I find it annoying to unplug the electrical connectors in my 1996 Volvo 850. It is very tricky to release the connectors because they usually have some kind of latching mechanism on both sides so that if you use a screwdriver on one side, then switch to the other side, the first side snaps back. Is there some special type of tool or tools that are supposed to disengage these connectors?

There are two basic types. The first type has a wire clip with a v-shaped crimp that looks like this:

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The other type is all plastic and looks like this:

enter image description here

This type generally has plastic ridges or rails on two sides and there are two arms with a catch that slide on these rails and latch the connector into place.

  • I don't know if special tools exist, but I will say that figuring out how to disconnect such connectors can be a real chore. Sometimes they look like they're held in with the plastic tabs that the second image shows when in reality it's just a friction-fit that needs a little bit of coaxing.
    – Zaid
    Feb 11, 2018 at 13:30
  • @Zaid Manufacturers told me they purposely design them hard to handle and easy to break.[sarcasm off] That doesn't even seem all too incredible though...
    – Bart
    Feb 11, 2018 at 15:57

1 Answer 1


If I remember correctly, that first type you have to squeeze that wire where that ”v” is towards the plastic body and the “teeth” disengage as they move up a plastic ramp .... but if they have been damaged....

The second has a clip that you press then pull to release - easy when you can see them , not so much when they are under the inlet manifold and the engine is hot...

Special tool - small nose pliers : remove metal clip then secure with a zip tie...

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