How to Change the Headliner in a Chevy Prizm

It is quite common for the headliner fabric in many vehicles to begin to sag over time. Also, loose pieces of headliner fabric can easily be pulled from the ceiling of the car. Torn or loose interior fabric can not only make the appearance of the car less than attractive, but it can also lead to depreciation of the car’s overall value.

There are many body shops and automotive service companies that will gladly replace the headliner fabric in a vehicle for customers. However, for those willing to get their hands a little dirty, changing out the headliner fabric in most standard vehicles is fairly straightforward. The 1999 Chevy Prizm is one of those vehicles where the headliner fabric can be replaced easily in less than an hour, with the right tools and supplies – you can check some very useful tools for cars, e.g., on Inside Tool, I really recommend this website, chose very good impact wrench there.

Two things that are absolutely essential for this task are of course the headliner fabric itself and a can of spray headliner adhesive. These two things can be purchased from automotive supply chains and specialty warehouses. In some cases, the headliner fabric may come as a pre-cut mold that is fitted specifically to the 1999 Chevy Prizm. In other cases, the headliner fabric may come as one large sheet that has to be cut. Naturally, using a pre-cut mold is easier, but this option isn’t always available and can be quite pricey in some instances.

Headliner fabric is sold in a variety of colors to match the interior of many cars. Headliner spray adhesive is different from regular spray adhesive and other types of glues and is designed to keep the fabric secure for longer periods. Other tools that may be needed are a utility knife, a Phillips screwdriver, and a straight-slot screwdriver.

The first step of replacing the headliner fabric is to remove the headliner from the car. In the 1999 Chevy Prizm, the rear-view mirror and visors must be removed first. In addition, the interior plastic should be loosened with the straight-slot screwdriver. These plastic pieces will pull loose, but sometimes they require a little bit of effort. Care should be taken not to damage the plastic. Also, there are three round plastic brackets in the back of the headliner that need to be removed. These can be pulled out with a screwdriver from the back seat of the vehicle.

After all securing parts have been removed, the headliner itself should be loose enough to pull out of the vehicle. The headliner is a large, form-fitting piece of cardboard-like material. This is best done by lowering both front seats and pulling the headliner through one of the rear doors.

Once the board is out of the car, remove any existing fabric by pulling it away from the headliner. Scrape any loose pieces of existing foam from the board by sweeping it with your hands or using a small broom. The new headliner fabric can be glued over the existing foam. The new headliner fabric has additional foam secured to it.

Next, lay the board on a flat surface and cut the fabric to fit it. Leave openings for the dome light and where the rear-view mirror, handles, and visors attach. Leave an inch-and-a-half piece of fabric on both the front and the rear of the headliner to wrap around the board. Once the fabric is cut to fit, spray half of the board heavily with spray adhesive. Secure the first half of the headliner fabric, then proceed to the second half of the board.

Allow the adhesive to dry for half-an-hour. The headliner is now ready to be put back into the car. Secure all plastic pieces and replace visors, rear-view mirrors, and handles.

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