I knew that I needed a replacement cable as the cable is not coming out of the silver piece here.
So I got online and ordered a replacement handle and CABLE. It was easier to match the handle and replace the entire unit than to just try to replace the cable.
This is the replacement handle and cable. It was less than $10 online.
Unscrew the 2 screws that the lever on the outside of the recliner are hiding. You can't take this piece out completely yet. Just let it hang in place. Put the screws in a safe place. You need them.
Flip the couch/chair over and see where the cable comes from the bottom of the piece over to the metal recliner mechanism.
Release the locking mechanism on the recliner by hand and then locate the little S hook that is connecting the cable to the chair. Remember where this is for later!
With the cable loose, it is now time to take out the clip that is attaching the plastic cable cover and lever to the chair itself.
Use a flat head screw driver or needle nose pliers and pull the clip that is holding the cable out of this connection. You will probably break it. No worries as you are replacing it.
This is the OLD mechanism. I know this because it is missing the internal cable that makes the entire recliner work!
Once you have the clip out, pull the entire mechanism out of the couch/chair from the lever side. Then take the new mechanism and place it in position on the outside with the cable inside.
From the underside of the couch, open up the section that is hiding the cable enough to pull out the new mechanism. This sounds scary. It's not. I had to remove 2 staples.
This is where the new clip goes. It is hard to find in the dark of the underside of the couch!
Carefully push the new clip into place. I had to rock the clip back and forth to get it to snap into place.
Take the S hook on the cable and attach it to the reclining mechanism. You might have to push the lever down to find the right spot. It likes to hide, but it isn't hard to find.
Get a drill and put the screws that you saved from the old mechanism and screw the new handle back into place.
Try out your "new" recliner! Congratulations!