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My Rav4 has a sticky heat selector knob. When I tried to examine it, a little tab broke off and now it wont stay in the dashboard. When you touch it, it kind of pushes in so you cant get a hold of it. I want to replace the knob. It is mechanical and connects to a cable. I believe the part no is 55901-42020

does anyone know how to replace this knob? i mean the actual disconnection and reattachment of a new knob to the cable?

there are threads on here but no specifics.
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It's probably too late for you since it sounds like the old knob broke, and it was months ago, but here's what I found with my 2007 that had a very annoying, binding feel to the heat mix control:

I removed the radio, which allows pretty easy access to the area behind the climate control knobs below. Right away I noticed that the control cables for the heat knob were looped over some (electrical) cable bundles for the radio. Clearly this was not the original factory routing for stuff -- it's quite possible that the OEM stereo was pulled at some point.

When the heater control cables are looped around extra stuff, then they bind. Mine had been that way long enough that the semi-rigid plastic sheathing on some of them had some fractures. However, after i re-routed them to avoid any tight turns etc, the heater control is buttery smooth now.

This same issue, and solution could also apply to the air control knob to the right, since that uses these same very thin control cables.

-Arthur
 
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