VW Beetle Forum banner

How to repair blend doors with out removing complete dash assy.

31968 Views 21 Replies 13 Participants Last post by  KA9MOT
Hello All,
newbie here and I wanted to share with everyone how I repaired my blend doors on a 1998 NB with out removing the complete dash assy. and it turned out very professional. Really thats the only reason I signed up. I put this job off for 2yrs due to reading about the difficulty and just being lazy but I tackled it yesterday and glad I did. Heat is going to feel good if it drops to 10 deg. here in Georgia later on.
Thing is I'm not real sure how to go about posting this info. When I try it states I dont have permission to post. I think this info. could help alot of people.

Thank You

Fish Head
1 - 20 of 22 Posts
Welcome to the Org!

If you figured out an easier way to fix the blend door I would like to hear about it and I am sure many others would as well.
Please try to post it!
How to repair your hvav blend doors and not completely remove the dash

Ok, first of all I wont go through the process of explaining how to remove all your dash panels etc because others on this site have done a wonderful job with that. So here goes, when you have all your panels removed and youre looking at the housing that needs to be removed to access the blend doors you will notice there are two metal supports that go from the hump up to the dash,one on the left one on the right. Remove the right one. There are 3 bolts which require a 13mm socket to remove.(Sorry some of my photos are blurred) Auto part Automotive exterior Bumper Vehicle Car

Notice on the lower right corner of this housing there is a "hook" molded into it, this hook is the only thing preventing you from removing the housing. This is what I did, I took the blade out of my hacksaw and used it by hand to cut this hook off in the center of the bend. This is what the hook looks like before cutting Eyewear Glasses Sunglasses Personal protective equipment Vision care
This next photo is after I cut the hook off Eyewear Glasses
Now you can pull out (to prevent damaging the foam on the backside) Metal
and down and this housing with a little wrestling will come right out Auto part
. If your careful you wont even damage any of the foam. If you do just reattach it with some weatherstripping glue.
Your problem (the blend doors) are right there. I used compressed air to blow out the main hvac box to clean out all the foam etc. Next I inspected my blend doors and snap bushings all were in perfect working order so I cleaned the doors with brake cleaner and used metallic hvac tape (that can be purchased at any hardware store)to completely cover the doors. This tape is only about 1.5 inches wide so I peeled back the paper backing down the side and overlapped 3 pieces about 3/8 of an inch down the side. Your tape should be about 7 inches long. Use a small flexible tape measure and you can get pretty good measurements of your doors inside the box. Peel your tape and very carefully place the tape on your doors. If its not perfect you can use a razor blade inside the box to trim to fit. This step is very important, once you have your metallic hvac tape on the doors turn your control knobs to be sure your doors work and are not taped to something there not suppose to be. This is how mine looked [/ATTACH]
Now you are ready to reintall this housing but how we cut the hook off? This is what I did-lay the housing (that you removed) down and whats left of the "hook we cut off" is now basically a tab drill a 3/16" hole dead center of this tab. It will look like this Technology Electronics Electronic device Metal
Do not drill a hole through the tab on the main hvac box.
Carefully reinstall your housing cover (I didnt even break any of the little plastic locks off during disassembly) and if you do it doesnt matter this housing fits up into the upper duct work it cant go anywhere. Be sure when your fitting the housing back up into place you hold out on it a bit to prevent damaging the foam on the backside. Once in place reinstall the two little gold hex screws up top but now how do we secure the hook we cut off? I used a stainless steel sheet metal screw about 3/8" long and small washer through the hole we drilled and with a little pressure the sheet metal screw made its own hole and snugged right up. Do not over tighten this screw just snug it.
This is how mine looked Auto part Vehicle Automotive exterior Engine Car
. Reinstall your metal brace and all your dash panels and there you go Bobs your uncle. Now tell me how awesome that is-I just saved you alot of time and alot of money. You do not have to remove the steering wheel and instrument cluster to do this job-and you have a professional repair!

Have a great day!

Fish Head


See less See more
How to repair blend doors with out removing complete dash assy.

Oh one last thing my hvac system in my bug has never worked so well-blows hard and now I have heat. Before you start this job go purchase the best instant glue you can find. Be very carefull removing your panels and console, all the plastic is brittle and hard and you will find things broken that you havent even touched. Most of your time on this job will be spent putting tape on your blend doors and repairing broken plastic.
Hope this info. helps some of you out there.

Fish Head
How to repair blend doors with out removing complete dash assy.

Clarification-the photos of the hook that i cut off the housing are after it has been removed. I taped it back together for photos just to show what it looks like. You have to use your hacksaw blade and cut this hook off before removing the housing.

Fish Head
Nice DIY and write up Fish Head!
This is now the 2nd easier method for fixing the blend door...pretty cool man.

So by the looks of things all you removed is the center dash and lower dash panels, correct?

Good job:goodjob:
Nice write-up! :)
Hello scaraby2k yes you are correct, remove the center dash panels and your left and right "knee" panels and you also have to remove the center console. My bug is s 5 speed and somewhere I read you have to take the button off your emergency brake lever then the cover off the lever but thats not true, your console will lift right up over the lever as it is.

Fish Head
NICE WORK!!! And a WARM Welcome to the great and wonderful ORG! Many fantastic cars, people and answers lurk in this great land. If you haven't done so already, take time to fill in your profile and post a few photos so we can ORGle them!!
Just finished the blend door. This method is a big time saver. Compared to the "hack" method, this is a better route for us big hand dudes.

Thanks Fish Head.
center console

I think I'm finally gonna try this over the holidays. This seems the best route to go. Do you have to remove the center console? any steps on what screws or what to take off first so that I don't break any of the already badly brittle plastic?
Welcome and NICE WORK!! Thanks for posting the great DIY info!
Thanks for the pictures. I followed your instructions and the blend door is now fixed. I didn't have to take out the center console. I used a dremel to cut the hook. Heres a picture of the cover on with the sheet metal screw. I did break some clips and plastic on the drivers side lower dash panel. Ordered a new one on ebay for $40.00. That is really the only cost other than my time. Take pictures as you go.


See less See more
Glad this info helped someone.

Hello all,
its been several months since I have logged on. Just received a Happy Birthday from New beetle so I thought I would check to see if my original post had helped someone and I suppose it has and that was the whole reason for signing up on New Beetle in the first place. Sorry for the poor quality photos in my original post, I was in a hurry and just wanted to get finished with the job. Took them all one handed.Its pretty cold here in Ga. now but the heat sure feels good in my little commuter but it has developed a problem. every once in while (maybe once a month)I go out at 5:30am to go to work and all she'll do is crank-will not start.I can go to work, come home and she starts right up everytime. I thought the engine position sensor was the problem so I replaced it and for about 6 months all was well. Then one day last week it did it again. I cant think of any combination I'm doing to cause this issue but I think it may have something to do with the anti theft feature. Just a thought. Oh well now I have something else to figure out.

Have a great day!

Fish Head
See less See more
Fish Head,
Your DIY has made it to our org members Facebook page "the collective", in our Tagged posts glossary. This has been a HUGE help and time saver- thought I'd share it with others, for they'll need to do this eventually.

You da man, mang:cool::goodjob:
I used this method when repairing my blend doors and I can say it was only a 3-4 hour project, rather than the 10-12 of removing the entire dash and steering wheel. I'm not afraid to tackle a big project like this, but it made it so much easier that I would say almost anyone could do it.
Hello, I wandered in here from Google. I can't see the pictures even though I'm logged in. Did they get removed, or am I missing something?
It looks like it is inevitable that mine has to be done, I read that it can be done while leaving the center console in, so that is good. I am assuming that the Glove box and the what I call the kickplate or kneeguard below the steering wheel have to come off. Am I correct in thinking that the airbag on the passenger side can remain in place? I plan on disconnecting the battery as the door actuator sets off the alarm if I keep the door open for more than a very short time.
1 - 20 of 22 Posts
This is an older thread, you may not receive a response, and could be reviving an old thread. Please consider creating a new thread.