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Removing AND Replacing Center Lower Mesh withOUT Removing Bumper
Published by ezatnova
07-15-2011
Post Removing AND Replacing Center Lower Mesh withOUT Removing Bumper

Thanks to the lovely NJ Turnpike, I had a nice softball sized hole punched into my lower plastic mesh center grill last week. I tried searching on here and didn't find much about replacing it without removing the bumper. Since I have headlight washers, I didn't want to remove it, if I really didn't have to. Those springs are easily damaged when pulling the bumper off.

Anyway, I thought I'd share what I did. It worked wonderfully and I did the job in under 5 minutes.

To remove it, you can go along each clip and just forcefully push inwards. If yours is damaged like mine was, then go nuts. If you're just removing to repaint or something, then take your time and push carefully right at the point of each clip, where the plastic is beefier.

To replace it, you can finagle it in diagonally and work it around to eventually line up pretty well with the clips (don't put it in backwards like I did the first time...just follow the curvature to see what way is "front".

Once the clips are close to aligned, take a tint hook tool (I love my 4 piece set that Craftsman sells. 4 picks of different shapes) and hook it behind the mesh piece, again where it's beefiest, and pull back towards you. You may want another little hook tool or tiny screwdriver to pres the clip on the bumper down a bit, to make it easier. Just work your way around and snug up each clip one by one. I didn't pull each one completely back and locked in on the first go-round. I snugged each one about halfway in, then pulled them locked on the second time around.

Super simply, but hopefully this helps someone. I can't speak for the left and right pieces, but, given the size of the center one, odds are you are more likely to damage that one and need to replace it than the other smaller ones.
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By Razodo on 11-14-2011, 03:20 PM
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Actually the side ones are thougher. The center one has more space between the mesh and the radiator but the side ones have almost no space. Hopefully someone that has done the side ones can post some pics and instructions on how to do it.
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