Question about 2000 Ford Windstar

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The tach needle is over by the gear selector

My mom has a 2000 ford windstar and the taach needle is stuck by the gear selector. I tried to undo the battery cause I thought that might work (resets the computer) but nothing worked. Please help..

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I had this problem with my 2003 Windstar and found a really simple solution. There's a hole in the instrument panel's plastic cover that the trip reset button sticks out of. The button is slightly smaller than the hole, leaving a gap around it. I unfolded a long paperclip and slipped it into the hole beside the button and was able to reach the tachometer needle and flip back over to 0. That was it.
Surprisingly, the tach was still working after that too. The tip of the needle was rather bent though, after having the Park indicator jammed into it numerous time before I fixed it.

Posted on Jul 31, 2013

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  • Joshua Fitzgerald
    Joshua Fitzgerald Nov 18, 2013

    did this with a barbie pin just added little twist to slip around trip reset button . It has a little wiggle room.

  • Carlos A Chaidez Apr 07, 2018

    Used a large paper clip as well, worked perfectly thank you.

  • James Taylor Sep 29, 2019

    Thin gauge wire smaller than a paper clip worked great! Thanks for the idea.


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I had same issue with my 2001 Windstar. To take the pointer needle back to its position without removing the Cluster, you will need to:
- Remove the head lights and dimming switch together with the bezel (left side of steering column). It is snap-fit, so just pull it softly from the edges
- From there, you will be able to peek and see the prndl and the red portion of the pointer stucked
- With a long soft stick (I cut a thin long portion from a manila folder, but you can also use a plastic flat stick or any thin card board material that you can cut like from cereal box) insert it into the prndl small opening between the Cluster lens and bezel to push the needle.
- If the pointer doesn't move at all and your paper stick is bended, it might be pretty stuck (due to the countinuous pushing while placing the shift is P). For that, you can use a wood stick, like a chopstick, to un-stock it. Same thing, insert it trough the opening. Do not insert it all the way, as it will not fit. This is just to unstock the pointer with the chopstick tip.
- Once it is unstuck, get back to the paper stick and now insert it again and push the pointer up until it gets back to 0 by itself.

It is higly possible that your pointer will be bend at this point (again due to the continuous pushing of the shift at P). So you might want to consider removing the Cluster lens to bend it back straight.

Important: There are several comments that it is due to some ground connections issues on the cluster, which might be true. I haven't try finding it. Your pointers will eventually jump crazy again some day. In my case this happens 2 times a year (for the last 3yrs). If this happens again, hit the top of the panel hard with your hand and the pointers will jump back.
Due to this, it will be up to you if you want to remove or replace the cluster. I didn't find it worthy.
Good luck!

Posted on Nov 16, 2009

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We had the same issue with my girlfriends tach needle being stuck next to the P-R-N-D-2-1 selectors. 2001 Ford Windstar tachometer needle stuck.
We followed the steps provided by hhguzman to remove the left panel holding the light switch and dimmer. A piece of cereal cardboard paper simply crumpled and wouldn't push the needle. We eventually tried using an allen wrench and I was able to push it up slightly.
We set the e-brake on the car, then put the gear selection all the way in 1st so that gear selection needle would not be in the way. Next, with the allen wrench, we pushed the needle up slightly (about a half inch up so it wasn't resting on the inner dash). We had the key in the car turned to accessory mode so the radio was on and the windows were working and the interior lights on (this was at night) and then I hit the top of the dash really hard about 5-7 times and the needle eventually JUMPED back over to the zero position.
Like hhguzman mentioned before, the needle will be slightly bent and I do mean slightly (hard to notice unless you stare at it). Not enough to make you misjudge your RPM's while driving :)
Hope this helps!

Posted on Jul 17, 2010

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You will need to change the instument cluster.

Posted on Jul 18, 2009

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