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    Thread: Extensive Headliner DIY

    1. Member brandonrosensteel's Avatar
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      01-17-2008 10:20 PM #1
      Ok, I redid my headliner last night, and it turned out better than I expected.
      I was very happy with the final outcome and I figured I would post some info as to make this a little easier for everyone else.
      I know there is like 4 other DIY headliner threads, but most of them are only from after the headliner is removed.
      I dont have any pictures of me actually removing it, but I'm going to try to sum it all up so that others who try this for the first time have an easier time attempting this.
      Also, this is for a 92 Jetta with a sunroof.
      Golfs may be slightly different, as I know nothing about the similarities/differences in the Golf headliner.

      Materials:
      Screwdrivers (phillips and straight)
      Pliers/Channel locks (optional, see below)
      Razor blade
      Decent scissors
      Headliner adhesive (9.99 LocTite Headliner Adhesive from AutoZone)
      Black plastic clips (1.99 Part#963-055 from AutoZone)
      Material of choice (Around 7.00 from WalMart)

      Also, I chose to do fleece.
      Baaad idea.
      Though it looks good and is durable, its so thick that the actual headliner installation became a hassle.
      Use thinner materials.

      NOTE: The headliner board is extremely fragile. Be very careful when moving it.
      I did all steps myself, but it would be 10x easier with someone helping you.

      Ok, so...
      First off, I removed my sun visors.
      Three screws each and then you have to twist the one clip 90 degrees to take it out.
      Secondly the rear view mirror.
      Twist it left or right, but be careful. It will be tight but it takes a little effort to pop it loose.
      After that, take down the sunroof crank.
      One phillips screw, and make sure not to lose the washers for it.
      After that, remove the light. Push the small tab on the right to pop it out and disconnect the wire.
      You can then pull the light/sunroof crank piece loose from the headliner.
      It has two clips along the back of it, and two that slide over the headliner in the front.
      Pull the back down, then slide it towards the rear of the car.
      Be careful with this though, as I broke the clips that snap it in place.
      Next, take down your "Oh Sh*t" handles. Each has 4 screws.
      Remove the screws in your A and B pillar covers.
      A pillar is at the top, B pillar is at the bottom.
      Pull the A pillar in towards the dash, its not necessary to completely remove them.
      The B pillar though must be removed.
      There is a large plastic clip at the top that must come out as well.
      Dont lose it because its what snaps the top of the pillar tight.
      Pull the C pillars out.
      They are only held in by metal clips which can easily be pulled in and out.
      Don't take them all the way out either, because let me tell you, they are extremely hard to put back in place.
      Remove the trim that surrounds the rear window. It has 6 clips that pop down out from the ceiling. Be careful not to break them.
      Ok, now comes the part to be patient with.
      I used a flat screwdriver and slowly slid it between the weather strips and the headliner over the doors to pop the headliner board loose from them.
      They help hold the entire board in place so its crucial you get them all loose before you take the clips out of the ceiling or there is a good chance you will break the board more.
      The only thing holding the board up now is the weather stripping around the sunroof and the 4 large plastic clips in the headliner.
      Slowly pull the headliner material from under the sunroof interior trim.
      It is glued to the metal under the trim, not to the board.
      I used a flat screwdriver to pull down on it in certain places.
      Last, take out the 4 large plastic clips.
      I had bought the extra clips for the headliner, so I just broke the large flat heads so I could grab them with channel locks and pulled them out.
      If you want to save them, then find a gentle way to remove them.

      Ok, now to get it out of the car.
      I put both seats down flat and lowered the board.
      Opened the passengers side rear window (that door doesnt open on my Jetta)
      Went to the drivers side rear door and maneuvered the corner out that door.
      Move the rear right corner up inside the back window.
      Stand the drivers seat up and slide the board down behind the drivers seat.
      You will probably have to bend it slightly to get it out.
      The front should still be in the front passenger seat mostly.
      Slide it across the bottom of the door and out the back drivers door.

      Ok, once its inside.
      It started out and looked like this.

      Peel the old material off.
      It comes off very easy.
      I broke my board and you can see where.
      Its ok, it can be fixed.

      You next have to scrub/brush all the old foam off.
      I used a coarse grit scouring pad for dishes.
      Be very gentle, you barely have to apply pressure.
      Also, dont apply pressure to the actual board
      I.e. Don't lean on it while you are scrubbing the foam off
      Another helpful hint if you are doing this inside is to have a vacuum nearby with a hose to suck the debris up out of the way while you work.

      Ok, once all the foam is off, next step is to fix the cracks, tears, etc.
      I used aluminum tape. The kind for duct work
      Very strong, flexible, and very heavy duty.
      Just tape all the breaks back together and all the cracks.
      And make sure you get the pieces to fill the whole board in, or make your own.
      I used cardboard and improvised where the board broke and I couldnt find the missing pieces.
      I also taped the sunroof crank/light area down to make it a smooth, one piece look.
      That is optional, though I think it would be harder to do two pieces.
      Also, if you do it as one piece, make sure you tape it down so it doesnt move once its on your ceiling and pull free from your fabric.

      After I did all of that, mine looked like this...

      Now you can lay down your fabric.
      Spread it out over the board, making sure its the right direction, long enough, wide enough, etc.
      I started at the front of the headliner, and did the right corner, worked to the left.
      Spray down about about a 1'x1' area of the board with glue, and apply the material very slowly, pressing and smoothing with your hands.
      Make sure there is enough of the material to stick over the edge so you can tuck it onto the back for a clean wrapped look. (about an inch)
      Work the whole board like this, always taking your time to get all the wrinkles.
      Use your hands to form the creases in the actual board.

      After all of that, it should look something like this...

      Now is time to flip it over, trim the excess, and glue it to the back.
      Once its face down, trim all but an inch from the edges.
      Fold that over to the back of the board.
      I used All Purpose Cement like that for PVC pipes for this step.
      Just swab a bit on, about 6-8 inches at a time, and press the material down.
      When you get to corners, cut a notch in it so it will bend correctly and trim away the excess that cant be glued down.

      It should look something like this after that step.

      Finally, repeat this step to all the holes for your rear view mirror, light, visors, etc.
      Also, dont forget the 4 big clip holes too.
      I decided not to put the "Oh sh*t" handles back up.

      After all the holes are cut out, and the edges glued, it should look something like this...

      And you are done finally!
      Trust me, when you reach this step, its a good feeling.

      Installation is the reverse of taking it out.
      Also, I found out the front two holes for the large plastic clips are not the same as the back two.
      The front two need a different size clip than the rears that I used.
      When I go get new clips, I'll post them in here as well.
      As for now though, its fine and dandy in my car.
      It has about a 1/2 in. sag right behind my sunroof for the time being, but its not even a slight problem.

      Now, after all the work is done, have a drink!
      Hell, for reading all of this, have a drink!

      I hope this helps someone out, because I know there was more than one step that puzzled me while I was doing this.
      It's a bit extensive, but its the complete step by step.

      Also, if there is any questions, you can PM me for more details.

      Thanks a lot guys!
      -Brandon

      EDIT: Sunroof panel has been finished for a while, but pictures are just now coming up.
      The sunroof panel shows through in the pictures but you cant see it in person.
      Also, the fabric on it looks different in the picture, but its the same fabric and looks the same in person.
      Around the sunroof panel too, you can see where the red shows because I didnt tuck the fabric up under it like the stock way.
      Im planning on taking that trim piece back down and painting that edge black to help it blend in.






      Modified by brandonrosensteel at 1:01 AM 4-12-2008


    2. Member TheNothelleKing's Avatar
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      01-17-2008 11:01 PM #2
      Nice DIY

    3. Member brandonrosensteel's Avatar
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      01-17-2008 11:05 PM #3
      Thanks!
      It took me long enough.
      I just thought I would help out everyone else that decides to do this their first time too.

    4. Member brandonrosensteel's Avatar
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      01-18-2008 02:42 AM #4
      Bump?

    5. Member
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      01-18-2008 04:20 AM #5
      nice diy
      1.8T A4 mmmm

    6. Member peecee's Avatar
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      01-18-2008 08:44 AM #6
      Please keep the pictures hosted someplace. I'm going to stick this in the DIY thread.

      Great writeup!


    7. Member kt883's Avatar
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      01-18-2008 12:37 PM #7
      how hard is it to get it out of a 2 door?
      This isn't your normal skyline. This motherfcker is the skyline God would drive if he wasn't busy doing God sh*t like making tsunamis and crap. Its set up to go fast, and go fast sideways. Who doesn't like to get sideway?! Terrorists, thats who. Are you a terrorist? No? Then you need this car.

    8. Member Burnitwithfire's Avatar
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      01-18-2008 12:43 PM #8
      Nice, added to the DIY list!
      Quote Originally Posted by SAV912 View Post
      Going to church is bland. Eating vanilla ice cream is bland. Dating somebody from your local Ayn Rand book club is bland. This car makes all of those things seem as exciting as doing 12 lines of cocaine. With Katie Perry. While she's on fire...in Times Square. And you're naked.

    9. Member brandonrosensteel's Avatar
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      01-18-2008 01:06 PM #9
      Not sure about the two door.
      If you have a golf though, you can just pop the rear hatch and its way easy I bet.
      Jetta coupe could probably be a problem though.
      But again, I'm just speculating

    10. Member MarsLander's Avatar
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      01-18-2008 03:23 PM #10
      Wow this is tremendous!! Thank you!! I may actually try and do my headliner myself after this awesome DIY.

    11. Member zideman's Avatar
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      01-18-2008 04:34 PM #11
      what kind of fabric did you use? it looks heavier almost like a suede which is what i have and need to do my liner with. great DIY write up btw.
      It's a car, it's meant to be ****in driven. ~ elijah-

    12. Member brandonrosensteel's Avatar
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      01-18-2008 04:46 PM #12
      I used fleece, becuase its durable and cheap.
      But yeah, its extremely thick and the only complaint is when I went to put it in the car, i had a hard time snapping the rear view mirror back in and the clips for visors.
      Other than that though, it looks great and feels great.
      I'm actually going to upload the pictures of it in my car in a few minutes.

    13. Member brandonrosensteel's Avatar
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      01-18-2008 05:04 PM #13
      Just took some pictures of my headliner installed
      I didnt do the sunroof yet because I dont have time/it was raining when I did the other part, so I couldnt take it out.
      I'm going to do it though within the near month.
      Also, Im going to buy the black visors/sun roof crank from a guy in NY.
      He gave me a great deal and I really appreciate it.

      Heres a few pictures guys!



    14. 01-19-2008 06:37 PM #14
      there's one thing i had to learn the hard way.

      if you are doing this, don't trim too much from the sunroof hole cause you have to fold it over and tuck it in under the frame of the sunroof. i didn't leave enough and had to fix it ghetto style.


    15. 03-24-2008 06:20 PM #15
      Hows about sunroof removal?

    16. 03-24-2008 08:41 PM #16
      Quote, originally posted by flak88 »
      Hows about sunroof removal?

      oh man.. i did my headliner from my GTi then i went to do my sunroof.. upon takin it out i broke a clip and now i dont remember how to put it back it, and the way it comes out its like impossible (i think) to put fabric on the and install back it with out having the fabric gettin rubbed out, cuz the tray scrapes when taking it out.. .. i think.. i may be wrong..

    17. Member ANSAracingb's Avatar
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      03-24-2008 09:01 PM #17
      Nice DIY! The headliner looks great, too.
      -Bryan

    18. 03-24-2008 09:16 PM #18
      i also took my liner out the driver's rear door. took out the front seats first and it was a breeze. in case you ever decide to do it again.

      nice diy! wish i would have thought to take pictures.


    19. Member brandonrosensteel's Avatar
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      03-24-2008 10:04 PM #19
      Ok, sorry, I did my sunroof and never posted.
      I actually dont have any pictures of it but I can give you all a rundown of it and take pictures tomorrow.
      I actually wrecked that car tonight and need to get to work tomorrow fixing it.

      Anyways.
      Crank your sunroof back about half the way.
      Grab the front edge of the inside panel (the part with the fabric on it) and pull down.
      There is like 5 or 6 metal clips that pop in it.
      It takes a good bit of force to get them all out, dont worry, you wont break the panel.
      Then after they are loose, hang onto the panel tightly and start to crank it back all the way open, and pull forward on the panel.
      It should slide out then.
      To get it out of the track, you have to kind of wiggle, fandangle, and maybe even slightly bow it to get it out.

      Theres 2 big clips on the back of it.
      Save them.
      Theres pieces of foam that go on top of it for sound deadening
      If you leave extra fabric for them like I did, you wont need them.

      When you put it back in, all you have to do is slide it in the track with the sunroof all the way open (the hardest part is getting it back inside the track) and then crank the sunroof back up on top of it.
      Push the back all the way in and then push hard on the front edge to pop the clips back in place, and Viola, all done.

      Any more questions, PM me.
      Ill put pictures up tomorrow sometime.

      EDIT: I also got a new trim strip for around the inside of the sun roof panel.
      If you look in the pictures, you can see its cream as well.
      If you dont get one of these similar to the colors you are using, it may look dumb.
      You should replace it at the same time you take the panel out for the headliner because you have to loosen the track of the entire sunroof to put it in.

      Like I said, more pictures tomorrow.


      Modified by brandonrosensteel at 10:06 PM 3-24-2008


    20. 03-24-2008 10:16 PM #20
      if you dont do it quite soon I will be following your instructions and see if I can snap some pics.
      Question though.. the trim ring around the sunroof.. I wonder how to color match plaid Ideas on how to upholster it with the plaid

    21. Member brandonrosensteel's Avatar
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      03-24-2008 10:50 PM #21
      What colors are in the plaid you are using?
      I plan to do mine with black, red, and white, and so Im just going leave it black around there.

      I dont think you could do it in plaid and make it look good anyways since it turns and has to bend, and you would end up with some crooked lines and the plaid on the board would all be going one direction.

      Your best bet if you want it to be red or some other color might be to buy a cream colored one (I have one for sale ) and fabric dye it.
      Then you could make it whatever color you wanted.


    22. Member
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      03-25-2008 01:39 AM #22
      Here's the headliner I just did in my car. It's just cotton fabric. I've done vinyl before and it was a real pain. I just need a new inside sunroof seal.





      Modified by GTi-G60 at 10:42 PM 3-24-2008


    23. Member brandonrosensteel's Avatar
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      04-12-2008 12:25 AM #23
      Heres some finished pictures of my headliner with the sunroof panel installed.
      Figured I should finally post these up.




    24. Member Jeepr21's Avatar
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      04-12-2008 12:36 AM #24
      Awesome DIY... I can't wait to do my headliner! probably sunday!!! I know who to come to for ??'s!

    25. 05-20-2008 02:40 PM #25
      I was thinking of doing this but my concern was the glue showing through the fabric or leaking out. Anyone have any issues with this especially with thinner fabric?

    26. 05-20-2008 03:19 PM #26
      How do you take out the sunroof panel. Everytime I try I feel as though I am about to break it.

    27. Member under the radar's Avatar
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      05-20-2008 03:53 PM #27
      Quote, originally posted by kt883 »
      how hard is it to get it out of a 2 door?

      2 or 4 doors, taking out the front seats makes life way easier and only adds a few minutes to the job.

      and the OP is right about being able to do this alone but having someone to help is huge.

      Quote Originally Posted by spoon! View Post
      I'll go if Paul goes.
      Rod Blagojevich - Team My Little Pony

    28. Member membersonly's Avatar
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      05-25-2008 03:04 PM #28
      has anyone done this with pattered fabric??? if so does it look goofy when you get towards the back part of the headliner where it bowls in?

    29. 05-25-2008 05:07 PM #29
      Quote, originally posted by GTi-G60 »
      Here's the headliner I just did in my car. It's just cotton fabric. I've done vinyl before and it was a real pain. I just need a new inside sunroof seal.



      Modified by GTi-G60 at 10:42 PM 3-24-2008

      SICK! where'd you get that?


    30. 05-26-2008 03:22 AM #30
      That money liner is so F-in ghetto....Thats pretty much wat you put into it..$$$

      20,9000000000 thumbs up!!!


    31. Member Das_Jetta_Good!'s Avatar
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      05-26-2008 09:07 AM #31
      Your going to hate life with that black headliner. I know I had one in my jetta in the summer here in maryland it acts like a freaking heat trap!!!!

      Either way very nice DIY, we need more like this. Great job.

      88 Jetta 8v gone, 89 Jetta 8v gone, 91 Jetta 16v Turbo gone, 92 Gti Vr6 gone 08 Jetta 2.5 GONE! For the first time in my driving life I'm VW-less

    32. Member rawk's Avatar
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      05-26-2008 11:07 AM #32
      God I'd love a headliner, my car has been headliner-less for almost 2 years now!

      I've actually had a wanted post in the classifieds for over a year and not a single person has one.. got to be one of the harder OEM parts to find these days.

      Bleh =[


    33. 05-26-2008 12:30 PM #33
      That's a great write-up, once I finish repairing mine I will be posting an extensive thread about repairing it....

      Getting a headliner out of a coupe or a four door can be a pain, more so on a MKII because they are so brittle....It was a little shifty to get the HL out of my MKIV jetta, at least it isn't brittle....What I figured out was lay the front seats as far back as they can go, and work it out through one of the front doors, the passenger being the better choice due to there being no steering wheel....


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      07-11-2008 11:02 PM #34
      dude well done, i have a 92 jetta sunroof, big time diy, doing my sunroof soon. thanks for info, mike

    35. Member brandonrosensteel's Avatar
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      07-11-2008 11:04 PM #35
      Hey thanks, its about time to redo mine.
      Time to go with some new exciting fabric

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