Hi tlarson38. Welcome to the forum. First look for any trim caps covering screw heads. They are plastic and will have a tiny notch for inserting a pick to pry the cap out. There will be two on the handle and usually one in each lower corner. Sorry, but I don't remember ever removing a trim panel on a '96 or newer van. My memory is of the many '95 and older vans that I performed the famous liftgate latch recall on. If the newer models are similar, also look at the speaker grilles to see if they can be pried out on the bottom. If they are separate pieces, they will be snapped in with four spring-loaded clips. There is likely to be a panel screw under each grille. If the grille is just a series of slots in the trim panel, obviously my memory is fading. Don't try to pry out what isn't there.
Once all the screws are removed, the panel will be held on with plastic snap clips. There is a special forked tool, similar to a small pry bar made for prying out those clips, but if you're just a little careful, you'll be able to pop them out by starting in one corner with a flat screwdriver as the pry bar, then just tug on the panel as you work you way around it. Don't panic if some of the clips break. You'll never notice if a few are missing, and you can buy replacements from auto parts stores and body shops, and you can find them in the salvage yards. It's more important to pry right next to each clip so the slot they're slid into doesn't break on the panel. That will prevent the clip from staying attached to it.
To reinstall those clips, start the point in its hole, then give the panel a quick smack with the side of your fist. Lightly pressing on the panel will just irritate the clips. They need a good wrap to explain you intentions.
Tuesday, June 22nd, 2010 AT 3:12 AM