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questions on removing/replacing steering wheel with airbag

Discussion in 'General Explorations!!' started by PUR PONY, January 2, 2003.

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    1. PUR PONY

      PUR PONY Well-Known Member

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      I would like to swap my 96 limited steering wheel with a 98 or newer style steering wheel..... is this possible?? I dont see why not.

      How do i remve the steering wheel without bothering the airbag??



      I also want to replace the black steering wheel on my 96 XLT with a saddle eddie bauer wheel.....

      thanks
       
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    3. AdamsGuitar

      AdamsGuitar Elite Explorer

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      By bothering, if you mean not moving it, then it isn't possible. If you mean without setting it off in your face, that's not too hard :D

      To remove the 'bag, remove the two screws that sit on either side of the wheel. This should allow you to lift the airbag assembly out of the wheel and disconnect the harness. Set the airbag outside the vehicle on a stable surface with it sitting on the bottom if possible (to maintaint the same position as in the vehicle), or on its back. Don't know if that really matters, but it's what I've always done just to be safe.

      Once you do that, you'll need to remove the screws that hold in your cruise buttons. Disconnect them and set them aside.

      Now remove the two bolts on either side of the center steering bolt.

      Now for the fun part! I have never seen a steering wheel puller that works for these wheels without jury rigging, but I have figured out a way to use the standard screw in type:

      Go to your local hardware store and buy two nuts and two thick, large washers that will fit onto any of the steering wheel puller bolts that come with it. Screw them onto two of the bolts until the bolt is just coming out of the nut, then put the puller in place on the steering bolt and slip the bolts with the nut and washer on them into place on the upper and lower sides of the wheel. Hold them in place until you get the puller tight, then screw it in as your normally would to remove the wheel.

      I hope those instructions make sense. I know how to do it, so of course it makes sense to me, but that is no guarantee for anyone else ;)
       
    4. '96explorereddiebauer

      '96explorereddiebauer Well-Known Member

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      Adam's dead on. But one very very important thing he forgot to mention. It is to unplug the battery and don't do anything for about 5 minutes so the electricity in the airbag backup module is depleted.
       
    5. PUR PONY

      PUR PONY Well-Known Member

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      thanks for all the info guys... makes perfect sence....

      so this means in order to switch to a 98+ steering wheel(the 2 spoke style with the buttons for radio, a/c, etc... i am going to need that style airbag also......

      or are all the airbags the same and the " center " steering wheel cover comes off the airbag.....
       
    6. '96explorereddiebauer

      '96explorereddiebauer Well-Known Member

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      You're getting the newer ones, right?? One with audio and climate controls? If so, yes, you'll need a new airbag also, along with connectors for the audio and climate controls. If you're just replacing the spokes, don't worry about the new one.
       
    7. PUR PONY

      PUR PONY Well-Known Member

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      yes- it would be the new style with the radio and a/c controls.... I dont really care if the A/C controls worked and i dont think the radio ones would since i have any aftermarket deck....

      I just want the new style.... it will allow for better viewing of my aftermarket gauges and is more comfortable to drive ..... thats the reason for swapping...
       
    8. AdamsGuitar

      AdamsGuitar Elite Explorer

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      As for comfort, try a late model ranger wheel. My friend's 99 Ranger XLT has a wheel that's a lot thicker, but looks like it would fit where mine is.
       
    9. PUR PONY

      PUR PONY Well-Known Member

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      i would but its black correct?? my truck is a limited and has the matching interior(grey) wheel
       

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