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Door Panels Etc.



Hello Everyone,

As I have not yet found a factory service manual. (I have one in my EBay watch list though) I need some help.
My R/H door panel is loose at the top-rear. I assume it should clip in somehow. It appears that it sits over that rail & then clips in at the bottom. Does anyone know what the procedure is for removing/installing it? While I am on the subject of interior stuff how does the shift knob come off the 6 speed car, does it unscrew like most or is there another procedure? All the above questions apply to my 95 coupe.
The door panels are way different from mine so I'm not gonna throw you off by guessing here Jim. :L

The shifter knob might be the same for all of them though; gently pry the button cap off and you may find a metal wedge inserted in a groove in the shaft. Remove the wedge (pull it out with a oair of pliers) and unscrew the knob. This "guess" is probably more accurate than having me try to help you re-attach your door panel. ;)

Good luck.

_ken :w
Right On

Thanks Ken,

Now that I have the shift knob off, I find the leather boot has a small tear in it. I suppose it needs added to the list of things to replace. I'm in the process of switching out the factory Bose Gold w/Casette only, to the Bose Gold w/Casette & CD.
Much thanks again...
That Sounds Painful

I sure hope you are refering to the rubber boot below the leather one. On my 95' there is a rubber boot that seals off the shifter to the transmission tunnel. My rubber boot looks good. My leather boot appears to be an apperance item only. It is attached to the plastic trim piece. The screws that attach the leather boot are on the backside. Or at least it looked simple! I have not removed the leather boot from the trim piece yet.
I was referring to the leather boot.

At least from the sound of it you don't have it as bad as earlier C4s when it comes to removing the center console trim plate. On my '87, you have to remove the driver side instrument trim piece and then the center trim piece, and it helps if you remove the lid to the console, before you try to remove the center trim plate. A lot of pieces to remove just to get at the boot.

Congratulations on the ease with which you can change yours. :upthumbs

_ken :w
I Had Already Suffered

What started all this was my need to remove the stereo, to do this I needed to remove the vertical center trim piece that surrounds the radio & heater controls. I found that to get to the lower screws for the vertical piece, I had to remove the horizontal trim piece that surrounds the shifter. To remove the horizontal piece I had to remove the console lid. So you're correct there are a lot of pieces to remove. I had suffered thru all of this earlier today.
Heck, I got so rattled when I read your post I went out & took the leather out of the trim piece, just got back in from the garage.
Have a great weekend..
:L We all have to suffer sometime. ;)

You have a good weekend too Jim.

_ken :w
I will try to pass on my experience with the interior door skin, but I will probably not impress you with my technical terms. The key to the skin being tight is the one long screw that comes in from the door jamb (above the Rear Hatch Lid Release) and the two that go in the arm rest. With all the screws removed, get the long window trim piece (Do-Hicky) pushed tightly onto the Door Skin. Then, while holding the inside door release, fit the top of the skin down into place and while pushing down and in, put in the two screws in that go down into the door arm. Next put in the screw that goes into the door jamb. By messing with it a couple of times, I was able to get both doors pretty tight so that they don't rattle too bad when you close the doors with the windows down.

By the way, I have almost worn out the screws on all the interior dash trim pieces while trying to fix the digital dash, the radio, the heater controls, and replacing by leather boot.

Have fun!!:beer
Tmarsheby said:
By the way, I have almost worn out the screws on all the interior dash trim pieces while trying to fix the digital dash, the radio, the heater controls, and replacing by leather boot.


The door panel work sounds exactly the same as my '87. Thanks for filling me in on that.

And never think to you have impress anybody here with technical terms; we're all here to help each other learn any way we can. :upthumbs

_ken :w

Just kidding, thats the best info I have on the subject yet. I will get out in the morning & try that procedure.

I love my Corvette, the low end torque, smooth 6 speed ZF trans, suspension, huge tires, exterior styling, interior styling. Some of the interior engineering/fastners/fitment Etc. leave a lot to be desired.
I looked at a Z06 at the dealer today & it looks as if they have made some real improvements in the fitment of the interior on the C5. I'm hooked on that car, I just can't quite decide between it & everything else I own.
Thanks for your help
That is a beautiful Vette!! Looks like mine, but with good paint.;)

Getting ready to drive the Vette is almost as much fun as driving it!
No Luck Today

Good evening everyone,
Sorry it took so long to post. I made it out to the garage today, I was unable to find a long screw (or otherwise) in the door jam area/above the hatch release. Just isn't there. I suspect it has to do with the model year difference between our cars. I have heard there is actually quite a bit of difference in the door panels on the late C4 vs the earlier C4.
A friend just had the door panel off his 94 . He said there's a hidden screw to contend with . You have to pry up on the lock switch to get at it . Other than that it was basic . Just take out alot of screws .
Top of door panel popping off

Some of the guys are installing a 1/2" aluminum angle under the door panel, bolted to the door structure, that will add to the holding power of the top flange.
The Hidden Screw

I found the hidden screw on my 95' inner door panel. The screw is behind the light lens. I had to use a small flat blade screwdriver to pop out the light & there it was. I then completly removed the door panel. I reinstalled it correctly and added a Black flat head interior screw in the same location as the earlier models. ( The same location Tmarsheby & Ken spoke of in earlier posts). The fiberglass door structure has a standoff molded into this location. I installed a clip on nutplate onto the standoff, drilled and countersinked an 1/8" hole thru the door panel to match the nutplate location. The door panel is now tight & the installation looks like it came fron the factory.
Thanks to all for the great Info....
Re: Top of door panel popping off

TomsToy said:
Some of the guys are installing a 1/2" aluminum angle under the door panel, bolted to the door structure, that will add to the holding power of the top flange.

Can you point me to more info on this? The whole top of my (aftermarket, prior-owner-installed) driver's door panel is off the frame. Worse, it's cracked so it won't stay without some added backing.
My panels rattled and were loose too. When I took my '86 door panels off to replace the inner and outer weather stripping I found that they were both badly cracked where they hooked over the inner door. I fixed them with, of all things, self sticking fiberglass sheetrock tape and PVC pipe cement. Cheap and low tech, but they are much stronger now.

The rattle turned out to be the rod from the outer door handle where it hooked through the latch arm. The arm had become elongated and filling the hole around the rod with Permatex Ultrablack silicone while slightly holding up the outer handle until it cured solved it at least temporarily. The handle is now flush with the door and the only rattle in my car is gone.

Not concours, but I gotta buy some new Pilot Mxx3's before autocross season.

Panel popping off

If you remove the inner door panel there are several holes and a flange in the upper part of the door (just inside the window). This flange is the piece that the door panel "hangs" on and locks to. The fix is to increase the size of the "flange", so the door panel has more to hang onto. The guys that have used this fix bought a 1/2" or 3/4" aluminum angle (from the local hardware) and bolted or poprivited the angle to the top of the door using the existing holes for mounting. Line the aluminum angle "lip" up with the existing door flange "lip" that is supposed to catch the door panel and hold it. The aluminum angle makes a larger "flange" for the door panel to "Lock" onto. Short of replacing the panel this is the only "fix" I'm aware of.
Lots of luck.
Some news on your door panel...

and it's probably not good. Your door panel is probably broken at the top. There are some places in the plastic that split, and when they split, the portion of the door panel you talk about gets loose.

Take the 5 "thingys" out that are across the bottom of the door. Next take the screws out of the door handle area. Then pop off the plastic door lock cover and remove it. Look for a screw here also. Then look for another screw behind the door opener. I think this covers them all or I may have made up one. Just remove all the screws. Then carefully lift the door panel and look behind it, where you will need to disconnect some electrical connections - no big deal - they only connect with the proper end. Now remove the door panel from the car and look at the area below where the door panel sits on the top rail of the door. There are some round stress points that will probably be split, and that's why the door panel is loose. That's why mine was loose.

I tried epoxy to fix this, and it worked for a brief time, and now things are almost back like they were. I will probably try a fiberglass repair kit this spring - I think that will repair it permanently.

Good luck. It's really not that hard to remove the door panel. Just be gentle.

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