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Well my wife accidently dumped her sweet tea all over the commander switch. Needless to say the buttons became so sticky that they seized up and rendered the whole switching unit useless. I'm sure this situation is going to happen many times considering that it is located directly in front of the cup holder. I was unsure if the whole switch was fried or not so I set about trying to tear into it knowing that I may have to replace the whole thing anyway. Here is how it went.
1. Unsnap and unzip the boot on the E-brake.

2. Open the center console and just about the two outlets are slots to slide a flat head screw driver. Gently pry up and the center cover will start to come up.

3. Slowly work your way to the front by gently pulling up on either side. There are four tabs on each side

4. When you get to sides to release, be sure to not pull up to far. There is one final clip that attaches to the plastic trim piece around the shifter. Push down on the center of the shifter trip piece while gently pulling up on the center cover and it should release. I think I snapped my clip a little but it still locked back in nicely when I put it back together.

5. Reach in under the cover and remove the wire harness. there is a release on the plug that faces the drivers side...just push in on it and gently pull the plug away from the center piece. The whole center piece should come right off now.

6. Flip the center piece over. Locate and remove 4 Phillips head screws to pull the command switch out. Be extremely gentle with the tabs that hold this thing in place. I broke off two of the tabs later on in my adventure.


7. Now remove the seven small screws from the bottom of the switch to separate the components.


There is a rubber piece that helped protect the computer board. The whole issue turned out to be iced tea on the buttons themselves. No damage done to the board.


8. Gently remove the plug from the board

9. With a very thin object, gently pop off the blank pieces on either side of the switch. This allows for removal on the center buttons on either side. The corner buttons are on there good. I ended up pushing them out from the backside. Be very careful as this was how I broke off the tabs that holds the switch to the center console.


Clean everything up and put it back together :) Just be careful around the selector knob. I never did get that stupid thing to come out so do not what would happen if it got any liquid in it...it may have already and we got lucky! When I put it all back together, I found that if I turned the tabs that I broke off the right way, they could be used as washers lol


I hope this helps someone.
 

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Nice Write up - sorry to hear about your car - poor thing must have been so sticky!

Glad to hear your got it cleaned up, and I'm impressed the circuit board wasn't fried from the drink.
 

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Yeah, I was not a happy camper lol...My wife didn't think it was a big deal because she thinks the commander switch is dumb. I on the other hand love using it and it pissed me off that a month old car already had something not working on it. Oh well, it worked out :) I have to give Mazda credit for at least thinking about spills and putting that rubber in above the circuit board.
 

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Is the connector on the commander switch proprietary or a standard type? I'm interested in one day replacing the head unit with something like the Parrot Asteroid.
 

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How hard do you think it would be to add one to a '14 that doesn't already have one? I'm assuming the sport already has the connectors, just not the commander switch installed.
 

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Curious...how many wires are in the plug for that commander? I am thinking about trying to make it work with a steering wheel remote module so I can use the knob for volume
, track, and such. I hate that it will not do volume on the factory radio.
 
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How hard do you think it would be to add one to a '14 that doesn't already have one? I'm assuming the sport already has the connectors, just not the commander switch installed.
If you find out how to do it, please let me know. I've been trying to do this for a while now. Thanks.
 

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Hello Plummer, thank you for this write up. I am trying to reassemble my console, however I am struggling to properly align the center cover with the trim piece that surrronds the shifter. The cover snaps back into the place, with the exception of on the passangers side the cover will not align flush with the shifter trim piece, however the rest of the cover appears to align. Now there is a visable lip/gap. Any suggestions?
 

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Thanks for this write plumber!! I have a '15 and had a hard brake that spilt soda all over the buttons. Within a day they were sticking sooo bad. I followed your guide to disassemble and was able to get it all cleaned up(luckily like yours nothing go on the circuit board). Thanks again!!!

-Adam
 

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Sorry for bumping this thread from the dead, but has anyone had any luck removing the commander switch from the main enclosure? I've been able to take the knob cover off, but I spilled some gunk and it seeped into the cavity that holds the commander switch in place.

I have a Mazda3, but I'm assuming the switch design is fairly similar.
 
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