|This will hopefully aid those that experience the broken blinker switch problem. Enough people have had this problem that the wiki should be blessed with a solution.|
What typically happens is that a plastic tab inside of the switch breaks. I have seen 3 switches with the break in the exact same place. For some reason, the switch likes to break when you signal left, so you are stuck with a left signal thats constantly on. When this initially happens, the first thing you need to do is take the blinker fuse out from the passenger compartment fuse box (so you don't look like an idiot with his signal always on.) You now have two options
Option 1: Replace the whole switch. Make sure you get the right one for your year, as there are at least 2 confirmed different switches. The connectors inside the switches are completely different, so splicing between the two switches isn't a convenient option. Disconnect the battery, and then take off the plastic trim around the steering wheel column. (screws are under the steering column.) You do NOT need to take the steering wheel off. The switch is held on by 3 or 4 screws, it's an easy plug and play.
Option 2: Fix the switch. This is the real reason behind this wiki, as buying a switch from the dealer is $$$, buying it from someone online may give you the wrong switch/another broken switch (happened to me and I requested for a 1999 switch only!), and junkyards are a hit and miss. Buying another switch also means that your new switch may break someday exactly like you're old one. It's better just to make it stronger...
What you will need:
-thick paper clip, and wire clippers
-drill with 1/16th bit
-20 minutes and precision.
We are going to make like an orthopedic surgeon and put a pin in the broken bone. Comprende?
Take out the switch as stated above, and then disassemble the housing (I think there are 4 screws.) Try to pull it apart slowly and over a clean desk, so no small parts will fall out or at least make it easier to find if they do. You'll find the upper corner of the inner part the wand has a broken piece (red circle).
The tab may be still in the white rectangular piece of plastic that actually makes electrical contact for the switch. Find it and don't lose it.
At the top of the picture, is the white rectangular piece I'm referring to. Look inside there to find the tab.
And here is the piece removed, with the broken plastic tab
This is where you need to be precise - so use your skills and don't mess this up. Drill a 1/16" hole into the corner of the wand that the tab broke from. Try to be parallel with the orientation of the tab (or just see the pic and do that.)
Now drill a hole right through the center of the tab. It's small so hold the tab in a wrench or something else, and center it right down the middle. If your skills are good you will get this:
Now it's time to put in your "pin." Cut the paperclip with the wire clippers to approximately the length of the tab plus the length of the corner of the wand assembly. Squirt some superglue through the wand assembly hole and QUICKLY thread the pin through that hole, and then place the tab over the part of the paper clip that sticks out, where the tab should be located. Put a little more superglue around the periphery, and let it dry. If there is any extra pin sticking out either side past the pin or the corner, cut them or grind them down, as they will cause the switch to bind when you reassemble it. Here's the final pic:
Reassemble your switch, put on the plastic housing, and replace your fuse. Do it like I did, and your blinker tab is now stronger than a stock one, so it should never break again.
FYI, here is a 1999 switch connector:
And the other earlier version:
Written by ez
Last modified on 2007-08-18 09:53:16