WRX/STI Hood Louver Installation 08-14'
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This Hood Louver kit is a DIY product, and although cutting into your car can be scary, it's a fairly simple job. Just remember to take your time, and cut with the most precision possible. We are not responsible for any damage to your vehicle or this product during the installation process or after. If you do not feel comfortable, please consider professional assembly.
Your Spiked Performance Hood Louver kit includes:
- Hood Louver set
- 1/8th Rivets
- Vinyl Cut template
- Icy cold beverage
- Cutting tools-
- Angle Grinder
- Dremel with cutting discs and drum sanders
- Drill & 1/8″ drill bit
- Rivet Gun
- Masking tape
- Measuring tape
- Basic metric socket set
Step 1: Remove Hood
Although this is not necessary, it only takes a few minutes and will make the job much easier and cleaner. 14mm socket to remove the 2 bolts per side. Set the hood on saw horses, or use a couple of boxes like I did.
Step 2: Install Cut Template
From the front corner of the hood, measure 2" straight back and mark it. Do this on both sides of the hood. See pic for reference.
Run a piece or masking tape straight across the hood, under the marks connecting them together. This will create a straight line across the hood. Again, the 2" mark should be on top of the tape.
On each side of the tape, measure 6.5" in, and mark the tape. This is where the lower corner of the louver will sit. Lay the corner there, and secure with a small piece of masking tape. Make sure that corner of the louver stays right on that 2" high mark.
The inside corner is going to dip below the tape when you line the top up. That's okay, just keep the outside corner on the top of the tape.
Next, measure from the top of the louver to the edge of the hood. Get the template to sit exactly 4" from the edge. Add a small piece of tape to secure it down.
With the template in it's final location, lay masking tape all around the template. This will make it virtually impossible to stick it down in the wrong location.
Now it's time to install the template. This is a big sticker, so it's difficult to install without a wrinkle or bubble. The best way to be sure it's done right is by using a vinyl applicator liquid, or baby soap/water.
Spray the surface with the vinyl applicator liquid. Apply 1 template at a time, and use the masking tape perimeter you made to align it. Use a squeegee or a credit card to smooth out the template and run the application fluid out from under the template. Give it a few minutes to dry, and peel the transfer tape.
Step 3: Protect the Paint
Tape some newspaper or whatever you have handy to cover all areas of the hood you aren't cutting. You can also go crazy and just cover everything in masking tape.
Step 4: Cut the top layer
I prefer an angle grinder with a 4.5" cut disc for this step, but you can get away with a dremel if that's all you have. The dremel is going to take a long time, and you'll go through a lot of blades.
Warning: Take your time. Do this in sections, and give your hood a chance to cool between cuts. If it over heats you'll melt the vinyl, and it can start to damage your paint.
This is a good time to sip your icy cold beverage between cuts.
Step 5: Cutting the Bottom Layer
Flip the hood over, and you should be able to see the holes you cut out on top.
Using your angle grinder, cut out the bracing blocking the opening.
Slide the louver into place and fine trim any area that's contacting. This is a great time to clean up the edges with the drum sander Dremel bits.
Step 6: Drill the mounting holes
Start by only drilling one hole. Then place the louver on the hood, and stick a rivet in the hole to hold it in place. *Do not actually install the rivet, you are just placing it in the hole.
Line up a hole on the opposite end. Example; you drilled the bottom left hole, so line up the top right.
Drill through the louver and the hood together. Now stick a rivet in this hole to hold the louver in place.
Drill the remaining holes through the Louver and hood together. This insures perfect alignment.
Step 7: Install the Pop Rivets
This step is self explanatory. Use your rivet gun to install the rivets. If you don't have a rivet gun, you can order one for about $20 on Amazon.
Step 8: Install the Hood
Only snug the bolts, then line up the hood. Tighten the bolts fully when hood is aligned.
That's it! Congratulations on your new hood louvers!
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