5: Renovating the interior

After thorough inspection and you have seen all that you need to replace and repair, it I best to begin with the interiors of the car. Remove the seats and pull out the carpeting if there is one.  The upholstery might still be usable. Changing the upholstery might be a chore, nevertheless it must be done properly. You ll be needing the kind of material used previously e.g. leather, vinyl or fabric. At times, you ll need vinyl majorly. 

There is a great probability that the padding under the car might need replacement. You’ll easily get padding and vinyl at any fabric store. You could also get tools for reupholstering from there. If the need for vinyl cord arises, you ll easily get those online or in stores that  sell upholstery products majorly. After you remove the padding and upholstery, the seat should be cleaned thoroughly, any dust removed and the seat springs checked. Rusty or rotted springs must be replaced.

After cleaning the seat, and the metals you can go ahead to replace faulty or bad springs, after which the padding and vinyl must be replaced. A number of methods abound that can be employed to upholster car seats. This can easily be accomplished with small nails covered up with cording. Furniture upholstering is different from car seat upholstering; the latter uses ordinate studs, while the former is less elaborate and quite sleek. A vital point to keep in mind is that the material must be  taut over the seat frame before you  begin to fix it to the seat.

The seats should be removed and the floor inspected for rust. Sandblaster can be used to clear rust, that is if  it is not beyond repair . If the floor has really disintegrated, it might need replacement. This usually involves disassembling the car and reassembling it again. Most times, complete overhauling of the floor might not be worth the stress. In the previous chapter, we talked about things to tae cognizance of before embarking on the pastime.

Once the floor gets cleaned, the new carpet can be installed. This is very easy and carpet remains can be picked up without stress, however, you might want the new carpet to look like the one you removed

You might also need to take a look at the dashboard and steering wheel, inspect the underside of the dashboard and see what is functional and what is not, there is a big chance that a lot of the electronic items are no more functional. They will all have to be cleaned and rewired and replaced of possible. If the parts on the dashboard need replacement, you will have to source for parts that match your make, model and year of car. You can start out by going through catalogs or looking online.

The importance of belonging to a club cannot be overemphasized when you begin this past time. The  club members will be ready to help you try to find places to get car parts without hassles. It is possible you ll need to replace a number of parts on the car, if you want the job to be thorough. It ll do more good and no harm to have as many options when it comes to finding replacement for the parts.

Remove the dashboard parts and clean everything very well, it is possible the plastic covering on the dashboard may have cracked. This may be glass depending on when the car was made. This can be handle easily. Plastic and glass can be easily cut to size for the dashboard at a glass company or hardware store. But ensure that the cover of the dashboard is replaced with what was used originally.

Everything on the dashboard should be thoroughly cleaned and any rust removed. If a part cannot be repaired, the only thing that can be done is to find a replacement. For your reconstruction to be genuine, the same parts that were used in the original car must be used. This gives it an “old feel”, which is what we want to achieve. If the exact part cannot be found, a similar model made during the same period can be used as an alternative.

Make it a point of duty to check the carpet work in the trunk and the interior of the glove compartment. The insides of the car should be spick and span, as if it just came out of the exhibition room. Both the insides and the outside of the car are important;  thus so  the task must be done with absolute care and efficiency.

If you decide to undertake this activity in the evenings or during the weekend, it might take a month to get a hang of it because of the time. Do not lose heart and ensure that the insides are appealing to the eyes.

The seats must not be returned into the car until you have almost completed the restoration project.

Cover them with plastic and put them in a safe place.


Upholstery repair might not be that easy to undertake. If the upholstery in the car still looks decent and usable, clean it with an upholstery cleaning solution. It helps to save time, energy and cost. There are a number of companies that provide this service.

It might still suffice, however, to take off the wrapping and scrutinize the padding and springs of the seat, this is very important most especially if the car is over 25 years old. It would however be easier to make use of the old wrappings than buy new fabric or vinyl and start from scratch.