Fixing Steering Wheel Control Button

Hey. This page is more than 7 years old! The content here is probably outdated, so bear that in mind. If this post is part of a series, there may be a more recent post that supersedes this one.

We bought a new (second hand) car and adopted some ‘niggles’ with it. It’s a 2006 Subaru Legacy GT. One issue was that the SET button on the steering wheel control did not seem to work (or do anything).

I ended dismantled the steering column to take a look. I cleaned stuff and tested contacts (they were all fine) and reassembled again.

Centre info/set button did not seems to work.

Youtube video below is pretty useful as a starting point – he is replacing the steering wheel.

  • Heed the video author’s advice: Disconnect the battery and discharge as residual charge to avoid the airbag deploying.
  • I think the guy in video wings it with wrong type of screwdriver to open the two first captive screws either side of the wheel. I found┬áthem to be REALLY tight and would recommend getting hold of correct tool/ screw-head. Its a Torx T30 Socket.



Although this disassembly-clean-reassembly exercise was useful, as the button was sticking a little bit because of the buildup of gunk (Yuk!), I suspect that it was actually working to start with. It’s just the button does not do a great deal.

What I have found:

  1. If you hold the button while turning the key then you can get into some car settings (in Japanese) – you can change clock, turn on/off dial startup animation, set your birthday(?), set your anniversary(??).
  2. You can also disable seatbelt alarm – hold it down while alarm is sounding (when driving).
  3. To reset the trip computer (Trip A or B) you hold the <SET> button and simultaneously press the trip reset button in the dash. This is the ‘conventional’ one which I randomly noticed was there and was surprised to see.

All a little pointless. But there it is.