Training Time July/August 2021

2010 Toyota FJ Cruiser Replacement

By Alfredo Calva

1 Toyota no longer manufactures FJ’s, but I’m hoping they bring them back because they are eye catching and fun to drive. The installation process is the same from 2007 – 2014 The replacement is a bit challenging, especially if you have never replaced one before.

2 See if the roof is dented from removing the top moulding. See if side pillars are scratched from removing the cowling and check if the antenna scratched from using the wrong tool to remove it. I start by removing the windshield wipers. They are different so set them aside in the correct order.

3 I personally replace the antenna ornament on every installation, as most of the time it gets damaged in removal. If you want to save it, you have to pull up: try not to pry on the metal since it dents easy. If you have a replacement one, trim down around it and you’ll be able to slide the cowling up.

4 I prefer to break the clip that clips on to the fender rather than prying it off since the metal bends easily and you’ll end up with a gap. I use a sharp chisel and a plastic protector, the clips break really easy

5 I prefer to break the clip that clips on to the fender rather than prying it off since the metal bends easily and you’ll end up with a gap. I use a sharp chisel and a plastic protector, the clips breaks really easy

6 Continue by sliding it off down from the moulding or pry it off using a tack puller. It depends on whether you’re trying to reuse the moulding or not.

7 Finish removing it by closing down the hood and slide the cowling towards the windshield carefully. Protect the side pillars with tape to avoid damages

8 Next, remove the side mouldings by pulling them off .

9 The last moulding to remove is the most challenging. Pry up the end of the moulding using the glass side. I wouldn’t recommend prying it off the body since it can dent easily. The first clip will release.

10 This moulding is glued down at the factory. My technique is to use a spatula blade to cut through the urethane. The urethane is between the clips so after cutting through, pry up to release the rest of the clips.

11 This is how the top moulding looks like underneath. It’s a good reference to know where the urethane is and to know where to apply the primer.

12 After removal, prep both surfaces accordingly to your adhesive recommendations. Before priming the top moulding, scuff it up first so the primer bonds properly to the plastic.

13 I personally prefer to install the side mouldings to the glass and hold them with tape and set the glass with the mouldings already on.

14 To hold the glass in place, tape it down on the side pillars to prevent it from sliding down. I use primer on the glass as a guide to know exactly where to apply the urethane for the top moulding. Apply the urethane to the edge of the glass.

15 Line up the moulding. Starting at one end, push down one clip at a time. Be gentle since two clips go slightly under the glass. Don’t force it down, as once the clip goes under the glass correctly the moulding will set flush with the glass.

16 In case you do end up with a gap in between the glass and the moulding, it might be that one of the clips that goes under the glass is still on top of the glass. Use a fine plastic stick to push the clip so that it goes under the glass correctly. Don’t try to force it down since the glass can break easily.

17 Taping the glass this way has worked for me very well to avoid gaps in between the glass and the moulding. Only until MDAT, when we turn the car back to the customer, we remove it since it can obstruct the driver’s view. Instead we put tape across the top moulding and ask the customer to remove later.

18 I recommend replacing all the clips on the end caps of the cowling. If the windshield has been replaced before and there was a noticeable gap, bend the metal back where the clip goes to avoid gaps.

19 Slide the cowling under the glass bottom moulding without the end caps. Install the clips and windshield wipers in the correct order.

20 Line up the end caps of the cowling and push them down so that the clips fit back on. Be careful not to scratch the pillars: protect them with tape. Fit them under the moulding.

21 To reinstall the antenna ornament, I spray silicone spray to slide it back easily. Overall, this vehicle could be a bit challenging but that’s what makes our job fun and interesting–there is always learning curve involved.

Alfredo Calva is the president of Alfredo’s Auto Glass in Corona, Calif.

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