Wednesday, August 8, 2012

Is your "Beast of Birdin'" an F-250/350?

The Overhead Display Hole

I guess I was blessed with one that lasted longer than most, but when my overhead display (also known as the trip computer, mileage computer, temp sensor)  went out, I figured no big deal.  Then, I caught myself looking up there at a blank screen time after time. I noticed it was nice to know the temp/direction/miles to go to flameout and all that other nice stuff.  I called the local Ford guy and gave him the part number off the old unit and asked him to give me an estimate (in case I needed to rob a bank on the way over). He said Ford doesn't make the part and he can't get me one!  What? Passing up an opportunity to triple the profit on a part? That doesn't sound like Ford Motor Company to me! I got on the Internet and found a Ford blog site that gave detailed instructions about how to repair said part. (  I unplugged the black box, detached it from the mount, unscrewed three screws and layed open the innards.  It looked like the inside of my desktop computer.  Sure enough, one of the resistors was loose, so I gently pressed it back in to place.  I hooked it up and it worked! I noticed it was dim and all the functions didn't work, however.  More investigation revealed there should be 7 chips- I only had 5 chips in 7 holes. Two of the chips had fallen off!

Back to the Internet to find  a guy to fix it. I found several people who sell re-conditioned boxes and, also, new OE boxes.  The refurbished ones run about $100 and the new ones are about $220. I gave in and ordered a new one, and he gave me a $20 credit if I sent him my old one (hence, the photo of the hole where it was- lol.).  Interestingly, one guy said the refurbished ones have all the computer upgrades and show instantaneous mileage, as well, something my 2001 F-250 never did display.  So, I should be getting an upgrade on the my computer out put, too. That figures since my truck is almost 12 years old now. 

Note: the most difficult thing in this whole operation was getting the cover off.  There are detailed instructions here (, but I suggest taking it to your local repair place and paying them to show you how to do it.  Don't cheap this one- if you break it, you will pay much more than you save.  Once the cover is off, the rest is a piece of cake!  

This is the guy I used, but there are many others out there.  Google "F-250 Overhead display" to start your search, or message me and I'll find the website address. George DeCarlo


The part arrived before noon today and it took me 10 minutes to plug it in, put three screws in the mount and put the cover back on! It's working fine and it should last me another 10 years...or another 325,000 miles.  Along with the part, were instructions on removing the cover and box.  They are the same instructions on his website.  Overall, I am pleased with the transaction.  Everything was exactly as presented and I recommend this method.  

The Updated Repaired Version! Whoohoo!