Red QV Start Button DIY Install
Ok, so from day one when I bought the car I knew this would be a mod that I would do, however, I want to add some more detail for members here as while these instructions seem pretty good, IMO there is a lot of detail missing to make them more "idiot proof" - and I wouldn't have considered myself an idiot by any stretch of the imagination prior to trying this, but here we are...
Firstly, I thought that I would give this a shot as have been on the tools, so to speak, my whole life, so am very handy and competent doing anything mechanical, but none of that seemed to matter I don't think... :grin2:
The first caveat
= no matter how good or experienced you are on the tools, if you're not experienced in automotive trim and modifications, this is likely going to freak you out at some point in the installation process, as you have no points of reference to go by on past experience.
The second caveat
= have the right tools and even more options than are mentioned in the instructions, as I ended up using different Phillips head screwdrivers at different points depending on grip and how the screw 'felt'.
Ok, so like others have mentioned, there are a total of five screws in the back of the wheel that need to be unscrewed, but not necessarily as the instructions had described.
2 x 3mm hex screws either side of the wheel (L & R) the hold down the actual steering wheel controllers (audio controls on the right, cruise control on left).
1 x long Phillips head screw on the bottom backside (6pm) of the wheel.
Nice to have:
Headtorch to keep hand free (I used both, one on the head and pen torch in my mouth when in the really tight bit of button wire reconnection.
Not critical at this stage:
2 x small fiddly Phillips head screws that hold the start button to its housing. People have mentioned in past posts how fiddly these can be, I concur and had trouble with them but got them unscrewed. The thing I didn't know is that you don't have to do them at this stage of the process, you can pry the facia off and then get to them with a different angle if you are struggling the suggested way. The only foreseeable issue with that is that with the facia loose, you might have more trouble applying the required pressure to get them loose while juggling the center airbag etc. When I was re-installing, I actually tightened them before putting it all back into place as it was FAR easier. Food for thought.
What I wasn't clear about in reading all the posts:
Facia!!!!! So I unscrewed everything and was ready for the tricky bit, getting that beautiful, perfectly formed and clipped trim away from the wheel... This is where the stress and sweat begun. Having no real experience in automotive trim, I was trying to pry away for the first 20 minutes the black plastic cruise control part by itself. That wasn't working. Then I saw that the fine silver trim could come off, so I started on that and got the left-hand side off, I snapped one pin on the very far left of the wheel just before the edge, wasn't happy but it wasn't a deal breaker.
This is when I realised that the silver fine trim you don't touch, nor starting at the cruise control part alone!
I finally worked out that the easiest place to start is the bottom of the wheel (6pm). You have to squeeze it like your life depends on it and then you can work it side to side while squeezing and eventually one side will pop. There is some glue, I am certain of it, so the first time you do this it takes some work. Popping that out is hard, real hard as the angle that the steering wheel trim is at it is like pulling a dovetail wood joint out from the wrong way, this is why you need to squeeze the triangle shape together to pop it. Once this was loose, it was clearer what I was supposed to be removing...
Then I went to the top left part where the start button and cruise control housing is and started to pull that off. Now if I thought the bottom part of the wheel was hard to remove, it was nothing compared to this. This part was even harder to get free of the wheel. I can't remember what exact movements I did, but it was a rocking, squeezing and pulling motion to get it off. Again it seemed like it had a rubber cement behind it from factory instal, but happy to be proven wrong about that. You can see in one of the pics I took the strong tab that part has on the underside of it.
I then made the decision to just work without it completely free on the right-hand side as others have said, this leaves less risk of trim damage on that side and is still possible, but just tighter. I ended up pulling out the black start button and using thin pliers to get the cable connection out of its housing and disconnected. Then just reversed that, but plugging in the red button wire housing to the steering wheel one then putting it into the harness needs very thin pliers and or screwdriver.
Then I screwed the two small screws that hold the actual red start button to its housing back in while the trim was off as that gave me a far better angle of attack.
Then came the final nightmare bit of the process, putting the dovetail style facia back into the left-hand side of the wheel and bottom part of the wheel. I swear I was mm from snapping the bottom bit of the plastic, also doing it while not scraping the beautiful inside of the steering wheel material is tricky. I just tried to get one edge at a time just into the space and squeezed like all **** to do it, got it in eventually, unscathed.
Anyhow, hopefully, there's someone, somewhere who is reading this thinking, ok, I get it now. Ideally, this would have a video with it from a pro, as god knows I would LOVE to see how a professional does it and what tools they are using.
The OEM button is beautiful:
Most of the tools I used:
First mistake, don't do this:
Get this part out first, bottom of the wheel, enjoy how hard it is...
Then this part, equally as stressful, but not quite as hard....
This is what it looks like when Black is out and Red is coming! The two small screws everyone talks about hold the back of the start button to the facia.
On it's way back in, we're nearly there baby!
Broke a clip... not my first, won't be my last!
This is what I mean by saying that the two small fiddly screws don't need to be removed until you have the facia off, likewise in reverse, screw the back of the start button housing to the facia while it's still out so it makes it far easier...
I can confirm that the vehicle is 15% faster and 27% sexier now that I have a red button. Stay tuned for dyno results >
HAVE A LOOK AT IT GLOWWWWWWWWW!!!!!
Final point that is worth mentioning, I was mostly stressed about the airbag prior to doing this, but when you are halfway there, you won't even be thinking about it. The whole unit is sealed and sits in the steering wheel and doesn't need to come out of the wheel housing at all during this process. So don't stress. The only way I could see this being a big issue would be if you were being pretty forceful trying to remove the facia and you slipped and it pulled the horn/airbag out of the housing entirely and disconnected the wires. Then I assume you'd have an issue. I had none of these issues and didn't disconnect the battery (had to start the car multiple times to move the wheel around) and cliping it back in couldn't have been easier, didn't even sound the horn when I did it!