Digital Odometer Display Not Working – Causes And Solutions

If you are confused about the digital odometer display not working, this writing will help you find out the causes and recommend the relevant solutions.

Although this issue brings no significant harm to the car’s performance, it is better to have timely preparation.

Digital Odometer Review

Digital Odometer Display Not Working


The mileage plays a crucial role in ensuring drivers  have a good record of the car’s usage frequency. Meanwhile, the odometer is in charge of guaranteeing the vehicle’s mileage is recorded.

The digital odometer in your vehicle shows the digital value of your car’s mileage onto the instrument cluster or dashboard using electronic signals.

Generally, there are recorded values saved on the vehicle’s ECU (Electronic Control Unit) for the digital odometers to determine the car’s overall mileage.


Before knowing how to fix digital odometer, it is essential to understand how this component functions.

The way it works makes the difference between the digital odometer and other types using mechanisms and mechanical elements more apparent.

The toothed wheel, regardless of the alloy or premium wheel, is connected to the tire system, of which the pulses are counted by either an optical sensor or magnetic sensor.

These sensors record every movement of the wheels and transmit the data to the car’s ECU. The digital odometers make use of these sensors to determine how many pulses the toothed wheel has offered.

After receiving the records from optical and magnetic sensors, the engine control unit analyzes and calculates how far the car has traveled based on the number of pulses either transmitted from the sensors or on proper values like the vehicle tires’ sizes.

The calculation process employs the mathematical algorithm.

How To Check And Calculate Car Mileage On Dashboard

It is easy to check and calculate the mileage of your vehicle, follow these instructions:

  • Get your tank fueled to its brim.
  • Reset the trip meter till it turns to zero
  • Drive stably at the speed limit of the vehicle as it consumes more fuel for too much speed 
  • Drive the car from 250 to 350 kilometers, then refill the tank. It will definitely take a number of days. However, the more oil is burnt, the more you can top up.
  • Use oil to top up the tank.
  • The final step is dividing the number of kilometers you have driven by the fuel quantity you have consumed.

The value will be presented digitally on the vehicle’s instrument cluster through the car’s digital odometer.

The location of the odometer is not fixed; yet, it mostly stays next to the speedometer as a norm. Moreover, they utilize similar tire data for their value records.

Why Is My Digital Odometer Display Not Working? Signs Of Faulty Odometer

Some noticeable signs of the car odometer not working are defective console light, cracked solder joints, faulty speed sensor, dirty cluster, or malfunctioning connector in the back of the dashboard.

However, it causes an inconvenient feeling as there is nothing displayed. This component usually becomes out of order after a certain time of the drive.

So, it’s best to prepare yourself with some tellable symptoms in advance.

Console Light Bulb Is Defective

If the console light bulb on your car turns black, the mileage or digit expected to be on the dashboard will be no longer visible.

The roots of this issue are diversified, including the blown-out fuse, the burning bulb, or the connector getting rusty.

It is necessary to emphasize that the console bulb gets defective does not mean the dashboard is faulty. In this case, the mileage can be still a tad visible at night or in dark.

Cracked Solder Joints

What does it mean when the odometer stops working? It could be because the solder joints inside your dashboard have been damaged or cracked.

This is the element that locates the plug and the cluster that allows the electrical system to get through.

In most cases, the main connector of this component becomes brittle after a certain amount of time, leading to open circuits or other gremlins of electricity. This might lead to the electrical system shut off when driving.

Speed Sensor Gets Defective

It is understandable when you face up with the digital odometer not working but speedometer works. However, once the speed sensor malfunctions, it results in an odometer issue.

How to know if the speed sensor is out of order? As mentioned before, these two components are located close to each other.

Thus, when the odometer is broken, the gears spinning it also gets broken. It triggers the harsh or slow shifting rooted in the defective speed sensor.

Cluster Of The Dashboard Is Dirty

Why is the mileage not showing on dashboard? Another answer to the question may be due to a dirty cluster.

After a proper time of driving, there are buildups of debris, dust, and dirt on the cluster as well as its electrical. This filthy cluster is the culprit behind a faulty odometer.

Connector In The Dashboard’s Back Malfunctions

There is a connector at the back of the vehicle’s dashboard. Once this element gets lost or damaged, it impairs the odometer. 

It goes the same as when you insert the connector incorrectly and find your digital odometer not working. Besides, a malfunctioned fuse also affects the performance of the odometer.

Instructions To Fix The Faulty Digital Odometer

how to fix digital odometer

Replace Speed Sensor If Necessary

One of the top solutions for a defective odometer is replacing the speed sensor. You can find this element near the back of the transmission.

As mentioned, a broken odometer may cause the gears to break. Thus, you should have the instrument cluster pulled to fix it.

Remove Dust

When it comes to the buildup of dust, dirt, or debris, the first step is clustering out the components. Then, take advantage of compressed air for removal. Besides, clean the translucent plastic with a microfiber cloth.

At the same time, you can either refresh or add in some LEDs for the car’s cluster lighting. This process is a prevention method for further troubles caused by faulty odometers.

Replace the Gears

Use a flat head screwdriver for popping the tiny plastic clip out and twisting the car engine. Then, the fuel will come out thoroughly. Next, take the black gear out by using the screwdriver and inspect it.

If the plastic piece is broken, the gear also gets broken due to missing teeth. Thus, drivers have to swap the gear with a new white one.

Before replacing, ensure that you have eliminated all the old bits so that the alternative gear won’t get stuck.

Check The Connector At The Back Of DashBoard

Check the connector at the back of the dashboard to ensure that the connector and the visual test are inserted precisely.

Set your eye on the first fuse box and find out whether there is a blown fuse.

Get The Right Sized Fuse

Getting the wrong size of fuse is a common mistake in fixing. For instance, you may purchase a 25-sized fuse while the one needed is 15. 

Another root causing the mentioned problems is the cluster relays getting weak. In this case, changing the fuse might work.

Pay Attention To Defective Wiring Or ECU

The last possible reason for a malfunctioning odometer is when the car’s wire or ECU gets out of order.

Remember that these wires are not expected to be too short, or else the fuse can blow out and prevent the normal function of the odometer.

It mostly happens to older vehicles, whose wires are shorted and allow the fuse to burst out. This process halts the operation of the speedometer.


Is It Possible To Change The Mileage On A Digital Odometer?

Absolutely Yes. Any type of odometer, including the digital one, can be altered easily. The scammers can change the mileage with little clues remaining, thanks to the use of special tools.

These people can even adjust the displaying numbers of miles as well as substitute the memory chip having fewer miles.

How To Check Car Mileage Without An Odometer?

You can not check the mileage of your vehicle with no odometer. Thus, replacing a broken odometer is necessary to get accurate records. However, you can check the mileage with a tracker app with these instructions:

  • Download and install a mileage tracker app on your phone. The most common names are MileIQ and TripLog.
  • After downloading and installing, open the app and pick up your preferable mode of tracking. Some apps have auto-tracking features available, while others offer a manual mode.
  • Choose a relevant tracking mode and then start the engine of your vehicle. The tracking mode will then log each mile of driving. It delivers real-time data.
  • Once you have finished the route, stop tracking. There will be an overview of the number of miles you have moved when the trip is finished.


You have been equipped with the most comprehensive information about the digital odometer display not working.

Besides having a suitable solution when you face up with this problem, having proper maintenance and periodically checking up will also help you avoid getting into trouble with this defective component.

2 thoughts on “Digital Odometer Display Not Working – Causes And Solutions”

  1. What I read kind of makes sense but I am more confused than ever in determinig howtofix the dash display. For unknown reason the dash starting showing the radio station settings . I don’t know why or how and I don’t know where to begin to restore the dash tothe original settings


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