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DIY Tutorial: Adding paddle shifters

Discussion in '2.5 Gen Tundras (2014-2021)' started by busy13b, Feb 15, 2022.

  1. Feb 15, 2022 at 5:15 PM
    #1
    busy13b

    busy13b [OP] New Member

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    This is a brief tutorial on how to add paddle shifting to your Gen 2.5 Tundra.
    • Disclaimer: I did this on a 2104 - I'm not sure if any wiring changes were made in later model years.

    [​IMG]
    [​IMG]

    I used a 2014+ Corolla steering wheel, which is a GREAT upgrade for several reasons:
    • Slightly smaller diameter
    • All functions remain the same as stock - button for button match
      • In particular, the volume controls are now much easier to access, instead of that awkward move your hand has to make with the stock button placement
    • Steering wheel control backlighting is same color as the Tundra
    [​IMG]

    Overall, this is a relatively simple procedure that requires running a few new wires, and tapping into existing wires.

    I got the idea from here (second gen procedure) and the basics are the same with some minor differences since 2nd and 2.5 gen clock spring plugs are different:



    PARTS NEEDED:
    • 4 pigtail wires (direct fit - Toyota part number 82998-12870 or 82998-12860)
    • 2014-2019 Corolla steering wheel (RAV4 wheel from same years *should be equivalent*)
      • Make sure the steering wheel includes the proper control buttons (since I believe some later Corollas added BSM controls and TSS functionality to the wheel), paddle shifters and harness!
    • 2014-2019 Corolla air bag (RAV4 air bag from same years *should be equivalent*)



    GETTING STARTED:
    • Remove Tundra center console (rear must come out first, in order to allow front portion to come out)
    • Remove lower steering column cover
    • Remove air bag
      • NOTE: disconnect negative battery cable before air bag removal!
    • Remove steering wheel
      • NOTE: make sure your front wheels are perfectly straight before removal!!
      • NOTE: take precautions to keep clock spring in place once steering wheel is off!!
        • A piece of painters tape works great



    STEERING WHEEL MODIFICATIONS:

    • On the Corolla wheel, de-pin the three paddle shifter wires at the clock spring plug. (You can also cut the wires if you have new pigtail wires to use - wires are bundled in BROWN insulation)
      • Three wires at that plug are:
        • Ground (black wire)
        • Shift Down (pink wire)
        • Shift Up (orange wire)
    [​IMG]

    • Remove the steering wheel control buttons off both steering wheels (from the front):
      • On the Corolla wheel, there is one Philips head screw on each side
        • In addition to the screws, there are several nubs/prongs that hold the controls in place - they pry up and out, but require some force to do so.
          • Prying up with a trim removal tool will help
    [​IMG]
    • On the Tundra wheel, there are two Philips head screws on each side
    [​IMG]
    • Unplug the Corolla steering wheel control button harness (two connectors, one left, one right)
    [​IMG]

    • Unplug the Tundra steering wheel control button harness (SAME AS ABOVE: two connectors; one left, one right)
    • Plug in your Tundra harness to the Corolla wheel
    [​IMG]
    • Re-install the steering wheel controls back in the Corolla wheel
    • CRUISE CONTROL STALK:
      • Either swap cruise control stalk from Tundra wheel to Corolla wheel
      • Or unplug cruise control harness (#11 in diagram above), and swap the Tundra harness into the Corolla
    • Now you are ready to install the Corolla wheel on your Tundra
      • Be careful not to allow the clock spring to come off or rotate around as you reinstall the new steering wheel!

    FINAL WIRING:

    • Completing the steering wheel paddle shifter wiring:
      • Overview:
    [​IMG]


    1. Ground (black wire)
      • It gets grounded anywhere on the steering wheel metal structure
        • Since I cut my wires from the Corolla harness instead of de-pinning, I extended the wire, added a grounding ring
    [​IMG]

    2. Shift Down (pink wire)
      • Add Shift Down pin to an open slot of your clock spring plug
        • Since I cut my wires, I connected a new pigtail
        • Going from left to right, I plugged the pigtail into clock spring plug slot 7
    3. Shift Up (orange wire)
      • Add the Shift Up pin to another open slot of your clock spring plug
        • Since I cut my wires, I connected a new pigtail
        • Going from left to right, I used slot 2
    [​IMG]



    • With your lower cover of the steering column already removed
      • Under the ignition tumbler, you expose the "output" plug of the clock-spring:
    [​IMG]
      • Add two new pigtail wires (if you used the above clock spring open slots, you *must* use the following slots, for continuity through the clock spring)
        • Top row, going from left to right, slot 1 will be your Shift Down wire
        • Top row, slot 5 will be your Shift Up wire
    [​IMG]
    • Run those wires under your dash to the center console area, where transmission wiring is:
    [​IMG]
    • Tap into the Shift Down (LT BLUE) wire using your favorite electrical wire tap/connector.
    • Tap into the Shift Up (YELLOW) wire using your favorite electrical wire tap/connector.
    [​IMG]

    • With everything wired, now start the Tundra and put it into Sport mode to test functionality.
      • Both the shifter and paddles should be able to go up and down the gears and the display on the dash will show this.
    • If all is good, re-install the center console, the lower steering column cover, and lastly, the air bag.



    DONE!
    • Enjoy the new look and paddle shift functionality!

    [​IMG]
     
    Last edited: Feb 22, 2022
    Saltyhero13, prevent, Nbab23 and 18 others like this.
  2. Feb 15, 2022 at 6:13 PM
    #2
    vipgs3

    vipgs3 New Member

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    Great job!
     
    W3agle likes this.
  3. Feb 19, 2022 at 8:42 AM
    #3
    W3agle

    W3agle New Member

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    This is such a good diy post. really appreciate the effort and organization.

    I’ve got my lightly used 2016 Corolla steering wheel sitting in my lap as I type this.

    I can’t get past this part. I took out the 4 screws thinking they may be holding the plastic cover on the back.

    image.jpg

    *edit* got it. Maybe. Felt more like I took the front cover off. The plastic piece with the buttons and stuff. Also I definitely broke one of the little plastic pieces. Going to attempt some glue momentarily.

    image.jpg

    *update* after about an hour of trying to de-pin I’m just ordering new pigtails.
     
    Last edited: Feb 19, 2022
  4. Feb 19, 2022 at 9:08 AM
    #4
    RainMan_PNW

    RainMan_PNW SSEM #82 RGBA #4 “That Guy” Vendor?

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    Check the build link in my signature.
    Pretty slick idea.
    As an FYI, wiring on the 2018+ is likely different, and you’d need to find a wheel that has the additional buttons for the TSS functions.
     
    hANNAbONE and W3agle like this.
  5. Feb 22, 2022 at 8:48 AM
    #5
    busy13b

    busy13b [OP] New Member

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    You are welcome - I'm glad it is helpful!


    Thanks for the reminder! It's been a long time since I had my steering wheels taken apart, and I believe you are correct - the steering wheel buttons/front cover came off from the front, by removing the screws you have pictured.

    (I updated the procedure to reflect that)

    I remember breaking one "prong" off from one side of the buttons, but also recall that once screwed back in place, the buttons are really snug, and the prong wasn't going to be missed.
     
    Last edited: Feb 23, 2022
  6. Feb 22, 2022 at 9:04 AM
    #6
    TucsonTundra1794

    TucsonTundra1794 ASCM #6-11 I'll buy if you're willing to ship

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    This is amazing! I'm going to start looking at corolla wheels on ebay now.
     
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    #6
  7. Feb 22, 2022 at 10:26 AM
    #7
    PNW_Husky

    PNW_Husky New Member

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    Not for me, but this is a great write up. Well done.
     
    WBW likes this.
  8. Feb 22, 2022 at 10:42 AM
    #8
    MadMaxCanon

    MadMaxCanon New Member

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    Too many, but not enough....
    I am glad I already have a short throw thumb paddle switch on my column mount shifter :)
     
  9. Feb 22, 2022 at 11:21 AM
    #9
    GAknight

    GAknight New Member

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    Too many…scratch that…not done yet.
    Awesome write up and great work OP!

    One thought and a couple questions…

    It may go without saying, but I’d add to the getting started section, to disconnect the negative battery before trying to take apart the steering wheel and especially the airbag.

    For the mod itself;
    Do you think the back of the steering wheel housings are such that you could remove the paddle shifters/housing from the Corolla/rav wheeler and mate it to the tundra steering wheel, since they both have the support arms at 3 and 9?

    Understanding the paddles and console shifter are both sending electrical signals to the tranny whenever shifting; have you noticed any improved gear shift response with the paddles?
     
    hANNAbONE likes this.
  10. Feb 22, 2022 at 12:21 PM
    #10
    busy13b

    busy13b [OP] New Member

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    Yes, good call.



    @TTracer was able to add the paddles to the stock wheel, but I don't know what was involved:

     
    hANNAbONE and GAknight[QUOTED] like this.
  11. Feb 22, 2022 at 1:07 PM
    #11
    pursuit2550

    pursuit2550 New Member

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    Do the shift work better with the paddles back the heat shifter? I will say there is a huge delay with the heat shifter. To the point I don’t even use it.
     
  12. Feb 22, 2022 at 1:08 PM
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    GAknight

    GAknight New Member

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    Awesome!!!
    Thanks for the tag with @TTracer
    I’ll check out the other posts.
     
  13. Feb 22, 2022 at 1:17 PM
    #13
    texasrho83

    texasrho83 DGAF#1

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    Super cool concept. Great work :hattip:
     
  14. Feb 22, 2022 at 1:22 PM
    #14
    busy13b

    busy13b [OP] New Member

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    No change in functionality with the paddle shifters. They are simply an extension of the shift lever in the center console.
     
    pursuit2550[QUOTED] likes this.
  15. Feb 26, 2022 at 12:30 PM
    #15
    W3agle

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    EDIT: I'm dumb. I'll leave this so y'all can laugh if you want. I was looking at my steering wheel harness upside down. On the bright side I learned how to do continuity testing with a multimeter today. Deleted everything unnecessary to keep the thread clean.

    Running into some questions. My steering wheel harness has different open slots than OP.

    I'm concerned about keeping continuity through the clock spring:
    So in my case, I can still use slot 7 for shift down. And the other end of my clock spring I'll use slot 1.

    Photos of my situation:
    upload_2022-2-26_12-30-16.jpg
     

    Attached Files:

    Last edited: Feb 26, 2022
  16. Feb 26, 2022 at 2:10 PM
    #16
    Downytide

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    We should have forum Kickstarter, so we can donate $10 per user for someone to see an idea works or not, for the 18+, I've wondered about lx570 steering wheel, they look nice.
     
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  17. Feb 26, 2022 at 5:26 PM
    #17
    RainMan_PNW

    RainMan_PNW SSEM #82 RGBA #4 “That Guy” Vendor?

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    If someone wants to send one to me, I’d be willing to give it a try.
     
  18. Feb 26, 2022 at 5:45 PM
    #18
    Roborob70

    Roborob70 New Member

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  19. Feb 27, 2022 at 10:15 AM
    #19
    W3agle

    W3agle New Member

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    Hmmm. Everything is back together. Shift down is working. Shift up is not. Nooot really sure what’s going on. Will start trouble shooting at the tap to hope for an easy fix. Maybe my position didn’t bite.
     
  20. Feb 27, 2022 at 10:30 AM
    #20
    ATV25

    ATV25 Young at heart

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    Not much interested in paddle shifters but a steering wheel with a slightly smaller diameter would be nice
     
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  21. Feb 27, 2022 at 10:32 AM
    #21
    W3agle

    W3agle New Member

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    That was more motivation for me than the paddle shifters.

    good news! My shift up posi tap just missed the wire. I’m in business!
     
    busy13b[OP] and ATV25[QUOTED] like this.
  22. Feb 27, 2022 at 11:44 AM
    #22
    Joe333x

    Joe333x Member

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    Cool write up! Just a reminder to anyone thinking about this. The way the "manual" shift mode works is just that you are selecting the max gear the transmission will shift to, so just because you are in S4 and then "shift" to S5 doesnt mean its going into 5th unless the computer decides it should be in 5th. Also down shifting if you are say in 4th and going down to 3rd since you can't rev match if the rpms are high when you down shift its not smooth at all in any sense. The point of manual mode is mostly for towing or if you are on steep grades or off road to keep the transmission from over heating in high gears. Also incase anyone is interested only gears 4,5 and 6 can lock the torque converter, 4th is the lowest gear you should drive in for long term highway speeds.
     
    Last edited: Feb 27, 2022
    busy13b[OP], Saltyhero13 and W3agle like this.

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