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If you own o­ne of these cars long enough there is a good chance that someday you’ll experience a failed ignition switch. When the switch fails it typically sticks in the ‘start’ position which will keep the starter engaged and cause things such as your power windows, radio, and climate control to stop functioning.

If you look in the factory repair manual it will tell you to remove the entire steering wheel and instrument cluster. While that would make access easier it is not essential to do so. For the process detailed below both the steering wheel and instrument cluster were left in the car. The cluster will be repositioned in order to allow for access to the switch however it was not unplugged or removed from the car.

OK, so what will you need for this operation?

  1. Small flat screwdriver (see photo for an idea o­n the size)
  2. Medium Phillips screwdriver
  3. Small towel to cover top of steering wheel switch panel (to avoid scratching it with instrument cluster o­nce moved out of the way)
  4. Telescoping mirror (comes in very handy although not essential)
  5. Light. A small fluorescent work light worked well for my purposes. Just don’t use anything HOT as you don’t want to melt any of the wiring harnesses in the dash.
  6. Thread locker (Loctite etc.)
  7. A few cotton swabs (Q-tips)
  8. New Ignition Switch. Audi Part Number 4A0 905 849B
  9. Patience.. and smaller hands help too. 😉
  10. A telescoping magnet retrieval tool may come in handy as well… in the event you drop something in the dash. Let’s hope for the best however!
  11. Time: If you are new to this sort of thing allocate about 2 hours start to finish. If all goes in your favor and you’re a handy individual I suspect it could be done in about 45 mins.

Let’s get started… step by step:

  1. Remove the lower instrument cluster bezel trim. There are two Phillips type screws that you will need to remove first. o­ne is up from the ignition itself and the other is o­n the opposite side of the steerin