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    Thread: Here is an ignition switch removal procedure

    1. Member badufay's Avatar
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      09-01-2007 10:36 AM #1
      Clearly the CEO for VW had a “special” brother or something and put him in charge of designing the ignition switch, the cup holders, and the heat shields on the exhaust manifold. As we all know he did an “excellent” job! I just tackled the ignition switch on my wife’s 98 Jetta, and I pieced together another DIY, but instead of pulling the whole column, I pull off the collar. I picked up the switch online from Autohaus AZ for $5, http://www.autohausaz.com/sear...witch.
      First things first, disconnect the negative terminal on the battery (have the keys handy in case the alarm goes off). Next, remove the airbag from the steering wheel by loosening the 2 Allen screws on the backside of the wheel, and then carefully pry the connector from the airbag itself.


      After that, remove the 2 plastic pieces that sit behind the steering wheel by removing the 2 Phillips head screws. Be careful when removing these pieces they are made out of very breakable plastic

      Remove the steering wheel, but mark the wheel first (makes installation much easier). I lock the ignition switch, but I don’t let the ignition lock be my opposing force while I remove the steering wheel nut.


      Before removing the steering wheel, disconnect the coil wire that sits on the back of the steering wheel. I found the easiest place to disconnect it is from the larger connector.

      Next remove the 3 little straight screws that hold on the switches, and remove all the wire connectors (including the ignition switch one). These all come out pretty easy so don’t force them, a little flat screw driver helps in removing the wire harness connectors.

      Remove the little shear bolt with a pair of small vise grips (I have never had one that doesn’t come off with minimal force).

      Now for the part that scares everyone away from this job…Pulling the collar off. Get a large pair of vise grips (I bought this pair at AutoZone for $10). Clamp the vise grips on the collar directly behind the lip as TIGHT AS YOU CAN! Position the vise grips at the 6 o’ clock position to provide counter leverage as you turn the wrench on the puller. Once the vise grips are securely fastened, use just a regular two arm puller and position it against the vise grips.

      When positioning the puller make sure it is as straight as possible, the point is to pull straight back, not off at an angle. As you turn the puller, apply counter pressure on the vise grips so you don’t snap off the ignition switch wheel lock. I just placed my foot on it and turned the wrench for the puller from standing outside the car. You can determine if you are pulling it off successful by counting the number of threads showing.

      With the collar removed UNLOCK the ignition switch lock with the key and the whole housing assembly pulls easily off.

      Remove the little Phillips head screw from the old switch that holds it in the assembly and install the new switch in its place. Notice the difference between the 2 switches.


      Installation is pretty much just the opposite of this procedure. Some things to keep in mind when installing everything are; make sure the ignition switch housing is securely in place on the column before continuing (It has to be unlocked in order to slide it all the way down). I lock the wheel once the shear bolt is put back in. When installing the collar, place the spring back on the column followed by the collar and then get a 5/8” spark plug socket and a hammer and “press” the collar back on. Try to get it is far as possible, but it doesn’t have to be perfect. When you put the steering wheel back on, as you tighten the nut it will finish seating the collar and spring. Reinstall the column switches and plug everything back into their respective connectors. I believe the plugs are dummy proof, so it you shouldn’t have to use any excessive force to get any wires plugged back in.
      Install the steering wheel, align your marks, if the marks are missing, unlock your ignition and straighten your wheels as close to centerline as possible (it probably won’t be perfect, but it will at least provide a static adjustment that is easily fixed once you start driving the car). When tightening down the steering wheel, keep tightening the wheel even after resistance is felt. Remember you are still seating the collar and spring…You can feel it when it is fully seated, then torque it down to whatever the proper torque is (nice and tight). Reinstall the 2 pieces of plastic that go behind the steering wheel, be careful they do fit together, so don’t force them. Once that is done, reinstall the airbag. Double check that you didn’t miss anything then connect the battery (again have the keys handy for the alarm).
      Road test the vehicle to make sure everything works right, if any adjustments need to be made to the steering wheel...DO THEM CORRECTLY.
      1. Determine proper adjustment (Meaning 45 degrees left, or whatever it maybe).
      2. DISCONNECT THE BATTERY
      3. Remove the airbag
      4. Remove the steering wheel (you do not need to pull the coil spring off, it lifts off just enough to turn and reposition the wheel)
      5. Then reverse it all to put it back on.
      Overall the procedure takes only about 45 minutes and is not that difficult. I was going to try and do the “removing the steering column method,” but I just can’t get down under the dash like that anymore. I hope this helps…If you own a VW, YOU WILL AT SOME POINT REPLACE THE IGNITION SWITCH!!!

      Ben

      Modified by badufay at 9:39 AM 9-1-2007


      Modified by badufay at 10:38 AM 9-1-2007


      Modified by badufay at 10:41 AM 9-1-2007


      Modified by badufay at 10:42 AM 9-1-2007


      Modified by badufay at 10:43 AM 9-1-2007


      Modified by badufay at 10:54 AM 9-1-2007

      Previous Cars:
      04 Jetta 2.0L, 98 Jetta 2.0L, 98 Golf 2.0L, 98 Cabrio 2.0L, 95 Golf 2.0L, 87 Golf GTI 16v 1.8L, 86 Cabriolet 1.6L, 80 Audi 4000 1.6L, 76 Audi Fox 1.6L, 76 VW Beetle 1.6L, 74 Audi Fox 1.5L, 69 VW Beetle 1.5L

    2. Senior Member Dan J Reed's Avatar
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      09-01-2007 11:47 AM #2
      Pics no work man.

    3. Member Mobius1's Avatar
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      09-01-2007 11:52 AM #3
      Dan, you might have some competition with the DIY's now
      Quote Originally Posted by mikey69
      NOW THATS SOME VORTEX FOR YOUR ASS

    4. Member badufay's Avatar
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      09-01-2007 11:55 AM #4
      pics back up, had to change host site. we will see how this one works now.

      Ben

      Previous Cars:
      04 Jetta 2.0L, 98 Jetta 2.0L, 98 Golf 2.0L, 98 Cabrio 2.0L, 95 Golf 2.0L, 87 Golf GTI 16v 1.8L, 86 Cabriolet 1.6L, 80 Audi 4000 1.6L, 76 Audi Fox 1.6L, 76 VW Beetle 1.6L, 74 Audi Fox 1.5L, 69 VW Beetle 1.5L

    5. Senior Member Dan J Reed's Avatar
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      09-01-2007 12:11 PM #5
      Well done.

      I still prefer the yank the center shaft out way myself.

      But I am glad you showed the "trick" with the vice grips and the gear puller!


    6. 09-02-2007 12:52 AM #6
      Thanks a lot badufay. Have you included this in the DIY section? A lot of people will find this helpful. I'm discovering a lot of play in my ign. switch so I'll be replacing mine soon.

    7. Senior Member Dan J Reed's Avatar
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      09-02-2007 12:53 AM #7
      Quote, originally posted by rayray086 »
      Have you included this in the DIY section?

      He can't its under "reconstruction".


    8. Member VertigoGTI's Avatar
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      09-02-2007 03:21 AM #8
      Nice write up. I'll be using it when I swap my switch here in a few weeks.

      BTW: Does anyone know what the dealership charges for the switch?

      Quote Originally Posted by Surf Green
      The real world is more ruthless than TCL, and sensitivity was never one of Darwin's strong points.

    9. Member badufay's Avatar
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      09-02-2007 09:12 AM #9
      Way back in the day when my old 95 Golf was still under warranty, I took it too them and it would of cost about $400. They also insisted that the lock cylinder was worn (BS) and needed replacement so that created about $150 in parts and then $250 in labor (I don't know how they figure that number). I would bet it would be somewhere around $250 now...Don't forget to figure in the automatic $50-$100 diagnosis fee as well. But i guess the only real way of getting an accurate answer is to ask them directly.

      Ben

      Previous Cars:
      04 Jetta 2.0L, 98 Jetta 2.0L, 98 Golf 2.0L, 98 Cabrio 2.0L, 95 Golf 2.0L, 87 Golf GTI 16v 1.8L, 86 Cabriolet 1.6L, 80 Audi 4000 1.6L, 76 Audi Fox 1.6L, 76 VW Beetle 1.6L, 74 Audi Fox 1.5L, 69 VW Beetle 1.5L

    10. Member Quickfry's Avatar
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      09-02-2007 09:23 AM #10
      I was quoted $60 CDN six months ago.

    11. Member badufay's Avatar
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      09-02-2007 09:33 AM #11
      wow, i got ripped off!!! Good thing all i had to pay for was the lock cylinder! There is no way a dealer down here in Texas would charge that little, hell their hourly rate is about $100...reason 684655968 why I hate living in Texas.

      Ben

      Previous Cars:
      04 Jetta 2.0L, 98 Jetta 2.0L, 98 Golf 2.0L, 98 Cabrio 2.0L, 95 Golf 2.0L, 87 Golf GTI 16v 1.8L, 86 Cabriolet 1.6L, 80 Audi 4000 1.6L, 76 Audi Fox 1.6L, 76 VW Beetle 1.6L, 74 Audi Fox 1.5L, 69 VW Beetle 1.5L

    12. 09-02-2007 10:41 AM #12
      Awesome...thank you!!!

    13. Member badufay's Avatar
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      09-02-2007 10:45 AM #13
      While we are at it, I will add this last ditch, tried everything else, but still can't get it off procedure. ***If all else fails, you can try cutting the sleeve off with a Dremel and order a new one. VW part # 191 419 514, it costs about $20, I would assume it isn’t normal stock, so you might need to plan ahead*** I would be extremely cautious in doing this being careful not to damage anything else, but just in case the other two methods fail, there is always plan "c".

      Ben

      Previous Cars:
      04 Jetta 2.0L, 98 Jetta 2.0L, 98 Golf 2.0L, 98 Cabrio 2.0L, 95 Golf 2.0L, 87 Golf GTI 16v 1.8L, 86 Cabriolet 1.6L, 80 Audi 4000 1.6L, 76 Audi Fox 1.6L, 76 VW Beetle 1.6L, 74 Audi Fox 1.5L, 69 VW Beetle 1.5L

    14. Banned PELLA's Avatar
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      09-02-2007 12:13 PM #14
      nice work

    15. Member VertigoGTI's Avatar
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      09-02-2007 08:32 PM #15
      $60CDN for the switch? Damn, I'm getting it off the site then. Might pick up a few extra for when the price rises due to 'demand.'
      Quote Originally Posted by Surf Green
      The real world is more ruthless than TCL, and sensitivity was never one of Darwin's strong points.

    16. Member cstjetta's Avatar
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      09-02-2007 09:22 PM #16
      its easier for the later cars, i had to do this to mine last week, if you dont have the puller just go to the U joints by the pedals and remove the bolt and pull it all out. took me 40 mins to do it by removing the bolt at the U joints to the steering shaft. and putting it all back together is easy to. and if you pay more than 5 bucks for it your paying way to much. and if you remove the drivers seat makes it easier to get under there.


      Modified by cstjetta at 2:23 AM 9-3-2007

    17. 09-07-2007 06:54 AM #17
      Thanks Man! Would have been even more of a pain in the A$$ without the pics. I love how they built the car around the ignition switch...haha!!

    18. Banned PrupleGTI's Avatar
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      09-07-2007 07:58 AM #18
      wait a sec

      you don't need to do all that


    19. Member tjm0852's Avatar
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      09-07-2007 08:45 AM #19
      Quote, originally posted by PrupleGTI »
      wait a sec

      you don't need to do all that

      Nope your right. But that is the "Right /Bentley" described way, to do it.

      I prefer to disconnect the steering knuckle, which is probably what your referring to as well.


    20. Banned PrupleGTI's Avatar
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      09-07-2007 08:52 AM #20
      Quote, originally posted by tjm0852 »

      Nope your right. But that is the "Right /Bentley" described way, to do it.

      I prefer to disconnect the steering knuckle, which is probably what your referring to as well.

      Not even

      Remove the sheer nut put a breaker bar in there twist the unit pop out the plastic part put in the new one Done


    21. Member badufay's Avatar
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      09-07-2007 09:25 PM #21
      ??? snap what off of what?

      Previous Cars:
      04 Jetta 2.0L, 98 Jetta 2.0L, 98 Golf 2.0L, 98 Cabrio 2.0L, 95 Golf 2.0L, 87 Golf GTI 16v 1.8L, 86 Cabriolet 1.6L, 80 Audi 4000 1.6L, 76 Audi Fox 1.6L, 76 VW Beetle 1.6L, 74 Audi Fox 1.5L, 69 VW Beetle 1.5L

    22. 09-24-2007 10:53 PM #22
      Hello, I wanted to say thanks a million... brilliant proceedure, great pictures, great explanation. You really saved me a lot of money and a big headache. Jeff

    23. 09-24-2007 11:54 PM #23
      taking out the steering colum is easier i think

    24. 09-25-2007 12:02 AM #24
      Quote, originally posted by Dan J Reed »
      Well done.

      I still prefer the yank the center shaft out way myself.

      But I am glad you showed the "trick" with the vice grips and the gear puller!


      dude it's way easier to pull the whole column and reach in from behind

    25. Member vee_rub's Avatar
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      09-25-2007 12:08 AM #25
      Quote, originally posted by badufay »
      ??? snap what off of what?


      x2 wtf


      taking out the steering column is sooooo much easier and if you have to take out your driver seat to get to your pedal area you are a fat ass. good write up though..
      for kicks i would like to add i ordered 2 ign, swiches from paps parts and the first one was broken out of the box and the other lasted 2 weeks so i would go with the better quality switches. last one i ordered is from gap and it has lasted a long time opposed to all the others i have done. i have done this job about 6 times in my car


    26. 09-25-2007 02:36 AM #26
      Quote, originally posted by badufay »
      wow, i got ripped off!!! Good thing all i had to pay for was the lock cylinder! There is no way a dealer down here in Texas would charge that little, hell their hourly rate is about $100...reason 684655968 why I hate living in Texas.

      Ben


      Thats what you get for living in Texas, where everything is bigger, haha

    27. Member kingbingy's Avatar
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      11-20-2007 12:07 PM #27
      Sweet I am changing the locks on my mk3 Golf and this is perfect. Granted if it was just the ignition, removing the entire column may be easier. But I have to remove the entire assy. from the column, which that they don't go over.

    28. Member vwgermankid's Avatar
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      11-20-2007 12:41 PM #28
      Quote, originally posted by badufay »
      wow, i got ripped off!!! Good thing all i had to pay for was the lock cylinder! There is no way a dealer down here in Texas would charge that little, hell their hourly rate is about $100...reason 684655968 why I hate living in Texas.

      Ben

      lol, I heard the Texan economy is broken compared to other states, even though ya'll (he he) have them oil fields...

      But Very Nice DIY, might actually do my own Ignition Switch with this

      for you Sir.


      Modified by vwgermankid at 9:42 AM 11-20-2007


    29. Member renngolf's Avatar
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      11-20-2007 01:06 PM #29
      Both ways work and comparing the two its the same amount of work either way. If you dont have a puller on hand slide the column out but if you dont want to be lying on the floor of the car on your back trying to re-align and press the splines in for a half hour just pull the steering wheel.

      Quote Originally Posted by barry2952 View Post
      So, not recommended for '50s engines?
      Quote Originally Posted by KahviVW View Post
      I think they require fresh oil squeezed from a live dinosaur. It's the only way.

    30. 05-09-2008 02:17 PM #30
      Thanks soo much for this DIY! I prefered it to removing the column due to the tight working space down there. Got it done in 45 min. Solved ALL my problems to
      Cheers!

    31. Member 2pt. slo's Avatar
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      05-09-2008 02:38 PM #31
      only takes like 10 mins tops to do it from pulling it though...ive done it like 20 times now to different cars so its a breeze. Good alternate DIY none the less.

    32. Member
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      05-09-2008 02:46 PM #32
      when you replace an ignition switch do you need a new key? or do you do something to it so you can keep using your current key?

    33. Member silvr rcr's Avatar
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      06 jetta tdi, kinda low
      05-09-2008 02:51 PM #33
      no, you use the same lock cylinder

    34. Member oxygen454's Avatar
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      05-13-2008 11:20 PM #34
      Is there a DIY on removing the steering column? I cant get mine off, also dont have the proper puller.
      1995 golf. 1.8L auto

    35. 05-27-2009 09:06 PM #35
      hey i was wondering how you get the grey housing thing off, im doing mine now and i cant get my ignition switch off while this houseing beast is on the car.

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