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Way to Restoring Your Car’s Molding

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In the world of car aesthetics, trims and moldings play a crucial role in defining a vehicle’s look and adding that finishing touch to its design. However, as time passes, various factors, including exposure to chemicals from routine car maintenance, can weaken the adhesive that holds these trims in place. The good news? Repairing this is simpler than you might think, and you can easily do it yourself!

Understanding the Why
Gone are the days when car trims and moldings were secured with spring clips. Nowadays, adhesive tape is the preferred choice of many car manufacturers. While this tape is effective, it’s not invulnerable. It can be affected by chemicals like wax and bug removers, which weaken the tape’s bond over time. The result? Your car trim could be at risk of coming loose.


Steps to Reattach Your Car Trim

  • Setting Up:
    Start by ensuring you’re working in a well-ventilated area, especially considering the potent adhesive remover you’ll be using.
  • Position the Trim:
    Begin by placing the car trim or emblem back in its original location. This is crucial for ensuring proper alignment when you reattach it. Use removable masking tape to outline the trim’s position; this will serve as a guide for repositioning later.
  • Safety First:
    As this task involves chemicals, put on nitrile gloves and a respirator designed for paint solvent exposure. This will protect your hands and prevent inhaling potentially harmful fumes.
  • Remove the Old Adhesive:
    Pour a small amount of adhesive remover along the top edge of the trim and allow it to soak into the tape for about five minutes. Use a plastic putty knife to gently slide under the trim, employing a rocking motion to cut through the old tape. Continue adding adhesive remover to make the process smoother.
  • Clean the Residue:
    Once the trim is removed, ensure you remove every trace of the old tape and adhesive from both the car’s paint and the trim itself. A clean surface is essential for the new adhesive tape to bond effectively.
  • Apply the New Tape:
    Avoid direct contact with the adhesive side of the tape by wearing a fresh pair of nitrile gloves. Place the new tape on the car, following the inside edge of your earlier template. Press the tape firmly onto the surface. Then, remove the top liner of the tape and position the trim above the template. Once it’s perfectly aligned, press the trim onto the tape, ensuring it’s firmly in place.

Materials You’ll Need

  • 3M 08984 Adhesive Cleaner and Remover: Priced at around $17, this product will help you efficiently remove the old adhesive.
  • 3M 03614 Scotch-Mount 1/2″ x 15′ Molding Tape: For approximately $8, this tape is ideal for reattaching your car trim.

You can find these products in auto parts stores that carry body shop supplies or online at retailers like Amazon.

With this straightforward DIY guide, you can ensure that your car’s trim and molding are securely in place, not only enhancing your vehicle’s appearance but also making it look as good as new. Don’t let loose trim take away from your car’s beauty—reclaim that pristine look with a little DIY magic!