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Can You Change the Shift Knob on an Automatic Car?

If you are willing to bring some upgrades to your automatic car, it is likely that you’d like to change the shift knob. Users often raise a concern about changing the shift knob of an automatic car.

Here, we will discuss whether you can change or remove the shift knob and how you should proceed with it. If it’s something that interests, you then you have landed on the right place. 

Can you change the shift knob on an automatic car?

You can change the shift knob of an automatic car. In fact, it is a rather easy task that can be accomplished even with limited resources. You can change, remove and upgrade the shift knob all by yourself or take help from an expert mechanic. Just make sure you maintain the proper steps.

A shift knob is a knob that is placed on top of the lever in your car. It is designed to let users change the gears in an automatic car. If you’re planning an upgrade for your car, changing the shift knob will be a good place to start.

Many people feel the need to change the shift knob because they have worn out or sustained damage. You can change the shift knob on an automatic car without much hassle. It can also be customized to fit your personality.

In fact, changing the shift knob of an automatic car is one of the easiest projects that you can take up. It can be done relatively quickly and conveniently.

But make sure that you have researched well about the combination of boot and shift knob that will suit your automatic car.

How do you remove an automatic shift knob?

Removing an automatic shift knob entails many intrinsic details that will need your special attention. Let’s take a look at the steps that you will need to follow to remove an automatic shift knob: 

Check and identify the shift knob type:

Check around the knob to identify what kind of shift knob your automatic car features.

See if you have a shift knob that comes with a head bolt or features a screw. This will play an important role in choosing the right shift knob for your car.

Unscrew the shift knob:

Depending on the type of shift knob, you will now need gear to unscrew it. If it features a screw, then you will need to use a screwdriver to separate it from the shaft.

And if the shift knob features a head bolt, then you will need an Allen wrench to remove it.

Some shift knobs may be placed through compression. In such a case, you might need to use a screwdriver with a flat head.

Check for snap ring:

Check if your shift knob has a snap ring underneath. It may be present under the shift knob, connecting it with the shaft.

Some cars incorporate this snap ring to keep the shift knob from moving too much. Carefully remove the snap ring from the shaft by using the screwdriver.

Remove the knob from the shaft:

At this point, the shift knob is supposed to be loose and ready to go. Now it is time to separate the shift knob from the shaft of your car.

You should be able to simply pull it off from the shaft. Make sure to pull it out steady but slowly.

If it does not come off so easily, twist the shift knob anti-clockwise. And it should do the trick.

How to change the automatic shift knob?

You can easily change an automatic shift knob. Follow these steps to get the job done effortlessly:

Take note of the type of shift knob:

The first thing that you should consider is the type of holding that the shift knob has. Check it thoroughly to identify whether the shift knob is connected to the shaft through a head bolt or a screw.

Remove the shift knob:

Now you should remove the shift knob from the shaft. Depending on the type of knob, use a screwdriver or a wrench to get the job done. Pull the shift knob gently once it is loose enough.

Change the shift knob:

Now that you have removed the older shift knob, it is time to replace it with a newer one. Make sure that the new shift knob is compatible with the shaft. If the fitting does not seem right then you can use an adapter and install the shift knob.

Can I put a manual shift knob on an automatic car?

Yes, you can put a manual shift knob on an automatic car. There is no reason why you cannot do it. It is done by many car enthusiasts and the process is rather simple.

Make sure that the width of the thread that is featured in the manual shift knob matches the one in your shaft.

But you should consider using a boot along with the shift knob. It makes the car look much better and makes the shift knob more efficient as well.

Are gear shift knobs universal?

Not all gear shift knobs are universal. Whether you will get a shift knob of universal fit largely depends on the brand that you are considering. Brands like Mishimoto offer shift knobs of universal fit.

Many shift knobs in the current market come with universal fitting. You can use them practically in any car. They also go well with a broad range of shift levers.

But keep in mind that if the shift knob that you have purchased does not fit your car shaft perfectly, then you can always use an adapter. It will adjust the fitting and allow a smooth setting for the shift knob.

Do shift knobs fit all cars?

One shift knob may not fit all cars. Only the shift knobs that have a universal fit will fit all cars. So before you purchase a shift knob, make sure that it is compatible with the shaft of your car.

Due to their increasing popularity among car enthusiasts, you will now find a wide range of options in shift knobs that feature a universal fit. They are designed to be compatible with all cars.

And if they need an adjustment in the fitting, you can install an adapter along with the shift knob. This will make the fitting just right for your car and the knob will stay steady when you’re using it.

Why do some shift knobs have buttons?

Shift knobs have buttons underneath their cover. These buttons are placed to allow you to switch the car from park mode to neutral mode. The buttons on the shift knob allow you to do this even when the car’s engine is turned off.

So you can use the buttons on the shift knob to release the gear of your automatic car even if the engine is turned off.

What does a weighted shift knob do?

Weighted shift knobs are designed to increase convenience among users. The weighted shift knobs offer a smoother and more solid shift.

Most of the modern cars feature weighted shifts as they are growing more and more popular among car enthusiasts.

In addition, the weighted shift knobs minimize the amount of effort that you will need to put in order to change the shift. Note that the ideal weight for a weighted shift knob is from 300 to 400 grams. This weight will offer great convenience and crisper shifts.

Do weighted shift knobs make a difference?

Yes, weighted shift knobs have proven to make a difference. They are much more convenient than the traditional shift knobs. Weighted shift knobs allow much smoother shifts that require lesser effort on the part of the driver.

However, keep in mind that the weighted shift knob should not weigh more than 400 grams. This is the ideal limit for the weight, and any more than that will create difficulty for the driver.

Are weighted shift knobs bad?

No, there is no evidence to support that weighted shift knobs are bad. In fact, they are considered to be better than the traditional knobs that we have been using all along.

It has been proven that weighted shift knobs are not bad for the transmission of your car. On the contrary, the weighted shifts have proven to make shifting much easier and effortless.

That being said, a heavy shift knob is a personal preference. If you are not comfortable with the extra weight, we would not recommend you to use it.

Final thoughts:

You can change the shift knob of an automatic car without any trouble. It takes very little time and effort, and even a backyard mechanic can get the job done. However, there are some critical factors you need to consider like the shift knob type, fitting, compatibility, and more.