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Pelican Technical Article:

Steering Wheel Removal

Steve Vernon

Time:

30 minutes30 mins

Tab:

$0

Talent:

**

Tools:

Small flathead screwdriver, 10mm Allen, breaker bar, a friend

Applicable Models:

Mercedes-Benz W123 (1977-85)

Parts Required:

Steering wheel

Hot Tip:

Be sure to disconnect the battery

Performance Gain:

Access to components behind steering wheel.

Complementary Modification:

Replace steering wheel with upgraded model

There are all kinds of reasons why you will want to remove the steering wheel from your W123, including replacing the stalk switches behind it. While removing the steering wheel is not difficult, if it has never been off the vehicle before you are probably going to need a friend to help you remove. The factory installs the 10mm Allen bolts with a form of Loctite and it may need a lot of force to break loose.

Over the years your car may have been serviced by multiple people including previous owners and this can lead to parts replaced with different size fasteners and hardware. The sizes of the nuts and bolts we give may be different from what you have so be prepared with different size sockets and wrenches. If something is different on your vehicle please let us know and share your info to help other users. If you have any questions or comments or even a different procedure you would like to share please leave it below and please leave your vehicle information.

Make sure your steering wheel is centered and the front wheels are pointing straight ahead before you disconnect the battery.

Disconnect the negative battery cable (red arrow).
Figure 1

Disconnect the negative battery cable (red arrow). Make sure it cannot make accidental contact with the battery while working.

It does not really matter which direction the wheels are pointing before you remove the wheel as long as you mark the wheel and shaft before removing the wheel, but by centering the wheels and having the steering wheel level it will give you piece of mind when re-installing and it is an easy way to check that nothing has moved.
Figure 2

It does not really matter which direction the wheels are pointing before you remove the wheel as long as you mark the wheel and shaft before removing the wheel, but by centering the wheels and having the steering wheel level it will give you piece of mind when re-installing and it is an easy way to check that nothing has moved.

Use a small flathead screwdriver and very carefully remove the center emblem from the horn pad using care not to mare the pad.
Figure 3

Use a small flathead screwdriver and very carefully remove the center emblem from the horn pad using care not to mare the pad. This is easier to do if you leave the car out in direct sunlight for a few hours to warm up the pad.

With the emblem removed you can see the 10mm Allen bolt that holds the wheel to the steering shaft (red arrow).
Figure 4

With the emblem removed you can see the 10mm Allen bolt that holds the wheel to the steering shaft (red arrow). Someone has marked the nut but this will not help you when installing the wheel as you need to mark the relationship between the wheel and the shaft.

Use a 10mm Allen and remove the nut.
Figure 5

Use a 10mm Allen and remove the nut. There is a very good chance you will need to use a breaker bar and have a friend hold the wheel while breaking this nut loose.

The factory installs a form of Loctite on the bolt (red arrow).
Figure 6

The factory installs a form of Loctite on the bolt (red arrow). If you want to use a little Loctite on this bolt just make sure you use the non-permanent type.

This is the area you need to mark; the relation between the steering shaft and wheel (yellow arrow).
Figure 7

This is the area you need to mark; the relation between the steering shaft and wheel (yellow arrow).

With everything marked you can simply pull the wheel straight off the shaft.
Figure 8

With everything marked you can simply pull the wheel straight off the shaft. Installation is the reverse of removal.

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