Volkswagen Air-Cooled 1970-1981 Repair Guide

Bumpers

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REMOVAL & INSTALLATION Type 1 Models



On 1970-73 models, you can remove only the bumper itself by taking off the nuts on the back of the bumper. The brackets and reinforcement strap can stay on the car. On 1974 and later cars, the reinforcement is welded to the bumper. Remove these reinforced bumpers as a unit together with the spring-loaded damping elements that are used in place of brackets.

In addition to the welded-in reinforcement and spring-loaded damping elements, the bumpers on 1974 and later cars have plastic protectors on their ends. these protectors are intended to prevent the body work from being marred in the event that the damping elements are fully compressed.

FRONT BUMPER

See Figures 1 and 2

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Fig. Fig. 1: The bumper and bracket should be removed together, then the bracket can be removed from the bumper



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Fig. Fig. 2: The horn mounting bracket bolts to the left-hand bumper bracket and must be removed before the bumper can be removed from the car

  1. Using a 13mm wrench, remove all bumper bracket-to-body bolts.
  2.  
  3. Pull the bumper, together with the brackets and reinforcement strap or the damping elements, out of the slots in the front fenders.
  4.  
  5. On 1970-73 models, remove the 3 nuts from each bracket. Separate the reinforcement strap from the bumper and the brackets.
  6.  
  7. Remove the 3 nuts from each bumper bracket or, on 1974 and later cars, from each damping element. remove the brackets or damping elements from the bumper.
  8.  
  9. Installation is the reverse of the removal procedure. Replace the rubber grommets in the front fenders if they are weathered or damaged. Lubricate the threads on the nuts and bolts before installing them.
  10.  

When installing the bumper and the brackets on the car, install the bolts, but do not tighten them. Adjust the bumper to a uniform gap with the body before tightening the bolts to 14 ft. lbs.

REAR BUMPER

See Figures 3, 4 and 5

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Fig. Fig. 3: The rear bumper mounts in the same manner as the front bumper-remove the 6 bracket-to-body bolts, then pull the bumper off of the car



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Fig. Fig. 4: A view of one of the two rear bumper brackets-note that there are 3 mounting bolts per side



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Fig. Fig. 5: If so desired, or if a new bumper is being installed and the rubber trim must be transferred, the rubber trim can be removed from the bumper by removing the 2 nuts and the center bolt

  1. Using a 13mm wrench, remove all bumper bracket-to-body bolts.
  2.  
  3. Pull the bumper, together with the brackets and reinforcement strap or the damping elements, out of the slots in the front fenders.
  4.  
  5. Remove the 3 nuts from each bumper bracket or damping element. remove the brackets or damping elements from the bumper.
  6.  
  7. Installation is the reverse of the removal procedure. Replace the rubber grommets in the front fenders if they are weathered or damaged. Lubricate the threads on the nuts and bolts before installing them.
  8.  

When installing the bumper and the brackets on the car, install the bolts, but do not tighten them. Adjust the bumper to a uniform gap with the body before tightening the bolts to 14 ft. lbs. On 1974 and later models, position the bumpers as far away from the body as possible.

Type 2 Models

1970-72 FRONT BUMPER

See Figure 6

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Fig. Fig. 6: Each bumper bracket is mounted to the front bumper by 4 bolts and nuts

  1. Thoroughly clean the exposed threads on all bumper mounting bolts before you attempt to remove them. If corrosion is evident, or if the nuts or bolts are difficult to turn, apply penetrating oil to the threads.
  2.  
  3. Remove the 2 side support bolts located just ahead of each front wheel.
  4.  
  5. Remove the 2 bumper bracket-to-frame rail bolts from one end of the bumper.
  6.  
  7. Place a support under the unbolted end of the bumper, or have someone hold it. Then remove the 2 bolts from the other end of the bumper and remove the bumper from the vehicle.
  8.  
  9. To remove the bumper bracket, remove the nuts and bolts attaching the bracket to the bumper.
  10.  
  11. To remove the end pieces, take out the 3 nuts and bolts that hold them on the bumper. Be careful not to damage the rubber seal.
  12.  
  13. Installation is the reverse of the removal procedure. Loosely install the assembled bumper and brackets on the vehicle. Then, by sliding the brackets and side supports on their elongated bolt holes, obtain a uniform gap between the bumper and the body. When the bumper is properly aligned, tighten the bolts to 25 ft. lbs.
  14.  

1973-81 FRONT BUMPER

See Figure 7

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Fig. Fig. 7: On 1973-81 Type 2 models, the front bumper mounts to the support by 4 bolts, one of which is shown

The one-piece front bumper installed on 1973-81 models is bolted on an energy-absorbing support. The bumper is removed by taking out the mounting 4 bolts. Installation is the reverse of the removal procedure. Tighten the mounting bolts to 25 ft. lbs.

1970-72 REAR BUMPER

See Figures 8, 9, 10 and 11

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Fig. Fig. 8: The gravel guard is held onto the bottom edge of the rear bumper by bolts



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Fig. Fig. 9: Exploded view of the rear bumper and bracket mounting for 1973-81 Type 2 models



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Fig. Fig. 10: The bumper bracket mounts to the bumper by two bolts and nuts-during installation, make sure to install the washers



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Fig. Fig. 11: Once the rear bumper is removed, the cover plate can be unbolted from the bumper

  1. Remove the bolts and nuts at both sides of the vehicle that hold the cover plate to the body.
  2.  
  3. Remove the 2 bolts that hold one of the bumper brackets to the frame sidemember.
  4.  
  5. Place a support under the unbolted end of the bumper, or have someone hold it. Then remove the 2 bolts from the other bracket and remove the bumper from the vehicle.
  6.  
  7. The brackets and cover plate can be unbolted at this time.
  8.  

Thoroughly clean the exposed threads. if corrosion is evident, or if the nuts are hard to turn, apply penetrating oil.

  1. Installation is the reverse of the removal procedure. Be careful not to damage the rubber spacers by overtightening the bolt on the cover plate. Loosely install the assembled bumper and brackets on the vehicle. Then, by sliding the brackets and cover plate on their elongated bolt holes, obtain a uniform gap between the bumper and the body. When the bumper is properly aligned, tighten the bracket bolts to 25 ft. lbs. Do not overtighten the bolts that hold the cover plates on the body.
  2.  

1973-81 REAR BUMPER

See Figures 12 and 13

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Fig. Fig. 12: Fig. 13 Each rear bumper bracket is held onto the body with two bolts and washers



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Fig. Fig. 13: To remove the bumper bracket from the bumper, simply unbolt it

  1. Remove the 2 bracket-securing bolts from one end off the bumper.
  2.  
  3. Place a support under the unbolted end of the bumper, or have someone hold it.
  4.  
  5. Remove the 2 bolts from the other end of the bumper, then remove the bumper from the vehicle.
  6.  

To install:
  1. Loosely install the assembled bumper and brackets on the vehicle.
  2.  
  3. By sliding the brackets on their elongated bolt holes, obtain a uniform gap between the bumper and the body.
  4.  
  5. When the bumper is properly aligned, tighten the bracket bolts to 25 ft. lbs.
  6.  

Types 3 and 4 Models

FRONT BUMPER

Although the bumpers have undergone a major design change during the years covered by this guide, the mounting remains relatively similar.

The front bumper has a reinforcing bar between it and the front body apron.

  1. Disconnect the negative battery cable.
  2.  
  3. Disconnect the horn wire. the horn may be left attached to the bumper until the bumper is removed from the car.
  4.  
  5. Remove the 2 screws securing the reinforcement bar inside the bumper.
  6.  
  7. Remove the 3 bolts under each front fender that hold the bumper brackets onto the body.
  8.  
  9. Pull the bumper forward and off the car, complete with brackets and reinforcement bar.
  10.  
  11. Lift out the reinforcement bar. Remove the nuts from the carriage bolts that hold the brackets to the bumper, then remove the brackets. Unbolt the horn and remove it.
  12.  
  13. Installation is the reverse of the removal procedure. When installing the bumper assembly, make certain that the gap between the bumper and the body is uniform. When bolting the bumper brackets to the body, remember to install the washers.
  14.  

REAR BUMPER

There is no reinforcement bar behind the rear bumper. Also, the brackets used to mount the rear bumper are different from those used to mount the front bumper.

  1. Remove the 2 bumper bracket-to-body bolts on each end of the bumper.
  2.  
  3. Pull the bumper rearward and off the vehicle, complete with brackets.
  4.  
  5. Unbolt the brackets and back-up lights, if applicable.
  6.  
  7. Installation is the reverse of the removal procedure.
  8.  

 
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