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Old 12-05-2015, 12:07 PM   #1
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Add steering wheel instrument controls to focus S? (adds T/C switch!) and factory Cruise.

Does anyone know if you can add the instrument control switches to a 2012 focus S and have them function? I want to replace the instrument cluster with unit that has the larger TFT display and then add the control switches so that I can go into the menu's to switch off traction control. The replacement process looks fairly simple but I don't know if the GEM/BCM support the other devices.

If someone knows or has done this, your input would be welcome.

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Last edited by fishcat; 12-25-2015 at 01:51 PM. Reason: updated info
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Old 12-06-2015, 12:24 AM   #2
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A way to switch TC off in the '12 S models would be great.

This thread gives info. on a way to switch BCM options, maybe with the right wiring/switches it would do it for you:FoCCCus Central ECU Config Edit

It worked for adding select shift to a car without it once the control was added (different shifter/wiring).
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Old 12-06-2015, 11:56 AM   #3
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Quote:
Originally Posted by sailor View Post
A way to switch TC off in the '12 S models would be great.

This thread gives info. on a way to switch BCM options, maybe with the right wiring/switches it would do it for you:FoCCCus Central ECU Config Edit

It worked for adding select shift to a car without it once the control was added (different shifter/wiring).
I really wish there was a tc switch as well as a switch for hill start. I have my hill start shut off through the cluster, but wish there was an easy way to turn back on.
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Old 12-19-2015, 01:54 PM   #4
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So I have the parts to test if I can add steering wheel controls, swap steering wheels and a new instrument cluster. I swapped instrument clusters so I now have the color TFT display and that lights up and functions normally. I'm now onto swapping the steering wheel. I removed my current airbag and have everything laid out but I would like to test if the steering controls are going to operate when plugged in before going further.

My question is, can I turn on the accessories and power up my car, without starting it, with the airbag disconnected?

I imagine the system will detect no air bag and flag an error, will that clear after I'm finished and reconnect the bag????

any insight would be appreciated.

Thanks

Last edited by fishcat; 12-19-2015 at 01:56 PM. Reason: more info
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Old 12-19-2015, 02:42 PM   #5
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so I decided to test the system without an airbag connected and I can tell tell anyone interested in adding the instrument cluster and steering switches, to be able to disable traction control, that it does work on an S model 2012 focus.

The display works nicely and the switches work without any issue. The only remaining issue is to decide what to do about the airbag. They are similar on the backside with the screw bosses being somewhat present to mount the switches. Unfortunately, that would require cutting the plastic on the spoke and I think that would look lousy so I will likely buy an airbag with the switches.

Anyhow, I'm happy it works.
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Old 12-19-2015, 08:35 PM   #6
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Moved this to MkIII Interior mods with a permanent redirect so it doesn't get lost.

Stickie for the TC control on an "S", more info. added to the thread would be good.
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Old 12-21-2015, 06:59 AM   #7
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some additional info:

No programming/changes are required for the upgraded instrument cluster to work. Plug and play.

No programming for the steering controls to access the menus on the upgraded instrument cluster so also plug and play

The issue is the airbag. I'm hesitant to modify the spoke on the existing airbag to mount the switches but an airbag swap requires programming by a shop with the correct software tools since the airbag is linked to the VIN of the car. Doable but the airbag light will be on after a swap.

If I mod the airbag there shouldn't be any safety issue as the switch mounts on the spoke and is outside the airbag radius but would likely be a tradein/sale issue later having a modified airbag.

I will likely replace airbag and get the SRS system updated by someone with the tool
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Old 12-22-2015, 05:42 AM   #8
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So I've asked around a bit about swapping airbags and have been told that if the bag didn't deploy that an airbag swap won't require any SRS servicing. I was told only the airbag module is linked to the VIN and not the bag itself.

I've ordered a bag from a salvage yard and will update after the swap about any issues. Getting close to the finish line now.
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Old 12-25-2015, 01:32 PM   #9
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Ok, so the replacement airbag with switches is in and everything went smoothly. No airbag warnings and everything works perfectly, so much so that I decided to push my luck and enable factory cruise control using Focccus software. Guess what, factory cruise works perfectly on an S model by simply adding the cruise switches on the steering wheel and enabling!!!! Merry Christmas to me :)

Steps to add traction control switch and factory cruise control, you don't have to do both but while you're at it why not?:


1. obtain instrument cluster with color TFT display (I got mine off ebay for ~ 80$). Try to find one with an odometer value as close as possible to that on your car. Even though the ECM tracks mileage they don't synch and the cluster maintains it's own odometer value.
2. obtain an airbag with control switches, has the brushed stainless trim. (got mine on ebay for 160$)
3. obtain a steering wheel that is designed for use with the steering controls and already has the switches for cruise control if you want to enable that. (from ebay ~80$)

The replacement steering wheel is necessary because the steering wheel without any function switches doesn't have a small harness that plugs into the clockspring connector for the airbag switches and horn. The non-switched steering wheel connects the horn directly to the clockspring connector whereas the switched steering wheel has a green connector for all of the switches on the airbag/horn and the cruise switches are wired through the rectangular plug on the clockspring. You can browse ebay for the steering wheel you want, I bought a leather wheel with the cruise control switch.

There are threads on this site for airbag removal but it was really easy. This is the info I followed:
Official Genuine Cruise Control Update...

1. Top piece of trim between the instrument cluster and steering wheel needs to be popped off. No screws.
2. Disconnect battery for an hour or so (this is at your own risk as the removal of the airbag can be hazardous but I didn't have any issues).
3. insert flat blade screwdriver on back side of steering wheel in the clip recesses and gently twist. There are 2 spring clips, one at each end of the bag. When they are spread apart it allows for the airbag to be pulled from the steering wheel. Remove carefully so that the airbag connections are damaged.
4. there are two wiring clips on the back of the airbag, the back of the connector pops up so the connector can be unplugged, it will not unplug until you unlatch the back. Do this very carefully as they are fragile. There are color coded and keyed so you can't mix them up.
5. unplug the rectangular clockspring wiring connector. There is a tab to squeeze and then it unplugs. The airbag should now be free from the steering wheel.

remove steering wheel:
1. Unbolt the center steering wheel bolt and then pull the steering wheel away. Do this carefully so as not to damage the clockspring (where the rectangular connector was plugged in). The clockspring will rotate freely so keep it centered where it was.

Installation is essentially the reverse. After the new steering wheel is bolted on you should see the new green connector that connects all of the new switches from the airbag. The green airbag plug connects there and the rectangular clockspring plug on the steering wheel has a lot more wires to it now for all of the new switches(cruise) so plug that in as well.

Reconnect the two airbag connections and remember to pop the back caps into place so they are flat after plugging them in.

The airbag should pop back into place with the metal clips were spread apart before clicking back into place to secure the bag. It should fit evenly and allow for depressing which activates the horn.

The instrument cluster removal has also been covered in this forum.
info link: Mk3 Custom Gauges: HOW TO
There are 2 screws at the bottom of the instrument cluster that need to be removed and then the instrument cluster pulls forward. There is a tab that engages the top of the cluster that will fight you and make a clicking sound.

When it is pulled forward enough to see the back you will see the electrical connector to the cluster. Removal of that connector is very tricky until you get the hang of it. I'm sorry to say I can't explain how to do it. All I can say is that you need to press the back of the connector(farthest from the cluster) while pulling the catch that locks the connector into place.

remove the cluster and install the new cluster. The connector will plug itself in as you insert it and move the latch back into place. Push the cluster all the way back into the dash until the screw tabs line up again. Replace the screws and then replace the trim that was removed.

Congrats you're mostly done. At this point you can reconnect the battery and the instrument cluster and steering menu switches will now be fully operational. Plug and play. You can now access the menu's that allow disabling Traction Control.

If you purchased a steering wheel with cruise control switches you can load up Foccus software and connect to the car with an ELM USB OBD-II interface and enable cruise and voila, you'll have cruise. I used version 0.8.4 with my 2012 S model Focus and everything works well.

Take your time and it should work well for you too.
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Last edited by fishcat; 12-30-2015 at 10:41 AM.
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Old 12-29-2015, 09:03 PM   #10
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Sounds cool. Question, did you do this on a manual transmission? And could you post links to the eBay parts and maybe pics. Thanks
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