Flood's Idiot-Proof How-To's: Fixing Shifter Play
Alright, this is a pretty easy fix. I've done it to my car and two other friends cars. Obviously, only works on standard transmission cars. Of course, if you clicked this, you know that. *Note that this will not ALWAYS fix shifter play, as some shifter play is caused by normal wear and can be fixed other ways.
So, here's what you need to know, in a nutshell. When you shift hard, fast, or your car just has high mileage, the shifter gets a certain degree of "play" in it. Play is any undesired movement of the shifter while in gear. Whether it has hit off the shifter stop hundreds of thousands of times, or has just been shifted way too hard because you drive it like a race car, it's still annoying as hell, and can affect your driving experience for the worse. If your car has any miles at all, the shifter stop that limits the shifter from going too far in any direction is probably loose. This how-to is a simple walkthrough of how to fix said problem.
You will need:
An allen wrench set
A flat headed screwdriver or other similar tool to pry with (optional)
Patience, as not to mess anything up!
Precautions - Make sure to take your time finding the right sized allen wrench, you don't want to mess up your bolts! Put the car in neutral to do this fix. Don't have your car running while doing this! While this is obvious, I must state it since this is supposed to be idiot-proof.
Pull your shift boot up by the leather near the corners until it pops up. Be gentle, it'll just pop loose. Alternatively, you could pry off the piece of trim that holds it down with a screwdriver or other prying device. Just be gentle. I don't recommend the screwdriver method, though, since if you pry too hard, you can break the trim or scratch your console.
Pull the boot straight up by the trim, so it turns inside out and covers the shift knob itself. This will keep it out of the way while you're working.
Look down to the base of the shifter. You'll see two allen-head bolts (my fingers are on them) holding down the "shifter stop" (as I call it), one of them with a small red block of plastic under it.
Step 4: Line up the shifter stop so it's well centered, then tighten the bolts with the allen wrench. Tighten them til snug, then another half-turn or so to make sure they stay tight.
Pull your shift boot back down and snap the piece of trim that holds it down back in. If you did it right, it should look like it did when you started!
Put your tools away, and you're done, foo! Thumbs up!
1999 SVT Contour #986 T-Red SOLD