstream market like their cars to be in original condition and with factory components. So, unless you find an enthusiast like yourself, making this change might not pay off in the long run.

Safety Factors:

Tinkering with the original factory fittings means some things might come to lose, or you might not be able to make the correct adjustments again.

The instrument cluster on your new dashboard might malfunction, the warning lights might not power up, or the LCD might start displaying incorrect information.

All of these indicators, which are crucial for the correct handling of the car, might increase the risk factor of your vehicle.

Warranty or Insurance:

Most of the warranties do not accept custom modifications to the car as they may reduce their lifetime. Furthermore, insurance providers also require you to declare major modifications before making them.

If you are planning to replace your car’s dashboard, make sure you check with the manufacturing company and your insurance providers, or else you might lose one or both.

So, can you change a Car Dashboard?

Absolutely! But you must make this decision after considering all the cons and factoring in all the finances it requires.

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