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Pelican Technical Article:

Steering Column Switches Removal

Kerry Jonsson

Time:

2 hour2 hr

Tab:

$300

Talent:

**

Tools:

Phillips head screwdriver, prying tool

Applicable Models:

Mercedes-Benz R129 (1990-02)

Parts Required:

Steering column switches (cruise control, turn signal wiper, steering column adjustment)

Hot Tip:

Have the wheels pointed straight ahead to align the steering wheel for installation

Performance Gain:

Turn signal wiper, cruise control and steering column adjustment will start working

To improve safety many of the vehicles control switches have been moved to the steering column. This gives the driver easy access to them and allows him to control many of the cars functions without taking his hands far from the wheel. In our vehicle the wiper switch also doubles as the turn signal switch. The cruise control switch is placed above the turn signal / wiper switch and the steering column adjustment switch is towards the bottom of the steering column shaft, still within reach but not viewable by the driver while driving. If any of these systems stopped working the car would not be safe to drive in the rain and the driver could not signal their intentions. In this tech article we are going to go over all the steps to remove your steering column switches.

In order to remove your steering column switches you will need to remove your steering wheel. See our tech article on steering wheel removal. Also to remove the switches from the steering column you are going to need to remove the right side lower dash panel to access electrical connectors. See our tech article on right side lower dash panel removal.

With the steering wheel removed unscrew the three Phillips head fasteners (green arrows) that hold on the steering column switch cover.
Figure 1

With the steering wheel removed unscrew the three Phillips head fasteners (green arrows) that hold on the steering column switch cover.

Lift the contact cover plate off of the steering column and move it to the side.
Figure 2

Lift the contact cover plate off of the steering column and move it to the side.

To remove the cruise control switch, remove the Phillips head fastener (green arrow).
Figure 3

To remove the cruise control switch, remove the Phillips head fastener (green arrow). Pull the switch out of the steering column. You will not be able to pull it out all of the way because the wiring harness electrical connector is still attached. By pulling the switch out of the steering column you so have more room to pull out wiring harnesses and electrical connectors.

ThisPicture illustrates the right side of the dashboard below the steering column with the lower panel removed.
Figure 4

ThisPicture illustrates the right side of the dashboard below the steering column with the lower panel removed. Locate the electrical connector housing (green arrow) and pull it downward so you can access the connectors.

Squeeze each side of the cruise control wiring harness electrical connector (green arrows) and pull the connector away from the housing to unplug it.
Figure 5

Squeeze each side of the cruise control wiring harness electrical connector (green arrows) and pull the connector away from the housing to unplug it.

Pull the cruise control switch away from the steering column a few inches.
Figure 6

Pull the cruise control switch away from the steering column a few inches.

Feed the wiring harness through the opening in the steering column and pull the connector out of the steering column.
Figure 7

Feed the wiring harness through the opening in the steering column and pull the connector out of the steering column.

To get the contact plate cover out of the way unplug the red electrical connector (green arrow, with the blue sheathing) from the electrical connector housing.
Figure 8

To get the contact plate cover out of the way unplug the red electrical connector (green arrow, with the blue sheathing) from the electrical connector housing.

Feed the wiring through the steering column until you can pull the connector all the way out.
Figure 9

Feed the wiring through the steering column until you can pull the connector all the way out.

To remove the turn signal / wiper switch remove the two remaining Phillips head fasteners (green arrows).
Figure 10

To remove the turn signal / wiper switch remove the two remaining Phillips head fasteners (green arrows). You already removed the top one when taking out the cruise control switch in step #3. The cruise control switch should already be out of the way.. Remove the turn signal / wiper switch by pulling it out of the steering column. You will not be able to pull it out all the way until you unplug the electrical harness electrical connector under the dash. .

ThisPicture illustrates the electrical connector housing.
Figure 11

ThisPicture illustrates the electrical connector housing. Locate the locking slide for the turn signal electrical (green arrow) and push the top of the slide in the direction of the blue arrow. We have left the red connector of the contact plate plugged in to help you locate the position of the turn signal / wiper switch electrical connector.

This is the position the locking slide will end up after you push it.
Figure 12

This is the position the locking slide will end up after you push it. You can now unplug the electrical connector.

ThisPicture illustrates under the steering column shaft behind the right side lower cover.
Figure 13

ThisPicture illustrates under the steering column shaft behind the right side lower cover. Use a long pick (green arrow) to lever off the clasps of the black cover. You must remove this cover to fish the turn signal/wiper switch through the steering column.

There are four clasps (green arrows) that hold the back cover onto the steering column.
Figure 14

There are four clasps (green arrows) that hold the back cover onto the steering column. ThisPicture shows the position of the four clasps. Unhook all four and remove the cover.

Feed the wiring for the turn signal/wiper switch through the steering column until you can pull it all the way out.
Figure 15

Feed the wiring for the turn signal/wiper switch through the steering column until you can pull it all the way out.

To remove the steering column adjustment switch push the back of the connector in the direction of the blue arrow to pop it out of the steering column cover.
Figure 16

To remove the steering column adjustment switch push the back of the connector in the direction of the blue arrow to pop it out of the steering column cover. It is held in with spring clips.

ThisPicture illustrates the electrical connector housing.
Figure 17

ThisPicture illustrates the electrical connector housing. Unplug the electrical connector for the steering column adjustment switch by squeezing both sides of the connector (green arrows) and pulling the connector off.

Feed the wiring through the steering column until you can pull the connector all the way out.
Figure 18

Feed the wiring through the steering column until you can pull the connector all the way out. Installation is the reverse of the removal steps. Fish the wiring harnesses for the switches through the steering column and plug them in to their counterparts on the electrical connector housing. Position the steering column adjustment switch in the steering column cover and push it back into place. Install the turn signal switch first followed by the cruise control switch and tighten the mounting fasteners. Finally install the contact plate cover and tighten down the mounting screws. Fit the lower cover and steering wheel per the instructions in their tech articles. Reconnect the battery and turn the ignition switch on. Verify the steering column adjustment, turn signal and wipers work. Before driving he vehicle, be sure the steering operates in both directions smoothly. Go on a road test and verify the cruise control works.

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Comments and Suggestions:
Bob Comments: Thanks for the help. I have now removed the air bag, steering wheel, and clock spring to tighten the control collar. Everything has been replaced and connections checked and rechecked. However the SRS light remain lighted when driving. Is there a code that needs to be cleared?
August 4, 2016
  Followup from the Pelican Staff: If the faulty part has been replaced, you will have to clear the airbag fault codes using a Mercedes-Benz scan tool. - Nick at Pelican Parts  
Bob Comments: Does the steering wheel need to be removed to access these fasteners?
Or just the airbag?
July 8, 2016
  Followup from the Pelican Staff: Steering wheel, clock spring . - Nick at Pelican Parts  
Bob Comments: The collar that holds the cruise control and directional levers rotates around the steering column. How is this tightened?
July 7, 2016
  Followup from the Pelican Staff: There should be fasteners behind the clockspring. - Nick at Pelican Parts  

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Page last updated: Fri 12/9/2016 02:27:58 AM