Q: Turn Signal Switch Replacement
Recently the turn signal switch has been malfunctioning on my 1968 coupe. It does not automatically turn off when I make a right turn. I know this is a common problem with any car that has been around for a number of years but I’ve never actually fixed it before. Is this a problem with the “Turn Signal Switch?” This part is in the Ames catalog (F-8c) on page 70 and it says there are two brands, distinguishable by color. If that is indeed the part I need to replace, does it require that I remove the steering wheel to get to it? My 1968 has a wood wheel and is a console shift auto… I assume I’ll need a “puller” to get the wheel off. Any recomendations here? Never done this before… Thanks in advance for your advice!
A: It was a real mess trying to determine what turn signal switch you need. I have some 1967 and 1968 columns,both tilt and non tilt, that have boyne switches. These are usually blue or red(pink). The delcos are white.
The easiest way to determine if your column came with a delco is to look at the hole where the hazard flasher knob comes thru the column. A factory delco switch will have a “D” shaped hole. The boyne will have a round one.This is especially helpful when the column is missing a switch or youre not sure what it needs.
The delco switches are still available in a superceded form, which has a generic (post 1969) pigtail and an adapter for pre 1969 wiring connector.
A: To fix the turn signal return cam you must replace the cam and wiring harness inside the column. Although it doesn’t require you remove the column, you just about have to dismantle the top portion to remove the harness plug. It will require a couple of tools: a steering wheel puller and a hub(?) puller. Both are available at your local auto parts stores.
If you’ve never had a column apart, I recommend you find a friend to walk you through it or be very careful and make detailed notes of EVERYTHING. Once you pull the “C” clip off the shaft, things and get pretty scary. If you can hold off, try to find a cheap column at you local U-Pull-It yard and practice first on it. There are three little springs that, unless your careful, can get lost quickly.
A: It is right to practice on a donor column first. But you must stick to a 1967 or 1968 as 1969 is totally different. Its no real big deal to replace switch with column in car. Tilts are harder but straight columns are a cake walk if you get the newer replacement switch with the straight (1969 and newer style) wiring connector. You should also get an adapter that has the 1967-1968 curved (half moon shaped) wiring connector on a pig tail. to get the old switch out cut the wiring about 1/2 inch from old wiring connector remove three mounting screws and pull out. After you have cut off the connector tie a strong string or wire to harness to use as a pull string when installing the new one. When installing the new one bend the wiring connector at a 90 deg angle to the wiring as to make it fit thru the small hole in column. After it is pulled thru straighten out the connector and plug in the adapter. After a couple of these you can do blind folded.
A: I replaced the switch on my car and found it very easy. I used no manual and had no practice or advice. However, I did have one problem. The “service replacement” Delco part that I bought was grossly inferior to the original part. The original switch had a white backing plate with a metallic cam that provides the ‘click’ feel of actuating the turn lever. This design had a cam loop that goes all the way around the steering shaft. The replacement was orange plastic, with a plastic catch that caused a ‘snap’ feel when actuating the lever. This was the same feel I remembered from a friend’s 1989 Cavalier some time back, and every time you signal a turn it felt like you were breaking something internally. A small (cheap) switch on the replacement sat only on one side of the steering shaft. Turns out my problem was the wiring of the connector. I junked the replacement switch and grafted its connector onto the original switch assembly. I would NEVER put one of those orange plastic Delco replacements on a nice classic Firebird.
Also, just because your switch doesn’t cancel doesn’t mean it needs replacement. It may have worn down some and now will not quite cancel, but the alignment of the internal gear may just need to be adjusted, as in the steering wheel may be centered straight with the alignment but not with the internal cam for cancellation. I’m afraid I do not recall exactly how the assembly fit together, but I’m under the impression that this is adjustable. I do know that you could pull off the steering wheel and replace it one tooth counterclockwise (or the opposite). Then you could offset this by adjusting both side tie rods during your next alignment to re-center the wheel. If you cannot get it so that both sides (left turn, right turn) cancel correctly, the switch should be replaced.
A: Ive got several replacement Delco switches here that are of same quality as originals no orange plastic in them. I ll dig one up and get part#. They have the later style flat connector(which is better for installation anyway.) And they have the flat (1969) to half moon (1967-1968) connector adapter pigtail.
Any proposed updates, changes, pictures, and/or corrections, please use our comment section below (may need to click on permalink to access comments feature). Information is subject to change and offered as is without any warranties or guarantees. Please review our Term's Of Use for more information.
Content last modified: January 25, 2014 at 10:58 pm