Piston Slap: B-bodies Shall Master the Road Once More! (Part II)
Sir, I have a problem with my 1994 Buick Roadmaster. You remember the one that I inherited from my parents but didn’t care for the way it rode? Yeah, that one.
I followed a lot of your advice in making it a much more desirable car for me: big sway bars, rebuilt the front suspension with police grade goodies. Same with brakes. Redid the steering box, too! But now there’s a problem: the darn thing keeps blowing its horn!
Usually I’m in a store when it goes off and the call comes over the loudspeaker that my car is screaming at the top of its lungs. And those triple horns are loud!
Please tell me how to get this fixed!
You previously mentioned you’d let a mechanic address complex(?) things, but it’s time to get a full set of GM service manuals (including wiring diagrams) and up your game!
A stuck horn is, in theory, a simple fix to a simple system.
I’ll randomly assume the horn circuit/relay is fine, it’s likely the steering wheel airbag’s horn pad stuck in the “on” position. Designs vary, but the system is usually two metal plates suspended from each other, closing when you push the horn button. The suspension is either via something terrible (like structural foam that turns to dust after 15+ years) or a spring-loaded suspension. When the separating technology fails, the horn just won’t shut up!
This video shows the easy way to defeat the airbag horn switch. Which you could certainly do…
Considering you’ve done an admirable job on my suggested OEM+ upgrades from B-body sister ship Chevy Caprice/Impala, it’d be nice if you fixed/replaced the airbag.
If you’re lucky, finding an NOS airbag will be easy and somewhat cheap. If not, dissect another airbag from a junkyard for practice: disassemble it in a static electricity free zone, do not mess with the ignitor, and get to the horn pad.
Is there a part number on the pad assembly? If so, look it up on eBay/ Rearcounter and get a new one. If not, can you do anything to restore that aforementioned suspension back to new again?
If all else fails, do the external button/switch as seen in the above video. But get a spare steering wheel if you want the buttons in the rims, please!
What say you, Best and Brightest?
[Image: Shutterstock user JazzBoo]
Send your queries to email@example.com. Spare no details and ask for a speedy resolution if you’re in a hurry…but be realistic, and use your make/model specific forums instead of TTAC for more timely advice.
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