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Repairing Interior Trim


KY350
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Hi folks - I've noticed that the roof lining on my 91 LS has unglued (is there such a word?) from the roof. I have attempted to fix this problem myself twice now and have failed.

The roof lining that has become unglued, runs allong the length of the top of the rear view window. The lining is normally held in place by glue to 4 inverted T brackets. I tried to reglue the lining to the brackets using liquid nails and some hardback books wedged between the top of the back seat and the roof lining to hold the lining up while the glue dried. Unfortunately, the liquid nails did not hold.

Next I bought some sticky velcro and stuck the male part onto the bracket and the female part onto the lining and then pushed the two parts together so the velcro would stick. This worked but only for about 1 day and the next day, the weight of the roof lining pulled the sticky end of the male velcro portions off the brakets

So still no permanent fix. Whats most irritating about the whole thing is not that the lining has droped about 1 inch, but the fact that there is a loud rattling noise coming from above the roof lining whenever I go over a bump. I hate rattles and want to get this fixed.

I'm open to your suggestions, before I resort to taking the car to someone to repair the trim.

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This is "new" news to me. I have never heard this happening on a Japanese car. I thought this was a Ford/GM problem only. This was a very common problem on the older (1980s) GM and Ford cars with the cloth roof lining. In fact, my 89 Pontiac wagon has a sagging roof liner. The 1976 and older GM cars had a vinyl type headliner - which was stitched- and it was much better. Not sure about the newer GM cars, but I think they have about fixed this problem. I had a 81 Toyota with a cloth headliner and I was suprised that the roofliner was still OK, because I was used to this type sagging on the 80s GM cars I had owned. Ironically, my dad bought a 1986 Chevrolet Monte Carlo with a new 350 engine to put into the 1969 Camaro he is restoring- and the Monte Carlo had a perfect lining- which amazed me.

I understand what you mean about rattles- I hate them too. My 1990 LS400 had developed several interior rattles shortly after I bought it. I still think it was the "Lexol" I used on it. Seems like it hardened my dash panel covering.

Good luck with your roofliner. The only thing I have ever known anyone to do is to take it to a auto interior shop and have them reglue it. I am amazed this has happened to a LS400, as I have never seen it happen before on these.

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Mine is the same way and I have been watching this thread.

mine has done it on the sunroof panel...but i have an ES.

Humidity is a BIG factor, as is heat. to keep heat and humitidy from building up inside your car and causing this over the years, do 3 things:

Get the Darkest Window Tinit as is allowed in your area

Use a Sunshade in the front Windshield

leave a window or 2 cracked when the car is parked. this will keep excess heat and pressure from building up inside your car.

on an 85 degree day, the inside fo a black car can reach well over 120F. that is wayyyyyyy over tolerance levels for most adhesieves.

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Seems as though this problem occurs to the older cars, which is to be expected.

Army - as you said, heat and humidity would cause the glue to deteriorate over time. We get very high humidity in Sydney in the summer months.

Funily enough, I pushed the roof lining up to try and restick the sticky velcro back onto the brakest and it has now held for 2 days. But the rattles are still there - damn.

I may have to pull the lining down a little and use gaffer tape to stick the wires to the roof to stop the rattles. The wiring for the phone antena runs under the roof lining to the middle of the rear window and I suspect that this is the cause of the rattle.

If i can get the rattle fixed this way and the velcro holds (doubtful) I will be one very happy camper. I'll let you know how I go.

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Seems as though this problem occurs to the older cars, which is to be expected.

Army - as you said, heat and humidity would cause the glue to deteriorate over time.  We get very high humidity in Sydney in the summer months.

Funily enough, I pushed the roof lining up to try and restick the sticky velcro back onto the brakest and it has now held for 2 days.  But the rattles are still there - damn.

I may have to pull the lining down a little and use gaffer tape to stick the wires to the roof to stop the rattles.  The wiring for the phone antena runs under the roof lining to the middle of the rear window and I suspect that this is the cause of the rattle.

If i can get the rattle fixed this way and the velcro holds (doubtful) I will be one very happy camper.  I'll let you know how I go.

if you intend to remove the roof lining anyways, take it to an upholstery shop and spend the $250 US to have it reupholstered professionally, and be doen with it for another 10-15 years. as i said, there are a few things you can do to slow thsi process down, btu it will eventually happen again. In the US, i look at it like this:

In the northern US, the cars rust out usually before 10 years because most people dont care enough to get the salt off and spend 2 days a year cleaningt he undercarriage of their car.

In the southern US, Heat ruins a cars interior, and sunlight ruins the paint.

so doesnt relaly matter where you go, you will be hardpressed to find a car without SOME kind of asthetics problem. and if you do, you will pay dearly for it.

May i suggest looking for a high heat adhesive? most adhesives garuntee their ability to adhere at 120F. most cars in the souther US (let alone austrailia) get MUCH hotter than that inside, especially in the summer months.

another thing that helps, is let the heater gradually warm up the inside of the car in winter. the sudden heating fo things liek dashbaords and headliners is not good for them.

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My headliner "board" was sagging in the back at the rear window. Once mine started, I noticed there were a lot of early LS's on the road with the same thing. I bought some 3M Super Trim Adhesive in a spray can, sprayed the heck out of it on the top, then used a broom handle and a broom to push and hold it in place overnight.

No more sagging headliner.

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I had an older Jeep Cherokee that suffered from sagging ceiling fabric. I too was able to push it back up and it would stay for a day or two at a time. :D

Follow Army's advice, just take it to an upholstery shop, they'll make it like new for not too much money. The result will be a brand new ceiling, well worth the money and it's a hassle free solution you can depend on.

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