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2000+ R&R Trans change lever/turn, headlight switch,etc

Author: bubba
Date: Sat Nov 24, 2007 11:17 pm

This group of photos and instructions should allow you to easily remove and/or replace the automatic transmission change control lever assembly.

If you are here it is probably because either you cannot remove the ignition key due to a failed Park position switch or are not able to move the shift lever out of Park due to a faulty shift lock solenoid. Both the Park switch and the shift lock solenoid are attached to the entire change control lever and are not available from Mazda as separate parts to replace if they have failed.

To start with we need to open up the hood and disconnect the negative battery cable. We wll be removing the drivers air bag in the steering wheel so we need to depower the system to prevent accidental deployment of the air bag. The battery will be left disconnected during this entire procedure. Leave the negative battery cable disconnected for a minimum of 5 minutes before starting to allow the air bag system back-up battery to power down. Can use the time to gather up the very small number of tools that will be needed to complete this procedure.
You will need :
#2 phillips scewdriver
very small flat screwdriver
3/8 ratchet
A couple of 3/8 extensions
10mm socket
12mm socket
21mm socket

Now that everything is ready we will start by centering the steering wheel so drive wheels are straight ahead and removing the 10mm bolts that secure the air bag module to the steering wheel. On either side of the steering wheel at approx 3:00 and 9:00 positions are some small hole covers. Remove these covers to reveal the 10mm bolt head below.This view is showing the left side equipped audio control buttons on the steering wheel.

This is showing the right side hole cover removed.

If the horn went off when removing the bolts, you did not get the negative battery cable disconnected correctly so stop and get that done and wait 5 minutes again.
It helps greatly to use a magnetic socket or put something sticky on the socket as the bolts are in there quite a ways and want to fall off of the socket. Will be even more handy during reinstallation. Once the two bolts are out then pull the air bag away from the steering wheel slowly so as not to stretch any wires.
If the air bag connector looks like this, then it is separated by pressing on the white portion where my finger is to lever the locking tab up and allow to be disconnected. If your connector does not look like this then head down to the next photo for info on removing the other style connector in later MPV. Read the next info however to store your air bag module.
Set the air bag aside where it will not be disturbed with the nice trim side facing up. This prevents scuffing but is primarily a safety step. If aliens were to fly over and air bag went off then would just harmlessly deploy rather than launching entire part skyward. Shocked

If you did not have the above connector then this picture is for you. Your air bag is connected with two individual connector right at the module. To unlock the connector, just lightly insert a very small flat head screwdriver as shown and gently pry the black portion up. Once the black part is pulled upwards just like the already removed Orange connector looks, it can be easily removed from the air bag module. As you can see they are color coded and shaped in such away that is impossible to connect back up incorrectly.

Once the air bag is stored away then we are going to remove the steering wheel. Note the yellow vertical line marks on the steering wheel and steering colum shaft, Doing this will allow you to reinstall the steering wheel in exactly the some position on the shaft, It can be reinstalled in any position as it is splined but just realign the marks you have made now and will not have an off center steering wheel and yelling #%$%#^@ bubba on first test drive.
Disconnect the white connector by depressing the center button and then remove the 21mm nut that secures the steering wheel. Once the nut is off then rock the steering wheel from side to side with hands at 3o'clock and 9o'clock position. If being stubborn the do the same thing with hands at 12 and 6 position. A steering wheel puller is a last resort but have never found one necessary yet. Once wheel has come loose then gently remove and allow the air bag connectors to snake thru the hole opening.

Now that the steering wheel is off then get out that phillips screw driver and remove these three screws. Note that the one on lower part of photo is a fine machine thread and upper two are course thread for reinstallation.

Clockspring is next. This is the little unit that allows the electrical signal to air bag, horn, radio controls, etc to go from stationary object to one that turns. At 12:00 position you will see two arrows between the stationary and rotational parts. This is to ensure correct alingment. Line up those marks and install a piece of electrical tap to keep the center part from turning. If is too late then do not worry. Insturctions for centering the clockspring is printed right on the front for you already. Remove these three phillips screws, disconnect electrical connectors and set aside.

Now comes the turn signal, headlight, wiper switch assembly, Disconnect the electrical connectors and remove these three phillips screws. The bottom screw come out at 90' different angle then the top two. Make note that these 3 are maching screws as opposed to the course thread screws used to retain the clockspring.

Now remove the two harness clips from the change control lever assembly by squeezing the springy parts of the clip and releasing.

Remove this dash trim panel by pulling the top edges outward to release plastic clips, pivot downward as shown and then pull the trim free when at the horizontal position.

Now disconnect the electrical connector on right for the change lever assembly and remove this 12mm nut in photo center that attaches the change lever assembly to the shift cable. Good idea to mark the nut postion on the cable with scribe or paint prior to removal so that it can be reinstalled in the exact same spot. Not crucial but a good idea.

Finally ready to get that change lever off!! Two 10mm nuts on left side and one 10mm bolt on the right and off she comes.

Here is a view of the change lever assembly removed and Park switch. All of this for that one little tiny bugger. Will add some arrows don't worry.

Here is a farther away view. Shift lock solenoid is shown on left. White paddle for the emergency override center and Park switch shown pulled out of the change lever assembly.

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