Ford Explorer & Mercury Mountaineer: Removing Kick Panel & Cover

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Removing the kick panel means extracting a few interior layers in order to replace your car's heater core. Learn to remove the kick panel and cover from a certified mechanic in this free automotive video.

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Video Transcript

Here we're demonstrating how to change a heater core on a late model Ford Explorer or Mercury Mountaineer. In this step we're going to talk about the proper service procedure for removing internal material. Here, this is called a kick panel, this is also a kick panel here, and this is called the A-pillar cover, this piece that runs all the way up along here. This is the A-pillar of the vehicle, now we have some mounting bolts hidden behind here that we're going to need to gain access to. Unfortunately enough, as you can see, it's all layered, this piece is on top of this piece, which is underneath this piece. In order to start working in this area, we have to actually start way back down here. Now we're just going to take and get this portion loose. Now they're going to have a lot of various different kinds of clips that holds this stuff together, sometimes even screws, but most of the time you can take and just peel it up just like so. That's all we need to do to get this out of the way. We're going to take and move on to this piece here, right there. As you can see, we've exposed one of our large mounting bolts for our instrument panel. Now again we're going to take and set this aside so it doesn't get any dirtier or damaged during our service. I'll take and put it all the way in the back of the car. We're going to take and work on the A-pillar cover, that's this large piece that runs from here all the way to here. We're going to get this out of the way, just like so. And again, make sure to set this out of the way, this stuff is extremely expensive to buy, just being that it's a non-wearing item and they never go bad unless they're broken. So make sure to set them in the backseat. You're going to go ahead and repeat that procedure for the driver's side of the car. It will again expose some mounting bolts that you're going to need to take out in order to gain some access to your heater core box. Now that's the proper service procedure for removing your kick panels and your A-pillar cover.

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