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Popular Content

Showing content with the highest reputation since 09/18/2019 in Tutorials

  1. 1 point
    First off - thanks to everyone who has been down this road before me for providing tips and suggestions and troubleshooting regarding this common problem. I have been dealing with a key that would stay all the way to the right upon starting meaning that the A/C, heated seats and some other items would not function. My solution had been to simply start the car and then just move the key back one notch to the left and everything worked fine. So if others have that issue, my original solution will work but obviously the problem remains and at some point you may end up stranded if the ignition switch completely fails. I stumbled upon some of the other threads and found that this needed fixing and I opted to replace just the switch as opposed to upgrading to the new complete unit that Porsche has moved to. This procedure is not new to the board, but I thought a step by step with pictures may be useful to those looking for an inexpensive solution. It cost me $12.11 including tax. If your ignition mechanism has been changed to the newer revised unit the ignition switch is a different part number but I assume the steps would be the same. The part for just the switch - no longer available through Porsche since they are only selling the entire $150 unit - is 4A0905849B. The switch alone is available mail order through Pelican for $10, Autohausaz.com was +/- $8.75, Ebay has them all over the map from $15-30. All of these options will work but require shipping charges and delivery time. I was hoping for a local option since I had the time to do it today. Here is what I found in Houston - a local Audi dealer had one in stock for $35, while VW had to order it (for more than $35 believe it or not). Doing a search online at parts stores using my Porsche got me nowhere so I opted to use an older Audi - in my case a 1997 Audi A8 since the part is the same. I found Autozone had one for >$40, OReilly came up blank but I did not call to check, a specialty imports place had one for $27 and then I found it in stock at NAPA for $11.19 + tax. Since NAPA seems to have stores all over the place I suggest looking there first if you don't feel like mail order. The complete part number at NAPA was ATM 4A0905849B using the 1997 Audi A8 as the vehicle. Here is a picture of the NAPA part (left) alongside the original part which I removed from my 996 cab - note the AUDI rings on the old part. Equipment needed: Small flat screwdriver - eyeglass or electronics size Philips screwdriver Torx driver 10mm wrench rubber pry tool Cold beer to celebrate 1) Disconnect the battery - I just undid the negative with a 10mm wrench 2) OPTIONAL but makes the job easier than the shop manual in my opinion. Remove the side air vent by pulling the headlight switch towards you and inserting a small blade screwdriver up from the six o'clock position. You should notice a spring like resistance which will release the knob and allow it to pull towards you. Here is a picture of the back of the knob showing the release mechanism Once the knob is off remove the three torx screws – one in the headlight control recess and two on the side After the screws are out take a rubber pry tool (or be careful with a flat screwdriver) and remove the vent housing - it will pull towards you with a little effort but not much. Once off I pulled it out far enough to gain access but left the headlight control connected because I was lazy and saw no need to unhook it. I forgot to take a picture of this part but it should be self explanatory. You will now see a philips screw directly in the back of the air vent - remove. 3) Crawl under the dash and remove the center piece (A) of the air vent - there is not much room and you will not miss it. The piece can be nudged towards the side to release on one end and then the other. Since you removed the screw from above you should be able to remove the middle and side piece now out the bottom. 4) Unplug switch by pulling directly off the back - do not unhook the purple tabs just pull the entire unit back. Make sure to pull this off BEFORE unscrewing and removing the switch as the screws holding the switch in make this much easier than trying to get a hand in there - believe me I jumped ahead and then resorted to screwing it back in. 5) Unscrew two set screws - one on the bottom on one on the opposite side. The screws are coated with red paint that may need to be chipped through with your screwdriver before you can get the screw to grab. I unscrewed the bottom screw while under the dash and then from the seat I reached under and could view the top screw through the side vent area and unscrewed it. Do not remove the screws just undo them far enough to remove the ignition switch. Bottom screw noted in this picture Top screw as viewed from side vent opening - this can also be done from underneath but the small space and clutch pedal against my head led me to look for easier access 6) Now that the screws are loose you should be able to pull the ignition switch out and replace it with the new one. Screw in the set screws, hook the harness back to it and get ready for a cold beer - not quite but almost 7) Slide out from under the foot well, hook up the battery and see if all is well. You may as well check before reattaching the rest. If the car starts as it should you will notice a nice smooth ignition with the slight spring back to the left just after ignition. Hook up the air vents, screw everything back together and push the headlight knob back in place 8) Crack open a cold beer and smile - you just saved a lot of money. This is one of the simplest "repair" DIY out there - it took me probably less than 20 minutes including removing the side vent and I took my time since I had never done it before. If I need to replace it again - which is likely - it will be even quicker. You can always replace the entire ignition module with the new and improved unit at around $150 I think - and alot more effort - but for $12 and 20 minutes I am hoping I can get some decent life out of this switch and then just replace it again in a few years if I need to. Like I said before - this is not a new DIY but I am hopeful that these pictures will be helpful. Thanks again to all of those who provided the prior posts.
  2. 1 point
    While looking for a good garage door opening solution for my MY01 996 C4, I came across some posts referring to the Gentex auto-dimming mirror with Homelink. Some posts suggested that there was a VW/Audi adapter that would allow this universal fit mirror to be installed on a 996 windshield. Other posts suggested that it was easy to tap into the existing dome light and sunroof switch wiring. So I decided to give it a go. It was a relatively easy install, and one of my best mods yet. Step 1: I purchased the Gentex GENK40A Auto-Dimming Mirror with Homelink on Amazon (American Security Company) for $249. My kit came with a VW/Audi adapter and a free wire cover. Here is the mirror, the piece of the wiring harness that I used (it came with a full, route to fuse box wiring), and the wedge adapter. Here is a close-up of the adapter. Here is the wire cover. Step 2: Remove the old school mirror by rotating the base 90 degrees counter-clockwise. I put masking tape around the base and used channel locks and a firm grip to rotate the base 45 degrees. I continued rotating the base by hand another 45 degrees until it released. Be careful as you don’t want to break the windshield -- been there, done that on a wiper blade DIY, oops! Step 3: Slide the adapter onto the windshield button cam and secure with hex key set screw. Note that my adapter did not fit out of the box. I used a small file to remove material around the inside of the adaptor until it fit snugly around the button cam. Since the adapter is aluminum, this was easy work for a steel file. I also primed and painted my adapter matte black to make it more inconspicuous. Step 4: Plug the wiring harness into the rear of the mirror, and remove the large red harness at the other end. The color coding for the wires is as follows: (1) Red = switched power; (2) Yellow = un-switched power; (3) Black = ground; and (4) the two Green wires are not used for this mirror (they are used for other Gentex mirrors with temperature displays). Step 5: Mark the outer wire casing so that you can split it for purposes of routing the wires through the mirror base. Don’t forget to leave some slack for mirror adjustment. Step 6: Slide the mirror base over the adaptor. Tighten the mirror base set screw with a T20 Torx driver. Step 7: Now it’s time to remove the dome light / sunroof switch housing. First, remove the two black alien eyes with a plastic trim tool. Next, remove the two screws underneath the alien eyes. Then, carefully pull the end closest to the sunroof away from the headliner until the rear tabs release. To fully release the housing push it towards the windshield so the front tabs release from the mounting edge. You’ll understand when you are in there. Step 8: Identify the existing wires that you need to tap into. After testing with a test light, I used the following wires: (1) the Red/Green wire with black spots going to the sunroof switch for switched power; (2) the Red/Black wire going to the dome light circuit board for un-switched power; and the Brown wire going to the dome light circuit board for ground. Step 9: Install the wire cover by clipping it into the top of the mirror base, and route the wires from the mirror through the cover and into the dome light housing. Note the wire cover that came with my kit was way too long, so I cut it down to size. I also made a channel out of mine to cover the wire on the inside. The inside cover was cut a little shorter than the outside piece to make it easy to route the wires. The dome housing will fit over the wire cover, so thankfully there is no need to cut a whole in the housing. To make the install look cleaner from the outside, I intend to go back and use a thin strip of black film on the inside of the windshield to better hide the wire cover from the outside. You might want to try this now. Step 10: Now it’s time to make the connections. I used 22-18 gauge splice tap connectors. The connections are as follows: (1) Red to Red/Green with black spots; (2) Yellow to Red/Black; and (3) Black to Brown. I wrapped up the unused green wires with electric tape. Step 11: Reinstall the dome light / sunroof switch housing by: (1) pulling the front tabs onto the mounting edge; (2) snapping the rear tabs back into the headliner (you may need to move the wires around a bit to get a good fit); (3) replacing the screws under the alien eyes; and (4) replacing the alien eyes. Step 12: Test the install. The Homelink buttons should work when the ignition is off. Press each and you should see a red light come on. With the ignition off, the anti-dimming feature should be off. If you press the 1 button, nothing should happen. With the ignition on, you should see a green light indicating that the anti-dimming feature is on. You may need to press the 1 button the first time. It should go on and off with the ignition after that. You can verify that it is working by covering the sensor on the back of the mirror and shining a light on the sensor on the front of the mirror. I found that the mirror works really well in real life conditions. Step 13: Program the Homelink buttons with the included instructions. Step 14: Congratulations, you are done.
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