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How to Restore an Old Steering Wheel

The steering wheel is the heart of the car. It’s the direction giver. That’s why it’s very important to keep it clean. Your steering wheel can get damaged, and worn out. You can easily fix this issue with some home tools.

During the restoration of the steering wheel, you will also learn how to remove the airbag from the steering wheel.

So when it comes to restoring the steering wheel, there are actually a couple of options that you can try.

For a starter, you can buy the exact same steering wheel from a market. If your steering wheel is in too much bad condition then this is the quick fix.

Secondly, you can use a cover on top of your steering wheel which will give it a fresh look.

Thirdly, you can clean and sew new leather in your existing steering wheel and make it look just new.

When you’re trying to remove the steering wheel, make sure it’s locked and not moving. How do you do that? Just pull out the car keys and turn the steering wheel in any 1 direction. You will hear a sound now it’s locked.

Now comes the question. How do you remove the steering wheel from your car?

If you look closely, you’ll see screws beside the steering wheel. Just unscrew them.

Another thing you need to keep in mind is that you have to remove the battery line and wait for 10 minutes before doing any of these.

While you’re removing the airbag section, make sure you do the process slowly. Because the airbag is connected with another wire and by pulling it out too fast you may tear it.

If you have cruise controls in your steering wheel then you have to disconnect another wire also for that.

There’s usually a center screw that you need to remove also. You can use a T50 Torx for removing that.

Now you can pull off the steering wheel. A lot of steering wheels have a puller section. Just attach 2 puller screws and remove the steering wheels easily.

First, you need to remove the old leather wrap. This is the easy part, as you can use a blade or sharp object to cut the ties and the wrap will then come off easily.

Use some soapy water to remove the rest of the residue stuck with the wheel.

Now you have a clean steering wheel with no wrap. Just grab some good-quality leather or vinyl cover. We have the previous wrap as a template. So you can just place that previous wrap on top of the new leather and use a marker to mark lines.

One thing to keep in mind is that the wrap needs to be stretched and not rigid. If it’s rigid then you’ll have a hard time making the wrap and it won’t be worth it.

So in leather one side will be rigid, so no matter how hard you pull two ends it won’t stretch much. And the other side will be the opposite. So you want to place the previous wrap on top of it diagonally so that it has both rigid & stretching qualities.

While cutting the leather you can have some extra room and cut more. You can always trim down but if you cut too much in the first place then there’s no going back.

Now you can make some dotted lines where you’ll sew the leather. It may take some time, but if done correctly it will save you a lot of hassle in the long run.

After completing the wrap, gently place it in your steering wheel and connect both cruise control and airbag wires. Then screw the steering wheel. Don’t forget the side screws. Make sure the car battery is also connected. Now you have a completely new-looking fresh steering wheel in your car.

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