Keeping Your Car Tidy

Keeping Your Car Tidy

How To Replace The Gasket On A Manually-Operated Sunroof

by Dean Reyes

The rubber gasket around the perimeter of sunroofs on cars can become brittle with age. Eventually, the gasket can become so deteriorated that it starts to let melting snow and rain leak in around the sunroof and drip into the car onto your head. You need to replace the old gasket with a new one to create a new seal to stop the water from getting into your car. Here is how you can replace the rubber gasket around the perimeter of a manually-operated sunroof on your car.

You Will Need:

  • A new Rubber Gasket
  • Long-Handled Wrench
  • Flathead Screwdriver
  • Adhesive
  • Adhesive Remover
  • Plastic Putty Knife

Step One: Remove Trim from Around the Sunroof

Open the sunroof until you can reach the seam on the metal trim to the perimeter of the sunroof. The trim was originally pushed onto the lip of the sunroof and clipped into place. Start at the seam and pull the trim away from the sunroof.

Step Two: Remove the Sunroof

Pull the courtesy light down. The courtesy light sits in the front of the car above the windshield. Then pull off the trim around the courtesy light. This will give you access to the bolts securing the sunroof to your car.

Use a long-handled flat wrench to reach into the space between the ceiling of the car and the metal roof top. Remove the bolts and lift the sunroof off of the car.

Step Three: Remove Old Gasket

The gasket usually comes as one piece and wraps around the perimeter of the sun roof. Find the seam where the two ends of the gasket meet. This is usually on the rear side of the sunroof.

Pry the seam open with a flathead screw driver. Grab one end of the seam and pull it away from the perimeter of the sunroof.

Some of the old adhesive material and rubber from the gasket might stick to the metal in the channel around the perimeter of the sunroof opening where the gasket sits. Spray the channel with an adhesive remover and scrape the old adhesive and rubber off with a plastic putty knife (a metal putty knife can scratch and gouge the paint on the metal.

Wipe the area with a gentle cleaner to remove any residue from the adhesive remover.

Step Four: Put the New Gasket in the Channel.

Set the new gasket into the channel around the perimeter of the sunroof and press it down in place. Take a tube of clear adhesive material for outdoor use, and cut the very tip off of the tube so you can put down a small bead of adhesive.

Place the tip of the adhesive tube under the edge of the rubber gasket and squeeze the handle of the caulk gun to push the adhesive material underneath the gasket. Make sure you put the adhesive material underneath the entire gasket - any gaps in coverage could allow water to seep underneath the gasket and into your car.

Place the sunroof over the new gasket and bolt it back into place. Push the trim back onto the inside perimeter of the sunroof. Allow the sealant to dry for several hours before using the car again.

For more information, contact T M Custom Auto Trim & Glass Ltd or a similar company.


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About Me

Keeping Your Car Tidy

Do you have kids? If you do, then you know how impossible it can be to keep your car interiors in decent condition. Our four boys are constantly trying to smear things into the upholstery. However, by using a few clever tricks, my wife and I have been able to keep our cars in good shape. The goal of my website is to help other parents to care for their cars, so that they don't end up paying for pricy repairs later. Having kids isn't always easy, but by knowing how to keep them from destroying your ride, you might be able to avoid a few unplanned expenses.

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