How To Repair Your Car's Headliner

Updated October, 2020
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Repairing your vehicle's headliner can be done temporarily or as a permanent fix. When temporarily fixed, you reattach the face fabric to the foam board using glue, pins, or tape. When you want a permanent fix, it's best to let a professional handle the repairs.

What is a headliner?

The headliner in your car is the fabric that is attached to the inside roof of your vehicle. It usually has multiple layers traditionally made of foam and cloth or synthetic material. Each layer has a unique purpose. Some are purely cosmetic, while some protect your head from impacts on the roof if your car flips.

What causes a car headliner to sag?

Headliners that sag are not an uncommon sight. As your car gets older, the materials that hold it in place can wear down. Here are some common reasons for the sagging:

  • Loss of adhesive power
  • Moisture and heat causing shrinkage
  • Broken nails or fasteners

DIY repair methods without removing your headliner

If your headline impedes your view while you drive, you need a quick fix that allows you to make it to the shop. While these methods aren't permanent solutions, they enable you to get to your destination safely.

Method 1: Using double-sided tape

Use this method if you have access inside the headliner, like if your headliner tears or becomes unattached around the edges.

  1. Make sure both materials will adhere to the tape.
  1. Apply the tape to the roof of your car first.
  1. Apply pressure on to the tape with the fabric.
  1. Watch for the tape beginning to fail in the future.

Method 2: Gluing it back on

Using glue to reattach the headliner is best when used around the edges.

  1. Remove the headlining panel out of the car.
  1. Clean away the excess glue.
  1. Use a hot glue gun or preferably a specialized headliner adhesive.
  1. Replace the headlining panel when the glue is dried.

Method 3: Pin it

Using this method, you stick a pin through the top fabric back into the foam backboard. This is the most common and most well known temporary fix.

  1. Make sure your vehicle's foam backboard is still viable.
  1. Push the pin through the face fabric and into the backboard.

How much does it cost to replace the headliner instead?

Replacing your headliner is the safest option when it comes to headliner repair. Depending on your vehicle's make and model, the pricing for the repair can vary. The typical 4 door sedan price is around $100. If you have an SUV, your price shoots up to about $250. A luxury vehicle repair costs more than your standard vehicle's repairs.

Does insurance cover interior damage?

While insurance doesn't cover your everyday use damage or wear and tear if the damage occurred due to an accident or weather, it may be covered. If you have comprehensive insurance, any damage caused by weather, such as a tree falling or hail damage, can be covered. If your headliner falls off due to a collision, your collision coverage can cover the bill. Making sure you have the proper coverage is key to saving you time and money.

When the time comes, can I rely on my insurance?

When it comes to car insurance, there are several factors to consider beyond monthly cost. A policy that covers you when you need it, has a low deductible, and offers several discounts can be hard to find - which is why we've done the work for you.

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Our team will help you find the lowest insurance prices.