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1999 Forester
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57 Posts
Discussion Starter #1 (Edited)
Both the radio, and the upper clock are dimmed out. The upper clock is dimmed enough that it is unreadable when the sunlight hits it and you have to make a shade for it with your hand. Any ideas on how to stop this? Is it a battery issue or are the contacts corroded or what? Any help would be sweet. Also the dimmer switch doesn't do anything.

And I leave the lights on to help with visibility on the road.
 

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2009 & Jamboree Motorhome
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347 Posts
Both the radio, and the upper clock are dimmed out. The upper clock is dimmed enough that it is unreadable when the sunlight hits it and you have to make a shade for it with your hand. Any ideas on how to stop this? Is it a battery issue or are the contacts corroded or what? Any help would be sweet. Also the dimmer switch doesn't do anything.

And I leave the lights on to help with visibility on the road.
Sad to say that is just one of the things about the older Foresters that we live with.. I guess there may be some way to fix it.. But its so you will not have super bright lights when driving at night.. So only real bright if the lights are off.. But then it does tell you the lights are on' if you can't read the clock during the day.. Its a real pain and should have been hooked to the dash lights so you could make it brighter or dimmer.. But running an extra wire would be a lot of work.. Just do what I do and shut the lights off for a sec to read the clock.. Not high tec but works..

Snowdance

Flickr: snowdance38's Photostream
 

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Administrator
2007 Forester Sports XT 4EAT
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39,521 Posts
The later models do this, but not to that extent. If you're handy with wiring MODs, you could bypass the dimming circuit. You'll most likely need the wiring diagram for this task. There is a down side, you may make it too bright at night. :frown:

Bobby...

['07 FSXT MODding Journal] ['03 X MODding Journal]
 

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Premium Member
2015 Highlander AWD XLE 6AT
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4,255 Posts
The later modeles do this, but not to that extent.
Actually, the dash-mounted dimmer on the '09's (and the '10's, I presume) allows you to operate the gauge-, radio-, and controls illumination at full brightness when the parking- or headlights are on.

HTH,
Jim / crewzer
 

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1999 Forester
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57 Posts
Discussion Starter #5
So the problem is because the car doesn't make enough juice for it to power an LED or something? Weird, thanks anyway though.
 

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2007 Forester Sports XT 4EAT
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39,521 Posts
So the problem is because the car doesn't make enough juice for it to power an LED or something? Weird, thanks anyway though.
I'd say it has to do more with the designer/engineer taking the easy way. They figure if the headlights are on, it's dark outside, so the instrument, clock & radio back lighting needs to be dimmed. They could have used a ambient light sensor, but that would cost more. :frown:

Bobby...

['07 FSXT MODding Journal] ['03 X MODding Journal]
 

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03X MT
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846 Posts
I see that the earlier Foresters don't have DRL (daytime running lights) so...... There is thread around here somewhere about adding an after market DRL kit to the earlier Foz's

Might be worth a try.
 

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2017 Forester 2.5I - 6 Speed
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994 Posts
So the problem is because the car doesn't make enough juice for it to power an LED or something? Weird, thanks anyway though.
LEDs take very little power. If the older Forester dash lights did not dim when the car was new, it should not be doing it now. There is something wrong with the power regulator on the alternator or a malfunctioning dimmer switch on the dash.
 

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03X MT
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846 Posts
I think what this person is doing is running the headlights during the day to simulate DRL since the earlier Foz's don't have DRL. The dimming of the dash illumination is normal.
 

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none none
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8,844 Posts
On the SG models at least, holding the power button on the headunit for a few seconds causes the interior lighting to goto full brightness if the headlights are on.
 

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2007 Forester Sports XT 4EAT
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I like the DRL feature, but I also like to have the tail lights/clearance lights on with them. This causes the instrument/clock/radio illumation to dim. It's not that bad on my '03 X or my '07 FSXT, but since the OP brought this up, I decided to look into it on the wiring diagrams. The main illumination is done over the V (violet) & OrW (orange/white) wires. These come from the Body Intergrated Unit... yes, another one of Subaru's custom modules! :frown: From my quick look, I'd guess the Body Intergrated Unit receives a signal telling it that the headlights/tail lights or clearance lights are on & it dims the illumination lights connected to the V (violet) & OrW (orange/white) wires. To maually override the dimming should be as easy as running the sense lead thru a switch to allow manual override of the automatic dimming. :smile:

I haven't done this, but I may play around with it sometime down the road. :wink:

Bobby...

['07 FSXT MODding Journal] ['03 X MODding Journal]
 
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