How To Replace Airbag Clock Spring

Discussion in 'Tech Articles, How-To's & Write Ups' started by Orange 94, Feb 23, 2013.

  1. Orange 94

    Orange 94 Moderator Staff SN95 Supporter

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    WARNING: Neither I nor this website is responsible for damages or injuries.

    Replace the clock spring at your own risk.

    The airbag has the potential to explode causing serious injuries or possibly death. Use extreme caution. Do not have the back of the airbag facing you, always have the front of the airbag facing forward.

    If you do not feel 100% comfortable/safe, seek a professional!





    How to know if you need to replace airbag clock spring:

    There will be an airbag code on the dash. When the vehicle is turned on the airbag icon on the dash will flash in a sequence creating a code. Look up the code and if it decodes as driver side airbag high resistance, it is likely the clock spring. My code was code 32.

    Here is a useful link to diagnose airbag codes
    http://www.veryuseful.com/mustang/tech/airBag/airBag95.html

    Tools Needed:

    T50 torx
    8mm socket
    Steering wheel puller (or any way to pull the wheel off)
    Small flat screw driver
    Philips screw driver
    Small straight pick

    Parts Needed:

    Airbag clock spring (buy new)


    Have the steering wheel perfectly straight. As seen in this “how to” I neglected that instruction. However it doesn’t really matter, it’s just to make the reassembly easier.

    Directions:

    1. Disconnect the battery. Leave disconnected for a period of time to drain the charge in the airbag circuit. Haynes Manual recommends 3 minutes, I would recommend as long as possible, maybe overnight.
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    2. Remove the 2 plastic inserts on the side of the steering wheel

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    3. Remove the 2 bolts (8mm) under the plastic inserts.

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    4. Airbag will remove from steering wheel. Try to always have the airbag facing forward (if airbag does explode, the softer side will be facing you and project away from you, rather than the hard side being projected towards you).

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    5. Remove metal clip on airbag plug.

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    6. Push tab in back of airbag plug. Disconnect plug.

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    7. Remove airbag. Lay airbag face up (if airbag explodes the softer side will be facing up and will push downwards, rather than the hard side facing up exploding upwards creating a projectile).

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    8. Push tab on cruise control plug. Disconnect plug.

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    9. Remove steering wheel. Remove the center bolt and then use a steering wheel puller (or any other technique) to remove the wheel.

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    10. Insert key into ignition. Turn to the on/running position. Using a small straight pick or similar tool to poke the pin and remove the ignition tumbler.

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    11. Remove the under-dash panels, plastic and metal. The plastic panel is held in by clips. Underneath the plastic panel there is a metal panel held in by a few bolts.

    12. Remove the screws holding the steering column paneling on. Screws are located on the bottom. There are 3 screws on the right side and 1 on the left side. Remove the panels. (step 11 needs to be completed, unlike the picture bellow)

    [​IMG]
     
  2. Orange 94

    Orange 94 Moderator Staff SN95 Supporter

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    13. Unplug the 2 plugs from the clock spring under the dash.

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    14. Slide off the tumbler contact from where the ignition tumbler was.

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    15. To remove the clock spring, simply pop the clips on the back holding it in place. Take note of the position of the clock spring.

    [​IMG]


    16. Put on new clock spring on the same way as the old one was. If the steering wheel was perfectly straight the little arrow should face upwards. Make sure the clock spring is correctly centred. My clock spring came with a lock (yellow tab in picture) to keep in centred, if yours does happen to move out of the center position there is direction how to re-center on the actual clock spring.

    [​IMG]
    [​IMG]


    Reassemble:

    Basically follow directions in reverse. I won’t go through complete process of reassembly to reduce the size of this “how to”.

    When reconnecting battery, take caution of the airbag because it could potentially explode. Also when turning the ignition to the ON position do not have any part of your body in front of the airbag, it could potentially explode here as well.


    Code:

    The clock spring code should now be gone, but there will be a new code that appears in its place.

    This site provides a very good description of how to clear the code. http://www.veryuseful.com/mustang/tech/airBag/airBag95.html#ERROR_CODES

    Scroll about ¾ of the way down the page until you see the title
    “Diagnostic Trouble Code Clearing”

    “Example: Due to corrosion, high resistance develops on the driver side air bag circuit. The air bag diagnostic monitor stores a diagnostic trouble code 32 in NVRAM. Upon each cycle of the ignition switch, the air bag diagnostic monitor checks the resistance of the driver air bag circuit.

    l If the resistance is still high, the air bag diagnostic monitor causes the air bag indicator to flash out a DTC 32.
    l If the resistance falls within the normal range due to service or an intermittent condition, the air bag diagnostic monitor causes DTC 72 to be flashed on the air bag indicator.

    Once a fault has been serviced, the associated diagnostic trouble code may be cleared from NVRAM. Only diagnostic trouble codes that the air bag diagnostic monitor sees as repaired or intermittent may be cleared (diagnostic trouble codes 52 and above). In no circumstances can hard fault conditions (diagnostic trouble codes 45 and below) be cleared.
    1. Follow the diagnostic procedures as outlined to service the fault condition flashing on the air bag indicator.
    2. Cycle the ignition switch to OFF and then to RUN.
    3. Observe air bag indicator prove-out (six ± two seconds) followed by diagnostic trouble code (52-85) flashing completely one time.
    4. Locate the Diagnostic "Trouble Code Clear" Connector located underneath the glove compartment (06010) containing Circuits 631 (T/R) and 57 (BK).

    5. Use a jumper wire to short Circuit 631 (T/R) to Circuit 57 (BK) or to another good ground. This short must be made after the diagnostic trouble code flashes completely one time, but before the warning light stays on continuously.
    6. Hold short until air bag diagnostic monitor tone sounds (approximately five seconds).
    7. Release short on Circuit 631 (T/R) to Circuit 57 (BK). This short must be released within 25 seconds after the diagnostic monitor tone sounds.
    Diagnostic trouble code is now cleared from NVRAM. Next highest priority diagnostic trouble code stored in NVRAM (if one exists) will begin flashing.
    [FONT=&amp]Diagnostic Trouble Code Retrieval”[/FONT]
     
  3. rz5.0

    rz5.0 Legend

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    I did this a while back.. Good write up.
     
  4. ttocs

    ttocs Post Whore

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    you can get the wheel off with out the puller. Take the nut off in the middle and then with an open palm hit the top/bottom of the wheel and then give a light pull and it should come off.
     
  5. rz5.0

    rz5.0 Legend

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    I took mine a lil different. Put my knees on the bottom part of the steering wheel pushed out. Tap the top part out then wiggle a lil bit and fell off.
     
  6. Orange 94

    Orange 94 Moderator Staff SN95 Supporter

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    Yes, there is multiple ways of pulling the steering wheel off. I will fix it to include that.
     
  7. Orange 94

    Orange 94 Moderator Staff SN95 Supporter

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    Also just as a suggestion, if you pull the steering wheel without a puller please have the bolt partial threaded in. You won't be very happy when you smack yourself in the face after pulling it off... :p
     
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  8. belber095

    belber095 Legend

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    I gave myself a black eye doing that in my buddy's landrover lol. ^listen to the man!
     
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