The instrument panel (I/P)contains the instruments used by the driver during vehicle operation, the ventilation and sound system controls, many vehicle convenience items, and most of the HVAC outlets. The panel has been designed to facilitate removal of all switches and instruments.
The instrument panel lower trim pad bears the load of the entire instrument panel. It is supported by the lower steering column support, a center support bracket and two outer support brackets attached to the LH and RH body side hinge (A) pillars.
To remove and replace the instrument panel lower trim pad, several of the instrument panel electrical harness, crosscar and engine harness connectors must be unplugged.
REMOVAL AND INSTALLATION
- If equipped with an air bag, properly disable the SRS as outlined in Chassis Electrical of this repair guide.
If not done already, disconnect the negative battery cable.
- To remove the instrument panel upper trim panel, perform the following:
- Remove the I/P trim pad.
- Remove the defogger vent grilles from the I/P upper trim panel.
- Remove the RH front radio speaker.
- Loosen the upper edge of the I/P lower trim panel by removing the two hex screws.
- Remove the five screws retaining I/P upper trim panel and remove the panel.
See Figures 1 and 2
The following steps outline removal of the instrument panel (I/P) lower trim pad.
- Remove the front passenger seat.
- Remove the push-in retainers securing the dash panel upper insulator.
- Remove the dash panel upper insulator.
- Remove the I/P sound insulators by removing the attaching screws and pins and removing the floor courtesy lamps from the insulator panel.
- Disengage the four upper retaining clips, then remove the I/P steering column opening filler from I/P lower trim pad.
- Remove the I/P upper trim panel
- Remove the hood latch cable-to-hood release handle.
- Remove the hood release handle.
- Remove the LH and RH lower cowl side panels.
- Tag and detach the I/P harness to the crosscar harness (J-block) connectors.
- Label and unplug the I/P harness from the body harness (J-block) connectors.
- Carefully lower the steering column to rest on driver's seat in order to allow clearance when removing and replacing the I/P lower trim pad. Make sure to remove or disconnect components that would interfere with this procedure.
See Figure 3
- Disconnect the I/P harness from the engine and forward lamp harnesses (J-block connector near the LH shock tower in the engine compartment).
- Detach the I/P harness from the connectors from both wiper solvent pumps, brake (low hydraulic fluid) warning, blower motor, blower motor resistor, blower motor high-speed relay and the windshield wiper motor.
- Disconnect the I/P harness from the vehicle space frame (located behind the LH lower cowl side panel).
- Tag and detach the I/P harness from the steering column electrical components (hazard switch, ignition switch, turn signals, SIR components, etc.)
- Temporarily provide support for the I/P lower trim pad. Disconnect the load bearing support braces. You will need the help of an assistant to help support the I/P lower trim pad during removal.
- Remove the I/P center support bracket.
- Disconnect the steering column lower support.
- Push the engine compartment side of the I/P wiring harness though the LH dash panel grommet access hole into the passenger compartment.
- With the help of an assistant, lift the I/P lower trim pad from the vehicle.
- Place the I/P lower trim pad in a flat and secure location.
- Installation is the reversal of the removal process.
- During installation, make sure to attach all connectors as tagged during removal, and properly fasten all retainers.
- If equipped, properly enable the SRS, as outlined in Chassis Electrical of this repair guide.