Aftermarket Steering Wheel Wackiness

Yesterday I installed a new Steering wheel, hub adapter, and quick release in my 2005 Subaru WRX. In doing so, I ended up deleting the cruise control. Could this affect my car’s idle at all? Now, the idle briefly drops super low (almost to the point of stalling) when I let off the gas before returning to the normal idle RPM. I’m guessing there’s a vacuum line I need to disconnect somewhere? All I have done is removed the harness that was attached to the clock spring.

Assuming you have solved the misfire problems in your other posts you really need to join a RRR Forum ( Ridiculous Rice Racers ) because you have just ruined the resale of this vehicle and may have violated some state or federal statutes about removing air bags .

1 Like

Honestly I cannot see how this would affect idle quality at all, tho maybe I’m about to learn something silly. Did you perform any other services under the hood of your Subaru in conjunction with this steering wheel event?

1 Like

Luckily I don’t plan on reselling the vehicle so the monetary value of it is meaningless to me. Thanks for your contribution.

Nothing at all, this is why I’m so confused. All I did was remove the factory steering wheel and clock spring and installed the new one. Deleted the airbag and cruise control (duh) but I altered nothing else on the car and now the idle is giving me issues. A friend said I need to disconnect the cruise control cable on the throttle body and I’m trying to confirm/deny if that will help.

Yeah, except there isn’t one. This car has drive-by-wire which means the cruise is totally electronic and the throttle is as well. No cables. No vacuum line to disconnect either.

I can’t see where this would affect your idle at all.

The question we always ask… is the check engine light on?


That generation of engines still used the idle air control valve for idle control, I happen to have problem with this valve on more than one Subaru.
Luckily for me, it was enough simply to clean it, no replacement was needed.

1 Like


Rockauto doesn’t list an IAC valve for this vehicle?


probably my mistake.
I used to have 1996, 2002, 2003, then 2007, all long gone.
one some two of them I had unstable idle and ended up cleaning IAC from the carbon, which helped.
probably 2005 already transitioned to drive-by-wire.

There used to be buttons on the steering wheel for the CC right? And now – with the new steering wheel – those buttons don’t exist. So maybe the problem is that the CC thinks one or more of those buttons are being pressed (when they aren’t obviously) and this is confusing the electronics that controls the throttle valve position. Suggest to carefully examine the CC’s connections to those buttons (on the car’s electrical diagrams) as it may be necessary for those buttons to be placed (via some sort of simulated method) into the “off” position. Simply disconnecting a button (switch) doesn’t always cause it to go into the off state in electronic circuity.


Deleted the air bag and cruise control (duh)

Duh indeed, I don’t think anything anyone on this forum says is going to make the slightest impression on you.

I don’t know if you have considered this, but deleting the air bag could present a huge problem down the road if an accident occurs.

Even if the accident was someone else’s fault and you were badly injured or killed the insurer would, and justifiably so, refuse any payout to you or next of kin based on the missing air bag.
Even if the bag had zero to do with any injury or death.

As for the idle issue I don’t see the steering wheel having anything to do with that,

1 Like

I am not sure this is true. There are many cars on the road here which are old enough to have no airbags, or only a driver’s airbag. There are also many cars on the road here which were previously involved in an accident, branded a “salvage” title, and returned to working condition–with no new airbags installed.

I do not think the liability insurance of an at-fault driver can legally weasel out of paying for injuries incurred by the people in the other car, just because there are no airbags, or the airbags were previously used and not replaced.

I do think there might be a risk for legal liability if one resells a vehicle in which the airbags were removed, disabled, or used but never replaced. Even then, the seller would have to have actual knowledge. This would not be easy for a plaintiff to prove if the car in question had several owners. Who’s to say that the most recent owner had any idea?

considering the OP removed them himself I doubt that. It’s not the same as being in an accident, having them deploy, then not replacing them when the vehicle is repaired

Most governing bodies will inspect the car prior to allowing it back on the road. It will fail.

You always have a responsibility to minimize damage where you have control. It would be a simple argument to say that the person’s injuries in the other car were made worse due to their knowingly defeating a safety feature. The knowingly part will be easy when they see an aftermarket steering wheel…

That bright red glowing SRS light on the dash should be sufficient.

1 Like

By that same logic, anyone who is driving a 1994 or older truck/SUV, or anyone who is driving a 1992 or older car, which never had any airbags or other modern “safety features” would be at fault for their injuries sustained in an accident–even if the other driver ran a stop sign/red light or was drunk/on drugs at the time of the accident. After all, they could have bought a different used car with those features for roughly the same price.

The law certainly doesn’t work that way here in Arizona, and even people who failed to wear their safety belt can still receive compensation for their injuries from the at-fault driver (or their insurance). Also, the inspection for turning a “salvage” title, which cannot be registered back into a “restored” title, which can be registered does not require the replacement of used airbags. It requires that the vehicle be structurally sound, that all lights and horn work, and that invoices or other documentation be provided for any parts replaced as a result of the accident.

That’s irrelevant, because the point is that OP intentionally removed a safety system that should be there. In part, his insurance rates are based on the insurance company’s belief that the car has an airbag. You get a discount for that because it’s likely that the airbag will save the insurance company some money if you get in a wreck. Most of us have forgotten that because it’s been so long since non-airbag-equipped cars have been made.

Beyond the basics, insurance companies are not your friend. They will take any excuse to deny a claim. Intentionally disabling a safety system makes their day because they can deny the claim and no one will call them a bad guy, unlike when the medical insurance does crap like denying cancer coverage because you didn’t tell them about your teenage-years acne.


Not the same at all as shadowfax pointed out. Intentionally modifying the existing systems is the key, not the existence of them in the first place.

In some states, there is a thing called comparative negligence. You may still be awarded damages but they could be reduced by the amount of your negligence. In fact, I would bet on it.

Something to read on it-

ok4450: Now we know why the FAA makes the use of STC’s and 337 forms. Gee, I had to have an A&P file 337 forms (and new W&B) for the copper electrical cables in my Seneca (big improvement from Aluminum), and when I switched from paper to “Brackett” air filters on the engines. But there will always be those owners who had a better idea than engineers at Piper, Beech., Cessna, etc.

As a word of caution…If you let someone drive your now modified car and they get in an accident and is seriously injured or killed - YOU can be held responsible…

1 Like