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Telescopic Steering Column Question

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Old 04-26-11, 08:42 AM   #1
papasmithn
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Default Telescopic Steering Column Question

I am now the new owner of a garaged all of its life, near pristine condition, 97 LS 400 with 95,000 miles.

While searching for an LS 400, I noticed that the automatic tilt and retract feature of the the steering column in several of these cars had stopped working. This would definitely have an impact on resale. As I am quite satisfied with the steering column remaining in one place, is there a simple way to disable this feature on my car such that, when I decide to sell, I could reactivate it. Fuse, something?? If not, does anyone have an idea of how much this would cost to fix?

Thanks,
Dave in NC
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Old 04-26-11, 09:38 AM   #2
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On my 91' LS theres a "automatic" button on the left of the colum. Just push it.
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Old 04-26-11, 12:22 PM   #3
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One reason people turn them off is eventually (Gen 1s anyway) the gear can slip down the shaft so that it doesn't work anymore. The fix is really easy though, and there are DIY instructions on how to put a shim underneath the gear to keep it engaged.
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Old 04-27-11, 09:48 AM   #4
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I think your '97 is like my '99, no switch on the side like the gen1 cars, it's a programable feature that dealers can change.
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Old 04-27-11, 10:13 AM   #5
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is there a way to turn disable it on a 95 ls
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Old 04-28-11, 06:05 AM   #6
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I think the '95 is a genII which would make it a programable option, if you don't have a switch on the side of the steering column to disable it like the genI. In that case it will take someone with a Lexus scan tool (like a dealer) to change it. I almost disabled mine when I took it to my independent shop for a timing belt replacement, I requested that it be disabled and they said they could do it, but when I got it back it was still enabled. Didn't want to bother with taking it back, and now I'm starting to like this feature. There is a great DIY post with pics on how to lubricate the gears that control the tilt/telescope, that's the most common failure and from what I've read it's not as big a problem with the later LS400s as it was with the earlier cars. There's also another post with a list of all the options that can be programmed for yor car, if you decide to take it in check out the list.
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Old 04-28-11, 01:18 PM   #7
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Wanderson View Post
I think the '95 is a genII which would make it a programable option, if you don't have a switch on the side of the steering column to disable it like the genI. In that case it will take someone with a Lexus scan tool (like a dealer) to change it. I almost disabled mine when I took it to my independent shop for a timing belt replacement, I requested that it be disabled and they said they could do it, but when I got it back it was still enabled. Didn't want to bother with taking it back, and now I'm starting to like this feature. There is a great DIY post with pics on how to lubricate the gears that control the tilt/telescope, that's the most common failure and from what I've read it's not as big a problem with the later LS400s as it was with the earlier cars. There's also another post with a list of all the options that can be programmed for yor car, if you decide to take it in check out the list.
I tried searching but I, personally, could not find the DIY. Is it on LexLS.com?
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Old 04-28-11, 03:26 PM   #8
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Well I just googled LS400 Telescopic and so many results came up and found these:

http://us.lexusownersclub.com/forums...showtopic=4237

http://www.clublexus.com/forums/sc-4...n-and-out.html


Pls try searching google as you can always get loads of answers. Just a suggestion.

Hope you get the problem fixed.
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Old 04-28-11, 08:41 PM   #9
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Quote:
Originally Posted by waseem3000 View Post
Well I just googled LS400 Telescopic and so many results came up and found these:

http://us.lexusownersclub.com/forums...showtopic=4237

http://www.clublexus.com/forums/sc-4...n-and-out.html


Pls try searching google as you can always get loads of answers. Just a suggestion.

Hope you get the problem fixed.
Didn't even think about Google. I don't have a problem.. I was just interested in the DIY.
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Old 04-29-11, 06:14 AM   #10
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I thought the steering column motor DIY was on this board, not sure if it was in the maintenance section, may have also been on lexusownersclub site. But goggling tilt/telescope LS400 is how I stumbled upon it but I don't have it bookmarked. Basically once you remove the steering column cover you'll see two motors in plain view, one on the left side of the column and one on the bottom. Both have flat cover plates on the front that are held on with bolts, once these plates are removed the motor gears are exposed, that's where they need lube. Looked like there was more time & effort in removing the steering column cover than in exposing & lubing the motor gears, but it had excellent pictures if there's any questions. I haven't done it yet, but it appears to be a very easy proceedure. Based on the pics it looks like they're lubed with a white lithium/molypaste.
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Old 04-29-11, 07:35 AM   #11
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In my case, and this is Gen1, it stopped working when the gear slid down the shaft. It was a very easy fix but I still turned off the auto tilt as I don't know if the shim would hold up to daily use.
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Old 05-02-11, 03:52 PM   #12
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Well, there is a lot of discussion about how to cut off the Gen1 switch and, I have found a post on how the Lexus Dealership can cut off the feature with some special codes for the 1998 and 1999 models. Yet, I have not found anything on how to cut this feature off for a 1997 except installing some kind of cutoff switch in the key mechanism which sounds above my pay grade. In addition, I have done a google search to no avail. In fact, the search led me back to Club Lexus. Any other ideas?
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Old 05-03-11, 12:42 PM   #13
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Set wheel where you want and unplug it inside the steering column.
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Old 05-04-11, 10:58 AM   #14
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I was just wondering if unplugging would keep the wheel in the position set, or would it retract to the "home" position. Thanks!
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Old 05-04-11, 01:02 PM   #15
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Quote:
Originally Posted by MicahBerry View Post
I was just wondering if unplugging would keep the wheel in the position set, or would it retract to the "home" position. Thanks!
Yes, there are two plugs one for tilt and one in and out.
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Old 05-04-11, 01:02 PM
 
 
 
 
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