How to Tighten a Loose Gear Shiftby Kevin Mclain
Once a gear shifter becomes loose, it cannot be tightened. The lower gear shifter bushing will have to be replaced to remove the looseness of the gear shifter. The gear shifter is connected to the transmission linkage underneath the gear shifter console. Generally, most all gear shifters will become loose due to aggressive gear changing from the gear shifter. Aggressive gear changing can cause damage to the bushing on the bottom of the gear shifter lever. Once the bushing is damaged, it will cause slack in the gear shifter. Always move the gear shifter without slamming it into gear.
Remove the bolts and nuts that secure the center console around the gear shifter with a 1/4-inch drive ratchet, a metric socket and a Phillips head screwdriver. This will expose the rubber boot. Pull back any carpet as needed to make room for the rubber boot to be pulled over the gear shifter.
Turn the gear shifter knob counterclockwise to remove it from the top of the gear shifter. Pull the rubber boot over the gear shifter and place it on the floorboard.
Loosen and remove the retaining bolts at the base of the gear shifter with the ratchet and a metric socket.
Remove the gear shifter retaining ring with the pliers. Once the retaining ring is removed, you will now be able to pull the gear shifter lever straight up through the console hole. Inspect the bushing on the pivoted area at the bottom of the gear shifter lever. Remove all of the damaged bushing from the bottom of the gear shifter lever with the pliers.
Place the new bushing over the pivotal ball end of the gear shifter lever. Hold the gear lever with one hand and twist the bushing onto the ball end with your other hand until the bushing locks in place.
Reverse the same steps as outlined above to reinstall the gear shifter assembly and the center console assembly. Make sure that all of the retaining nuts and bolts are tight.
- " Ford Mustang Haynes Repair Manual for 1994 thru 2004 covering all models;" John Haynes; 2005
- The bushing for the gear shifter lever can be found at most all auto parts stores.
- Do not shift the gear shifter in an aggressive manner to prevent looseness and slack within the gear shift.
Things You'll Need
- Phillips head screwdriver set
- 1/4-inch drive ratchet
- 1/4-inch drive socket set (Metric)
- New gear shifter lever bushing
- Fix a loose gear shifter lever as soon as possible to prevent the gear shifter lever from breaking in half.
Kevin Mclain has more than 20 years of automotive, home improvement and landscaping experience. He has been writing for various online publications since 2002. Mclain has U.S. Army certification in automotive maintenance and repair, among more than 15 additional certifications related to the automotive field.