ZC. Dash Removal
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2000 Miata LS
I started working on the interior of the car today. The first order of business was to figure out how to remove the dash. I need to install a new airbag sensor and it mounts just below the windshield under the dash. It is impossible to replace it with without removing the dash. I also want to install a different instrument cluster out of a 2000 SE and to remove the carpet for a thorough cleaning. So the dash had to come out.
I found this site describing how to remove the dash. I read it twice and studied the pictures. It was a very helpful article. It convinced me that I could remove the dash without taking out the wiring harness and air systems. Sure glad I found this article.
I will take more pictures upon dash installation since it would have helped me a lot to have a picture of each connection and bolt to remove.
This is the A/C controls removed after disconnecting the wires and control cables as mentioned by the article above. My radio and tape player was already removed along with the center console and dash surrounds.
I still ran into things that I had to figure out for myself. Which connectors I needed to disconnect was baffling and there were some wiring harness to dash anchors to deal with. I included some pictures of them below.
This large white connector had to have the gray keeper pulled out to allow the connector to be separated. It was located to the left of the steering column.
The square white connector below is the other end of the connector with the gray keeper. The other two white connectors and the black one were removed from the rear of the instrument cluster.
This yellow connector had to be disconnected on the passenger side. Also the connector attached to the fan beside the yellow connector must be disconnected. The large connector above the yellow one with the brown foam also had to be disconnected.
There were two 12mm nuts securing the steering column to the firewall that had to be removed to allow the column to drop down enough to get the dash over the levers. I also removed the black plastic surround on the column universal joint at the firewall. It just snapped on and off.
The two fuse block screws must be removed.
The hood release cable had to be removed from its holder. It was just one nut to be loosened then the cable slipped out easily.
I still could not free the dash after all the above was done. It seemed to be hanging on the pillar covers. So, I started removing the pillar covers.
There is one push type plastic anchor on the top corners of the weather stripping across the top of the windshield frame. Then the weather stripping just pulled loose. Not sure I had to pull it back, but it seemed to make taking out the pillar covers easier.
The pillar covers were secured with two clips. One at the top and one near the center. I did not know how they were attached and split the passenger side cover by pulling on it too hard. It would not come free so it cracked. I found that applying the force at the clip anchor points would free the clips without breaking the cover.
Then I realized that the covers are also attached to the cover that crosses at the top of the windshield. I removed the sun visors and the top striker mounts to separate the two covers at a joint. The clip it attaches to is shown below.
The reason the dash would not come out was there is a long tab that enters the dash from the pillar cover. I wish I had known that before I started.
Once the cover was removed the dash was finally free to be removed.
Success!! The dash is out. I sure hope I can remember where everything attaches when it is time to re-install the dash.