Rear sliding door trim panel removal
Date: Wed Nov 21, 2007 2:16 am
The primary reason for this DIY is to give a step by step procedure for removing
the rear sliding door trim panel.
The last group of photos will also address the most common reason for needing to
take it off in the first place. Water leaking into the area under the sliding
door scuff plate area. If after a rain, washing van, or just running garden hose on the
sliding door window area, you open the sliding door and see some water drips coming
from behind the plastic trim panel, this repair is for you.
To start out with we need to remove the scuff plate. With sliding door fully open, just
lift straight up on the scuff plate to release the four metal retaining clips that
hold it in place. This is a view of the backside of the scuff plate so you can see
the location of these four clips.
Here is a closeup of the bell shaped metal clip.
Next we close door part way and pull on the bottom part of this trim panel to remove
it. It has three smaller metal clips holding it into place in the areas noted by
the red dots.
We now need to remove the manual handle. It is held in place with an omega shaped
spring clip. Handle is shown on top with spring clip installed. Below is what the clip looks like alone
along with the tool used to remove it and how. The tool simply spreads the two "legs"
of the clip as it pushes it free.
Now it is time to remove the trim panel. With door fully closed, grap the cupholder
as shown and pull straight away from the door. There are a total of seven plastic
clips holding the trim panel in place. Next picture shows location. Once all 7 clips
are released, hold the bottom of the trim slightly away from door and lift straight up to release
panel from upper hooks.
Here is showing the location of plastic retaining clips. The clips on the leading
edge of the trim panel are a little different in that they have a black seal on
them. Circled in Blue.
Now just unplug the power window connector and door panel is ready to set aside.
You can see from the fact that I was able to insert two pencils between the water/vapor
barrier and body sheet metal that the sticky black goo that is used to secure the
water/vapor barrier has separated at these two places. This is where the water is
leaking in at.
Here is showing a closeup of the separated area.
With the lower part of the water/vapor barrier lifted up you can see that there
are two holes in the body sheet metal on the inside of the sealer line. These are
designed to allow water to drain from the barrier area, back into the door where
is can then drain to the outside thru other drain holes in the very bottom of the
door. The separated sealer is usually always in these areas and this instead allows
all of that water to drain into the interior and ends up in that cavity under the
Wiping the sealer lines on the door and vapor barrier with some carburetor or brake
cleaner will get the stuff sticky again so it will adhere. Might want to use a vinyl
glove when doing this as the black sealer is very sticky and will get all over the
place if not carefull and can be near impossible to get off of hands. A clean rag
saturated with the cleaner should easily wipe up any sealer that got onto places
you did not want it to. Have also found it beneficial to use a hot glue gun to provide
a little extra adhesioin where needed.