Steering Wheel Manufacturer
When it comes to vehicle control, the performance of the steering is critical. There is always the need for reliable and comfortable steering. At MZW, we assure you of that and more.
MZW steering wheels are engineered to the highest of OE standards. Apart from using premium raw materials, our manufacturing and testing processes are thorough and highly controlled. That has made us one of the most trusted aftermarket steering wheel companies.
Our products apply to a wide range of automotive, both heavy and light.
A steering gear box transmits the drivers controls to the wheels. As such, it needs to be adequately suitable for the task. That is why we follow a strict process to produce our steering gears.
MZW steering gear boxes are 100% tested to ensure they are leak-free. We also carry out factory assessments to determine their performance in real environments.
At MZW motors, product durability is one of our main areas of concern. The steering gear boxes we produce are specially coated to prevent rust and any form of corrosion.
Send us an inquiry or call us today. We guarantee you steering gears of the highest quality. Our products are available worldwide, and we assure you of quick response to queries.
Why MZW Automotive Steering Wheels?
By Choosing MZW, you get the benefits of steering gear boxes with the following characteristics
- Stylish steering wheels- whether leather or wood covered- that make the car’s interior elegant
- Unique designs for steering wheels that offer great comfort while driving
- A wide choice of steering wheels for different vehicle types and models
- Durable steering wheels that have been made from the best of raw materials
- Custom steering wheels that match your requirements to the letter
MZW Made Steering Wheel
Leak Free Construction
Fear Moving Parts
Steering Wheel Cross Reference Lookup
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MZW Steering Wheel Guide
A steering wheel lets you control a vehicle’s direction. Stylish ones also improve the appeal of your car, making it look classy. And with buttons shifting from the dashboard to the steering wheel, the component is becoming even more useful than ever. How much do you know about steering wheels? Learn more about them in this easy-to-read guide.
Steering Wheel Meaning: What is “Steering Wheel” in Car?
The steering wheel is the part that a driver turns to make the wheels roll in a specific direction. It’s also called a driving wheel from its function or handle wheel based on how it’s operated.
There’s not one particular steering wheel design. The component can be many different shapes and sizes. Features usually depend on the vehicle type and application, sometimes even owner preferences. Most steering wheels are circular, though, with only a few design differences.
The steering wheel location depends on the laws of a country, which may require vehicles to keep to the left side of the road or the right. Automakers accordingly design vehicles to suit the required position of the wheel.
Away from the steering wheel definition, let’s now delve into its anatomy and see the parts that make it. This will help you to understand the component even better.
Steering Wheel Parts
The standard steering wheel consists of a round frame with a central hub and spokes. These are discussed below.
The frame is the wheel’s the main part. Different materials are used to make it. They range from steel, aluminum, to magnesium. Usually, the frame is moulded or encapsulated in foam material or leather. The covering makes the wheel comfortable to the hands.
Other materials that are used for the steering wheel frame include wood and plastic. Wood is rarely used while plastic is a new material. Plastic offers the advantages of mass reduction, design flexibility that allows different layouts and, in some cases, lower production costs.
The hub of the steering wheel is that part used to attach it to the steering column. It comes in different layouts and bolt patterns. The hub usually houses the car horn. In most cases, it also contains a safety airbag. Steering wheel hubs are generally covered by a plastic material.
Spokes connect the steering wheel hub to the rim. Their number varies. Some wheels feature a single spoke, others two or more. Three spokes are the most common and what you will often come across.
Steering wheels usually connect to a part known as the steering column. The column, in turn, links to the steering shaft, and finally the steering mechanism that the steering wheel operates. The common steering wheel connection is through a splined shaft.
Steering Wheel Function and Working Principle
We all know that a steering wheel guides the wheels and, therefore, a vehicle’s direction. For many people, the steering wheel can make a car visually appealing. You must have come across stylishly wheels or those with attractive covers around them.
The modern steering wheel is also home to many components that enhance safety, driving comfort, and various other benefits. Examples include buttons to operate car accessories, gear or paddle shifters, and several other add-ons.
For driving comfort and other needs, various parts such wheel spinners, heaters, and spacers are also popular accessories. Or adapters to make installing aftermarket wheels easy. In summary, the functions of modern steering wheels are:
- To help turn the wheels and control the vehicle
- House safety parts such as the airbag
- Mount control components so you can keep your wheels on the steering wheel throughout
- Hold parts that enhance driving comfort such as wheel spinners
- Carry features to improve a car’s look such as stylish covers and designs
The steering wheel gives you control over your car or truck regardless of its weight or size. But how does such a small component accomplish such a great feat? Here is the working of these vehicle parts explained.
In a conventional vehicle, the steering wheel connects to different parts so it can transmit driver inputs to the relevant wheels. Most cars, trucks, and SUVs today use a rack and pinion mechanism to achieve that. So we will base our description on that.
The rack and pinion system is essentially a small pinion gear that runs on a teethed metal bar or what is called a rack. The gear connects via linkages to the steering wheel, transferring the movements of the wheel to the teethed bar or rack.
When you turn the steering wheel, the rotation causes the pinion gear to move along the rack. The rack, in turn, moves either to the right or left, based on the steering wheels direction and angle of turn
Another popular steering mechanism is called a reciprocating ball or steering box system. It’s somewhat more complex than the rack and pinion mechanism and employs the action of a worm gear (threaded cylinder) to move a drop arm.
You must also be aware of the power steering of modern vehicles. Power steering refers to the use of external force to assist with turning the wheels. The system can be a motor or hydraulic mechanism.
Power steering makes controlling a vehicle not only effortless but also accurate. It made small-sized steering wheels a possibility, especially in heavy vehicles that require higher steering torques. Next, a look at the major features of the component.
Steering Wheel Design and Features
Steering wheels exist in many different shapes, sizes, colors, and other features. Factory-installed wheels come designed for safety and drivability. However, they may not satisfy specific needs such as comfort, visual appeal, and other aspects.
To ensure user preferences are catered for, vehicle owners usually install aftermarket steering wheels. These offer more choices for different attributes, especially classy looks, diameters, thickness, and the ease to add components. Below are the notable features that buyers often (and should) look out for.
The steering wheel diameter is among the most important features. It determines many capabilities, such as steering ratio, the effort required to turn the wheels, comfort, and more. Most light vehicles work with a diameter between 25 and 38 centimeters.
Compact passenger cars are installed with steering wheels that measure around 35cm. Those used in commercial trucks and other heavy automobiles are somewhat wider, as large as up to 80cm. This allows for large turning forces and a better feel of the steering.
When considering a steering wheel upgrade, it’s important to find out whether your vehicle requires heavy or light steering. The available space, too. That’s because large wheels can take up valuable space while offering few to no steering benefits.
This refers to the steering wheel depth. In other words, it’s the distance between the hub to where the rim makes contact with the driver. The dish determines how close or far the steering wheel will be. It dictates the feel of the car when driving, comfort, and steering effort.
Distances usually range from 7cm to 10 cm, although some are called, with dish dimensions of 3cm to 4cm. The so called flat steering wheels are usually not truly flat. They will have a dish design, often too small to notice and only measure a few millimeters.
It can be circular or oval. Round rims provide a better feel of the steering motion, but oval designs are more comfortable to handle. Some steering wheels have the rims with thumb rests for enhanced comfort when driving.
Rim thickness also matters and can mean different vehicle handling capabilities. Many people find thick steering wheels easier to handle than thin ones. They’re also more ergonomic and can be held for long hours. However, a lot depends on a user’s preference, which can also be influenced by one’s physique.
To ensure safety, different design features have been incorporated in the steering wheel over the years. There have been wheels that retract in a collision or collapsible spokes to reduce the force of impact. Some of these technologies are no longer used.
Today, the use of airbags is considered the conventional safety feature. A steering wheel airbag sits in the middle of the hub. In the event of a collision or crash, a mechanism inflates and ejects the bag almost instantly. This cushions the driver against injuries.
Many stock steering wheels allow for the installation of a safety airbag or come with one. Not so with the aftermarket types. Most aftermarket wheels are not airbag-compatible. When choosing one, you may want to consider that.
Steering wheels come with different patterns for the mounting bolts. One steering wheel will fit the configuration of one steering column, and not another. Compatibility is often a consideration when purchasing one. Otherwise, you may want to purchase a separate component called a steering wheel adapter. The adapter changes allows you to mount a wheel with incompatible bolt configuration.
Steering Wheel Accessories
The steering wheel for car, truck, and similar applications usually consists of a steel frame encased in a cover. Several components are also attached, which range from those that help to control a vehicle to visual enhancement accessories.
Some of these components are factory-installed, while others are mounted by vehicle owners. The benefits of some may not be apparent or are disputed by some experts. But with most add-ons being user preferences, they feature on the steering wheels of many vehicles today. The parts include:
Steering Wheel Cover- these come in a broad range of types. For driving comfort and safety, the material used to make them must offer a firm hold even when your hands are sweaty. It should also warm enough in cold weather, and cool enough in warm conditions.
The most common are leather, suede, and polyurethane. Leather is durable, plus it provides a firm steering wheel grip at all times. Suede offers a non-slip hold but requires a lot of care. It also does not last for long. Polyurethane is a pocket-friendly steering wheel cover that allows for a steady grip. It’s also very durable.
Steering Wheel Audio Adapter– this is an accessory to control gadgets that a driver may be using, but without taking hands off the steering wheel. It’s more of a safety add-on that helps to operate things like mobile phones, car radio, and other audio equipment. The adapter usually uses Bluetooth to communicate with the devices.
Steering Wheel Knob- it’s also called a spinner knob, Brodie knob, or steering ball due to its round shape. Knobs allow for easy and comfortable steering, especially when driving in places where you have to turn now and them. They act as a steering wheel handle and are useful if the driver is handicapped.
Steering Wheel Heater- the heater is usually a warming element that heats up the steering wheels frame. It helps to prevent a driver’s hands from freezing, which would otherwise cause driving problems. In cold climates, the steering wheel warmer is an essential add-on.
Steering Wheel Buttons- these include switches to control various vehicle systems and accessories. Examples are cruise control buttons, car stereo buttons, and those that operate the car air conditioner or car computer.
When installed on the steering wheel, buttons allow you to operate various functions while still in full control of the vehicle. They can be factory-installed or added by the user to improve safety and drivability.
Steering Wheels Locks- these are devices to deter thieves or prevent theft from happening. Often a bright color to ward off intruders, the lock features a metal bar and locking mechanism. It works by fixing the steering wheel in one position. The steering wheel lock comes in different sizes and designs, often to fit specific application requirements.
Steering Wheel Spacers- when a steering wheel is set to far and causes fatigue when driving, many car owners install spacers. Also called steering wheel extenders, spacers bring the vehicle controls closer, making driving comfortable and easy. They also allow you better control of the vehicle.
Spacers can be fixed or adjustable. A steering wheel extension using fixed spacers requires you have several of them. That allows you to achieve the most appropriate driving position. Variable spacers let you lock the steering wheel position once tuned to your preferred distance.
Steering Wheel Hub Adapters- these allow you to change the pattern of steering wheel bolts. As a result, you can install virtually any type of wheel design to any column. Adapters are useful when upgrading or changing to a better or more stylish wheel.
A typical hub adapter consisted of two sections; a splined part that attaches to the steering column and an outer circumference with bolt holes. The holes correspond to those of your aftermarket wheel. Steering wheel adapters come in different types, each designed for specific wheels.
Steering Wheel Quick Release Adapter- it refers to a mechanism that lets you release the steering wheel in an instant. Initially developed for race cars to allow drivers to enter and exit the driver’s position, the quick release has found a useful function in the regular car.
Quick release adapters help to deter thieves when you’ve parked your car. You can remove the steering wheel by just pushing or pushing and leave with it. You can also use them to create room in the driver’s seat to enable entry and exit, just like they do in race cars.
Steering Wheel Problems
A malfunctioning steering wheel subjects you to many risks. Negotiating comers may become a nightmare, overtaking dangerous, and parking a pain. Besides these dangers, a bad steering wheel also takes away driving comfort. Problems include.
- Excessive steering wheel play caused by a steering gear that has worn out
- Power steering system issues such as low levels of hydraulic fluid that makes a steering wheel hard to turn
- Steering wheel judder or the steering wheel shaking when braking as a result of worn components of some or entire steering system
- Worn steering linkages and other parts that cause a steering wheel wobble
- Excessive wear of the tie rods that makes the steering wheel loose
- Steering wheel noise cause caused by wear of several parts such as the steering gear, steering assist system belt, and other components
- Steering wheel misalignment from a damaged steering column that makes turning the wheels uncomfortable and inaccurate
- Steering wheel tilt angle failure due to locking system issues
Steering wheel issues can manifest in many ways. Apart from the problems that affect the wheel directly, other parts where symptoms may appear include the tires. You may notice uneven wear or excessive wear on one side.
In vehicles that use a power steering system, the computer may light up a dashboard light to indicate issues with the steering system. Other signs include unusual sounds when turning, both at high and low speeds.
Steering Wheel FAQs
Before concluding the guide, here is a question and answer question. It will provide you with more information about the automotive steering wheel.
Q1. Are steering wheels universal?
A. Universal steering wheels can be installed in many different vehicles. However, that does not make them universal. There still exists design variations that make may cause compatibility issues. Generally, steering wheels differ in diameters, shapes, thickness and material. Also, in the way they mount to the steering column, including their bolt pattern.
Q2. What is a steering wheel puller?
A. It’s a type of tool used to make removing the wheel easy. The puller comprises a threaded central rod and two bolts on an outer bracket. By fastening the two bolts on the steering wheel and turning the center bolt, the resulting force pulls out the wheel. It’s a useful tool that any car owner who considers DIY repair jobs would want to own.
Q3. When do you know that you have a failing steering wheel and system?
A. Take immediate action if :
The steering wheel is stiff or locked
It may not turn when you want it to or you need to use a lot of effort. Both can make driving your vehicle dangerous, especially when you have to overtake at high speeds.
The steering wheel is crooked–
When the steering wheel is not straight, you risk making inaccurate turns. You may also find driving your car a most uncomfortable experience.
The steering wheel is shaking
Apart from the discomfort caused by steering wheel vibrations, you also risk obtaining inaccurate turns or losing proper control of the vehicle
The steering wheel is loose
A loose steering causes you to lose the feedback of the wheels. It leads to rides driving, especially in high traffic areas or uneven and winding roads.
The steering is misaligned
The wheel must be properly centered for correct functioning. An off-centered one can make controlling a vehicle difficult.
The steering wheel locks
It’s one of the most dangerous steering issues, especially if it happens when cruising down a busy road. It ready happens but can still occur. When it does, it’s advised to take quick action.
Q4. What causes a steering wheel to lock?
A. There are several causes. You may be having a faulty ignition steering wheel lock system or a problem with the power steering. You may also have turned too sharply. Whatever the reason, you cannot control a vehicle with the steering wheel locked and immediate action is required.
Q5. What if the steering wheel won’t unlock?
A. If the steering wheel is jammed, these repair options can help.
- Using the ignition key. The process is well explained in this YouTube video
- Cleaning the parts that make the steering wheel lock mechanism or the steering column
- Replacing the entire ignition lock
- Changing the power steering pump
Q6. Can you repair a steering wheel?
A. You can, depending on the type and level of damage. Steering wheel repair can be as simple as cleaning the to as complicated as replacing some parts. Simple repairs such a steering wheel restoration by reconditioning the leather or any other cover can be DIY tasks. If fixing the wheel involves more than cleaning the exterior, it’s recommended to involve a mechanic, especially if it has a safety airbag.
Q7. What is the cost to replace a steering wheel?
A. Around $50 on average, although it depends on where you are and the local rates. The steering wheels itself goes for between $100 to $300 average, but specialized ones can cost more. There are also wheels that cost less than $100. The price differences result from the wide variations of the component in terms of material, size, and design.
Q8. Can you replace a steering wheel yourself?
A. You can. However, it depends on whether it’s a steering wheel with airbag or without. Those that come with a safety airbag are dangerous to work on. The bag may eject unexpectedly and cause severe injury. To avoid accidents, always find a mechanic to help unfasten the wheel safely.
Q9. What is the best steering wheel?
A. The best steering for your car is one that satisfies your needs for size, ergonomics, and visual appeal. That could be your car’s factory-installed wheel or an aftermarket design based on your preferred features. That said, the manufacturer reputation cannot be overlooked. Some steering wheel brands are better than others.
Q10. OEM Vs. Aftermarket steering wheel: which is better?
A. OEM steering wheels are made by the carmaker or authorized manufacturer. They are usually costly and, at times, hard to obtain. They offer guaranteed quality, though. Aftermarket wheels are often cheaper, readily available and often more customizable. Many people seem to prefer aftermarket steering wheels for their cost and availability, plus their array of features that fit specific requirements.
The automotive steering wheel has come a long way. The modern one is not only a means to guide a vehicle but also a control center for various functions and car accessories. Understanding the wheel and its components should help you to choose the most appropriate for your car. And if considering an upgrade or enhancement, accessories that may be useful.