Elise Hardtop Headliner Delete - LotusTalk - The Lotus Cars Community
  • 1 Post By nikoror
  • 1 Post By nikoror
LinkBack Thread Tools Display Modes
post #1 of 5 (permalink) Old 08-04-2019, 08:49 AM Thread Starter
Registered User
nikoror's Avatar
Join Date: Jun 2016
Location: Houston, TX
Posts: 9
Elise Hardtop Headliner Delete

My headliner had started sagging and while looking for ways to fix it I saw some photos showing that you can just take it off and run without a headliner. I tried it and it seems to work quite well. Photos and description below.

The sagging is caused by the foam between the cloth and the backing deteriorating. There is really no simple solution to fix it. It needs to be removed. Once the hardtop is off the car (Torx T40) you need a security torx T30 to remove the brackets on the rear which attach to the mounting bolt. A cheap bit kit from Harbor Freight has the security torx. If you are only pulling the headliner there is no need to take off the two side trim pieces (no need to drill out the rivets); just use some needle nose to pull it from the gap.

In case you're wondering, the headliner weighs ~170 grams.

I used brake parts cleaner and shop towel: soaked the shop towels in brake parts cleaner and let them sit on the adhesive for ~10minutes. I used towels and microfiber to remove the adhesive.
Attached Images
TachItUp likes this.
nikoror is offline  
Sponsored Links
post #2 of 5 (permalink) Old 08-04-2019, 08:57 AM Thread Starter
Registered User
nikoror's Avatar
Join Date: Jun 2016
Location: Houston, TX
Posts: 9
Midway through I started using a plastic brush which attaches to a power drill. This worked quite well and saved quite some time. First half took ~1.5 hours, second half ~45 min. Total time with removal and installation was ~4 hours. I quite like the look of the body colored roof and it also makes the hump a lot more visible which I think is a cool feature of the hardtop. I am not sure if the quality of the paint on the inside is always this good.

If you're curios my hardtop without the headliner and hardware weighs 8.75kg and the hardware was 462g.

Final result:
Attached Images
lt1_fd3s likes this.
nikoror is offline  
post #3 of 5 (permalink) Old 08-04-2019, 08:59 AM
Registered User
TachItUp's Avatar
Join Date: Apr 2013
Location: Chattanooga, TN
Posts: 1,709
Some hard tops have a beautiful finish underneath the adhesive, and some are so-so. Mine is pretty decent, save for a splash of orange in the middle

2005 Nightfall Blue Elise: Sport, Touring, Quantum Zeros, Pro Alloy, BWR De-Cat, Stage II, BOE Torque200 tune
TachItUp is offline  
post #4 of 5 (permalink) Old 08-04-2019, 05:24 PM
Registered User
blaising's Avatar
Join Date: Oct 2016
Location: Naples, FL
Posts: 116
Nice job! In the end, it's good 'ol mechanical action that works best to remove the glue. My paint was not great, but not so bad I couldn't live with it. Makes the car a bit louder though.

"In general, the Elise will be kept in best operating condition by regular use."
Page 152 Lotus Elise owner's manual
blaising is offline  
post #5 of 5 (permalink) Old 08-04-2019, 05:53 PM
Registered User
ksm's Avatar
Join Date: Jan 2010
Location: Maryland
Posts: 882
Wow! No wonder you decided to run with no liner. Looks terrific! Handed mine to a place for relining and never saw what was underneath and now I'm curious! Either way, nice work!

'05. Eyes up.
ksm is online now  
Sponsored Links

  LotusTalk - The Lotus Cars Community > Lotus Discussions > Interior/Exterior

Quick Reply

Register Now

In order to be able to post messages on the LotusTalk - The Lotus Cars Community forums, you must first register.
Please enter your desired user name, your email address and other required details in the form below.

User Name:
Please enter a password for your user account. Note that passwords are case-sensitive.


Confirm Password:
Email Address
Please enter a valid email address for yourself.

Email Address:


Currently Active Users Viewing This Thread: 1 (0 members and 1 guests)
Thread Tools
Show Printable Version Show Printable Version
Email this Page Email this Page
Display Modes
Linear Mode Linear Mode

Posting Rules  
You may post new threads
You may post replies
You may not post attachments
You may not edit your posts

BB code is On
Smilies are On
[IMG] code is On
HTML code is Off
Trackbacks are On
Pingbacks are On
Refbacks are On

For the best viewing experience please update your browser to Google Chrome