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    VWVortex


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    Thread: Turn Signal Switch Cleaning

    1. Junior Member shawkur16v's Avatar
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      09-30-2012 07:20 PM #1
      Having issues with my turn signals so I took off the switch and its pretty grimy. Does anyone know how to take it apart and clean it?

    2. Member polov8's Avatar
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      10-01-2012 03:02 AM #2
      Undo the center nut and remove the steering wheel.

      Then remove the 2 screws holding the steering column cowling, and carefully unclip and remove that. If yours has all it's tabs and clips un broken, count yourself lucky!

      Then there are 3 machine screws running parallel to the column that hold the turn signal and wiper stalks to the ign switch housing.

      Once undone, you can pull away and remove the various plugs off the back and take off both stalks as one unit.

      The 2 stalks are clipped together, but are easily separated, there's just 1 clip, easily identified.

    3. Member sciroccohal's Avatar
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      10-01-2012 12:07 PM #3
      Clean the reed switches with fine emery cloth...do not use nasty solvents like carb or brake cleaner.
      Blow out with air.
      The feeling of immortality extends right up until the moment of impact.
      I cannot teach you how to be a Zen mechanic, grasshopper.
      The VW Scirocco, the worlds fastest ECONOMY car.

    4. Member first_rocc's Avatar
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      10-01-2012 12:14 PM #4
      I can see that those stalk switches are pretty cheap (less than $10-$15) and available online for an '88. I would just get a new one. Check the connectors closely for bare wires when you disassemble it.

    5. Junior Member shawkur16v's Avatar
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      10-01-2012 03:48 PM #5
      Quote Originally Posted by polov8 View Post
      Undo the center nut and remove the steering wheel.

      Then remove the 2 screws holding the steering column cowling, and carefully unclip and remove that. If yours has all it's tabs and clips un broken, count yourself lucky!

      Then there are 3 machine screws running parallel to the column that hold the turn signal and wiper stalks to the ign switch housing.

      Once undone, you can pull away and remove the various plugs off the back and take off both stalks as one unit.

      The 2 stalks are clipped together, but are easily separated, there's just 1 clip, easily identified.
      I actually have it off already. I want to know if it can be disassembled further.

      Quote Originally Posted by sciroccohal View Post
      Clean the reed switches with fine emery cloth...
      Blow out with air.
      What are the reeds?

    6. Member sciroccohal's Avatar
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      10-02-2012 10:26 AM #6
      They look like little leafs with anvils on them...just like points in a distributor.

      simple observation would tell you what the switches look like.
      The feeling of immortality extends right up until the moment of impact.
      I cannot teach you how to be a Zen mechanic, grasshopper.
      The VW Scirocco, the worlds fastest ECONOMY car.

    7. Junior Member shawkur16v's Avatar
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      10-04-2012 12:29 AM #7
      So I cleaned all the built up gunk off all of the contact points with rubbing alcohol and dried it with air. Then I cleaned all the plastic on the outside. Unfortunately I am still having the same problem so I will have to buy a new switch from GAP.

    8. Member cuppie's Avatar
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      10-04-2012 10:09 PM #8
      Before you do that....
      What, exactly, is the issue with the car?

      Most turn signal problems in 'older' VWs are caused by something that's not the turn signal switch (those are quite robust.)
      Hazard switches, for example, are a common failure point - and, will usually kill the turn signals when they crap out.
      - Cup
      '88 Scirocco 16v, 'tastefully' modified.
      Click here for my Cincy pics
      things currently broken (Scirocco): 5
      things currently broken (QSW): 5!!

    9. Junior Member shawkur16v's Avatar
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      10-04-2012 11:11 PM #9
      Quote Originally Posted by cuppie View Post
      Before you do that....
      What, exactly, is the issue with the car?

      Most turn signal problems in 'older' VWs are caused by something that's not the turn signal switch (those are quite robust.)
      Hazard switches, for example, are a common failure point - and, will usually kill the turn signals when they crap out.
      The reason I suspect the turn signal switch is because the hazards work perfectly fine. However when I try to use my signals the left one doesn't work when the switch is pressed all the way down, instead I have to hold it down just until it clicks on. The right side works when pressed all the way down except they blink fast. It sounds like a bulb problem but it isn't. I bought new bulbs for the right side but it didn't fix it so I switched the left side to the right side and had the same problem. All four bulbs come on except the right side blinks fast. I have also replaced the relay several times with no fix.

    10. Member cuppie's Avatar
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      10-04-2012 11:34 PM #10
      Okay, that's souding like your turn signal switch is definitely being wonky (and, may be mechanically broken inside.)
      Like others said, new one's only about $15 (so long as you don't have cruise control.)

      Check your grounds on the right-side lights, too. Poor ground = "low load" at the flasher relay = signals blink fast.

      (and, an FYI: nearly always, when the hazard switch craps out, the hazards still work, even though the turn signals are flaky-to-dead. It's rather bizzare how VW wired the turn signals thru the hazard switch....)
      - Cup
      '88 Scirocco 16v, 'tastefully' modified.
      Click here for my Cincy pics
      things currently broken (Scirocco): 5
      things currently broken (QSW): 5!!

    11. Junior Member shawkur16v's Avatar
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      10-05-2012 12:24 AM #11
      Since I have a spare hazard switch I will pop that in and see if anything changes. If not then I guess I will be buying a new switch. Thankfully I don't have cruise control, although that would be nice to have.

    12. Member sciroccohal's Avatar
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      10-05-2012 11:10 AM #12
      Quote Originally Posted by cuppie View Post
      Okay, that's souding like your turn signal switch is definitely being wonky (and, may be mechanically broken inside.)
      Like others said, new one's only about $15 (so long as you don't have cruise control.)

      Check your grounds on the right-side lights, too. Poor ground = "low load" at the flasher relay = signals blink fast.

      (and, an FYI: nearly always, when the hazard switch craps out, the hazards still work, even though the turn signals are flaky-to-dead. It's rather bizzare how VW wired the turn signals thru the hazard switch....)
      Since you've had them apart and see nothing apparently wrong....going after all the grounds is the next step.
      The feeling of immortality extends right up until the moment of impact.
      I cannot teach you how to be a Zen mechanic, grasshopper.
      The VW Scirocco, the worlds fastest ECONOMY car.

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