How to Remove an Astro Van Engine Cover

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The Chevy Astro van is well known for its unique engine layout. In order to access most of the engine components, you'll need to remove the engine cover, which is actually located below the dash between the two front seats. Removing the cover is not a terribly difficult task, but it's certainly harder than simply opening the hood, which is all that's required to access the engine on most other vehicles. The Astro's engine cover is often referred to as the "doghouse" by Astro owners, due to its shape.

Things You'll Need

  • Socket wrench with extension (13mm and 15mm)
  • Phillips-head screwdriver
  • Move the two front seats back as far as they will go. You'll need the extra room in the front cabin to remove the engine cover.

  • Remove the two 13 mm bolts from the bottom corners of the center dash panel extension (the part that has the cup holders in it). These bolts are at the very back of the panel; you'll have to bend down to see them.

  • Remove the two Phillips-head screws from the sides (toward the top) of the dash panel extension. There is one screw on each side.

  • Grasp the entire dash extension and pull it toward the rear of the Astro to remove it. Behind the extension you'll find an electrical connection. Depress the tab on the connection and unplug it. Move the dash extension out of the way.

  • Grasp the top part of the black heater duct. Pull it straight down with your hands, and then set it to the side to access the engine cover.

  • Loosen the two 15 mm bolts on the front rim of the engine cover. These bolts do not come out all the way; they only come out far enough to detach the cover from the dash.

  • Pull the engine cover toward you to remove it. You'll now have access to the engine.

Tips & Warnings

  • To reinstall the engine cover, reverse the procedure exactly. Don't forget to reattach the electrical connection.
  • The listed procedure applies to the second-generation Chevy Astro van (1995 to 2005).

References

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