E320CDI (UK) Instrument panel bulb replacement

Can anyone give me an idea how to release the instrument panel on the E320? I have 1 bulb in need of replacement and my local dealer wants me to book
the car in for 2 hours for them to replace it. At their hourly rates? Right! Help me please...
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I had local dealer do this job. $140 to replace all the bulbs but it's not damaged by my lack of "how to" knowledge.
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It's very simple, though a bit unnerving.
Get a pair of instrument cluster pullers from the MB parts desk. They look like boot hooks (a tee-shaped hook with wooden handle). You would insert the hooks (hook tips facing straight up) at the 10:00 and 2:00 positions (maybe slightly lower) of the clear instrument cluster, between the edge of the dash surround and the cluster. After inserting the shafts of the tools, rotate the handles so that the hooks grab the instrument cluster from behind. Firmly pull the cluster straight out toward the back of the steering wheel, keeping equal tension on both hooks.
The instrument cluster is simply pressed into the dashboard with friction. The small (tan?) hexagonal pieces on the back of the instrument panel are the bulbs for illumination; turn counterclockwise to release. I'd suggest replacing all of them while the unit is out.
Failing the MB dash hooks, other owners use firm coathanger wire, with a 1/4-inch hook bent at the tip (needlenose plier tip, rounded back), and the pulling end of the coathanger doubled up a few times to create a T-shaped handle and hook.
It's unnerving to do, because the plastic creaks and groans as it is pulled out. The last I heard, the replacement cost for an instrument cluster was about US$1300.

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<http://cgi.ebay.com/ebaymotors/ws/eBayISAPI.dll?ViewItem&rd=1&categoryC996&itemE63592006&sspagename=WDVW

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Rugbyguy wrote:

<http://cgi.ebay.com/ebaymotors/ws/eBayISAPI.dll?ViewItem&rd=1&categoryC996&itemE63592006&sspagename=WDVW
$24!!! Jeez, they are less than $20 at the stealership part counter.
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Chas -
On most older Mercedes, the instrument cluster is a press fit into the dash, and is only held in place by a ribbed rubber strip wrapped around the cluster assembly. It prys out easily with any thin, smooth tool. With a little care it can be removed without marring either the cluster or the surround. It's only scary the first time you do it. I got involved when my aftermarket mechanic wanted to charge me $150 to replace a burned out instrument lamp. It's worse on a 450 SL, as you need to remove the steering wheel to gain access. I don't believe that should be a requirement on your E320. On the 450, I can pop off the wheel & remove the cluster, replace a burned out instrument lamp and have it all back together in less than 5 minutes time, it's that easy. Give it a try! You'll be up here telling us how to do it in no time!
Jerry Wolfram '78 450 SL - 214K miles
Chas wrote:

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