Miata Steering Wheel
by Lester Seal ( firstname.lastname@example.org )
An air bag is an explosive device, and
should be given the respect of one.
These directions are for information only.
Removal of the steering wheel involves working with the airbag.
This procedure should only be performed by a qualified mechanic.
The author, Miata.net, Mazda, the Miata Club of America, and
Eunos Communications are not responsible for any damage or injury
caused by use of these procedures.
- Phillips screw driver
- 1/4 inch drive ratchet, extension and
- 1/2 inch drive ratchet or breaker bar
- short extension (or deep socket) and
- 10mm box wrench
- Magic marker.
- Remove the negative cable from the
battery (10mm wrench).
- Remove the panel under the steering
wheel (2 phillips screws on the bottom edge).
- Disconnect the clock spring connectors
(large blue and orange connector). First the orange
connector has to be disconnected (there is a clip on the
side), then the blue connector is disconnected (the clip
is in the middle and is covered by the orange connector
- Put key into ignition switch and
unlock steering column so the steering wheel can turn. Locate
and remove the 4, 10mm nuts on the back side of the
steering wheel (these nuts hold the air bag to the
steering wheel). Lift the air bag off the wheel. You will
notice it has a cord attached between it and the wheel,
loosed the cord from the steering wheel and remove. Pull
the orange and blue connector from the clip in the wheel
and disconnect (the same way as the clock spring
connector). Put air bag to one side.
Caution: When carrying a live air bag
module, make sure the trim cover is pointed away from
your body to prevent personal injury in the event of an
accidental deployment. When placing a live air bag module
on any surface, always face the trim cover upward to
reduce the motion of the module if it is accidentally
- Center steering wheel, and mark the
stud of the shaft (inside of the nut) with the magic marker
so you know where the straight ahead position is when the
wheel is removed (I place a mark from the dimple in the
center of the shaft, vertically to the edge of the shaft).
Remove the 21mm nut. Remove the wheel (a rocking motion
with one hand opposite the other on the wheel, pulling
toward you at the same time should get it loose). Note
the position of the clock spring, there is 2 pointer
protrusions, they fit into the steering wheel, and should
be in a vertical up and down position. There is also a marker
at the 12 o'clock position. Try not to move the clock
spring around or it will have to be reset (centered). The
directions for centering the clock spring are located on
- Now it is just a matter of installing
the new wheel, being sure the clock spring protrusions
line up with the holes in the wheel, and the wheel is
centered with your mark on the shaft. The torque
specification is 29-36 ft-lbs. Reverse the removal
directions for installation. Do not forget to attach the
cord on the air bag to the steering wheel.
Authors notes: Working for
a dealership, I have had to remove many air bags from cars. The
first time was some what scary, but after a few times I came to
realize, the way the wiring is designed with the special
connectors, it becomes a fool proof procedure. Many air bags get
stolen from cars with no apparent discharges, and the thieves do
not take the precaution of disconnecting the battery. When you
get the air bag out, put it down somewhere safe, and don't play
with it. I have not actually replaced a Moss wooden wheel yet, if
there are any pertinent facts that need revising please E-Mail me