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I'd like to remove the top panel of the Driver's Side dash but I'm skittish about doing it blind. Anyone got images of the bolts i need to pull / panels that can be popped out to do this? Thanks!
 

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I'd like to remove the top panel of the Driver's Side dash but I'm skittish about doing it blind. Anyone got images of the bolts i need to pull / panels that can be popped out to do this? Thanks!

The top panel of the dash on the drivers side does not come off. It is part of the whole dash assembly.

If you are going to start taking things apart you may want to invest in a service manual.


If want to remove the panel around the gauges you can find that info here:

http://www.skidmore.edu/~pdwyer/e/instrument_bulbs.htm
 

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Discussion Starter #3
almost there...

I've gotten the side panel off, but getting the trim off around the gauge cluster is where I'm stuck. The link abouve goes from removing the side trim straight to removing the instrument cluster.
 

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Once you get the side panel off, you'll see a single Phillips screw. Remove that screw, and you can pop the gauge cluster trim out. It takes some force, but nothing heroic.

In other words, "Pry the instrument panel garnish just enough to release five clips on top, then four on the bottom. Then pull straight out to release two tabs on the right side."
 

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Once you get the side panel off, you'll see a single Phillips screw. Remove that screw, and you can pop the gauge cluster trim out. It takes some force, but nothing heroic.

In other words, "Pry the instrument panel garnish just enough to release five clips on top, then four on the bottom. Then pull straight out to release two tabs on the right side."
I'm trying to remain civil about this, ramblerdan. Was that a joke? If so I'm not laughing. You posted a line straight out of the link offered above, as If I did not see it or read it. C'mon, man! I've pulled on the dash panel already, without so much as a budge. I also just returned from the nearest auto parts store. According to the clerk neither Chiltons or Haynes publish a shop manual. Amazon was a blank too. I guess I'll try again tomorrow, when there's more light.
 

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I'm trying to remain civil about this, ramblerdan. Was that a joke? If so I'm not laughing. You posted a line straight out of the link offered above, as If I did not see it or read it. C'mon, man! I've pulled on the dash panel already, without so much as a budge. I also just returned from the nearest auto parts store. According to the clerk neither Chiltons or Haynes publish a shop manual. Amazon was a blank too. I guess I'll try again tomorrow, when there's more light.
That was not a joke. The point he was trying to make and highlighted with the quote is that pulling the trims off for the first time requires you to do something that is sometimes beyond the point of what you maybe comfortable with. It will feel if you pull any harder, it will break. But it is at that point that the item comes off. However, you need to pay attention that you do NOT pull any harder than that so be ready to let off the pressure because then you might break something.

He mentions the quote to emphasize this. I can understand your frustration. I have done some work under my dash trims and I cannot tell you the level of anxiety I had when doing it for the first time. He is trying to help you so don't get upset. There are somethings you have to just take on faith and do.

Try H-and A for the book. I have not found it retail.
 

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I have a 2007-2009 manual and it says the exact same thing that lizzurd posted, same picture as well. Page 20-89 of my manuel. One screw on the left. Looks like 5 clips on top and bottom with one clip on each side.
 

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Sorry for being short. I was frustraded by what i thought would be an easy install (I've put a stereo and speakers in everything from a 1980 Volvo to a 1991 4Runner and never had to gamble so much on force). I'm also peeved that pep boys and Autozone had a shop manual for everything except the Element. Ugh! I'll give it a shot again tomorrow. the images were helpful (pull towards the seat, not the DS door, etc.)

I think I'll take some pictures along the way :)

I'm installing a gps knob a fellow forum'er sold me.

ps there's a book on amazon called "notes from the element: a memior" for sale on amazon.
 

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Good luck with your install tomorrow. I hope it works out for you.



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PS Just for future reference: The site that is linked above that Ramblerdan had quoted from is his own website. He was quoting himself. ;-)
 
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