Problem: My steering wheel sounded like it had sand in it, scraping on every turn. Nasty business.
Solution: Behind the steering wheel there are one or two sprung metal contacts that ‘slide’ over a metal contact ring on the steering wheel itself, presumably to connect the horn and airbag electrics. After 17 years it seems that lots of dirt and crap have built up on the contacts.
1) Baby Wipes are the solution to about 98% of the world’s problems and this is no exception. Folding a baby wipe 3 or 4 times lengthways, and running through the gaps shown in the image below removes a load of dirt!
2) After the initial application of the ‘wipe’ I wanted to make sure there wasn’t any weird residues that might interfere with the contacts, so used some ‘Switch Cleaner’ on a dry baby wipe; they dry out very quickly if you just leave one in the air. Liberal spraying of the wipe with Switch cleaner and then running it through all the contacts and gaps again resulted in a very clean and silent setting experience!
Switch Cleaner: The type I used is a bit of an standard, called ‘Servisol Super 10 Switch Cleaning Lubricant’ but any Switch or Contact cleaner / lubricant will do. Mine was bought from RS or Maplin I think, but you’ll get it in any motor factors, electrical factors and probably most DIY places for a couple of quid a can.
Please let me know if this little tip was useful, just one click!