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Unread 08-11-2010, 05:50 PM   #1
monkeyhouse
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1997 ZJ 
 
Join Date: Sep 2009
Location: Cumberland, Maryland, Maryland
Posts: 3,157
A Year Later and The Horn Works!

So, I have some Jeep downtime and have been trying to fix all those little things that I never get to and the horn was something that had never worked, I tried running a ground straight to the horn assembly and made no difference. I hooked a test light to the positive wire at the horn and got no light, no matter what I did. I removed the relay from under the dash by the fuse box(white square, you can't miss it), but it was fine, looked pretty new actually. so I did some searching and found out where most guys found their problems and tore into it....turns out I had a bit of an unusual problem, but let's not get ahead of ourselves. I will say that I did this to my 89 YJ and I have no idea what other models are like, but in my Haynes the steering column is broken down into two types, ones with airbags and ones without, mine is of course, without, lol. You really don't need much for tools on this type of deal. I did recently get a grinder which came in real handy, but you can get by without one. I went to autozone and got the lender steering wheel puller(but you can probably get by without that too):



A couple things I should mention...one, my steering wheel is off 90 degrees...it's not moving right now, so that repair will come later. two, I notice that when I push in on my steering wheel, it moves in. It's spring loaded and the horn beeps for a fraction of a second, but you have to grab the steering wheel and push pretty hard. Anyway, my horn was mounted to my driver's side fender inside the engine compartment and it was mounted on a mountain of rust. Since the horn is grounded at the mount, I kinda firgured I'd start by cleaning that up.

Here's the before on top:



and underneath:



So, I had to grind the bolt off and even though that section of fender is rust infested, I got the surface cleaned up and replaced the bolt with a new one and took my grinder to the bracket and took a wire brush to the bottom of the horn and the nut that holds it to the bracket. Here it is cleaned up:



So next it was time to tear apart the steering column a bit. Don't let those hex nuts fool ya, they are just for looks, just pull that cover right off:



Once that's off, you see this:



Just pull those three screws out and you can grab that hole assembly out of there(the bushing receiver and flex plate). Here's what it looks like from the side:



With that out of the way, I went ahead and pulled off the insulator(the white plastic thing with 3 screws pictured here):



Next I pulled off the nut from the shaft in the middle. My steering wheel doesn't lock, (I just figured this was because of my wheel being 90 degrees off..I was wrong as we'll see later) so I had to hold the steering wheel and take the nut off, no biggie. Once the nut is off, it's time to pull the steering wheel off. I used a puller and it came off pretty easy. I have read other posts that said as long as you are very careful not to bend anything, you can grab the wheel and pull it off, but I didn't want to chance it. So, with the steering wheel out of the way, you see this:



That plastic sleeve just came off in my hands, it wasn't attached in any way. Once that's off, you're left with this, the lockplate and it's plastic cover. I've read that you can just pop the cover off with a screwdriver from the side(there are slots), but my cover and lockplate came right off with not much effort. I've been told there is a clip that holds the lock plate to the shaft(pics in Dale's link below), but mine didn't have one, nor is there mention of it in my manual...if it's supposed to be there, I'd like to take this opportunity to thank the PO!:





Once that's off, you'll see this, the turn signal cancel cam with horn actuator:





pull that off and you will see the turn signal switch and if you look very close you can see the spring around the shaft:



Now up to this point I just couldn't find anything wrong. I didn't see where anything was installed wrong, so I just cleaned every piece of it, coated the metal parts with white lithium grease and put it back together.

Remember how I said I could push on the steering wheel and get the horn to beep...well thanks to the magic of cameras, we can look back and compare...here is what my steering wheel looked like to begin with:



Notice that gap??

Now look at the after:



Seems like the PO must have removed the wheel to troubleshoot or something and just didn't put much umpf into tightening down the nut. Because once I had it all back together, my horn works perfectly.

I really didn't have any trouble putting anything back together. I have read where you should mark where the wheel lines up on the shaft, but if you look at it, the locking plate will only go onto the shaft one way and the turn signal cancel cam has to go through the lock plate and there is only one hole on the steering wheel for the turn signal cancel cam, here...see the only hole that goes through all the way(okay smarty, besides the one for the shaft):



So, I didn't mark anything and it went back together fine. Just don't try to fight the lock plate putting it on, be gentle and you'll see what I mean it will only go on in one position. Oh and don't forget to put the turn signal cancel cam on before the lock plate(ask me how I know, lol).

I hope this helps out a few people. I really couldn't find alot of info out there. I couldn't find a section on the horn in my Haynes manual, but there is a section under suspension and steering which has a nice picture, diagram and explanation of how to remove the steering wheel. I basically used the search function, the manual and this link for everything:

Tilt Column Fix - Dale's Jeep Junk

So, now my horn works...I guess no more flipping people off! Oh and my steering wheel locks too!

__________________
First Jeep was an 1989 YJ, 6 cylinder 4.2L , 258. Nuttered and TeamRushed, Weber 38 DGES, Now, I'm venturing into the world of Grand Cherokees

Last edited by monkeyhouse; 08-11-2010 at 06:55 PM..
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Unread 08-11-2010, 06:09 PM   #2
Firefyter-Emt
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1995 YJ Wrangler 
 
Join Date: Aug 2005
Location: Northeast CT
Posts: 593
Did you have as nap ring on the shaft right above that multi-finned lock plate (the copperish colored one)? It seems like that was the problem you had, but I did not see a mention of dealing with that snap ring on the shaft (it's a pain in the rear) You mention it came off without much effort, and that is not the way it will come off let me tell you! There is a groove on the shaft below the splines that you can see level with the horn actuator in you photo. That is where a round shaped retainer clip goes. The good news is that it's 10x easier to put back on that to get off. Somebody has been in there before and did not put it back on.
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Unread 08-11-2010, 06:14 PM   #3
monkeyhouse
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Location: Cumberland, Maryland, Maryland
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Firefyter-Emt View Post
Did you have as nap ring on the shaft right above that multi-finned lock plate (the copperish colored one)? It seems like that was the problem you had, but I did not see a mention of dealing with that snap ring on the shaft (it's a pain in the rear)
no snap ring at all. I never saw mention of a snap ring anywhere though, so I can't comment. It certainly wasn't the cause of my issue.
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First Jeep was an 1989 YJ, 6 cylinder 4.2L , 258. Nuttered and TeamRushed, Weber 38 DGES, Now, I'm venturing into the world of Grand Cherokees
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Unread 08-11-2010, 06:26 PM   #4
Firefyter-Emt
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I was the reason the wheel was sticking so far away from the column I bet. With the splines, there is no way the wheel was not tightened enough to make that gap. Without that snap ring, the issue may come back with some driving. The brass plate under the horn actuator rides on a pin to make contact. This pin is the one about 2 o-clock looking at your photo. Because that lock plate was not held down with the retaining ring, that pin did not ride on the copper disk to make a connection. Again, the reason that when you pushed the steering wheel, it would work. You will be in there again to fix it, trust me.
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Unread 08-11-2010, 06:49 PM   #5
monkeyhouse
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Firefyter-Emt View Post
I was the reason the wheel was sticking so far away from the column I bet. With the splines, there is no way the wheel was not tightened enough to make that gap. Without that snap ring, the issue may come back with some driving. The brass plate under the horn actuator rides on a pin to make contact. This pin is the one about 2 o-clock looking at your photo. Because that lock plate was not held down with the retaining ring, that pin did not ride on the copper disk to make a connection. Again, the reason that when you pushed the steering wheel, it would work. You will be in there again to fix it, trust me.
Wait, YOU were the reason! I'm gonna kick your butt. I take it that was a typo. The threads were pretty corroded which is why the PO probably thought he had it tightened down all the way. I didn't notice until I was putting it back together, so I pulled the nut off and cleaned the threads up. From all of the other things I have found on this jeep nothing surprises me about the PO. You could be right, but considering the nut applies pressure to the entire assembly with a spring behind, I'm not so sure. However I did see in Dales post a "clip". So I will edit my info to mention the clip for others. Also, there are actually two pins that make contact with the locking plate, both of which are spring loaded, so I can't really agree with your logic there, but I will keep an eye on it and post back if I see any slippage of the nut and/or lock plate. You do seem to have some good knowledge on this subject, I wish I could have heard some of it before when I was posting looking for help, but thanks!
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Unread 08-11-2010, 06:51 PM   #6
SpideYJeep
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Location: El Lay, TRIP!
Posts: 432
[QUOTE=monkeyhouse;9943416]
With that out of the way, I went ahead and pulled off the insulator(the white plastic thing with 3 screws pictured here):
You could have left this attached because the "plastic sleeve" is held to the steering wheel with these three screws and it can pull out as one unit after removing the bolt (ask me how I know LOL)



That plastic sleeve just came off in my hands, it wasn't attached in any way. Once that's off, you're left with this, the lockplate and it's plastic cover. I've read that you can just pop the cover off with a screwdriver from the side(there are slots), but my cover and lockplate came right off with not much effort:
Did you have a snap/lock ring that held the lockplate in place on the shaft - usually requiring a depressing tool to remove/replace the lockplate and snap ring? If not, another gift from the PO that led to the gap.
Seems like the PO must have removed the wheel to troubleshoot or something and just didn't put much umpf into tightening down the nut. Because once I had it all back together, my horn works perfectly.

I really didn't have any trouble putting anything back together.
Again, if you didn't put much effort into reassembly, the PO probably left you without parts - check Dale's Tilt Wheel pictures 6 & 7 regarding the snap/clip ring and picture 9 for a spring that pretty much requires the lock plate depresser tool to reinstall the lockplate and clip.
You may end up having to do it all over again - I can send you some more pics if you'd like.


Tilt Column Fix - Dale's Jeep Junk
__________________
Wrenching isn't the problem, it's the brains attached to the hands...unfortunately, I'm lacking some of the former so that's why I'm asking you guys!!

Quote:
Originally Posted by YJake View Post
My YJ is so excited it's leaking oil!
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Unread 08-11-2010, 06:54 PM   #7
SpideYJeep
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1992 YJ Wrangler 
 
Join Date: Jan 2010
Location: El Lay, TRIP!
Posts: 432
Ugh, Firefyter asked my questions, sorry man. If you need more pics, tho, I can still send
__________________
Wrenching isn't the problem, it's the brains attached to the hands...unfortunately, I'm lacking some of the former so that's why I'm asking you guys!!

Quote:
Originally Posted by YJake View Post
My YJ is so excited it's leaking oil!
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Unread 08-11-2010, 06:57 PM   #8
monkeyhouse
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1997 ZJ 
 
Join Date: Sep 2009
Location: Cumberland, Maryland, Maryland
Posts: 3,157
[quote=SpideYJeep;9943773]
Quote:
Originally Posted by monkeyhouse View Post
With that out of the way, I went ahead and pulled off the insulator(the white plastic thing with 3 screws pictured here):
You could have left this attached because the "plastic sleeve" is held to the steering wheel with these three screws and it can pull out as one unit after removing the bolt (ask me how I know LOL)



That plastic sleeve just came off in my hands, it wasn't attached in any way. Once that's off, you're left with this, the lockplate and it's plastic cover. I've read that you can just pop the cover off with a screwdriver from the side(there are slots), but my cover and lockplate came right off with not much effort:
Did you have a snap/lock ring that held the lockplate in place on the shaft - usually requiring a depressing tool to remove/replace the lockplate and snap ring? If not, another gift from the PO that led to the gap.
Seems like the PO must have removed the wheel to troubleshoot or something and just didn't put much umpf into tightening down the nut. Because once I had it all back together, my horn works perfectly.

I really didn't have any trouble putting anything back together.
Again, if you didn't put much effort into reassembly, the PO probably left you without parts - check Dale's Tilt Wheel pictures 6 & 7 regarding the snap/clip ring and picture 9 for a spring that pretty much requires the lock plate depresser tool to reinstall the lockplate and clip.
You may end up having to do it all over again - I can send you some more pics if you'd like.


Tilt Column Fix - Dale's Jeep Junk
thanks I edited the original post and actually the spring is in my picture, it's just hard to see.... I really wish I could have heard from you folks earlier
__________________
First Jeep was an 1989 YJ, 6 cylinder 4.2L , 258. Nuttered and TeamRushed, Weber 38 DGES, Now, I'm venturing into the world of Grand Cherokees
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Unread 08-11-2010, 07:34 PM   #9
SpideYJeep
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1992 YJ Wrangler 
 
Join Date: Jan 2010
Location: El Lay, TRIP!
Posts: 432
[quote=monkeyhouse;9943797]
Quote:
Originally Posted by SpideYJeep View Post

thanks I edited the original post and actually the spring is in my picture, it's just hard to see.... I really wish I could have heard from you folks earlier
Yeah, sorry, I really wish I could get on here everyday...work keeps getting in the way of things! Well, glad you have the spring, I just saw that in another thread. Do you have the snap/clip ring?
__________________
Wrenching isn't the problem, it's the brains attached to the hands...unfortunately, I'm lacking some of the former so that's why I'm asking you guys!!

Quote:
Originally Posted by YJake View Post
My YJ is so excited it's leaking oil!
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Unread 08-11-2010, 08:14 PM   #10
Firefyter-Emt
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1995 YJ Wrangler 
 
Join Date: Aug 2005
Location: Northeast CT
Posts: 593
From that link about the tilt fix....

Here is what you should have to do to get that stupid retainer ring off. The tool makes it so nice, it can be done without it, but it may kick your butt trying!


And you can just make out the retainer clip in this photo.


And this little ring is what you don't have.


On Dale's parts listings, it would be 'Ring,snap" Part # J320 8377 (Very good chance it's the same for the YJ)
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