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Old 18th October 2016, 20:56   #1
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Exclamation Steering wheel issue - Clock spring broken?

Hi,
First of all greetings to all TBHPians. I've being reading articles here since last 5 years and this is my first thread. Thanks to all of you for your immense support and knowledge!

I have a pre-facelift Škoda Superb B6 (2011) 1.8 TSi Elegance and something strange happened today:

1. I was driving for an hour and everything was alright, took few U-turns,etc. Everything normal.

2. At one point I had to take a U-turn so I turned the steering wheel anti-clockwise fully and while doing that there was a *click* sound from the steering column like something snapped.

3. Immediately "Airbag error" light popped up on the console. And within few minutes I found out that MFSW (multi functional steering wheel)buttons, backlight and horn has stopped working.

4. The steering wheel is fully functional - felt no change during turning.

5. I can hear faint clicking sounds while turning the steering wheel more than 90 degrees.


I searched for this on TBHP and found out Gannu_1's excellent thread (http://www.team-bhp.com/forum/diy-do...l-upgrade.html (VW Polo DIY: Mk7 Flat-bottom Steering wheel upgrade)) from which I can make out that this is due to a broken "Airbag slip ring unit" or a detached connector.

As the nearest Skoda A.S.S. is around 230kms far, I'm thinking of trying to fix it by myself, especially if its just a detached connector. Also the car is out of warranty.

I need your suggestions on what should I do. Attempt a DIY repair myself or take it to A.S.S.? And if a DIY to repair I need some guidelines (especially Gannu_1) on how to approach it.

Thanks a lot. Looking forward to your replies!

Last edited by noopster : 19th October 2016 at 11:24. Reason: Expanded the acronym- it's not a common one :)
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Old 19th October 2016, 00:31   #2
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Default re: Steering wheel issue - Clock spring broken?

It could be possible that the clock spring, the one which keeps the cables connected when you turn the steering is broken.

Although it seems like a mechanical problem, do a VCDS scan and check for any other electrical errors. Attaching an image here.

IMO don't try the repairs yourself. You could end up doing unknown damage. The slip ring and the spring both are complex pieces of technology.

Regards,
Vishy76
Attached Thumbnails
Steering wheel issue - Clock spring broken?-oemclockspringfontbairbagbfontsteeringwheelmoduleforvolkswagenvwgolf5.jpg  


Last edited by vishy76 : 19th October 2016 at 00:34.
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Old 19th October 2016, 07:36   #3
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Default re: Steering wheel issue - Clock spring broken?

Thanks vishy76 for your valuable input. I too feel that the mechanism is way too complex and I don't have much experience regarding DIY.

If anyhow the clock spring is broken, can you give a vague idea about its cost or someone who might source it.

By the way I got another option. There is a VW A.S.S. in my city and I might get one of their senior mechanic's help. I'll contact him soon and let you know.

Going off topic, I'm totally fed up of this car. She has given niggles from day one. Only 29k on ODO in 5 years, but numerous visits to A.S.S.
Note to self - No Skoda for a long time
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Old 19th October 2016, 08:42   #4
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Default re: Steering wheel issue - Clock spring broken?

Quote:
Originally Posted by vishy76 View Post
It could be possible that the clock spring, the one which keeps the cables connected when you turn the steering is broken.

Vishy76
+1 to that.

The clock spring in my Creta had broken during repair at Hyundai service station and the symptoms were exactly the same.

Please do a thorough long test drive after the clock spring replacement. The sensors have to be reset to Zero position and in my case, i had my vehicle pulling to one side after the replacement. Was rectified by Hyundai subsequently. So get it repaired at a place where the software for your car is available.

Have no idea about the cost since mine was changed under warranty, but remember seeing these clock springs on Alibaba.
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Old 19th October 2016, 20:03   #5
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Default Re: Steering wheel issue - Clock spring broken?

I managed to find a clock spring on vagtune for Rs 6600. Maybe you can get in touch with Mr Sugesh who could help you source it for your car but it will still need an expert installation as listed on the site.

I wouldn't trust Alibaba with these kind of parts. If you want to buy, buy original and known parts especially when it comes to German cars.
Do take care of the specific model.
Kudos
Vishy76

Last edited by vishy76 : 19th October 2016 at 20:05.
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Old 19th October 2016, 20:16   #6
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Default Re: Steering wheel issue - Clock spring broken?

So if things are mechanically functionally normal it does seems some electric connector has jumped. Best bet would be try and locate the connector and try to pop it back in. If that does not work we test the next problem of replacing the damned thing.

One step at a time?
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Old 20th October 2016, 20:38   #7
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Default Re: Steering wheel issue - Clock spring broken?

Update:
I drove the car for few hundred kms, absolutely no problems regarding steering mechanics and no worsening of symptoms.

I think my best bet now is to hope that its a jumped connector and try to put it back in place with help of a VW mechanic.
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Old 21st October 2016, 12:39   #8
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Default Re: Steering wheel issue - Clock spring broken?

Quote:
Originally Posted by dr.kushagra View Post
Update:
I drove the car for few hundred kms, absolutely no problems regarding steering mechanics and no worsening of symptoms.

I think my best bet now is to hope that its a jumped connector and try to put it back in place with help of a VW mechanic.
The same issue happened to my friend's Elantra ( new model) and when he replaced the clock spring every thing was back to normal. It was around Rs. 8000/-. When it was broken the Airbag light was on and the functions in the steering wheel was not working.
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Old 21st October 2016, 13:54   #9
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Default Re: Steering wheel issue - Clock spring broken?

Quote:
Originally Posted by dr.kushagra View Post

I need your suggestions on what should I do. Attempt a DIY repair myself or take it to A.S.S.? And if a DIY to repair I need some guidelines (especially Gannu_1) on how to approach it.
Quote:
Originally Posted by Gannu_1 View Post
We swapped the stock MFSW (VAG speak for Multi-Function Steering Wheel) with a Mk7 unit last weekend when we did the cruise control installation
I think Gannu has already captured the way to remove the steering very well and as a part of that the slip ring as well. Nonetheless, if you need any specific assistance you can always PM him. Anyhow, he will drop in here in a while. So sit tight.
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Old 12th December 2016, 15:27   #10
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Default Re: Steering wheel issue - Clock spring broken?

UPDATE:

Sorry for the long gap, I was busy with my internship and yes of course, weddings!

After utter confusion, I decided to get the steering wheel examined at Skoda A.S.S as it's a complex car and I have minimal DIY experience.

So, I drove to Channel Motors, Haldwani on 14-11-2016 and mechanic there confirmed that it was a broken clock spring and there was no other option than to replace it.

I was quoted approx. 20-24k for part and labour charges. I payed them the advance for the part and the wait began. They told that it might take around 14-18 days for the clock spring to arrive.

Having heard stories about Channel Motors and their careless attitude towards customers I regularly reminded them and asked the status about the spare part.

At last the wait ended. I got a call from SA on 7-12-2016 (23 days later) that the part has arrived. I sent the car the very next day and it was a simple plug and play job which hardly took half an hour.

The bill breakdown is as follows:

1. Part (5K0953569AL) = Rs. 17,454.15 + VAT(14.5%) = Rs. 19,985.00
2. Central wiring harness repair labour charges = Rs. 5112 + Service Tax (14%) + SBT (0.50%) + KKC (0.50%) = Rs. 5878.80
Total= Rs. 25,863.80


Steering wheel issue - Clock spring broken?-20161212_144300.jpg
Manufactured in Baunatal, Germany - this explains the absurd cost of the part.


Steering wheel issue - Clock spring broken?-20161212_144319.jpg
Same OEM part shared among VW, Skoda, SEAT and Audi.


Steering wheel issue - Clock spring broken?-20161212_144415.jpg
Steering wheel issue - Clock spring broken?-20161212_144422.jpg
The broken clock spring.

Steering wheel issue - Clock spring broken?-20161212_144903.jpg
Steering wheel issue - Clock spring broken?-20161212_145002.jpg
On dissection: clock spring prevents the wires (of airbag, steering controls and horn) from twisting upon themselves when we rotate the steering wheel. Second pic shows the point of breakage.


I had a talk with the mechanic and SA as to why it broke so easily. They pointed me some reasons:

1. Sudden and forceful full rotation of steering wheel. Doing this repeatedly is most common cause of broken springs
2. Tying religious shrouds around the steering wheel. It leads to debris collection in the spring which overtimes hardens and resist the free flowing motion of wires inside.

After a 1.5 months of patience I'm relaxed again. There's something bugging me all the time when my car isn't in top shape :P
Thank you all for the support and guidance! Starting to clock(?irony ) miles again.

Long Live T-BHP!
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