Cadillac | GM | VATs Key System Bypass | 93-03 | Steering Wheel Removal | Turn Signal | Airbag

I'm trying to diagnose my key switch

I've got a that that's a key which is

one of these stinking keys typically I

guess there's a broken wire inside the

column there there's two wires and one

of them usually breaks and it's let's

see it's like in this location back in

there so what you got to do is you got

to take off your air bag I went on

YouTube and I couldn't find anything so

I'm going to attempt to take this apart

and hopefully I can somehow another

fixes thing anyway there's four screws

in the back and I got a mirror here

maybe you can see it there's the four

screws having a mirror kind of kind of

handy but maybe there's four screws

there Torx screws there number 30

I got a 1997 Cadillac DeVille so you

unscrew it I thought it was only two

screws so I was having a house while

trying to take it out but there's four

once you take off for out you know that

it just comes out really easy you can

see be very careful you want to

disconnect your battery first and they

say at least you know wait 30 minutes

before you take it off because you still

have capacitors that still hold

electricity so you know wait about an

hour so you can see the wires here for

the for the airbags so I'm going to have

to disconnect this one here this one

here and this one is for the horn they

said oh so it's twisted off already

oh you break that you're kind of screwed

they said but that one was already

apparently you twist it you could see

this little tab here you stick it in

then you twist it in and it locks in

so take this off there's a little clip

here that I pulled out here I pulled it

out little tab then you unplug this this

little this little plug here was in here

and it just snaps in as you can see and

then you just squeeze it and it comes

right out as you can see there you just

squeeze it

I thought you pulled it out but it is

you gotta squeeze it so I would mark

everything before I take everything out

get yourself a little cup put all your

little clips and stuff in there and move

on to the next step okay now you're

gonna take a 13/16 socket and screw this

nut here which I just broke loose and

just take it off again this one's

already marked but you can see there's a

yellow of mark here there's a yellow

mark there so you're gonna make sure

that and there's a little well I guess

there's a little notch in here you

probably can't see it there's a little

notch in there of course you got a

little notch right there so make sure

those are aligned when you put

everything back together now you get a

pull you know the wheel out and I'm not

too sure if I can do that or not if not

there's two holes here and you're gonna

have to put up wheel puller screws in

there and then turn you know the center

of the wheel is going to go here and you

know pull this out okay as you can see I


we love steering wheel pullers you know

anyway just a puller you can buy these

at Harbor Freight for about 30 bucks or

you can rent one at most part places or

alleys and my little local place here

will rent - it's like anywhere from 30

to 50 bucks but you know once you're

done with it I think they give you like

48 hours you bring it back to give your

money back

so yeah you just take a wrench and turn

it and pulls it out this one's loose

already you can see so okay the steering

wheel just slid right out just got to

avoid these wires or as your point so be

careful when you're pulling it out the

next thing you gonna do is gonna take

this retaining ring off so getting a

special tool that you can you got

something but I picked up these tools at

Harbor Freight it was like I think it

was like five bucks six bucks pretty

good price they they probably won't last

very long but enough to take this off so

so as you can see just gonna slide that

in there so we can get a better shot

okay I've got the the snap ring out you

know just about some these from Harbor

Freight they were like six bucks and I

kind of cheap but you know they work

hopefully I don't have to use them again

but anyway this once you get it Ruth it

just slides out probably want to put

everything in that little cup and this

thing slides out try and take it out

with this little white thing also but I

did also as I marked it as you can see

pencil mark just so I know exactly where

it goes back hopefully these wires here

come out to you with it as you can see

I'm just trying to wiggle it out here

just be very careful I think there's

some wires behind it okay you can see I

got it out there is some locating errors

here but there's a wire behind here so

it was kind of tough to get out and if

you see it's down there so I just had to

turn it down sideways like that

hopefully I don't have to take those out


here's a little clip in here washer just

take it out with your yes it just comes

right out before I take it out I want to

make sure when I put it back it goes

back the same way if there's anything

different about it

I guess that faces downward that's hard

for you guys to probably see that okay

once you get that little spring washer

clip out there's another one that's

right in here I don't you can see the

little shiny area right there that's

just like a round clip also you can't

just take it out because this thing is

also spring-loaded so what you have to

do is you need to push this inward so it

moves forward and then you can take that

clip on and then this comes out now if

you think you can push that in then your

Lots way stronger than me with your

hands but I don't care how strong you

are you won't be able to push that in so

what you have to do is you have to buy

this thing okay and strength will lock

plate remover so I believe that's a lock

plate so this is nine bucks ten bucks

nine bucks so you need to buy this there

if you can find a place to rent it great

but you definitely need this there's no

way around it

for ten bucks what the heck again I got

this at Harbor Freight so I'm going to

mount this thing on it gets screwed in

here that gets this part gets screwed

into this part then those the other side

just pushes that in

okay this is what it looks like with it

on here so I did you just screwed this

into the shaft here get you screwed in

and then I turned this and as I turn it

this moves inward and takes that lock

plate and pushes it in so I can remove

that clip and as I turn I could feel it

moving okay you don't want to turn this

thing too far maybe about

an eighth of an inch or so but all you

need is to move it to clear that so you

can get that clip up once you get that

clip up that'll it'll allow it to move

the clot in this gosh what do you call

it lock plate you know you'll be able to

remove the lock plate once you move that

clip off so you're going to need you

know a little pick like this to get in

there and you know unsnap it just snaps

in so you just kind of unsnap it and

work its way out okay I was able to dig

that out you have to use like a a small

screwdriver and of course is pick you

know to pick it out and then to work

your you know the screwdriver round and

then it comes out you can see it's it's

somewhat out already a little bit I just

need to slide it some more but it's back

it was back in there and now it's half

ways up so I'm going to continue to

slide that out but it's kind of a hassle

but if you've been you know if you're

good with your hands and mechanically

inclined it's it's not too hard

okay I got that ring out so what I'm

going to do is I'm going to put a pencil

line right in here because I don't know

what I'm up against and I'm gonna tell

myself that that the lines from that I

have to mentally remember that because I

got two lines here that's the first one

I'll put a one and then and this is the

second one okay just wanted to show you

how you remove this you need to take

this out with it also but as you can

take it you can see as it just slides

out what I did is I try to remember let

me put it back it's all you know try to

remember that this lines up with that

screw there so I didn't have to mark it

but do whatever you need to do to write

you know to remember so this just now

slides off okay I took the three Torx

screws out but looks like I'm gonna have

to take this screw out and that Phillips

screw these are two full screws and the

handle comes out I believe and then

we'll see what happens before you pull

this out you're gonna have to remove the

emergency your emergency lights here and

if you just stick your phillips

screwdriver in there it unscrews

okay as you move this thing outward be

careful cuz right behind here is some

wires so only move it out as much as you

need to get to the back here okay so be

careful there's wires back in this area

okay so once you move this out of the

way you need to let me get up you need

to remove this torch screw here this

tour screw right here but this isn't the

way okay this pulls out really easy by

the way that Torx screw is let me

double-check that yeah it's a t20 so

before you pull that out you can take a

pair of needlenose pliers

I got some you know small vise grips and

this will pull out all you got to do is

grab it on the pide what I did is I just

grabbed it on the very bottom here okay

just and then it pulls out the thing of

it is is that the key position has to be

in the off position if the key if you're

playing around to see if the wires are

clear or whatever prior to and it's not

in the off position you won't be able to

take that out you'll think you need to

take it out like I did and if you do

pull it out in accuse not in the off

position this is what happens I broke it

so how to go to a junkyard do the same

thing all over again to do that so make

sure the key is in the off position and

this will come right out all you got to

do is just you know there's a clip on

the bottom let me show you you can see

there's a little clip on the bottom and

it slides right out it's pretty easy I

thought I had to put a little harder and

it broke so pull this out first and then

take the torch up

okay so we're taking the short screw-up


okay anyway that's that's what the screw

looks like once you take it out now

I looked in here and you know I turn the

key the wires are all moot the one I

turned the key in the wild all the wires

are moving like they're supposed to the

problem is I don't see any breaks in it

so I pulled the key out and you know it

looked good to me at the time of course

I moved it around earlier okay but when

I looked really close right there you

can see a small break now these wires

can break anywhere so if it was back in

here I wouldn't been able to see it so

at this point you can buy a new cylinder

and then just you know do what I just

showed you take the old you know Oh went

out put the new one in and you're gonna

have wires this orange wire and you're

gonna have to fish that wire going all

the way down the steering column and you

can see on the bottom where the wires at

on the bottom here and fish it out and

you're gonna have to plug it in that

plug there in order to do that you can

see that screw right up in there

you got to unscrew that and this comes

out and then you can take the Owens out

and plug the new ones in you got to take

this gray bar out to do that there's

some clips in there and I mean it's not

that too hard to figure out but you got

to take that bar out but first you're

gonna unscrew that and this plug comes

apart you know it's just a two plugs

that come together male female male and

female anyway you unplug it and then on

the inside not this side but the other

side there's a clips and you unclip it

and then you can pull these wires out

and then you can put your new cylinder

in it apart stores gonna run you about

40 bucks they give you a blank key okay

and you're gonna have to order two new

keys with your VATS number okay mine

happens to be a number seven there's one

through 15 so you have to order two more

keys they give you the blank you go take

the blank into a key shop they charge

you anywhere from three to five bucks to

recut a key recut it and once you

install everything put your key in and

it should start because you're using the

same vats number from the resistor the

same resistor it's just you you're

obviously going to have a new Keene

system in here so you have to have a

blank key so they can think like I said

they give you a keyed one already so

you're going to have to copy the key

that they give you so that's one way I


the other way of doing it is if you know

that you have a problem here with the

wire there's a couple of things you

could do you can figure out what the

resistance is okay and like I said it's

1 through 15

there's a chart figure out what the

resistance is on your particular key in

mind so number 7 so it's 1 point 8 7 I

believe milliamps so what you could do

is find some resistors double-check them

you know put them in series and solder

them together splice this wire down here

and just tap into it you know it's just

going to go on a circle so you know in a

serious it's called and you you've

basically digitally hot-wired your car

that's one way of doing it now another

way to do it to a quick way to figure

out or at least get you going is to

splice the wire and then I've seen some

guys take a wire here don't I don't you

know they he said he started it and I'm

not too sure if the heat is gonna damage

the resistor that's in there so what you

want to do is you know tape it or

whatever you know fix it to one side and

then put another wire on the other side

and then you know put some electrical

tape on it and then take the two wires

and then since you cut it from here

connect the two wires you've already got

all this put together put your same key

in and what's happening is now the

computer is not going to read your key

anymore okay because you cut the wire

but you put a key down here temporarily

to get you going and then come back and

you know with the resistors if you want

and do that or by a cylinder head take

this all apart again put the new one in

run your wire down take that thing apart

replug the wires in the new wires in

take the old ones up put the new ours in

into that terminal and then go take the


have it cut you know with your whatever

number you know you you know that number

you have because you have to have the

correct VAT number for the computer to

read it there's no other way and then

stick you know have it cut and then put

your new key in with with your current

you know which their current VAT number

and then just put it in and it should

start right up


know if you can type it here you can see

a reading okay I've got a touch both

sides and let me have they're moving it

backwards but I'm reading 1.13 it looks


1.06 1.13 do it again 1.13

okay so on a chart here get a chart and

1.13 is number five you can see there

1.13 is number five

so that's the VATS key number that's how

you determine what key number it is is

by these steps

now once you've determined that what you

want to do and this is the key that you

have unless you have a second key if you

have a second key and you don't want to

be without a second key then go on eBay

and buy yourself a vats key with that

number number five okay now again I mean

don't order number five but obviously

you're gonna have to figure out which

batch key number there's a one to

believe it's 15 okay

and here's where you read it okay the

number that the resistance number that

you're gonna get off here once you

determine the resistance number then

that'll determine your vats key number

anyway figure out your vats key number

go on eBay T so many where from five six

dollars all the way up to $25.00 per of

that's key the ones that have the

Cadillac emblem on and obviously going

to cost more if you just buy a plain one

then another cheaper so okay we know

it's number five be going obey the order

of that's key one or two however many

one it comes to you know to your house

obviously and let's say now we have the

VATS key from eBay right here okay now

this is what we're gonna do

you gonna take some more okay yeah good

about six inches or so you're gonna cut

it cut - okay gonna strip both sides

okay once you strip both sides okay then

what you do is you're gonna buy these

flat connectors really okay there you go

look like this okay

can I know you guys seen these before if

you have it just show them the video

this and you know what to do anyway it

doesn't have to be very big

you can see how relationship how big it

is to the key no are you gonna put these

in right into the wire okay what you

want to do is you want to crimp that

really really good okay so crimp it

really good damaging that you're gonna

get two of them like that right I don't

have the other one here but you're gonna

get two of them like this on each side

and then you're gonna have this is the

other side what it looks like you could

go a little longer on these maybe go

half an inch just recorded achieve in

one inch if you wanted to okay so then

anyway so you're gonna get you're gonna

have two leaves like this if you could

be the same color doesn't matter okay

then what you're gonna do the key now

some guys say solder on here and I think

that's I don't think that's what you

should do because there's it's a

resistance in here and we don't know if

there's a resistor or what in there and

if you heat it it could probably

damage the resistor so what I decided to

do was to take some electrical tape what

you're gonna do is you're gonna cover

the key okay okay you can see how it

kind of looks and where that little

metal thing is that even the dark part

go ahead and take your utility knife

your exacto knife and just cut it out so

only that area and to cut your finger

that area is exposed okay see what I got

there you can see if we're only maybe

you can't I don't know you can see that

it's only that little metal area that

little metal metal area only that's

exposed see because what we don't want

to do is we don't want to touch the

metal on here we don't want to test the

metal on here because if we do that


then we're connecting on the other side

it's not gonna work so anyway so now

that we got that exposed then we put

this on here right and you put some you

know you do it on both sides okay you do

the same thing like this on this side

too right so you want to do the same to

both sides and then what you're gonna do

is you put this on here make sure it's a

good contact and then or you know either

way you can go oh gosh so they you know

you're gonna either this way or this way

it doesn't matter but tape it together

both both of them in case you're gonna

have you know both of them like that

okay it's gonna look like this

you're gonna tape them together

all right once you tape them together

okay once you've taped them together you

know I'm just doing this as an example

but once you tape them together okay

once you've tape it together

get one of these okay and what are you

going to do is you're going to position

it right over that area where that metal

clip is that the reason why you want to

do that is because this is going to go

underneath the your steering column and

it's low voltage it's not gonna kid it

and I'll get you know catch on fire or

anything like that number one you got

you know tape over but on a hot day if

it's just tape you know these those

those contacts are gonna get loose and

they're probably not gonna make a good

connection if you clip this on it's

gonna make sure that those two contacts

are touching the key and those resistors

on each side it's going to hold it there

it's not going to move and then of

course you're gonna connect these two

wires underneath now remember you have

the wires coming down from the steering

column into that box that I was talking

about what you're going to do is you're

gonna cut the wire you know on the pin

box area you don't cut it so close to

the box cut it about if you can about

six inches away you're going to cut it

and you're going to connect it the wires

coming out of the box you'll see two

aren't you know you're gonna you're

gonna see once you cut it you're gonna

have to you know splice it and they'll

be two watt you know there'll be two R's

and you splice it and you're gonna

splice it and you're gonna connect it to

this right and what's happens is this is

going to complete the circuit okay

you got the two wires coming in and

you're gonna connect it you're gonna put

electrical tape you know blah blah blah

and you know you're gonna put this up

with nothing you know underneath here


what do you call it you're gonna put

this underneath your - next to the box

put it somewhere so it doesn't fall down

next thing you know your foot is

breaking this thing off accidentally

make sure it's you know out of the way

and what like I said it completes the

circuit okay well it's gonna happen when

you turn the key on instead of the the

computer going up into the column

reading the key and then coming back

down in the box and going back the

computer and saying okay we got the

right key in there

what's happy now is it's going from here

to this key in reading it going back and

telling the computer saying you know

we're good to go

and this is how they call this is called

digitally hot-wiring a car technically

you're not hot-wiring it you know you

just give it another key you know to

read off of instead of the one of the

column and like I said these cost about

seven to twenty five dollars depend on

what you know kind of key you want to