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How To: Dashboard/Windshield Noise Fix

Tom Vanlimbergen

Well-Known Member
Jan 19, 2018
459
554
93
46
As I explained elsewhere on this forum I managed to solve the problem of the cracking noises in the dashboard/windshield area of my car.
After the fix I've driven more than 500 km and the cracks seem to have disappeared entirely, even in N mode.
Fair is fair, so I must give some credit to a guy on the German forum who identified the cause of the problem (the piece of plastic trim on the bottom of the windshield, where the wipers poke through), but his fix seemed a bit dodgy to me, so I gave it a try myself.
It really is a DIY job, no need to be an experienced mechanic if you take things easy.

Right, what do you need?
- A socket wrench metric size 14.
- Some masking tape.
- Some touch-up paint or something else to make a marking.
- Some double sided tape.
- A piece of inner tube for a race bike (the one you have to pedal yourself ;)) preferably for a 23 mm tire.
- Something blunt (I used an allen key).
- A pair of scissors.
- Half an hour of your precious time.

1. Open the bonnet and get the covers off the nuts for the wipers (the round covers in the picture below). They can easily be removed with your fingers.


2. Loosen the nuts that hold the wipers.


3. Now mark the position of the wipers with a piece of masking tape on the windshield and a bit of paint (or something else to make a mark with) on the thread of the bolt that holds the wipers and the base of the wiper itself. This is to enable you to put the wipers in the same position when you put them back on (sorry for the blurry picture):


4. Now comes the most difficult part: getting the wipers off their bolts. I had to wiggle them about quite a bit and the right one needed some force. You should be able to do this by hand, don't use a screwdriver or something else because that could damage the plastic trim. You could try to put the wiper upright (the long one), that helped me (no picture for this step).

5. Remove the rubberish foam that is mounted on top of the plastic trim and that is fixed on both sides to the fenders of the car with some adhesive. Best way is to calmly pull it loose from one of the fenders. It is just pushed on to the plastic trim, so after you got it off the fender you can put it away without damaging it. In the photo it is still on the car but it shows you which piece I mean.


6. You now need to remove the rivets that hold the plastic trim in place. There are four of them and they are reusable. It is the round rivet in the picture below. You need to push the inner round pin down a few mm to loosen it. Use something blunt in order not to scratch anything (I used an allen key for it). When it is loose, you can lift the trim and take the fixing rivets away. Pull out the pins so you can reinstall them later.


7. Now everything you need to disassemble is off the car. Take a good look at how the piece of trim is placed on the car so you can put it back in the right position. Now you need to fiddle the trimpiece of the windshield en over the wipers. You have to slide the trim piece a bit downwards from the windscreen first in order to free the fixing points of the trim. Then take the trim over the wiper bolts. Take it easy and don't put too much stress on it. Note that the movement is limited by the bonnet (at some point you might need to hold the bonnet with your hand in order to make enough room). Very important is that the tube for the windscreen washers is fixed to the trim piece, so on that side movement is more limited. Pull the trim piece back until the fixing points are visible.

The cloth tape is what causes the cracking. I think it can't limit the movement of the trim piece on the window:


8. Now the inner bike tube comes in handy. Take your scissors and cut some pieces of about 1 cm. I think you need about 10 (forgot to count them).


9. Now pull those pieces of tube over the fixing points (you can leave the cloth on). I let it stick out for a few mm to give me some slack when refitting the trim piece. I think the rubber fixes the trim to the windshield meanwhile giving enough room to move without cracking. The 23mm version works the best. I tried larger ones but they were to loose and fell off. This size has to be stretched just enough to secure it tight enough on the fixing point. This is how it looks (the fixing point in the front of the picture):


10. That is the job done really. Now you have to refit everything in reverse order. To refit the rivets you place the rivet and then you push in the pin until it sits flush. The pin has four splines that fit in the rivet, so check they are located in the right way before you try to push them in. Take care when you refit the wipers not to damage the splines where they are located on. Repositioning them on the right splines might be a bit of hassle, so don't tighten the nut before you checked. Push them on gently and then tighten the nut. You can always take them back off and reposition them if their position turns out wrong. Now put the covers on the nuts of the wipers and put the rubberish foam back in place. Fix it to the fender with double sided tape.

11. Take a test drive! I hope it solves your problem as it did mine...
 
Last edited by a moderator:

Tom Vanlimbergen

Well-Known Member
Jan 19, 2018
459
554
93
46
@ speedking: that might have been before I finished the entire description (pushed the wrong button at some point and it was published halfway down my explination :cool:).
Took a lot longer to write the "how to" than to fix the problem itself...
 

Stash-N

Well-Known Member
May 24, 2018
1,545
2,989
113
Adelaide Australia
As I explained elsewhere on this forum I managed to solve the problem of the cracking noises in the area of the dashboard / windshield on my car.
After the fix I've driven more than 500km and the cracks seem to have disappeared entirely, even in N mode.
Fair is fair, so I must give some credit to a guy on the German forum who identified the cause of the problem (the piece of plastic trim on the bottom of the windshield, where the wipers poke through), but his fix seemed a bit dodgy to me, so I gave it a try myself.
It really is a DIY job, no need to be an experienced mechanic if you take things easy.
Right, what do you need?
- A socketwrench metric size 14
- Some masking tape
- Some touch-up paint or something else to make a marking
- A bit of doublesided tape
- A piece of innertube for a racebike (the one you have to pedal yourself ;)) preferably for a 23 mm tire.
- Something blunt (I used an allen key)
- A pair of scissors
- Half an hour of your precious time.

1. Open the bonnet and get the covers off the nuts for the wipers (the round covers in the picture below). They can easily be removed with your fingers.


2. Loosen the nuts that hold the wipers.


3. Now mark the position of the wipers with a piece of maskingtape on the windshield and a bit of paint (or something else to make a mark with) on the thread of the bolt that holds the wipers and the base of the wiper itself. This to enable you to put the wipers in the same position when you put them back on. (sorry for the blurry picture)


4. Now comes the most difficult part: getting the wipers off their bolts. I had to wiggle them about quite a bit and the right one needed some force. You should be able to do this by hand, don't use a screwdriver or something else because that could damage the plastic trim. You could try to put the wiper upright (the long one), that helped me (no picture for this step).

5. Remove the rubberish foam that is mounted on top of the plastic trim and that is fixed on both sides to the fenders of the car with some adhesive. Best way is to calmly pull it loose from one of the fenders. It is just pushed on to the plastic trim, so after you got it off the fender you can put it out of your way without damaging it. On the photo it is still on the car but it shows you wich piece I mean.


6. You now need to remove the rivets that hold the plastic trim in place. There are four of them and they are reusable. It is the round rivet on the picture below. You need to push the inner round pin down a few mm to loosen it. Use something blunt in order not to scratch anything (I used an allen key for it).
When it is loose, you can lift the trim and take the fixingrivets away. Pull out the pins so you can reinstall them later.


7. Now everything you need to diassemble is off the car. Take a good look at how the piece of trim is placed on the car so you can put it back in the right position. Now you need to fiddle the trimpiece of the windshield en over the wipers. You have to slide the trimpiece a bit downwards from the windscreen first in order to free the fixingpoints of the trim. Then take the trim over the wiperbolts. Take it easy and don't put to much stress on it. Note that the movement is limited by the bonnet stay (at some point you might need to hold the bonnet with your hand for a moment in order to make enough room). Very important is that the tube for the windscreenwashers is fixed to the trimpiece, so on that side movement is more limited.
Pull the trimpiece back until the fixingpoints are visible.
Than you'll see this:

The clothtape is the thing that causes the cracking. I think it cant limit the movement of the trimpiece on the window.

8. Now the inner bike tube comes in handy. Take your scissors and cut some pieces of about 1cm. I think you need about 10 (forgot to count them).


9.Now pull those pieces of tube over the fixingpoints (you can leave the cloth on). I let it stick out for a few mm to give me some slack when refitting the trimpiece. I think the rubber fixes the trim to the windshield meanwhile giving enough room to move without cracking.
The 23mm version works the best. I tried larger ones but they were to loose and fell off. This size has to be stretched just enough to secure it tight enough on the fixing point.
This is how it looks (the fixingpoint in the front of the picture):


10. That is the job done really. Now you have to refit everything in reverse order. To refit the rivets you place the rivet and then you push in the pin untill it sits flush. The pin has four splines that fit in the rivet, so check they are located in the right way before you try to push them in. Take care when you refit the wipers not to damage the splines where they are located on. Repositioning them on the right splines might be a bit of hassle, so don't thighten the nut before you checked. Push them on gently and then tighten the nut. You can allways take them back off and reposition them if their position turns out wrong.
Now put the covers on the nuts of the wipers and replace the rubberish foamseal. Fix it to the fender with doublesided tape.

11. Take a test drive!
I hope it solves your problem as it did mine...
Great "how to" guide for those with this issue. I think most owners with some hand/eye co ordination could carry this out. Great work and good job for locating what I am sure is an annoying distraction from enjoying your car.
 

Tom Vanlimbergen

Well-Known Member
Jan 19, 2018
459
554
93
46
That doesn't matter I think. Should work for the entire windscreen, as long as the sound comes from the bottom of the windscreen.
 
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Reactions: Stash-N

Tom Vanlimbergen

Well-Known Member
Jan 19, 2018
459
554
93
46
I repair bikes for other people as a hobby, so I had all sorts to choose from .
Your local bike store must have some and if they can't give you a used one you can allways buy a new one. Overhere (Belgium) they cost around 4 euro
 

Tom Vanlimbergen

Well-Known Member
Jan 19, 2018
459
554
93
46
@ Ben Richards: did you happen to check for wear on the cloth protection on the fixings? I found two spots where the cloth was damaged and the plastic came through. Was in the same area where the noise came from. That could explain why the cracks only surfaced after a few months.
I think they used the same cloth as on a normal i30 and the harder suspension on the N creates more vibrations, causing the cloth to rub through, but that's just a theory...
 
Last edited:

Ben Richards

Active Member
Jun 12, 2018
119
122
43
Warwickshire
@ Ben Richards: did you happen to check for wear on the cloth protection on the fixings? I found two spots where the cloth was damaged and the plastic came through. Was in the same area where the noise came from. That could explain why the cracks only surfaced after a few months.
I think they used the same cloth as on a normal i30 and the harder suspension on the N creates more vibritions, causing the cloth to rub through, but that's just a theory...
Yeah two of them had started to show bare plastic
 

paul-h

Moderator
Staff member
Dec 15, 2017
1,569
1,643
113
30
Glasgow
At Halfords now to get a 23mm inner tube! Just been a good run and that cracking noise got to me too much! Haha!
 

Greenfishman

Member
Sep 7, 2018
68
80
18
East Yorkshire
Cracking noise? I’ve got a ‘rattle’ that sounds like it’s coming out of the speaker in the corner of the dash, just under the windscreen. Is that the same? Sounds like a loose screw just rattling about.
 

Tom Vanlimbergen

Well-Known Member
Jan 19, 2018
459
554
93
46
Than that could have another cause. Mine didn't crack on smooth surfaces.
Now, it doesn't cost much and it only takes half an our, so I would try the fix. If it doesn't help, it will at least prevent it from creating the cracks over time
 

WookieeM

Well-Known Member
Jun 1, 2018
335
539
93
West Yorkshire
Has anyone approached a dealer regarding this noise issue, and the fix?

Are squeaks, creaks and knocks covered under any warranties anyway!?

Seems daft fixing a car issue yourself on a new car. Even when the fix is pretty easy.