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2000 silverado 1500
18 Posts
Discussion Starter · #1 · (Edited)
alright guys, i have done an insane amount of research, and aside from 3 videos on YouTube, there are almost ZERO finished write-ups or walk throughs, and next to NOTHING for resolved threads on steering wheel conversions.

thanks to YouTube, i DO know that:

99-02 wheels with controls (Yukon/Suburban/Tahoe Denali, and avalanche/Escalade) use an easy 4-wire connection to interact with FACTORY stereo. one wire to keyed power, one wire to lights/dimmer power, one wire to ground, and one wire to the OE stereo. (can use a PAC interface to use an aftermarket stereo)

03-06 wheels use a smaller bore and different splines on the column spindle compared to the 99-02 column/wheel

you CAN swap an ENTIRE 03-06 column into a 99-02, and simply swap out the electronics for your existing set (wipers, signals, shifter, ignition, hazards, etc)


you can disassemble the ENTIRE top end of the columns, and swap over the machined spindle which the wheel attaches to, thereby leaving your factory column electronics virtually unmolested.

the 03-04 2500, 2500HD, 3500, and 3500HD use a single stage airbag, similar to the 99-02 wheels in wiring (single yellow connector)

forums say that you can use a trailblazer wheel as they're supposedly single stage as well... (i have dismantled 20 different trailblazer wheels at the junkyard in hopes of proving this true, and so far 100% have been dual stage, similar to the 03-06 1500 trucks, with a white connector and a pink connector.)

if you are planning to run either a plain 03-06 wheel with no controls, or simply don't care if your wheel controls are functional, then there is nothing to worry about with wiring.

as far as i can tell, you just need the column (or just the spindle), the wheel, and a single stage airbag and matching clock spring to make the wheel fit.

now, for what i DON'T know:

how to wire the controls for an 03-06 steering wheel, as the connector for these controls are an 8-pin connector, with 8 buttons, compared to the 99-02 controls which have 6 buttons and 4 wires (i have not yet tried counting wires, but i don't see the point in an 8-pin connector if there's not at LEAST 5 wires...)

if anyone has information on wiring the 03-06 controls into the dash, please let me know. i will be using an aftermarket double din touch screen stereo, and most likely an app-based manually programmable PAC interface in my truck when i get to doing the audio system, but for now, since i know what parts i need for the wheel conversion, i am just doing the wheel swap for now.

for everyone looking for information on the conversion, i hope this thread helps!

(p.s. any way i can sticky/pin this for others to find in the future?)

2000 silverado 1500
18 Posts
Discussion Starter · #2 ·
i have determined the wiring for the steering wheel controls on 03-06 wheel, at least, based on the one i pulled. it may be different for different years, as i found 3 different button configurations while searching the junkyard.

left lower control, being two buttons, which appear to be to scroll, and to select which stat to be shown on the wheel, have an orange wire for the enter button, and a green wire for the stat selection.

right lower controls, appear to be fuel economy or my trip meter (gas pump with a + and - icon on it) and perhaps traction control? (road leading to clouds) fuel having a yellow wire, tcs? having a blue wire.
these 4 switches operate on signal and ground, rather than signal and input.

both lower controls have a brown wire to power lights, which ground to the same black wire as the signal ground for the buttons.

left upper control, has a fan speed and temperature control. these operate on signal and input.
they have a brown wire which powers the back-lights,
a black wire, which acts as ground for the back-lights,
a light green signal wire, and a green input wire which crosses over to the right upper control.
all 4 buttons use resistors to differentiate signals for each button, which add, collectively based on which button is pressed.

right upper control, having an am/fm selector, a menu button, and volume up and volume down.
this control has a light green signal wire, connected to the same pin on the hub connector as the left upper control signal wire, which feeds power to all 4 buttons,
a brown wire to power the back-lights,
a black wire to ground the back-lights,
the light green wire from the left controls,
and a white wire, which acts as signal input to the stereo from upper controls.

both upper controls receive power from pin G on the 8-pin connector, the one WITHOUT the white wire, grounds through the light green crossover to the ground-side of the white wire circuit on the other control. all 8 buttons have a resistor, of varying values. which may or may not add sequentially to the following or previous buttons in the circuit.

regardless, both controls send signal to the head unit via the white wire.

use of lower controls for stereo control IS possible, but either the back-lights would have to be cut out and/or bypassed, or a new circuit board would have to be designed to isolate the ground and generate a signal wire, meanwhile adding different resistors to the yellow, blue, dark green, and orange wires, and then tying the orange/green together, and the blue/yellow together upstream from the resistors, then tying the two pairs together, so that one signal wire provides varying signal (and thus varying input values) for each of the 4 buttons, then connect the new input signal to the same pin as the white wire from the upper controls.

otherwise, you could connect the back-lights and and leave the lower controls as non-functioning decoration.

of course, these new button configurations would require the use of a manually programmable interface unit, such as the PAC SWI-CP5, which can be programmed via app, computer, flash drive, or based on factory configurations in a factory car with factory unit, OR factory car with aftermarket unit, or by mapping each button manually using a list of functions and button press, allowing short and long press functionality. (the last possibility is what i plan on doing, as i wont have factory controls OR factory head unit)

the 8-pin hub connector is as follows:
A yellow wire, appears to be traction control? (road leading to clouds)
B blue wire, fuel economy, fuel level, or trip odometer? (rectangle with a + in the top half, - in the bottom, and a fuel pump hose running left to right between the + and -, with the nozzle at top right of rectangle, pointing left)
C dark green wire, DIC menu?(box with 3 horizontal lines, and an arrow outside the box pointing at the middle line) button signal
D orange wire, enter? (has an arrow, identical to the arrow traditionally found on the ENTER key on a keyboard)
E white wire, input signal from volume up, volume down, am/fm, menu? (4 vertical lines, with an arrow up top, pointing down to the second line from left), fan up, fan down, temperature up, and tempurature down controls.
F dark brown or grey wire? (couldnt really tell in the lighting i had. it was either brown or REALLY dark grey.) power wire to control back-lights.
G light green wire signal to volume, amfm, menu, fan, and temperature switches
H black ground wire from all 12 backlights, as well as the 4 lower buttons which use ground-signal.

8-pin connector is labeled on both sides with the above lettering, A-D on one side, E-H on the other.

this concludes my disassembly, research, diagnostics, and planning thus far.

if you wish to convert the control lighting to LED, i would suggest 3mm led bulbs in choise of color, but please note:

it is a ROYAL PAIN IN THE A$$ to separate the backs from the switches to get to the circuit boards. especially on the two smaller 2-button controls. the housings fit so tight that theres barely enough room to get a pick in them to pull the tab locks open, and i ended up breaking two tabs on each of the smaller two controls. its really a 4-tool job, and a person only has 2 hands. lol
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