Ease of install 2 out of 5, 5 being hardest. Good for a handy newbie, fairly to very easy.
You will need:
- Painted Votex Rear Spoiler: ECS or online
- small flathead screwdriver: you have one
- Needle nose pliers: really? You need them.
- Bluetape: get some when you pick up the needle nose pliers at a hardware store
- 3M double sided super duty tape: Auto-Parts Store
- Goop super adhesive: Auto-Parts Store
- Black Paint Pen: art supply, or craft store
- Non Sline a3: local Audi dealership, or from a seller on this site
edit: I used the 3m tape only, but I believe adhesive is like love and money: too much is just enough. Therefore, I've included GOOP on this DIY.
There's a good reason why this spoiler is so cheap to buy online, the fitment isn't perfect and it's kinda a PIA to get painted. The directions that came with the spoiler will get the job done, but it won't look or fit right and I believe the directions are lacking for common Schmoes like myself. However, with a little patience and care you can install a rear spoiler on your A3 that will look OEM, or better, and stay on for a life time.
Note: It's common sense, but clean all parts you plan on installing. The best adhesive won't work in dirty conditions. So wash twice and wipe down with rubbing alcohol before taping together.
You need one of these:
One of these:
and this PAINT PEN, NOT sharpie marker. You can tell it's a paint pen because when you shake it, it rattles like spray paint.
1st step, feel around until you can unclip the plastic piece at the top of your rear window:
2nd step, peel it back to expose the clips that hold in the 3rd brake light
3rd step, with needle nose pliers unclip all four white clips by squeezing the tabs together, you will hear click!
4th step, Unclip 3rd brake light wire. Pull light out.
5th step, blue tape the edges to save your paint!
6th step, use the paint marker (mine is black, same color as the rear spoiler) to cover the corners where fitment is questionable.
7th step, make sure you cover all four corners! You will notice that the rear spoiler has no hard corners, just curved rounded edges. If you do not paint pen these sections they will stand out like a sore thumb. Also, paint pen the edge of the body panels you are going to cover. I hate mistakes like this and cannot stand to have them on my car.
8th step, go inside and start installing your 3rd brake light on your new painted spoiler. First pop out the white tabs
9th step, then put in the new extended black tabs. Fins to the bottom.
10th and hardest part, putting the damn springs back in. Use a small flathead screwdriver to pry them in.
11th step, adhere the supplied foam ring to the inside of the spoiler.
12th step, adhere the double sided 3m tape to the spoiler.
13th step, check fitment and make sure that you have all the areas pen painted that you need to. Only after this can you take the backing off the tape and spread the Goop on the spoiler and the car.
14th step, press the spoiler firmly in place. Be sure that the light wire is accessible!
15th step, pull wire out and give yourself an extra inch or so of slack, you are going to need it to plug the wire in.
16th step, plug in third brake light and push the light in HARD! you will hear it kinda snap into place.
17th step, I went ahead and pulled the tabs into place with the needle nose. Only one of the four clips actually made it all the way in without pulling it down. Pull them down until they snap into place; the tab widens and it clips open. It's the opposite of step 3.
18th step, clip the plastic piece back in.
19th step, remove blue tape and admire your work
20th step, wrap heavy stuff in towels (i used dumbells and a can of Kilz) tape down the rear spoiler. Allow 3M tape to adhere. I waited overnight, it's probably good in a few hours.
TAKE NOTE!! These are spots that need special attention with the paint pen:
Do it right, do it once! Hope this helps.
Last edited by Willie Gee; 05-01-2012 at 10:19 PM.
Nice write up. And super mad skills taking pics while both hands are occupied
Sent from my MB860 using Tapatalk 2
My question is related to getting the spoiler painted. I talked to the dealer on getting basically the front lip, back spoiler and side skirts for like $140 for the whole set, but painting and install was ridiculous. Did you hit a body shop that was local (or a chain) and if you don't mind, how much did painting cost?
Gloss black is a very widely available and rather easy color to paint. I drove up in my beater van, and asked a local painter by a independent body shop what he would charge. His name was Hag.
"So, Hag," I say "How much you reckon somethin' like this would cost to paint?"
"This here's Audi. So, Uh, I dunno..." He glances to sky, and puffs his smoke. Sneaks a glance right in my eye. "Say $75. Pick it up in two days?"
Shook the man's hand and paid him $80 the day I picked it up. Paint was spot on.
The front lip will be more expensive, as he has to color match sorta white (not easy). Also, don't go cheap on materials. Make sure your paint guy mixes his own two part and puts on a coat of clear.
I'd also add goop to the DIY. I've had reports that the tape won't be enough for a twisted spoiler.
Last edited by Willie Gee; 04-30-2012 at 08:29 PM.
I noticed you are using the 3m tape. I used it to mount a 12v socket on my motorcycle and it lasted maybe a month.
Anyone who looks at the Audi A3 3.2 DSG and sees an overpriced economy car should not be allowed to play with Rottweiler puppies.
Robert Farago, The Truth About Cars