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Taillights and interior buttons

This is a discussion on Taillights and interior buttons within the Appearance Section forums, part of the General Help category; Hello all, A few questions for you, First off, I have an issue with my passenger side taillight on my ...

  1. #1
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    Metallic Navy Blue
    1998 Trans Am

    Taillights and interior buttons

    Hello all,

    A few questions for you,

    First off, I have an issue with my passenger side taillight on my 98 TA. There seems to be a leak in a seal somewhere because water is constantly trapped inside my reverse light, and once in a while I can take off the taillight, turn it upside down, and dump about 2 pints of water out (which is weird because it never rains in san diego) Anyways, the water seems to have discolored my lens, because it is clearly darker in appearence than the drivers side. Im wondering if there is any safe way to dissassemble the taillights without doing any permanent damage, Id like to find the leak and fix it up

    Secondly, I've been searching the net, without much luck, of pictures of custom interiors in TA's, and I came accross one in which the owner had taken some of the patented GM plastic interior pieces and given them a brushed aluminum look, which I thought was really nice looking. I'd like to do some of my pieces as well, but Im not sure how to get the window/lock/mirror buttons out of the trim pieces. I know how to get the piece that houses those buttons off of the door, just not the buttons out of the piece. Any help on either of these is much appreciated!!

    Thanks in advance,

    Shaun

  2. #2
    Senior Member 02z28ls1's Avatar
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    navy blue
    2002 Z-28 Camaro M6

    Well--- water will condense inside these things if left outside due to temperature changes-that would explain where the water comes from.The discoloration is coming from the water putting dirt on the lens.The quick fix is to replace the lens assembly,the seal must be broken somewhere and the drain(there will be a drain)must be plugged.I believe these things are glued together making them impossible to take apart and fix any internal problems like you apparently have.I'd just replace it if you can't see any problems externally.The lock slider knob on the door panel pulls off the metal rod I think-I've always left it in place myself so I could be wrong.The window switches pop out as a unit -there are little clips that you push in and pop the thing out.

  3. #3
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    NBM
    99 TA

    i had the same problem with water collecting in them, just drilled a small hole at the bottom of each tail light and no problems since. did the same with the fog lights also.

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    dot COM EVL LS1's Avatar
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    yeah drilling a small hole on the backside of the taillight as near the bottom as you can (so you cannot notice it from behind the car) will help out...

    you can take the taillights apart by preheating an oven to 350* and putting them in the oven for 1-2 mins... prying the taillight lense apart from the housing. clean them up then use a automotive grade contact adhesive to put them back together.
    my last TA had clear LT1 taillights that were done by this process.. just the red was removed once they were apart.
    i did this with a set of ford lightning taillights for my truck and had no problems at all... but TA taillights are larger and there's a bigger chance of them cracking/breaking when prying them apart.

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    Quote Originally Posted by EVL LS1
    yeah drilling a small hole on the backside of the taillight as near the bottom as you can (so you cannot notice it from behind the car) will help out...

    you can take the taillights apart by preheating an oven to 350* and putting them in the oven for 1-2 mins....

    Are you serious? I gotta ask you because thats the craziest thing I've ever heard, but also if that works I will do it because that will save me about 100 bucks ya know?

  6. #6
    dot COM EVL LS1's Avatar
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    yup.. i'm the mod maestro =)

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    I have a few friends that own STI's and those dudes always bake there headlights to take them apart. It definetly works. As for the leak, I had the same problem of the tail light filling up with water. I ended up lining the bottom with sand and rocks and bought a few fish to swim around.... nah but seriously I took it apart and filled in the top with sealent and I haven't had a problem since.

  8. #8
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    Tried heating my taillight up as you said, when I pried (or tried) it apart, all I managed to do was chip the lower corner a bit, like a half inch chunk went flying accross the floor, so I didnt have much luck there, and now my lens is jacked up :-( Any other means of taking these things apart?

  9. #9
    dot COM EVL LS1's Avatar
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    yeah you gotta be careful when prying. got to do it very slowly and not pry each section completely apart.. takes quite a bit of going around and around prying little at a time until they pop apart. that's the only way to get them apart.. they aren't really meant to be taken apart once they're put together by GM =)

    my truck's taillights didn't take no time cause of how small they are.

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