How to swap chrome with aluminum button on your hand brake

BoosTDIt

Veteran Member
Joined
Jan 14, 2003
Location
DC area - Fairfax,VA
TDI
The Last NA 2dr 5sp
OK...so it's been some time i know but...i'll come through...
Just been too busy upgrading and working [job, my car and other people's cars] to raise more $$ for mods :eek:



Here comes the official
"How to swap the button Assembly on your Hand Brake - works same way on both 99.5-03 and 04-06 H-Brakes in Mk4 Golf/Bora-Jetta"

Parts:
1J0 711 323 D 4J4 $11.00 from Impex last month

Tools:
T20 torx
13mm socket
ratchet & extension
10mm open end wrench
big flathead
needle nose pliers
hook tool

.................................................. .........................

At first i assumed that if someone was to undertake this mod...you most likely have a very good idea how to disassemble your interior [assumption due to no one would upgrade JUST this unless they already have all the rest of the aluminum trim]...but anyways ..to freshen up your memories.

1. First if you have an armrest...[if no armrest go to step 2. ]
- pop open by hand the side cover on the driver side.
- remove 1 nut [13mm] with a extension preferably.
- wiggle out and remove armrest assembly aside

2.a For 2003 and below consoles
- open and remove rear ashtray ...press the covers down and it'll pop the tray for you
- remove 2 torx [T20] through the guide holes ...use a bit on a magnetic screwdriver for easy retrieval...you will have to hold the ashtray covers halfway closed to be able to see the guide holes.

2.b For 2004 and up consoles
- slide out rear cup holder ...with your fingers squeeze from inside out the sides to release it and completely remove it.
- use hook tool to pop the base cover...
- remove the 2 [T20] torx that are easily seen in the location

Continue below ....all consoles same

- use the hook tool and remove the 2 screw covers in the most forward lower corners of the console & remove the 2 [T20] torx behind those covers

- open front ashtray and remove it...remove 1 [T20] torx ,lift onto the 2 locking tabs with the hook and slide the assembly - IN , UP and out...unclip the lighter connector
- pop the shifter boot and lift up
- the front section of the console has 2 more [T20] torx all the way up and under the dash on each side. Remove them and as you grab both sides with your hands gently press down until it releases [don't loose the clips- they tend to come off if you just yank on it] so pull down and spread them to make sure its free.
- place shifter in 4th and lower h-brake.
lift up the front section of console and pull it back and out.
- place shifter in 3rd and raise h-brake as much as possible
- lift up the rear section of console from the front and slide forward and out of the h-brake.


3. H- Brake
- with a 10mm open end wrench loosen the nut on the h-brake for the cables till they slide out of they holding bracket or whatever it's called...you'll see
or better yet remove it completely because we'll be doing that later on anyways
- With the 13mm socket remove the 2 bolts on the pass. side of h-brake ....1 more on the driver side or if you have a arm rest you'll need a deep 13mm to remove the 13mm nut holding the armrest bracket ...then the 13 mm stud below it.

now that we have the
H-brake out........



I sincerely hope you know how to remove the h-brake cover ..because on a Leather one ...it's a tedious procedure...on the plastic ones -- flip it upside down and you'll see a tab that needs to be lifted up with a hook tool and the cover slides out free...same on the leather ones but ....you cant see the tab...you'll need a plastic one to inspect for guidance and then just poke it with the hook and pray to hit the spot...i cut a 1/4 inch of the stitches on my first one till i learned to do it blindly

Next....



See where my fingers are pointing...
- undo the nut [10mm] if you haven't already from following the instructions above...
- then with the hook pop the "C" clip...usefull to stick a magnet to it so it doesn't fly off.
- slide the long rod out and remove the "C" clip pin

That way you get full swing and movement of the ratcheting arm.

Next...



Look close at where I'm pointing...get the big guns out and bend those 2 locking tabs UP - i used a big flat head.
Those tabs prevent the ratcheting lock arm to move too much forward or too much backwards...

Bend them up just enough so that they dint hit the arm anymore

Next...



OK here is what we're dealing here...this pic is the new part and only for information/guidance purpose...
see where I'm pointing at..
the lock arm slides inside that loop hole...by now you should have the button moving back and forth but theres still some binding and it doesn't look like it'll come out...
So i thought too ...but i also thought if VW sells a part like that ...there is a way to do it...they put it in some how right.

Next...



In this next picture i'm doing it on the out side so you can see exactly where to press...you have to press down in this exact spot while pulling the button out from the h-brake...don't press too hard ..use sense ... it's plastic
press gently and work it out..

Next..



There you have it...the button less h-brake

Slide the new button in and guide the lock arm through the loop hole and move the arm forward while pressing the button in....it should snap in place without much effort. Then guide the arm in the center of the hole on top and bend those locking tabs back down to their old positions...

reassemble ...........
 

mydeathbynapalm

Veteran Member
Joined
Feb 18, 2004
Location
Great Falls, VA (NoVA)
TDI
Golf GLS, 2002, Reflex Silver
we didn't want to just pop the buttons on and off. The part is one whole piece...not just the cover. It's a nice upgrade if one is doing the '04 center console (like I was thanks to Peter). We also installed mine upside down actually...so it sits slightly more square to the lines of the e-brake handle. Looks pretty nice actually...shows the aluminum look off a bit more.
 

BoosTDIt

Veteran Member
Joined
Jan 14, 2003
Location
DC area - Fairfax,VA
TDI
The Last NA 2dr 5sp
well ....believe me...i looked into swaping out just the button...i didn't want to got through all that drama eighter but i coudnt figure out how to pop off JUST the button...
and my logic was telling me that if that part comes together WITH the button then it must be easier to swap the whole thing instead of risking to brake both new and old pieces in trying to get only the button out..
i tought it was glued on so it came along as a assembly...

and it took me a while to figure out the assembly too...
so long that i acctually gave up cause i came upon a good deal on complete GLI h-brake that picked up.
And ofcouse as usual ...after it came...i figured it out...
so ended up with a extra h-brake and new button for sale/trade ...which i put in Nate - mydeath's car..
 

astonishedboy

Veteran Member
Joined
Dec 3, 2003
Location
pickinoutthetitsburgh, PA
TDI
Y2k Golf, Black Mariah
Actually, the dealer put the new button on for me. Maybe they did take apart the whole eBrake like this, but I doubt it. Anyway, I found the button that fell off about a month later, when cleaning out the car. Just a cheap piece of plastic. So I can appreciate this mod. Wish I new of it earlier.
 

mydeathbynapalm

Veteran Member
Joined
Feb 18, 2004
Location
Great Falls, VA (NoVA)
TDI
Golf GLS, 2002, Reflex Silver
I think they too the assembly off...you look at the labor charge? It is one part # as Peter said.

One of those other touches to think about moding...and as I am changing various trim pieces to the brushed AL, this was one of those parts! I just have the doorpulls left at this point. :D
 

BoosTDIt

Veteran Member
Joined
Jan 14, 2003
Location
DC area - Fairfax,VA
TDI
The Last NA 2dr 5sp
Yea honestly ..i don't know how yours fell off...the part number is one and it comes like this....
maybe you'r car was in warranty and you didn't pay anything so you don't know what they did....
again not really sure if there is a way to get just the button off...didn't want to risk breaking both the new and the old assembly that will be replaced
 

astonishedboy

Veteran Member
Joined
Dec 3, 2003
Location
pickinoutthetitsburgh, PA
TDI
Y2k Golf, Black Mariah
It was under warranty. Since I noticed the button missing after I took it in for service, they replaced it. I found it on the floor later.


Maybe since I have a 2000, it's different.
 

imperium

Veteran Member
Joined
May 8, 2006
Location
Poulsbo, WA
TDI
'98 New Beetle
I too found mine on the floor when I got my car. So you all are saying the button is actually one piece with the handle? Seems like such a waste of time to take everything apart to replace the button, altho I shall be taking my interior apart soon anyway. Think this would apply to a 98 NB?
 

BoosTDIt

Veteran Member
Joined
Jan 14, 2003
Location
DC area - Fairfax,VA
TDI
The Last NA 2dr 5sp
honestly no idea..but like i said earlier up in the posts...if u try to buy a new button ..it comes as pictured with the spring thingie
 

im no hero x

Veteran Member
Joined
Mar 28, 2007
Location
Tri-State
TDI
'03 Jetta Variant 5-spd
Where is this tab that I need to move to take off the cover? i've been trying for 2 hours now and I can't even get the cover off on my old one! :(

Anyone got a description of what the tab looks like at least or something??
 

BoosTDIt

Veteran Member
Joined
Jan 14, 2003
Location
DC area - Fairfax,VA
TDI
The Last NA 2dr 5sp
Im no hero x

i been away long time....anyway

Take a close look at the very last photograph.

You see the area of the grab handle where it is totaly straight right.

The area where you place your hand...as you go further you can see

how there is a 90 degree cut going up and then it straightens out

again and starts to curve down towards the floor. Exactly in the area

where the 90 degree cut is ,is the tab..tab is facing forward..points to the

button..so you flip hand brake upside down and poke the hook tool

through the stitches right in the area before it starts to curve..oh yea

hook should be pointing towards back obviously..

hope that helps..
 

Nuje

Top Post Dawg
Joined
Feb 11, 2005
Location
Island near Vancouver
TDI
2015 Sportwagen; Golf GLS 2003; 2016 A3 e-tron
Once I had the brake lever removed (mabye 10 minutes?), it was probably 30 minutes max. to do the swap and get it back to photo #1 condition. By far, the longest step was bending the metal tabs back down to become proper "stops" again.

Thanks for the excellent write-up and pics - never could have figured this out without the help.
 

BoosTDIt

Veteran Member
Joined
Jan 14, 2003
Location
DC area - Fairfax,VA
TDI
The Last NA 2dr 5sp
thanks
im glad atleast someone found that usefull...therefor the write up....it is soo tedious that only the true VW geek would attempt adding that little detail to their ride :p

believe me..i ordered that button ..and it took me maybe a month to figure this out... to be honest..i even bought a complete '05 GLI H-Brake
out of frustration ..and after i did that i managed to swap the button on my old one..and sold it to a friend :D
 

Nuje

Top Post Dawg
Joined
Feb 11, 2005
Location
Island near Vancouver
TDI
2015 Sportwagen; Golf GLS 2003; 2016 A3 e-tron
I just hated that in my new (used) car, the chrome paint had chipped off the button, and looked like crap. Having seen this post a while ago, I bought the brushed Al button thing, but never wanted to go through all the hassle (like you said - quite a bit of work for seemingly little payoff).

However, having done the centre console replacement to give myself some cup-holders down by the H-brake, this looked like the perfect opportunity. And now having done it, I could probably do it start to finish in 45 minutes or so. So, really - not all that tedious at all once you know what you're doing.

Thanks again! :D
 

Syndicate

Veteran Member
Joined
May 14, 2007
Location
FL
TDI
14 Q7 TDI Sline, 09 335d
Thank god I found this to take the ebrake cover off, thanks for the detailed instruction! lol I was wondering what the tab on the underside was.
 
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