Classic Cars: How to Remove Window Moldings
One of the scariest tasks about restoring a car without breaking your heart or your budget is removing the windshield or rear glass out of your project. If you have a rare older car or truck, then this is where extreme care needs to be taken to safely remove the moldings and glass.
I can't stress enough that you need to spend the money and not only buy the right tool for the job but take your time and most importantly, BE PATIENT!!! This is not the time to get in a hurry, as you'll see in the photos, I'll show you some of the obstacles that come up when removing glass moldings from a car.
Like I said before, you need to buy the right tool for the job and Speedway Motors has you covered, with their Windshield Molding Removal Tool. Having this tool at your disposal will make an easy task of preparing to remove the glass moldings from your project.
The first thing to do is to look at the moldings before you start removing them, make sure that there's not a bunch of sealer covering the edges of the moldings, I can't begin to count the number of times that I've seen that.
If everything looks good at this point, you're ready to start removing the moldings. You absolutely must take your time when doing this. The window moldings are extremely easy to dent, kink, and bend, and that can be heartbreaking, especially if you have a rare car or truck that parts aren't readily available for.
The Windshield Molding Removal Tool is shaped in a Y shape, with a hook on each end. You'll be using the hook portion to pop the molding loose. Look at the layout of how the moldings are placed on the glass, usually, the sides need to be removed first, and then you can remove the rest of them.
Take the tool, lay it flat on the glass, and push the hook up under the edge of the molding, then side the tool along with the molding until you feel it catch one of the molding clips. Then gently, and I do mean gently, pull against the clip, and twist the tool upward while pulling back to release the molding from the clip, (in some cases you may need to twist the molding very slightly to release the clip).
You can then pull the molding up (being very careful not to bend or kink the molding) while you release the remaining clips. After you've released all the clips, gently work the molding loose from the adjacent molding.
Now that you've got all the moldings removed, you may uncover more work that you had anticipated. This was true with my 1976 Chevrolet Laguna S3, there was so much sealer gobbed all around the bottom of the rear window glass, that it's going to take quite a bit of time to get all that cleaned out to get ready to remove the rear window.
The next step is very important even if you're not going to be reusing the moldings, they can be valuable for visual information for your build. Be sure to store them in a safe enough place they don't get damaged. Trim and Molding like these can be damaged very easily. I prefer to label them with tape, tape them together, and put them high up on a shelf.