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What you will need:

Torx bits
Socket set with extension
Trim tools
Flexible claw/pick up tool
Long flat head screwdriver
Optional: ballpoint pen with a tapered end
Mandatory: beer

Start to finish this took me a little less than an hour, including a couple breaks here and there. You do not need to dismantle the entire center console.

Start by removing the trim around the climate control module and shifter base. Use your trim tool to start to pry it out on the driver’s side. Continue around to the back of the trim; it slides back and out to release. On the passenger side it tucks under the trim by the glove box and has a clip there. When you reattach the trim I found it helpful to start on the passenger side, slide the rear of the trim back into place, then reattach the drivers’ side.

2016-12-18 10.51.16.jpg

Remove the shift knob and spring.

Remove the passenger airbag trim at the top of the climate control module. Start at each end on the top and gently start to pull it out. It will only pop out so far; at that point, you’ll need to slide your trim tool underneath as there is a clip on each side on the bottom of the piece that needs to be depressed for it to fully release. You can see the clips I'm talking about in the picture below.

2016-12-18 10.59.00.jpg

Unclip the wiring harness and set the piece in a safe location. This will reveal 4 torx screws that need to be removed. The other screw is at the rear of the climate control module by the cupholders.

airbagtrim.jpg

Unclip the climate control module. The climate control module, shift boot, etc. is one large piece and there are 2 clips on each side that will need to unsnap (clip locations are in yellow below). If you pull on it gently it should easily pop out. If it resists, use your trim tool to pop the clips free on each side and then pull back and up, pulling the shift boot up as you go.

Detach the wiring harness from the climate control module and set it aside.

2016-12-18 11.03.05.jpg

Now you’re free to start replacing the bushings. It’s a tight fit in there, and you’ll want to be careful not to drop any of the bits as you’re working with them. The claw tool will help you quite a bit. The top right bushing is the trickiest to put in place as it's very recessed with not much room to work. I did not feel comfortable wearing gloves to protect my hands and I ended up nicking my hands in a couple places, so be careful of sharp edges as you go if you don’t wear gloves.

Loosen all 4 bolts. Do NOT remove them, simply loosen all 4 and then go one by one, otherwise it may be difficult to line everything up again.

After you remove the first bolt, you will need to use the screwdriver to loosen the metal insert of the factory bushing before removing it. After the metal insert has been discarded, use the screwdriver to remove the rubber bushing. You will need to wiggle and apply a decent amount of pressure, as the rubber bushing wraps underneath the shifter. Pull the bushing out, and replace with the aluminum bushing. Replace the bolt, and tighten, still keeping all bolts somewhat loose so you can work.

Here is what you are replacing, and an example of how they sandwich together.

2016-12-18 13.18.30.jpg

I saved the top right bushing for last. It was possible to remove the bolt and OEM bushing easily with the help of the claw/pickup tool; inserting the aluminum bushing was a bit harder. I could not use the claw tool to set the aluminum bushing in place; I couldn’t use a magnet, because... aluminum. My hands are also large and I didn’t trust myself going in from the back side to drop it in as I would have likely dropped it. This is where the ballpoint pen comes in. Sounds stupid, but it worked for me. I wedged the tapered end of the ballpoint pen into the bushing, then stuck that down into the shifter base. I was able to pop the bushing off the pen by reaching around from the back. Same with the washer. I then used the claw tool to insert the bolt into the hole.

After all 4 bushings are in place, tighten all the bolts.

Stop to have a beer.

Reinstall the climate control module. Be careful to ensure that the passenger airbag light wiring harness is free to be reattached and not pinned underneath so you don’t have to remove the climate control module again.

As you reinstall the shifter boot, make sure to slide the black plastic reverse lockout piece into place as you guide the boot over the gearshift. Line up the clips, and snap into place. Reattach the shift knob and spring to make sure that you are able to pull all gears and enter reverse. Tighten all screws.

Reattach the passenger airbag light trim. Run through all the gears one last time, then reinstall the shifter base trim.
 

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I did this same install, turned out great!
 

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I just did this install and my god it was like entering a whole new level of hell. First the right side of the of the piece that covers the bottom torx bit refused to come out. I had to bend it just enough to be able to unscrew the bolt and take the climate control module out with it attached. Then I just pulled the shifter all the way out. I have no idea how one would do this with it still installed. I was about 1" short from being able to put my rachet on the extensions so I had to find other means to get them to loosen. But the real horrors started when I didn't realize the platform the shifter sits on, what you called "recessed" was actually sitting at a 35 degree angle and decided to eat the aluminum bushing. I had to take both sides off in order to find the thing and even then it had fallen down along the platforms arm and was standing on its side. Took me 10 minutes to find it the first time I dropped it. Yes, I was dumb enough to not decide then to superglue it into the hole. I dropped it a second time, this time it falling down under the carpet. That took another 10 minutes to find it. But it all went back together with no issues after that. I don't notice any difference in the shifter slop but I also have the bracket bushing I need to do next. Honestly these things should not be the color they are. They need to be mountain dew green so you can find them when they disappear into the abyss like this!

You pictures were amazingly helpful though, thank you for the guide.
 

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Wow really? I know I did the boomba shift arm at the same time but my shifting now feels much notchier in a good way with the shifter base bushings. Can't wait til the next two sets go in.
 

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I HIGHLY recommend that anyone who does this completely remove the shifter if you don't want to scream, swear and cry. Pop the cables off, release them from the mounts in the back, undo the 4 bols and lift that sucker right out. Pop the rubber bushings, super glue the bottom part of the new bushings to the bottom of the shifter and drop that puppy back in. Line up the holes, add the top half of the bushing and the bolts, and then mount and reatach the cables. Took me all of 3 minutes after swearing for 30 and cutting the **** out of my hands trying it like above.
 

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Thanks @Zach99 for this how to. I did these bushings at the same time as the shift cable and shift cable mount bushings (all from yourlittlecncshop.com).

I did two things differently. Once I got the climate control module loose I just flipped it off to the left, leaving everything plugged in. A little time saver.

The other thing I did was go after the right side bushings first, as I like to get the hardest part out of the way first. And I did these sort of two at a time. I loosened all 4 bolts, then removed both right side bolts so I could tip it up more on the right. Did the right front, reinstalling the bolt just a couple of threads, removed the left rear bolt, did the right rear, tipping it up at the back, etc. Went very easily. The left front could be done with the other three bolts loosely reinstalled as it is the easiest to get to. I also packed rags and paper towels around the sides so I didn't loose anything that got away from me. This saved me on one of the left rear bushings, which slid out as I was trying to start the bolt.

These, along with the shift cable and cable mount bushings, made a huge difference in shifter feel. Much more precise. This has to be one of the biggest bang for the buck mods you can do.
 

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I would say it's easier to go 1 step further and pop the shift cables off to remove the shifter base itself, even if you aren't doing the shift arm (which is actually pretty easy). Once out, just use some white glue between the bushings to keep them together, then screw it all back down.

But this was the guide I used to get everything apart, so thanks for the info.
 

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+1 to removing the whole assembly and glueing the bushing to them. I tired the other way and it drove me mad! The forked trim tool will easily pop off the end links.

Also I would add two things to the wonderful guide above.

1) on the passenger side, unclip the large pannel forming the dash from the U shapped trim first.

2) I had a tough time with the "passenger airbag tell tale" trim. Its easy enough to undo the top clips but not the bottom two. I tried from below with no luck so in the end I took a screwdriver in from the top, put it in the gap and twisted so that it lifted the tooth. This worked beautifully!

Otherwise great guide! Thanks Zach99
 

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+1 to removing the whole assembly and glueing the bushing to them. I tired the other way and it drove me mad! The forked trim tool will easily pop off the end links.

Also I would add two things to the wonderful guide above.

1) on the passenger side, unclip the large pannel forming the dash from the U shapped trim first.

2) I had a tough time with the "passenger airbag tell tale" trim. Its easy enough to undo the top clips but not the bottom two. I tried from below with no luck so in the end I took a screwdriver in from the top, put it in the gap and twisted so that it lifted the tooth. This worked beautifully!

Otherwise great guide! Thanks Zach99
Great advice here as well! That airbag trim piece is the hardest part of the job!

+1 to all the above notes on remove the shifter assembly completely from the car. Two cable ends, two collars to release the cables, and out she comes. I found an extendable magnet made it easy to pull the bolts out once loose so I didn't drop them.

When installing the new bushings, I put a dab of glue to hold them to the base (same method when doing the cable bracket bushings). To get the washers on, stick a rod of screw driver in the hole of the bushing and slide the washer down. The bolts are a bit trickier, but not bad if your hands aren't massive.

Also, verify your HVAC functions after. The plugs can only go in one spot...but even when mine snapped in they weren't fully connected. Didn't test until I fired to the car up 8pm to go visit friends. Made the drive with no HVAC...had to R&R when I got to my destination. Bleh.
 

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Great advice here as well! That airbag trim piece is the hardest part of the job!

+1 to all the above notes on remove the shifter assembly completely from the car. Two cable ends, two collars to release the cables, and out she comes. I found an extendable magnet made it easy to pull the bolts out once loose so I didn't drop them.

When installing the new bushings, I put a dab of glue to hold them to the base (same method when doing the cable bracket bushings). To get the washers on, stick a rod of screw driver in the hole of the bushing and slide the washer down. The bolts are a bit trickier, but not bad if your hands aren't massive.

Also, verify your HVAC functions after. The plugs can only go in one spot...but even when mine snapped in they weren't fully connected. Didn't test until I fired to the car up 8pm to go visit friends. Made the drive with no HVAC...had to R&R when I got to my destination. Bleh.
Nice glad I could help :) I was sweating that piece for quite some time!

Sent from my SM-G955F using Tapatalk
 

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Which way do you start pulling the U-Shaped trim piece? Any better details on that?
Start on the drivers side and pull it slightly towards the drivers knee with a pry tool and then pull it towards you. Once the left side is free, from the passenger side you will see a vertical seam. Pop the panel that goes behind the glovebox outward at the seem, there is a clip there. Next pull the passenger side toward you and it should all pop out.
 

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+1 to removing the whole assembly and glueing the bushing to them. I tired the other way and it drove me mad! The forked trim tool will easily pop off the end links.

Also I would add two things to the wonderful guide above.

1) on the passenger side, unclip the large pannel forming the dash from the U shapped trim first.

2) I had a tough time with the "passenger airbag tell tale" trim. Its easy enough to undo the top clips but not the bottom two. I tried from below with no luck so in the end I took a screwdriver in from the top, put it in the gap and twisted so that it lifted the tooth. This worked beautifully!

Otherwise great guide! Thanks Zach99
Holy **** thank you for this. I was about to just break that thing to get it out. The screwdriver was great, got it out in like 30 seconds, great advice!!
 
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