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Stalk Switch Replacement
 
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Pelican Technical Article:

Stalk Switch Replacement

Steve Vernon

Time:

2 hours2 hrs

Tab:

$250

Talent:

***

Tools:

24mm, 8mm socket, Philips head screwdriver, trim removal tools

Applicable Models:

Porsche 944 Turbo (1986-89)

Parts Required:

Stalk switches

Hot Tip:

Be careful plastic trim pieces

Performance Gain:

Working switches

Complementary Modification:

Check all of your bulbs

The steering column or stalk switches are all in one unit and therefore if one of them fails you must replace the entire unit. The unit is not difficult to replace. It is really just more time consuming removing everything that must come out or be moved out of the way first. If you take your time, which you should when working with the plastic trim pieces, you should be able to replace the unit in two hours.

You will need to first remove the steering wheel. Please see our article on steering wheel removal for additional information.

Depending on the options on your vehicle there can be multiple switches on the stalk.
Figure 1

Depending on the options on your vehicle there can be multiple switches on the stalk. Ours has two (red arrows). The stalk switches are contained in one unit and must be replaced together. To remove the switches you will need to remove the trim around the stalks.

If you did not disconnect the battery to remove the steering wheel, begin by disconnecting the ground cable from the post on the battery.
Figure 2

If you did not disconnect the battery to remove the steering wheel, begin by disconnecting the ground cable from the post on the battery. This is also a good time to check the condition of the terminal and wiring, as our cable is starting to get a little corrosion (red arrow).

To replace the switches you will need to just remove the headlight switch from the trim piece, as you will need to remove the trim piece to get access to the fog and dimmer switches (yellow arrow).
Figure 3

To replace the switches you will need to just remove the headlight switch from the trim piece, as you will need to remove the trim piece to get access to the fog and dimmer switches (yellow arrow). The headlight switch is just to the left of the steering column. You can usually just pull the front of the switch straight off using only your hands (red arrow). If yours is on pretty firmly, use a trim removal tool or a flathead screwdriver and gently pry the knob off.

The knob is just held in place by a friction fit (red arrow).
Figure 4

The knob is just held in place by a friction fit (red arrow). With the knob off you can see the 24mm nut holding the switch in place (yellow arrow).

Use a 24mm socket or a large set of pliers and remove the nut (red arrow).
Figure 5

Use a 24mm socket or a large set of pliers and remove the nut (red arrow). If you are using pliers take care not to mar the dash surface. With the nut off you can just push the headlight switch back and out of the trim piece.

With the steering wheel off use a Philips head screwdriver and remove the three screws on the column surround (red arrows).
Figure 6

With the steering wheel off use a Philips head screwdriver and remove the three screws on the column surround (red arrows).

Remove the column surround and use the Philips head screwdriver to remove the screws under and inside the column (red arrows).
Figure 7

Remove the column surround and use the Philips head screwdriver to remove the screws under and inside the column (red arrows).

Use a trim removal tool and pop off the trim piece beside the vent and remove the two Philips head screws (red arrows).
Figure 8

Use a trim removal tool and pop off the trim piece beside the vent and remove the two Philips head screws (red arrows).

Using a Philips head screwdriver remove the single screw on the end of the dash trim piece (red arrow).
Figure 9

Using a Philips head screwdriver remove the single screw on the end of the dash trim piece (red arrow).

Next, remove the three Philips head screws holding the switch trim piece and the vent (red arrows).
Figure 10

Next, remove the three Philips head screws holding the switch trim piece and the vent (red arrows). The vent is attached to the lower vent in the switch trim piece, so they have to be removed together.

With all the screws removed you can gently remove the trim piece from the dash.
Figure 11

With all the screws removed you can gently remove the trim piece from the dash.

Next, you are going to remove the trim piece from the other side of the steering column.
Figure 12

Next, you are going to remove the trim piece from the other side of the steering column. The trim piece is partially held in place by the HVAC control unit, so you will need to move it out of the way. Be very careful when prying the faceplate off of the unit. It is just held in by clips on the sides but they tend to break way too easily. Our project cars plate was already broken (red arrow) when we got the car.

Remove the knobs and sliders by pulling them straight off; you can probably do this with your hands for all of them but the fan speed control.
Figure 13

Remove the knobs and sliders by pulling them straight off; you can probably do this with your hands for all of them but the fan speed control. There is a small light behind the knob so you want to make sure you take this knob straight off. I recommend you use a trim removal tool and gently pry it away from the faceplate (red arrow).

With the knob off you can see the small fragile bulb in the center (red arrow).
Figure 14

With the knob off you can see the small fragile bulb in the center (red arrow).

Use your trim removal tool and gently pry both ends of the plate off and then work your way around the complete plate is off.
Figure 15

Use your trim removal tool and gently pry both ends of the plate off and then work your way around the complete plate is off. Take your time and go slow, as it will shock you how easy it is to break this plate.

With the plate off use a Philips head screwdriver and remove the four screws holding the unit in place (red arrows).
Figure 16

With the plate off use a Philips head screwdriver and remove the four screws holding the unit in place (red arrows).

Wiggle the unit out from the dash.
Figure 17

Wiggle the unit out from the dash. You do not need to disconnect it or remove it completely. You just need to move it enough so the trim piece can clear it.

Use a Philips head screwdriver to remove the screws under and inside the column (red arrows).
Figure 18

Use a Philips head screwdriver to remove the screws under and inside the column (red arrows).

Gently pry the trim piece out from the dash leaving the switches connected to the wiring harness.
Figure 19

Gently pry the trim piece out from the dash leaving the switches connected to the wiring harness.

Looking from underneath you can see the two electrical connections (yellow arrows) and the 8mm bolt on the stalk switch (red arrow).
Figure 20

Looking from underneath you can see the two electrical connections (yellow arrows) and the 8mm bolt on the stalk switch (red arrow). Use a 8mm socket and loosen the bolt.

Slide the stalk switches forward while wiggling off the connectors (red arrow).
Figure 21

Slide the stalk switches forward while wiggling off the connectors (red arrow). There is not a lot of room to work and the connectors can be a little stubborn.

Transfer the clamp over to the new unit (red arrow).
Figure 22

Transfer the clamp over to the new unit (red arrow). Installation is the reverse of removal.



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