What Parts Are Included in an Instrument Panel Cluster in a Vehicle?


Quick Answer

The speedometer and tachometer are parts included in a vehicle's instrument panel cluster. The odometer and fuel gauge are also present as well as dashboard indicators, such as the emergency brake, check engine, gearshift position and seat belt lights. Other dashboard indicators include lights to warn for low tire pressure and oil pressure as well as any problems with the vehicle's airbags.

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Full Answer

The speedometer shows the speed a vehicle is travelling. Traditional displays indicate speed in both miles per hour and kilometers per hour by a needle that moves to indicate the current speed.

A tachometer shows the rotation speed of a vehicle's engine shaft in revolutions per minute. It lets the driver know when he is running the vehicle at speeds considered unsafe for the life of an engine. Exceeding recommended tachometer readings can result in a lack of lubrication in the engine or engine failure. By observing the tachometer's readings, the driver prevents wearing out the spring retracted valves in the engine and overheating the vehicle.

The odometer measures the distance a vehicle has travelled. While mechanical odometers focus on the total number of miles the vehicle has travelled in its lifetime, digital odometers often have the capability of tracking distance of individual trips as well as lifetime mileage.

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