How to Remove the Dash in Cars

by Contributing Writer; Updated June 12, 2017

You can remove the dash from your Cadillac car right from your home garage or driveway. The dash is held onto the frame by seven screws and a few locking air vents. Once those are removed, you can pull the dash right off and out through the side door. If you have a friend to help you maneuver it out of the vehicle, it can help to prevent any interior damage. This job should take you about an hour and you only need a few basic tools that you probably already have on hand.

Under The Hood:

 How to Remove the Dash in a Town Car

Open the Town Car's hood, and use the socket wrench to disconnect the battery.

Remove the eight screws holding the upper dash pad in place with a Phillips head screwdriver. Four are located along the defroster vents and two on each side of the dash pad.

Remove the single screw holding the trim panel under the steering column. Pull the trim panel off the vehicle. This will reveal the electrical wire for the shift indicator. Disconnect it by squeezing the white plastic clamp.

Remove the four bolts holding the steering column in place with a socket wrench.

Remove the single screw going up through the steering column bracket and into the dashboard.

Remove the driver's side kick panel by unfastening the two holding screws and pulling it off. Repeat this procedure with the passenger's side kick panel.

Remove the two bolts at each lower corner of the dash on both sides.

Remove all eight screws holding the dashboard situated below the windshield glass.

Remove the dashboard from the Town Car. Carefully use your hands to work your way around the dashboard's edges, and peel it off the vehicle.

Items you will need

  • Socket wrench

  • Phillips head screwdriver

 How to Remove a Dash From a Cadillac

Pop out the defroster grille next to the windshield. Use a flathead screwdriver to pry it up.

Stick a butter knife into each of the four air vents. Feel around until you find the locking tabs. You will find two tabs inside each vent. Press in on the locking tabs to unlock them. Pull the vents out of the dash once they are unlocked.

Remove the screws under the defroster grille and behind each of the vents.

Lift up on the dashboard and slide it out the passenger's side door.

Items you will need

  • Flathead screwdriver

  • Butter knife

  • Phillips-head screwdriver

 How to Remove the Dash in a 2000 Cadillac DeVille

Remove the defroster grille on the upper portion of the dash. If you cannot remove it by hand, use a slotted screwdriver to pull it out.

Remove the four air vents along the front of the dashboard. Slide a butter knife into the edges of the vents until you hit one of the locking tabs. You will have to carefully maneuver the butter knife until it fits into the locking tab and unlocks it. There are two tabs on each vent. Once you have unlocked the vents, pull them out of the dashboard.

Remove the screw hidden behind each vent with a Phillips screwdriver. Remove the three screws underneath the defroster grille as well.

Pull the dashboard out of the DeVille by pulling up on it. Start at the left-hand side of the dash, pull it out by hand and remove it from the vehicle.

Items you will need

  • Butter knife

  • Phillips screwdriver

 How to Remove the Dash in an Oldsmobile Alero

Remove the screws on the ash tray housing and pull the housing forward.

Disconnect the cigarette lighter's electrical connection. This is a plug-style connector that can be pulled straight off.

Pry up on the spring clip under the steering wheel to release the pin that holds the tilt lever in place.

Remove the fuse box cover on the passenger side of the dash as well as the screw that holds the lower part of the c-pillar trim in place.

Remove the screws on the driver's side of the dash (labeled "A"), remove the screws holding the cup holder in place (labeled "B" - you may or may not have this optional equipment in your Alero), and the fuse box relay (labeled "C").

Slide the end of a trim removal tool under the pillar trim panel and pry it off. The vent and the trim will come off as one unit.

Remove the three Torx screws under the steering column that hold the lower steering wheel cover in place and pull the cover off.

Remove all of the screws holding the dash in place on the passenger side (labeled "A") and unplug the electrical connectors (labeled "B").

Pry out the defroster grille using either a flat tip screwdriver or, if you can fit the trim removal tool under the trim here, use the trim removal tool. The defroster grille is located at the base of the windshield.

Remove the four bolts holding the dash in place under the defroster grille.

Pry the center dash instrument panel off using the trim removal tool.

Pry the ignition switch bezel off with the trim removal tool.

Remove the screws located on the driver's side kick panel.

Open the glove box and push in the two spring loaded pins on either side of the glove box to remove the glove box assembly.

Remove the screws holding the dash cluster (speedometer, tachometer, fuel and water temperature) in place.

Remove the screws on the passenger's side kick panel.

Pry around the edges of the dash at the base of the windshield (on the defroster grille) with the trim removal tool to pry up the retaining clips holding the dash in place.

Pull the dash assembly off and disconnect any electrical wires running from the chassis wiring harness (exact wiring may differ according to specific year and vehicle options installed).

Items you will need

  • Philips head screwdriver

  • Flat tip screwdriver

  • Torx head screwdriver

  • Socket wrench with socket set

  • Trim removal tool

 How to Remove the Dash in a Hyundai Sonata

Lift up the hood of the vehicle and remove the negative battery cable by loosening the retaining nut with a crescent wrench. Carefully set it aside, taking care not to touch the positive terminal.

Open the glove box and remove all visible screws using a Phillips-head screwdriver. Pull the glove box from the dashboard.

Remove all screws on the lower part of the dashboard using a Philips-head screwdriver.

Remove the screws from the radio and pull off the radio face plate. Pull the radio from the dash and unplug the wiring behind it.

Locate all the screws on the top, sides and bottom of the dash. Remove all of the screws with the screwdriver.

Pull the dash forward and unplug all the wiring behind it. Pull up on the dash and slide it out the passenger's side door.

Items you will need

  • Crescent wrench

  • Phillips-head screwdriver

 How to Remove the Dash in a YJ

Loosen and remove the negative battery cable from the battery using a box or socket wrench.

Loosen and remove the dashboard retaining screws with a screwdriver. There are two screws located under the steering wheel column, three underneath the central instrument cluster, and eight along the top of the dash below the windshield.

Remove each dash component from the vehicle, pulling from the top of the piece first. You will have to pull sharply on each component to release it from its retaining clips. The dash include a panel to the left of the steering wheel, one on top of the steering wheel, the center instrument cluster, and glove box assembly.

Items you will need

  • Screwdriver set

  • Wrench set

  • Trim prying tool

 How to Remove the Dash from a Buick Park Avenue

Remove the edges of the trim adjacent to doors and beneath the steering wheel. The trim is what keeps the dash in place and covers all of the wiring. Wedge the flat-head screwdriver under the trim that runs alongside the windshield by the doors and pop the dash loose. Remove these trim pieces and set them aside. Use a Phillips screwdriver to loosen any remaining mounting bolts securing the steering wheel trim.

Loosen the trim along the edges near the doors and under the steering wheel. Use a flat-head screwdriver to pry under the edges of the trim running down the side of the windshield near the doors and pop the trim loose. Slide the trim pieces out of the car and set aside. Use a Phillips-head screwdriver to remove the five to eight mounting bolts holding the steering wheel trim in place. Pull the trim down and discard it.

Grab the temperature control knobs with a pliers and give a sharp tug. Use the pliers to pry off the radio knobs as well. If you can't pry the knobs off, turn them counterclockwise, as occasionally the knobs screw into the dash.

Items you will need

  • Flat-head screwdriver

  • Phillips screwdriver

  • Pliers

 How to Remove the Dash From a Sebring

Stereo Dash Panel Removal

Open the hood and set the support bar. Disconnect the negative battery cable from the battery terminal with the wrench.

Find and remove the two screws that are below the climate controls with the Phillips screwdriver.

Pry on the plastic dash panel off the front of the stereo with the flat-head screwdriver.

Remove the stereo from the dash, if necessary.

Dash Light Panel Removal

Set the adjustment on the steering wheel to its lowest position.

Find the screws on the bezel of the instrument panel and remove them with the Phillips screwdriver.

Pull the bezel off the instrument panel and set it aside.

Locate the three screws that are used to secure the instrument panel to the dash, if you need to replace a dash light bulb.

Items you will need

  • Wrench

  • Phillips screwdriver

  • Flat-head screwdriver

 How to Remove the Dash in an Oldsmobile Aurora

Remove the negative battery cable with a socket wrench.

Open the fuse panel cover on the driver's side dash and find the SRS airbag fuse on the diagram. Remove the SRS fuse with the fuse puller found inside the fuse panel.

Remove the screws from the instrument cluster bezel using a Phillips head screwdriver. Remove the bezel using a trim removal tool. Unplug the wires behind it and pull the bezel out of the dash.

Release the push pins on the knee bolster on the driver's side using a tiny screwdriver. Remove the bolster and push pins from the dash.

Pry off the dashboard's center bezel using a trim removal tool. Unplug the electrical connectors behind it.

Open the door of the glove box and push in the two tabs on the side of the box. Remove the glove box from the dash.

Remove the lower panels on the passenger's side of the dash using the trim removal tool. Pull the panels out of their clips and move them out of the vehicle.

Items you will need

  • Socket wrench set

  • Trim removal tool

  • Screwdriver set

 How to Remove the Dash of a 1995 Nissan Pickup

Pop up the hood of your Nissan and remove the negative battery cable using and adjustable wrench. Set it carefully aside so that it's not touching the positive terminal or any metal.

Open the fuse panel and remove the airbag fuses with the fuse puller located inside. The fuse panel cover is near the steering column. The airbag fuses can be found on the diagram on the inside panel door.

Remove the bolts on each side of the steering column with the socket wrench. Insert a trim removal tool under the bezel that surrounds the steering column and pry it up. Pull the bezel forward and unplug the wiring behind it. Slide it out the side door of the truck.

Push a flathead screwdriver into the holds on either side of the radio to release the retaining clips. Pull the radio out of the dashboard.

Open the door to the glove box and press the tabs inside to release the door. Remove the bolts inside with a socket wrench and pull the glove box out of the dash.

Remove all bolts on the top part of the dash next to the windshield using a socket wrench set. Pull up on the top part of the dash and slide it out the side door. You may wish to have your friend help you remove the dash at this point.

Remove the bolts on the driver's side and passenger's side kick panels with the socket wrench. Remove the kick panels from the vehicle.

Items you will need

  • Adjustable wrench

  • Socket wrench set

  • Trim removal tool

  • Flathead screwdriver

 How to Remove the Dash From a Passat

Open the hood and disconnect the Passat's battery.

Pry out all of the air conditioning vents from the dashboard using a flat-head screwdriver.

Remove the two Torx screws on each side of the dashboard, located on the side edge of the dash itself. Use a Torx screwdriver to remove the screws.

Open the glove compartment and remove its three Torx screws with a Torx screwdriver. Pull it off the dash. Disconnect its wiring connector and remove it from the Passat.

Remove the four bolts from the central console using a socket wrench. Lift the central console out of the vehicle.

Remove the four screws from the radio and the four screws from the air conditioning unit using a Phillips screwdriver. Disconnect the electrical wiring connector from both devices and remove them from the vehicle.

Remove the six Torx screws from the central dashboard and pull the central dash frame off the Passat.

Remove the two bolts from both kick panels with a socket wrench and remove the kick panels.

Remove the bolts at the rear of the steering column and lower it onto the seat.

Remove the bolts at the top edge of the dashboard with a socket wrench. Once all the bolts have been removed, have another person help you lift the dashboard out of the Passat.

Items you will need

  • Flat-head screwdriver

  • Torx screwdriver

  • Socket wrench

  • Phillips screwdriver

 How to Remove the Dash in a 1976 Corvette

Open the battery compartment behind the driver's seat and disconnect the negative battery cable.

Remove sun visors and windshield header molding using a Phillips screwdriver.

Remove the two windshield pillar moldings located on each side of the windshield just above the upper dash panel by taking out the two screws and gently pull them away from the frame.

Remove the screws holding the vents and wiper switch assembly to the upper dash. Remove the two screws located on each side of the bezel that hold the lower dash panels in place. Unplug the wiring harness going to the switch and remove the switch assembly from the center bezel.

Remove the screws from the right dash panel containing the map pockets with a Phillips head screwdriver. There are three screws holding the panel to the upper dash and two holding the panel to the right side frame. Gently pull the panel back and forth towards you until it separates from the framework.

Place a cloth over the shift console plate to prevent it from damage. Pull off the radio knobs and remove the retaining nuts with needle nose pliers. Pull the center bezel towards you enough to access the wiring harness to the center gauge cluster. Unplug the connections and remove the cluster from the dash.

Remove the left lower dash pad by removing the three screws holding it to the upper dash panel and the two screws holding it to the left side frame. Remove the lower steering column bracket with an open end wrench and remove the molding with a screwdriver.

Pull the right dash pad assembly towards you to gain access to the speedometer and tachometer cables. Disconnect the cables and wiring harness. Remove the panel from the dash frame.

Locate the speaker wire harness on the right and left sides of the upper dash. Unplug the speaker wiring.

Remove the upper dash panel by sitting in the passenger seat and pulling upwards at the center of the dash until the sides of the panel clear the windshield posts. Pull the panel towards you to release the forward retaining clips and remove it from the car.

Items you will need

  • Phillips head screwdriver

  • Open end wrench set

  • Needle nose pliers

  • Cloth or towel

 How to Remove the Dash in a Corvette

Use a screwdriver to take out the screws at the base of the center console. Lift up the center console panel.

Take out the screws securing the center bezel in place. Slide a flat-head screwdriver under the bezel and pry it off.

Unplug the wires connected to the back of the center console piece. Depending on what type of connectors are used, you might need to use pliers to disconnect the wires.

Take out the four screws in the dashboard. There will be two screws located in the upper corners and two in the lower corners. Depending on the type of Corvette you have, the bottom screws might be located beneath the steering wheel, at the base of the steering column.

Remove the control knobs on the dashboard. Some of these might pop off, or you may need to use a punch to help remove them. Remove the control pin at the base of the knob with the punch.

Items you will need

  • Screwdriver

  • Pliers

About the Author

This article was written by the It Still Runs team, copy edited and fact checked through a multi-point auditing system, in efforts to ensure our readers only receive the best information. To submit your questions or ideas, or to simply learn more about It Still Runs, contact us.