The headliner is the fabric that covers the ceiling of the roof over your head in your car. The headliner can become worn and will start to rip and fall apart. Replacing the headliner with new fabric isn't too difficult and most do-it-yourselfers can do the job themselves during an afternoon. Here is how you can replace the headliner on the average vehicle.

Remove Headliner Board

You'll have to remove the headliner board to remove the lining material and put a new one on it. Start by removing all the fixtures connected to the roof. This would include removing the dome light, sun visors, handles, and everything else.

Use a panel popper tool to remove the side trim panels around the top of the doors, and the front and rear trim around the edges of the headliner board along the top of the front and back windows.  Be careful, the trim is typically made out of plastic and can easily break when you pull it out of the clips on the car.

You can remove the headliner board once all the fixtures and panels have been removed. Try not to bend or crease the headliner board too much when getting it out of your car to avoid damaging it.

Remove Old Liner

Pull of whatever is left of the old lining material from the headliner board. The lining material usually has a foam backing, and a lot of the foam will end up sticking to the headliner board. You can remove the foam by taking a wire brush and scrubbing it off of the headliner board. Make sure you remove all of the foam.

Put on New Liner

Make sure you use new fabric with a foam backing just like the old liner had on it. The foam helps to keep the inside of the car quiet while you are driving around in the vehicle. Cover the entire headliner board with the fabric and then fold it halfway back. Spray the back of the board and the back of the folded over liner with a strong adhesive. Fold the lining material back over the board while pressing down on the fabric in an ironing motion with the palm of your hand to remove any air bubbles and creases between the fabric and board. Repeat the same process to glue the other half of the board and fabric together.

Flip the headliner board over so the fabric is underneath it. You will now see all the slots and screws holes in the headliner board where the dome light, visors, and other fixtures went. Cut those areas out in the fabric with a razor blade to make openings for the fixtures and screws.

Install Liner

Carefully squeeze the headliner back into the car and press it against the roof. Replace the front and back trim over the windows to hold the headliner in place. You can then replace the side trim around the top of the doors and sides of the car. Replace all the fixtures to complete the job. Share