How to Fix a Broken Center Console
The center console in your car or truck takes lots of abuse. They are usually filled with all sorts of junk and are always opened an closed for one reason or another. They may have a cup holder and a charging station for your phone or GPS. Center consoles are super useful! The only problem is that they are attached to your car with a small plastic hinge. No matter how engineered this hinge is, it is the weak point in the system, which all too often means that your console lid breaks off in your hand one day. The good news is they are reasonably easy to replace.
The Broken Center Console
In most center consoles, the weak points are two plastic attachment points that act as the anchor for the lid’s hinge. This gets a lot of abuse, so these points tend to fail. The car parts people know this, so your replacement console will have a new hinge assembly. Luckily, fixing your console is a lot easier than filling a dent, so there’s no excuse for living with that broken car or truck interior. Any 15-minute repair that will make such a big difference in your interior’s appearance is worth the time!
Removing the Broken Console Hinge
If your console lid is broken and loose, or if it came off completely, you’ll need to remove the old hinge assembly, it’s broken inside. It will be held in place with screws — in this case, they are modern Torx drive screws. Remove the screws and you will be able to carefully separate the hinge and remove it from the base of the console, which you aren’t replacing today. Be sure to put the screws in a safe place, such as a magnetic parts tray.
Separate the Console Lid From Its Trim Piece
Now that the lid of your center console is off, you can remove the broken lower half. This is the part that contains the hinge, and the part that has broken off from use. The replacement part consists only of the black plastic part that you’ll be removing so be sure to save the matching, upholstered armrest section that is normally on top of the console lid. They are easy to get apart. Just remove the (usually 4-6) Torx or Phillips Head screws from the underside and carefully pry the top from its base. They’ve been together for years so a little gentle prying with a flat screwdriver may be needed. Also, you’re going to be throwing the old black plastic underside (pictured) in the trash, so a couple of pry marks don’t matter. The top part (beige in the photo) will be reused so try not to hurt it.
Once you have them separated, take the new console underside with hinge and reattach it to the armrest top section using the same screws. Don’t over tighten them as the plastic can strip easily. If you press the two halves together firmly before you reinstall the screws, you should be able to get them in without using much force.
Reattach the Console at the Hinge
With your lid reassembled and ready to go, you need to attach the hinge to the console base. Separate the hinge slightly and slide it over the base piece. You can peek through the screw holes to see when everything is lined up. Now replace the screws you removed earlier, and test your newly functioning console lid. Done!