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Both the horn and the audio controls haven't work since I purchased the car. I have been told to replace the airbag (which will come with the controls) as this will make both the items work again. Can someone clarify?
 

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the horn and radio controls use the same 2 wires from the colomm to the steering wheel and they go through the thingy (cant remember what its called) that sits just behind the wheel, they are renound for breaking
 

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boxman said:
...and they go through the thingy
Yeah, the clockspring. :cheesy: It costs somewhere around $100 for a new one, but I bet that's your problem. A new airbag doesn't come with radio controls, by the way, so someone's trying to rip you off!
 

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Jeremy R. said:
Yeah, the clockspring. :cheesy: It costs somewhere around $100 for a new one, but I bet that's your problem. A new airbag doesn't come with radio controls, by the way, so someone's trying to rip you off!
Far better to replace this "clockspring" @ $100 than the airbag @ $500 ; particular if nothing is wrong with the bag !

And this springy thing for $$$ - is this the price that is paid for convenient stereo controls ???
Saab/GM, I'd say this is another "back to the drawing boards" situations..
 

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earthworm said:
And this springy thing for $$$ - is this the price that is paid for convenient stereo controls ???
Saab/GM, I'd say this is another "back to the drawing boards" situations..

the steering wheel controls have no bearing on the springy thing as it uses the same wires as the horn so the wires are there whether the wheel has the radio controls or not
 

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The clock spring is my bet as well. I have had the same syptoms in several cars chrysler, gm and my friend had it with his 9-3. The airbag does not contain the key to the problem. I vote rip off too.

BTW - I recommend a certified mechanic for this. When it comes to this type of fix, you need to know that more than just the horn and radio controls are working correctly.
 

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I wonder if the springy-thingy (clock-spring) were to break, would that(by chance) cause the horn to blow uncontrollably ?? I never , never use the horn - its is nothing but an annoyance..

And when did Saab start using this ?
 

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earthworm said:
I wonder if the springy-thingy (clock-spring) were to break, would that(by chance) cause the horn to blow uncontrollably ?? I never , never use the horn - its is nothing but an annoyance..

And when did Saab start using this ?
My guess is it would only cause your horn not to work. I can't think of the way how clockspring can break. I know mine did because it was probably mounted wrong (tensed in one way too much) after my steering wheel was removed once. But normally, with equal tension to both sides/turns I don't see how it can break. First signs of my clockspring going wrong was loss of the SW controls and horn, but they would still work with SW fully turned in one way in a small 2 degree area. Oh yeah, and "ding-dong" sound followed by triangle and SRS warning all the time.
 

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The short answer is no. The clock spring design is universal across all car makers. The clockspring is a continuous pressure spring designed to maintain an electrical connection while the steering wheel is moved in either direction.
It became necessary when automakers began placing controls and electrical components in the face of the steering wheel. It maintains an electrical connection without the necessity of wires that would have to twist left or right with the movement of the wheel itself. If the spring breaks, electrical components stop working; usually the horn, any steering wheel controls (cruise, audio etc) and airbags. Steering column controls (turn signals, wipers etc) are unaffected.

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earthworm said:
I wonder if the springy-thingy (clock-spring) were to break, would that(by chance) cause the horn to blow uncontrollably ?? I never , never use the horn - its is nothing but an annoyance..

And when did Saab start using this ?
 

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gman2560 said:
The clockspring is a continuous pressure spring designed to maintain an electrical connection while the steering wheel is moved in either direction.
You're actually describing the way it used to work, back when there was just a horn in the steering wheel. Older cars used a metal ring on the steering column and a springy contact on the steering wheel, or vice-versa, all lubricated with conductive grease. My guess is that design's not reliable enough when you have an airbag. The clockspring is named because it resembles a clockspring. It's a big coil of multi-conductor wire tape that can wind itself up and unwind itself as the steering wheel is turned. Considering the cost of wire tape, the price Saab charges is absolutely ridiculous. It should cost $20, tops!
 
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