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Thread: DIY - Looking good for the long haul! (Rust protection front/rear doors)

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    DIY - Looking good for the long haul! (Rust protection front/rear doors)

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    Admin note
    -- this thread is part of a DIY series:

    1. DIY - Rust protection front/rear wheel well areas
    2. DIY - Rust protection front/rear doors
    3. DIY - Rust protection for the rear hatch
    4. DIY - Rust protection for the inner rear quarters


    --------------------

    Welcome back to Part III of the DIY - Looking good for the long haul! (Rust protection for the front/rear doors)

    In Parts I & II we undercoated the front and rear wheel well areas and went the extra mile by painting the front calipers and the rear drums to give it a better shot at looking good years from now.

    In Part III the rear doors are going to get a swath of undercoating. Here in Northern NY, many-a-car has rusted from the inside-out but this doesn't have to happen if you have a few extra bucks and some free time.

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    ***DISCLAIMER***
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    What follows is the removal of the rear door inner trim pad to get a better look at what we're dealing with. The procedures for this segment will be general and probably not all-inclusive so if in doubt about anything, ask questions or do a little research before you make a mess or wreck your new car. In the same way there are those who should never carry anything sharper than a wet paper towel, there are those that should never attempt to hands-on repair an automobile. Going one step further, please consider this writeup for entertainment purposes only - I assume no liability - CrazyJerry

    Moving on - Let's look inside those rear doors!

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    1,986 miles - still new - do I really want to do this? YES!
    --------------------------------------------------------------
    A peek inside the rear doors requires the plastic inner trim be removed. EVEN IF YOU ARE A BULL IN A CHINA CLOSET YOU CAN DO THIS...

    For the job, we'll need a regular phillips screwdriver and something to drink.
    That's it?
    Yes, that's it.

    Step 1: Open your rear door(s) and take a look at the inner trim pad.
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    It's easy to find the four black phillips screws that will need to be removed. The photo below shows the location of these screws. (Two on the outer/upper edges, one more or less behind the door unlatch handle, and one in the well of the door close pull.)
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    **Update 11/29/2014**
    Note the following screw location on the rear door trim pad for the 2014 Mirage:
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    Then note, the 2015 Mirage has omitted that particular screw.
    Thanks to ToXiQ for the tip and the following photo:
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    **End of update**
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    The screw behind the door unlatch handle is the odd one and does not match the other three. It's thinner and longer so take note...
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    Now, there's two additional silver screws that have to be removed but to get at them, you'll need to remove the door pull that you previously took the screw out of. There is a procedure, and for all you Hulk's out there: CAUTION! Tone it down a little for this part. "Gently" squeeze the door pull like the photo shows and at the same time, pull upward but just for a couple of inches (you're not looking to rip this thing off it's mount and fling it across the street all in one motion.). Squeezing the door pull will release the "barbs" that hold it down and when you raise it you'll notice the power window control wires (if your car has them) attached:
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    If your rear windows are up, then go ahead and unplug the window control. If not, it's going to be a good idea to roll up the rear windows now.
    **NOTE: If you unplug the rear window control and think you can use the driver's control to roll it up - think again. Control switch must be plugged in to make the rear window go up or down from any control...
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    With the door pull out of the way, you should now easily see the last two silver phillips screws that need to be removed:
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    Once the last two silver screws are out the fun begins! It's time to remove the trim pad. I found this quite easy to do without any additional tools but you may need the assistance of something thin and relatively strong such as a butter knife of a long thin flat-tip screwdriver. To remove the door pad, look over at the area between the door hinges and using your hands you should feel a "lip" that you can get your fingers onto. I found I could get both hands on this slight lip and with a short brisk tug, the fasteners would "pop" loose. Once you get the feel for this, you'll have no problem figuring out where the rest are. Just be sure when pulling to space your hands out a bit to spread the pressure more evenly over the door pad. With the door pad loose, you'll notice it still won't be completely free to set aside. The door handle and cables are still attached from the backside with one lonely silver phillips screw:
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    If you were successful holding the trim pad between your arm and leg while unscrewing the door handle/cables, then you should be able to set it aside:
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    With the pad out of the way, we now get our first look at, well...... more plastic:
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    The adhesive that holds the plastic liner in place is very pliable. It's basically urethane rope seal and I have about 35 pounds of the stuff strategically holding parts of Centurion together! There is a trick to saving the plastic liner though. Using your finger as though it were a knife, get behind the plastic and pry up the black sealer:
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    There should be plenty of adhesive so you can "stick" the plastic out of the way and this will give you access to remove a styrofoam block of sorts (probably aids in an impact situation - just guessing though..) There is one plastic phillips screw that expands a plastic rivet that holds this thing in place. Remove that screw and out it comes!!
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    With the block removed you get a real good look at the inner door and a support beam. Notice, though, all the nooks and crannies where dirt and water can accumulate and ultimately rot out your doors!
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    **UPDATE 12-20-2014**
    The 2015 Mirage doesn't have this styrofoam block in the rear doors. Thanks again to ToXIQ for this update. (My 2014 Mirage has 6,100 miles on it now but ToXIQ's info is making it obsolete already! Haha!) Pic below:
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    Looking upward, we see the two nuts that hold on the exterior door handle. In time, they too will rust where they meet the door. Notice also, the window regulator track and how the glass is attached..:
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    Ok, talk is cheap, let's get down to business! For this task, the black undercoating we previously used won't cut it. We need something that will find all those nooks and crannies and remain pliable over time. There is such an undercoating and generically it's called "Amber Undercoating". This used to be popular in rattle cans at every local auto parts store but this does not appear to be the case anymore - what happened? So I found some online:
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    Even the most spirited user should find one can should easily be enough for both rear doors. Shake the can well, insert the little straw into the nozzle and commence to spraying. Go from top to bottom and don't be worried if it "runs" - that's exactly what you want!
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    At some point it will stop running and firm up. Areas that didn't get covered will show up - blast'em!

    Notice how the undercoating ran along the inside of the pinch weld and found the drain holes:
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    If your Mirage has electric windows you may see the connector and the exposed crimps.. This undercoating works excellent in preventing corrosion in these!
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    The speaker connector looked like it could be a place for dirt and moisture to hide. Not anymore:
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    When you're done spraying, simply reverse the procedure to reassemble and you're done - well almost!
    If you see any areas where the undercoat dripped out, you may wish to wipe with a paper towel. Some escaped around the outer door handle and also through the bottom drain holes:
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    ~CrazyJerry

    P.S. Continuing to Work hard for a free window forum sticker!



    Last edited by CrazyJerry; 12-21-2014 at 12:00 AM. Reason: Add photo for screw deletion on 2015 Mirage

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    Excellent write up. Thanks!

    I wonder how well this stuff will work for keeping the bottom of the doors from rusting (a very rust prone area).

        __________________________________________

        click to view fuel log View my fuel log 2015 Mirage ES 1.2 automatic: 49.0 mpg (US) ... 20.8 km/L ... 4.8 L/100 km ... 58.8 mpg (Imp)


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    Thanks from me too for the write up!

    Here in central Europe we get loads of salt and small jagged stones thrown on our streets during winter, and that can make any car rust if it is not protected well enough. The stones chip chunks of paint off, the salt does the rest.

    If we do anything to preserve our cars, this is what we usually do on a new car:

    First step is to steam off the entire underside including inside the front and rear fenders. This is to get everything clean and free of grease, oil or wax. Then we check for unprotected (unsealed) seams. These may usually be found around the rear wheels, on the underbody etc. Once all has perfectly dried from high-pressure steam cleaning, we apply 1-component Polyurethane bond- and sealant. This is the stuff used for glueing airplanes and freight trailers together. You can usually see it as the painted over sealant found on the lower inside part of car doors, near where the water exit holes are located. No idea what the stuff is called it in the States, here one popular brand is called Sikaflex. Once you start looking at your car, you can generally find lots of open seams.
    The sealant actually dries quickly, but the seams need at least one entire day for drying. This is because the sealent gives off water in the drying process. After that, it becomes totally waterproof and remains somewhat elastic and lasts longer than the rest of any car. It can be painted over, but thats just cosmetics and usually unnecessary.
    Warning: Do not even think of substituting silicone based sealant for 1-component polyurethane, because silicone generates acetic acid in the drying process!
    In new car production it takes a lot of effort and labour to seal those seems, but we can do that ourselves!
    The next step on a new car would be to paint the underside, or at least parts of it such as the inside of the wheel houses/fenders. After that you may consider applying a special undercoating, if you then still think it were necessary. There are plenty suitable products on the market.
    Next step is putting cavity spray (waxy/greasy stuff) into all the cavities. It can easily take up half a day to do it properly. Two or three 0.5 litre (a half litre is about one pint) spray cans are usually enough. Do read the product instructions and beware of the fumes. When finished, check that the water drainage holes didnt accidently get sealed with cavity spray.

    When the car becomes older, it is always worthwhile to check the entire underneath including wheel wells on a regular basis. I do it whenever I get under the car, or whenever it gets hoisted. This for checking for signs of rust and corrosion, and for doing something about it while its still easy, before it becomes a problem.

    foama
    Last edited by foama; 08-14-2014 at 11:18 AM.

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    Another great write-up, CrazyJerry.

    An anti-rust treatment like that is critical for anyone living in the rust belt. Going to drill small holes to access hard to reach spots as well? (Rockers, B-pillars, rear wheel dogleg) The commercial companies do that.

        __________________________________________

        click to view fuel log View my fuel log 2014 Mirage base ES 1.2 manual: 54.0 mpg (US) ... 23.0 km/L ... 4.4 L/100 km ... 64.9 mpg (Imp)


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    Quote Originally Posted by MetroMPG View Post
    Another great write-up, CrazyJerry.

    An anti-rust treatment like that is critical for anyone living in the rust belt. Going to drill small holes to access hard to reach spots as well? (Rockers, B-pillars, rear wheel dogleg) The commercial companies do that.
    Thanks MetroMPG!
    Unsure of the drilling just yet - at least for the rockers and B-pillar, I haven't made it quite that far!

    More joy on the way - Part IV on deck...

    ~CrazyJerry

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    Welcome back to Part IV of the DIY - Looking good for the long haul! (Rust protection for the front/rear doors)

    In Parts I & II we undercoated the front and rear wheel well areas and went the extra mile by painting the front calipers and the rear drums to give it a better shot at looking good years from now.

    In Part III the inner cavity of the rear doors were undercoated.

    In Part IV the inner cavity of the front doors are now going to get their share of undercoating. Years from now after completing this step, there shouldn't be any hint of the doors rusting from the inside out!

    -----------------------
    ***DISCLAIMER***
    -----------------------
    What follows is the removal of the front door inner trim pad to get a better look at the inner cavity.
    The procedures for this segment will be general and probably not all-inclusive so if unsure about anything, ask questions or do a little research before you deface or annihilate your new car. In the same way there are those who should never carry anything sharper than fresh marshmallow Peeps, there are those that should never attempt to hands-on repair an automobile. Going one step further, please consider this writeup for entertainment purposes only - I assume no liability - CrazyJerry

    Moving on - Let's look inside those front doors!

    --------------------------------------------------------------
    2,000 miles - still smells new - and winter is on the way!
    --------------------------------------------------------------
    To venture inside the front doors requires the rigid plastic inner trim be removed. If you were successful removing the rear door pads, the fronts are slightly easier...

    For the job, we'll need a regular phillips screwdriver and about 25 minutes per door (or 15 minutes per door if you don't have a lot of time and work right along).

    Step 1: Open your front door(s) and take a look at the inner trim pad.
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    It's easy to find the three black phillips screws that will need to be removed. The photo below shows the location of these screws. (2 screws: One on the outer/upper edge, and one in the well of the door close pull. 1 screw: located more or less behind the door unlatch handle.)
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    Like the rear door, the screw behind the door unlatch handle is the odd one. It does not match the other two you're removing - it's thinner and longer so take note...
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    There's also two additional silver screws that have to be removed and to get at them, you'll need to remove the door pull that you previously took the black phillips screw out of. What I found worked well was to "Gently" squeeze the door pull like the photo shows and at the same time, pull upward but just for a couple of inches. The electric window (those so equipped) and electric door lock wiring will be attached so don't be too ambitious. Squeezing the door pull will release the "barbs" that hold it down and when you raise it you'll be able to see the power window/door lock control wires and plug ins:
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    At this point, it's possible you may need to employ a rocking action to get the front to unhook itself. The passenger door on this one required this but the driver's side came loose without a hitch..
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    If your front windows are up, then go ahead and unplug the window control. If not, it's going to be a good idea to roll them up now or it'll be near impossible to get any undercoating in the upper half of the door. Each white part of the electrical plug has a small "tang" that needs to be squeezed to release the plug from the socket.
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    With the door pull out of the way, you should now easily see the last two silver phillips screws that need to be removed:
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    Once the last two silver screws are out the fun begins! It's "ALMOST" time to remove the trim pad.
    Almost means there one more thing in the way. Look up where your door rear view mirror is.. Do you see that triangular shaped trim piece? It must be removed and it's easy but will require a little finesse.

    It needs to be pulled upward and at the same time the tip needs to follow the contour of the window frame. So, pull at an upward / arc to the rear and it'll come right off!
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    With that piece removed, the door pad can come off.
    Like the rear doors, this is quite easy to do without any additional tools but you may need the assistance of something thin and relatively strong such as a butter knife of a long thin flat-tip screwdriver. To remove the front door pad, use your hands to feel a "lip" along the bottom edge that you can get your fingers onto. I found I could get both hands on this slight lip and with a short brisk tug, the fasteners would "pop" loose. Once you get the feel for this, you'll have no problem figuring out where the rest are. Just be sure when pulling to space your hands out a bit to spread the pressure more evenly over the door pad.
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    With the door pad loose, you'll notice it still won't be completely free to set aside. The door handle and cables are still attached from the backside with a single silver phillips screw:
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    Trim pad free from the door, you should now be able to set it aside:
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    With the pad out of the way, we are greeted with the clear plastic liner that must be peeled back.
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    The adhesive that holds the plastic liner in place is a very pliable urethane rope seal. To avoid stretching the plastic liner, use your finger as though it were a knife, get behind the plastic and pry up the black sealer:
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    There should be plenty of adhesive so you can "stick" the plastic out of the way and this will give you access to the inner door and a support beam. Notice, though, all the nooks and crannies where dirt and water can accumulate and ultimately rot out your doors!
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    ================================================== =======
    An "encore" of when the rear doors were sealed, amber undercoating is on deck:
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    Shake the can well and insert the supplied straw into the spray nozzle.
    Starting from top to bottom "suave the deck"!
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    As we "run" our way towards the door's lock end, we see the two nuts that hold on the exterior door handle. In time, they too will rust where they meet the door. Notice also, the large spring clip that holds the exterior door lock..:
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    Taking photos while spraying is not as easy as it may seem and in the above photo it appears the vertical black felt window track got a dose of the amber. If you duplicate this, please take the time to wipe away the excess from the window channel as it may slightly slow down the operation of the window once it firms up.
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    Assess your masterpiece and any areas that didn't get covered will show up - blast'em! If your Mirage has electric windows you may see the connector and the exposed crimps.. This undercoating works excellent in preventing corrosion in these (as well as the speaker connector)!
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    At this point the front door is ready for reassembly - unless you want to do just one more thing! The below photo looks into the door cavity and reveals the window roll down mechanism. The windows on this Mirage get quite a lot of use. up & down. So, the gears and pivot points will get a blast of lubricant:
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    When you're completely done spraying, simply reverse the procedure to reassemble and you're done.
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    **Note**
    There may have been a chance that during the trim pad removal, one (or more) of your plastic fasteners decided to stay with the door. If this is the case, you'll want to remove them from the door and reattach them to the trim pad.
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    Same as the rear doors, if you see the amber undercoating has made it's way out the bottom drain holes simply wipe off excess with a cloth.
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    If the can of undercoating isn't empty yet, consider giving the inner lower fender a quick blast while you're in the area. Allow the straw to enter the dark coronal hole area and give it a blast:
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    Dottie says, "I'm two months from being 18 years old. When can I drive the Mirage!"
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    ~CrazyJerry

    P.S. Getting closer to a free window forum sticker!
    Last edited by CrazyJerry; 08-16-2014 at 11:01 PM. Reason: typos

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    Great idea! This should be sticky in the thread. Cute dog by the way.



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