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Thread: DIY - Looking good for the long haul! (Rust protection for the inner rear quarters.)

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    DIY - Looking good for the long haul! (Rust protection for the inner rear quarters.)

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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


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    Welcome back to Part VI of the DIY - Looking good for the long haul!
    (Rust protection for the rear quarters.)

    Recap:

    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 Parts III & IV we undercoated the front and rear inner doors to give them some extra protection in an area that generally receives very little attention.

    In Part V, the lower portion of the rear hatch was quickly and easily undercoated.

    For Part VI we look into the left and right quarters.

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    ***DISCLAIMER***
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    What follows is the removal of the rear cargo trim pad(s) to gain access to the inner cavity of the quarter panels. The procedures for this task will be general and probably not all-inclusive so if unsure about anything, ask questions or do a little research before you start. 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

    Onward to the rear cargo area trim panels!

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    2,695 miles - no faults noted - and is a pleasure to drive!
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    Undercoating the "inners" of the rear quarters requires the center rectangular trim pad at the hatch-latch anchor point to be removed and this is not terribly difficult. This narrow center trim piece will require a little finesse; actually go slow and watch what you're doing or you may hear a crackling of plastic.

    For the removal, we'll need a thin regular flat-tip screwdriver, no distractions, and about 3 minutes...

    Step 1: Open the rear hatch, unhook the rubber bungy and remove the corresponding little shade/parcel tray. Fold the rear seatbacks forward while you're standing there picking your nose. Next, take a look at the center cargo area trim pad around the hatch-latch anchor. There's no intuitive indicator where the plastic rivets are that hold it in place but using the photo below you will be able to see how they are distributed along that panel trim piece. Using your flat tip screwdriver and a little finesse to pull back the hatch opening weather strip, pry the entire trim piece upward. When you pry in up in this manner the white plastic fasteners will be pulled from their holes, and the built-in lower plastic clip will allow the bottom section to raise up and eventually be free.
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    --->CAUTION: THE PLASTIC CLIP IS A BIT DELICATE AND WILL BREAK IF YOU AREN'T CAREFUL - STRAIGHT UP IS THE KEY FOR SUCCESSFUL REMOVAL<---
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    To clarify a bit further, the photo below is rotated around so you can see the trim piece backside.
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    More photos detailing the location on the fasteners:
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    Once that center trim piece is off the rest is pretty easy. Right below the slot for the clip (shown above) there's one of those plastic rivets you can easily pop outward with a flat tip screwdriver:
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    On the passenger side there is a small plastic square that allows access to the upper shock fastening nut, etc. Using your screwdriver, carefully pry it from its recess:
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    On the driver's side, you can remove that same square cover and the cargo light that is right above it (it will easily pop right out and you can unplug it). Optionally if you're careful, you can leave the light in place until you are able to gain access to the plug-in...
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    Once that is out of the way, start with either quarter panel trim pad at the edge that was in contact with the center trim piece you previously removed. At this edge, you can literally grasp the quarter panel trim pad and begin to pull it away from the rear hatch opening and its attachment to the upper interior trim piece. By just pulling this pad partially away from the steel it hides, you should have plenty of access to spray the inners.
    Passenger side view:
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    Driver side view:
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    I'll leave it up to those doing the job to decide how far they wish to go with the pad removal. I was able to find plenty of access holes (both large and small) to blast the amber undercoating in. Using the little straw in the nozzle helps with the aiming through some of the smaller holes. Blast it good and let the coating drool down into the lower portion of the quarters and dogleg. If you are unsure of how far in the undercoating has sprayed, use a flashlight and one of those mirrors-on-a-stick to see inside the cavity. I was quite happy with the way mine turned out and the photo doesn't exactly capture the depth the spray went into those secret passageways:
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    Before reassembling, I made sure to give the upper shock fasteners a blob of goo. This should ensure corrosion free threads for the magic day when your shocks finally need replacing:
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    Reassembly is a snap - literally! Just be careful when reinstalling that last small rectangular center trip pad - the one with the fragile plastic built-in clips:
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    **Undercoating the rear quarter inners will cause you to smell the undercoating in the car interior for quite some time. Personally I like the aroma but with any nostrils YMMV.
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    It's 15 miles one-way to work. I sent the following to a few fellow co-workers:
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    ~CrazyJerry

    P.S. By the time I get through this series, the free window forum stickers will be obsolete!




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  3. #2
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    Looks much more clean than mine!

    I always pull the vehicle apart and dump waste oil in everywhere and lop grease on all of the bolts and exposed threads.

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    Quote Originally Posted by M-88 View Post
    Looks much more clean than mine!

    I always pull the vehicle apart and dump waste oil in everywhere and lop grease on all of the bolts and exposed threads.
    M-88,
    With you on that! I've also used a toilet wax ring to firm the oil up a bit too. This rattle can stuff just makes it so easy... Yes, I'm becoming a ninny....

    ~CrazyJerry

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    One of these days I'll buy fluid film. Now it's just a lot of waste oil and grease. Nasty job. But my 2011 car is pretty darn clean underneath!



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