How to Replace an Overdrive Switch
The overdrive switch is not always the determining factor as whether the overdrive gear is engaged or disengaged. Instead, it is the position of the gear that would determine if the solenoid would engage, regardless of whether the switch is open or closed. Although that is the case, the switch's well-being must never be overlooked. When the overdrive wiring circuit no longer works due to a problematic overdrive switch, you need to replace and fix it. The following DIY overdrive switch installation instructions generally apply to overdrive switches having it at the shifter.
Difficulty level: Moderate
What you'll need:
- Philip screwdriver
- Small flat-head screwdriver
- Wire cutter
- New overdrive switch or actuator
Step 1: Move the shifter to L in order to have a good access to the screws on the shifter. Make sure to hold the button with a finger while removing the screws with a Philip screwdriver. This is to prevent the spring in the inside from shooting out. After taking out the screws, carefully lift your finger, making sure to catch both the button and the spring.
Step 2: Change gears. You can do that by reaching and pressing down the triangular lifter with your finger inside the button hole.
Step 3: Undo the center console screws. You may need to open up the center armrest to reach all of the screws. A coin holder may also be getting in the way, so you have to take that off as well.
Step 4: Shifting to a specific gear is important in order to remove the center console. You may have to change to the second gear or L to be able to lift the console more easily. Pull up with enough strength, but be careful not to break anything.
Step 5: Using a small flat-head screwdriver, pry on the overdrive switch in order for it to slide out. While the overdrive switch is not functioning, there will be no electricity running through the wires, because the overdrive is not in closed circuit as long as it is in ON mode. This is also the case when the button is unable to close the circuit.
Step 6: Inspect the overdrive circuit wires to make sure it is really the switch that is problematic, and that the new switch will work after the installation. If the wires are good, continue with the next step.
Step 7: Make sure to remove the key on the ignition before cutting the wires off the overdrive switch. This should ensure that there is no power to accidentally actuate the OD. But to be sure, remember to cut the wires one at a time in order to prevent the metal part of the pliers from closing the circuit and thus allowing electricity to flow. Cut nearest the switch to save wire length.
Step 8: Get the new overdrive switch, and connect it to the OD wires in the circuit assembly. And then, run tests to see if it is working already.
Step 9: This process actually allows you to replace the shifter should you decide to give the interior of your vehicle a little customization. If not, though, proceed with reinstalling the switch to the existing shifter as well as the center console.