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Headlight Switch Knob Replacement

Mr Dark

Well-known member
Feb 26, 2002
Sauk Rapids, MN, USA
1985 White Coupe
I want to replace the headlight switch knob on my 85 when it comes out of winter storage, so I ordered a replacement knob. The replacement knob came attached to a shaft, so I tried to remove the knob. According to instructions I've seen, I just put a small flat-bladed screwdriver into the small slot on the side of the knob and push until it releases. I just can't seem to get it to work. There is nothing to push on to release. All I'm managing to do is gouge the plastic inside the knob. What am I doing wrong? I figure if I can't get the knob off the one that's not attached to the car, I'll be in deep doodoo trying to actually remove the one that IS attached to the car. :) I must be missing something fairly obvious here and would appreciate someone pointing out the error of my ways. Any suggestions will be appreciated!
The reason they sent you the knob on the shaft is that is the best way to replace it.

You have to disconnect the battery, remove the trim and pull the entire headlight switch out of the dash just enough to gain access to the back side of it.

Now, you will see a crazy little button on the switch assembly with a spring coiled under it. You have to push that in while pushing and pulling the knob. When you hit the sweet spot, the entire knob and shaft will slide right out of the switch.

Now, simply push the new knob in and reassemble the i/p.

Piece of cake!

(okay, easy for me to say, but the first time I came across this I destroyed the knob, and two junkyard switches!)
I'd sure like to just replace the knob as opposed to the whole shaft, but it may come to that. It's just that, before I started to try to do it, replacing the knob seemed like it would be sooo easy! ;) ;) ;)
You'll like my Vette.... the knob comes off if you pull it too hard :) . Just as a suggestion, try pulling the knob straight (very straight) out with a steady even pressure (maybe while holding the stem with padded vise-grips). There's a small metal clip that's attached to the plastic and friction-locked to the stem.
Thanks for the suggestions. I'll have to try them out when I pull the car out for Spring. Of course, that may be a while. We just got another half foot of snow! :( :(
How about this. I pulled a spare G.M. light switch out of the tool box, and with the help of my lovely assistant I can now demonstrate to you how to replace your knob.

In this first picture our lovely assistant is pointing at the spring loaded tab, and the shaft is fully engaged. In the second picture I will post she is pressing the spring button in, and removed the shaft.
Actually on my 85 you have to remove the dash pad to get to the switch. I tried to cut a hole next to the switch using a dremal tool after removing the speedo/tach cover but the button is on the top, I suppose I could rotate the switch so the button is on the bottom, but decided to pull new knob off of the new stem and placed new knob on already inserted old stem.
The dash pad comes off as easy as can be. Certainly a lot easier than using a Dremel to cut another hole. ;)

_ken :w
Dremel tool? Holes in the dash pad? I'm gettin' scared here! All I wanted to do was replace the knob because the graphic had worn off the face, but I might just paint a new graphic on the old one and leave it alone. ;) ;)

69 - Thank your lovely assistant for her help in the demonstration. Thanks to everybody for their input. P.S. The weatherman, who is wrong as often as right, is saying 60's here by next week. I might be back on the road soon!

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