Well for those of you who own a 1992-1995 Civic, or really any Civic that is growing older, you may have noticed that your plastic trims are not the same black that they should be.
Unpainted trims such as side moldings, rocker trims, and some mirrors usually end up very faded over time and many times painting them turns out pretty crappy because it's hard to find a good paint that looks like O.E plastic. The paint is either too shiny, or too flat to look like new trims.
New trims are hell expensive. I know this from experience in buying all new trims, mirrors, moldings, and rocker trims for my 1992 CX hatchback.
I recently purchased a nice O.E front lip for my fiancee's 1992 Civic Si hatchback. What better way to see how awfully faded the trims were than to have a nice, fresh front lip on the front to compare and contrast with?
Duplicolor Plastic Trim Paint. It's usually found in a green can as seen here:
I recommend NOT
washing the car, as evidenced by the dirty car pics. Why? Because if you wash the car you'll hate it when water runs out of cracks and ruins your still drying paint. So yeah it'll look stupid at first, but let it dry and then wash the car afterwards.
Also do NOT
buy their adhesion promotor. It sucks. Simply make sure you wipe down any surfaces to be painted with rubbing alcohol. Having said that...
Tools for doing this?
Duplicolor Plastic Trim Paint
Rubbing Alcohol for prepping
Tape of your choice
Lots of newspaper if you can't get painters tape with film
Hair dryer for heating up trims and drying paint
Jack and jackstands for holding the car up while taping/painting rocker trims
So first up was the side trims/moldings. This will only concern any 1992-1995 DX, Si, LX, or EX Civics.
Here's a before shot to show how faded the trims were:
So first the molding needs to be taped up really tight:
Grab some help if you're too lazy to do it all yourself
Then to ensure that there is no overspray on the car, you can tape up very wide around the targeted area. Here I used painters tape that uses low adhesive, blue tape with a nice film glued to the low-adhesive tape.
Here's a shot of the moldings painted with the tape still on:
Here's a shot of the trim after paint:
So after doing the side moldings, I went for the rocker trims. You could either take them off or do it my lazy way, by jacking up the car and keeping it on jackstands as you tape/spray them.
Here's a shot of the trims done and the old, faded-looking rocker trim:
Here's the side taped up:
So then I went for the rear bumper trim - most people don't even know about this since many bodyshops don't observe the O.E correct way to paint the rear bumper:
So after the trims were done, it was time to hit those faded-*** mirrors. This is probably the worst looking thing on the car because usually the base of the mirror doesn't even match the damn glass housing!
A picture of a faded mirror:
So in order to do these right, I figured out that removing the mirrors themselves wouldn't be too hard.
Tools for removing mirrors:
8mm wrench and/or socket
Phillips head screwdriver
Step one, remove this plastic piece - manula mirrors will have a similiar piece:
Step two, unplug the mirror motor - NOT NECESSARY FOR MANUAL MIRRORS
Step 3, with a phillips head screwdriver remove this screw and pull the door trim out to access the lower 8mm nuts for the mirror:
Step 4, remove the 8mm nuts that hold the mirror on:
Step 5 for power mirrors, use the screw driver to squeeze in the clips to remove the mirror. the clips can be seen in the picture above.
So once the mirrors are off, tape up the glass as seen here:
Last look of the faded-*** mirror off the car:
So here's the after shots:
On the car:
And here's a few overall shots of the car after it was all done and washed:
So what do I think of the finish?
I compared the painted mirrorsa next to my brand new ones on my 1992 CX and the look is nearly identical! Uncanny! Had my old ones on my CX not been so chewed up I would have kicked myself for not painting them.
The painted trims gives the whole car an overall newer look. The paint has held up through the sun and rain and numerous washes, so it is definately durable too if you dry it with a hair dryer.
Hope it goes well for you too!