Have the buttons stopped working on your navigator? If they have, then this Tech Article will show you how to replace them and make your navigator work like new! It will guide you through what you need to order, and how to install the new parts. Only basic soldering skills are required, and the results are very rewarding!


Parts Required:

1. 12 replacement switches part number 101-TS7311T1606 from Mouser.com or P12227SCT-ND from digikey.com

2. Soldering Iron, Solder, and Solder Wick

3. Philips Screwdriver

4. Side cutters or Equivalent.

The Instructions:

1. Start by removing the screw from the left and right side that holds the front bezel on. The bezel should then easily slide forward and come off. Next, remove the two screws from the back of the navigator and the two locating pins from the left and right side. The bottom will then come off and the circuit boards can be removed; they should easily slide out. Then, fold apart the two halves so that they are seperated. I found that the project was easier if I removed the gray light bulbs also. Set them aside for later reinstallation.

Navigator after removing front bezel

2. This next photo shows the tools that are required, as you can see, you wont need too much equipment. A soldering iron, solder wick (to remove the old solder), and the 12 new switches are all thats required.

Circuit board removed from metal case

3. Next, use the solder wick to remove the bulk of the solder from the holes around the switch leads. Be careful with the holes that are closest to the display, as the wiring trace is on the top side, not the bottom where your soldering iron is. It is also important to note that the switches are not to be removed at this time, we are only removing the solder. This photo shows the board after the solder has been removed.

Bulk of Solder removed from board

4. Now it is time to remove the old switches. The easiest way to do this is to heat up one leg of the switch and rock it upward out of the hole, and then do the same thing for the other side. Do this for all twelve switches and then the board will be ready to accept the new switches.

5. Once you have removed all of the switches, you are ready to start installing the new ones. Center the new switch in the hole and use something to hold it down so that it does not fall out when you flip the board over. I used a small blob of super glue.

First switch glued into place

All 12 switches glued into place

View from back of board, you are now ready to solder

When you are soldering the switches, be careful to not heat the switch up too much. A quick touch of the soldering iron is all that’s required. If you use too much heat, you risk melting the switch.

All switches soldered into place

6. The next step is to cut the tails off of the switches. This is easily done with a pair of side cutters.

Tails cut off switches

7. Now put the navigator back together by reversing the steps above. Make sure the bulbs make good contact, as the ones in mine were not making a good connection and it took a few tries before they all lit.

Lamps installed

All re-assembled minus faceplate

8. Reinstall the navigator into the car and enjoy pushing the buttons that actually work!