Removing the Centre Console

There are quite a few jobs that necessitate the removal of the Centre Console, so I thought I would devote a page to it.

Click to enlarge It is held in place on the main facia by 6 clips which are quite easy to release, if tackled properly.

Click to enlarge If you have the standard Rover radio, you will need a pair of removal tools, obtainable from places like Halfords or your Rover dealer (Rover Part number SMD 4091). To release the clips without damaging or marking the plastic, get some wooden spatulas from your chemist - the sort used for throat examination.

Start by disconnecting the battery earth lead. Some times it seems a lot of extra hassle, but if you fail to do this and you have an electrical short, you could end up with an awful lot more hassle than you bargained for! Make sure that if your radio/CD player is security code protected, you know the code beforehand.

Then slowly insert the radio removal tools into the holes at each side of the radio. They only have to go in a short way and you will feel them click as the notches engage. Pulling on both tools, withdraw the radio and disconnect the multiplugs and aerial from the rear.

Click to enlarge Starting at the bottom edge of the centre console panel, release the clip by gently inserting the wooden spatula slightly off centre and levering upwards until the clip releases.

Click to enlarge Click to enlarge Then work up each side on the panel and finally the top, until all six clips are released. Dependant upon the work to follow, either gently move the panel to one side or, if required to remove it completely, undo all the electrical multiplugs, unscrew the gear knob, and lift the whole panel clear. On a standard instrument panel, all the multiplugs are designed so that they cannot be incorrectly connected.

Replacing the console is straightforward, since once all the multiplugs are reconnected, line up the clips and gently push the panel home until all clips engage.

Click to enlarge Refitting the radio can be awkward since the cables and aerial sometimes tend to bunch up at the rear of the radio support tray. If this is the case, tie a length of string on to cables and feed the string through the rear of the tray. You can do this by tying it to a thin piece of wood or metal, feeding it through the tray, and reaching around the left hand side in the foot well until you can get the end of the string. Then, as you insert the radio, gently pull on the end of the string, pulling the cables down through the back of the tray.

You can also access the wires that are behind the radio by removing the centre air vents - see Air Vents