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DIY FIX: Early VIN B6 rear license plate light lens screw broke

Old 11-24-2016, 12:37 PM
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Default DIY FIX: Early VIN B6 rear license plate light lens screw broke

In the process of replacing one of my rear license plate lamps, the long thin screw that holds the lens in place snapped. It's obvious why this happened; dissimilar metals, corrosion and the long THIN screw itself. It's also obvious that the boffins at Audi were aware of this problem because the 2005 B6 comes with a revised plastic version of this light strip (more info below). I'm not sure what the 2004 came with so I can't comment on it.




I had an idea for a repair, but first, I had to remove the light strip from the trunk lid.

First remove the rear license plate and holder (necessary for the strip to come out
without messing around and scratching the paint).

Then remove a couple of screws/nuts and pulled some trim tabs on the trunk lid lining in order to gain access to the strip.




Once the lining is removed, undo the steel cable for the locking mechanism, remove the electrical connections to the lights and locking mechanism and remove the four nuts along with the funky looking retainers that hold the light strip in place. These retainers are different in shape so don't mix them up because you want to put it back together again.

Here is where you would need some care because the magnesium strip itself is fragile as I ultimately broke off the end piece and had to go and get a used one. And this is how I also know that the newer one is made of plastic instead of magnesium.

My plan was to drill out the screw hole cavity and just replace it with an everyday drywall plug to accept a new lens retaining screw. I did this to one side (notice the corrosion):




But the strip broke when I did the other side. So, I had no choice but to seek a replacement. (Note: If you get a replacement from a newer car, make sure you grab all the nuts and retainers from the donor car because they are a bit different.)




I cleaned off the remnants of the corrosion as much as I could and applied a small bead of automotive grade silicon around the perimeter of the strip before I re-installed it back on the car for good measure in keeping out the elements.

This is rather trivial but I hope this helps you from being pulled over for a non functioning license plate light.
Attached Thumbnails DIY FIX: Early VIN B6 rear license plate light lens screw broke-img_20161022_162511_zpsznnbyxk9.jpg   DIY FIX: Early VIN B6 rear license plate light lens screw broke-img_20161024_173414__zpsc8snd55z.jpg   DIY FIX: Early VIN B6 rear license plate light lens screw broke-img_ab_zps8hx0e37f.jpg   DIY FIX: Early VIN B6 rear license plate light lens screw broke-img_161234_ab_zpsvlbpnvvt.jpg  

Last edited by veedubb; 11-24-2016 at 01:02 PM.
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Old 12-13-2016, 10:20 PM
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Default Re: DIY FIX: Early VIN B6 rear license plate light lens screw bro

Nice DIY. Had this problem on my avant. Was a bit of a PITA getting at it.
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