TECH: How to replace clock spring


Jason Welch
I just replaced my clock spring last week and wanted to share what I learned.

1: Make sure your wheels are pointing straight ahead
2: Disconnect battery
3: Remove the four screws that hold on air bag from the backside of the steering wheel
4: Disconnect and remove the airbag
5: Disconnect the connections going to the horn and cruise control buttons
6: Remove the bolt that holds on the steering wheel and use a puller to get it off
7: Unscrew the tilt lever from the collumn
8: Remove the three screws that hold on the steering collumn cover and remove the lower portion
9: Remove the ignition switch by inserting your key and turning it to the on position and inserting the end of a paper clip in the access hole in the bottom of the switch housing to depress the pin that holds the switch in
10: Remove the top half off the steering collumn cover
11: Remove the lower dash panel that is directly below the steering collumn by removing the two screws on the lower side and gently pulling toward the drivers seat to release the pins that just snap in on the top side of the panel
12: Remove the clock spring assembly from the collumn and dissconnect all connections
13: Put in new clock spring and reconnect then put everything back in reverse order

This whole job only took about an hour and is very simple. DO NOT BE AFRAID OF IT.
I wouldn't worry to much since you have a 93. Its for the airbag on 94-95s, also controls the horn and part of the cruise control system.
clock spring

Thanks for the good info,I've been needing to do this for about a year now.How much did the clock spring cost you? M.J.
MOTORCITY was kind enough to point out to me that my clock spring is shot. My question is why did these things go out and how long will a new one from Ford last? I don't want to drop $100.00 replace this thing and have it go out in 6 mos or so. Any thoughts? Thanks Ghost for sharing how to do this! I've printed out your instructions and will surely find them helpful when I get the part!
Does anyone have the Ford part # for the clock spring assy. and is it a Dealer only item or is it available in the aftermarket? Thanks - Brian
Hey guys, thanks for the replys and help. As soon as I get some time off from work I'll try to fix it. With Ghost's tech thread it doesn't seem like it will be to hard of a job.
Dealer only item.

Also shouldnt there be a period of time you wait after disconnecting the battery before messing with the air bag?

Sometimes when the clockspring goes bad it will short out the air bag diagnostic monitor. I have one of these if anyone needs it.
Some people say that you have to wait a long time between disconnecting the battery and messing with air bag but if you just wait about 5 minutes or so it should be fine. :tu:
I've replaced mine twice; both bought from Ford for about $100. Bought my truck used and it was bad when i bought it. The first replacement only lasted about a year and a half. Got about 6 months on the new one, but will be ticked if it goes out as soon as the last one...... still got the box, so I'll post the PN tomorrow if anyone needs it.
so the 94-95 lightnings have this clock spring to deal with but not the 93s cuase they dont have an air bag.
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I certainly wouldnt let the clock spring decide on whether you buy a 93 or 94.
Lets see : Clearcoat paint and better E4OD would offset that about 100 times.

so the 94-95 lightnings have this clock spring to deal with but not the 93s cuase they dont have an air bag, man wish i knew that before i got my 94 i would of just waited and got a 93. just another thing to worry about breaking on my truck, guess we're all SOL lol
any suggestions if the bolt holes on the the steering wheel for the puller are missing their threads?:hh:
I just found out that FORD is not the only manufacturer of these. A company called MOTORMITE at also makes these. There is also a video of the removal and the installation of these. I called my local Murray's Discount Auto Stores, and they called their warehouse to see if they had them. YES, they do, or can get them. The price was $61.00. Part number on website for '94 is #525-200.
Thought I'd pass this on. :D
Thanks to Jason for the infomative and encouraging post. Thanks also to PFA for helping out with a less expensive source for the part. My air bag light has been flashing a code 32 for a very long time and my horn just quit working so I guess it's time :(

I just finished my clockspring replacement with a Dorman P/N 525-200 from Autozone, about $46.

While fresh on my mind I just wanted to add a list of tools needed.

I don't know if they are supposed to be American or Metric but I had the metrics out and that's what I used. They seemed to fit right.

- 10mm socket for the 4 airbag retaining nuts
- medium philips screwdriver for the steering wheel cover
- 15mm socket for the steering wheel retaining bolt
- Steering wheel puller
- T20 Torq bit for the 3 screws retaining the clockspring

A couple of additions to the original instructions (THANKS!).

- In addition to the 3 screws that retain the lower steering wheel column cover, there is a smaller, black (I think) screw at the rear on the right side that fastens the top and bottom covers together, remove it also.

- On the Dorman, there is a short black wire with a brown connector. It also has a black piece on it. The black piece is just a protective shield for a small brass contact and you just gently take it off. The brown connector fits into a notch in the steering wheel column where you pull the key cylinder out.

I don't really know how to explain to position it, but look it over and take care in this area when putting (snapping) it in. My stock one had the retaining clip broken off (possible cause of my original failure?). The brass contact on the this piece will line up and make contact with the brass strip on your key cylinder, you'll see once you're in there.

Wasn't a bad fix, only thing I had to think on was that small connector since it is fragile and my old one was broken, so no reference point.

Now if I can just get a few years out of it. Jinx