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The corner of my cover started cracking where my wifes elbow sits while driving. I ordered a new part assuming it would be an easy swap. Turns out it's connected behind the Rear HVAC controls and to take that piece off requires removal of the center console. After I finally figured out how to get to what I needed. I snapped some pics to hopefully help anyone else that has to do this.

First off, this is why I replaced it...



And this is the piece I needed to remove to get to the 4 screws holding the armrest/cover on...


And as you can see from the back, it is not only held on by 4 clips, but also 3 screws. The middle one you can get to with the cup holder out, but the two side ones are impossible...


This shows the screw on one side. It is only accessible once the console is removed and seperated...


Here is a picture of the lower storage compartment (where the center seat stows) and the actual console behind it...


There are a total of 16 screws holding these two pieces together. 5 on each side, 4 in the bottom of the upper console storage and 2 in the back behind the lower console door...


^^ I took the opportunity to clean the sides of this before I put it back together...



And finally...



Here is a pic of the empty space without the console...



4 bolts hold it down and 2 screws secure it to the shifter console...



And...



Finally the lower dash and cup holder pieces can snap in. These just pop off but the dash piece (HVAC controls) has to come off first.



As you can tell, I took all my pics as I was putting it back together since I wasn't quite sure what I was doing as it came apart. I hope this can be helpful to someone as I was unable to find anything on this before I started.

I have more pics so if anyone has a specific question, let me know.
 

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Console cracking

My wifes 08 is doing the same thing. Where the elbow would rest, it has begun to crack. I can't believe that this is happening to such a young car. I have looked to see if I can by an upgraded part, but ran across your post. Great info. I even considered having the console arm rest, upholstered to match the seats, hoping this would last longer and still look and function like it oughta. Sounds like this will be at least a couple of hours worth of repair. I hate to put the same quality lid back and have it do this 2 yrs down the road. Thanks for the info and the photos.
 

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Armrest cracked now repaired

I couldn't figure why Toyota would make the removal so difficult. I went by an upholstery place today. The guy came out. Told me that the material Japan used was very thin. He said, I can recover it with a thicker, better material, and it will look like it did new.........$69.00. I couldn't say fix it fast enough. He went back in the store. Came out with a little battery operated screwdriver and within 3 minutes, he removed it and told me it would be ready by the end of the day. It looks awesome. Patrick, I think you were looking at it way too hard. :clap:
 

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Console cover

Buy a new console cover. Call you dealership, give them you vin number and buy the console cover assembly. I bought mine a lakeland toyota. The get into you back seat. Take off the rear temperature plate by using a utility knife, and sliding into top of plate. The unit will come out. Snap open the piece the piece that holds the console cover in. You will see a plate in the back the has four screws. Unscrew the unit and remove console cover. Might take a little moving around. Then take new console cover, put back into place. Keep the lid up, and then screw console cover back into space using bracket and four screws. Toyota dealership wanted $300 for fix, I bought console cover online for $135 and did fix myself. Very easy fix once you take off temperature control plate and snap open clips. Then you can remove cover, and put back in. Literally a 10 minute job.
 

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Can't get rear temperature plate off

Hi, I have the same problem with my '08 Highlander Hybrid. I bought the replacement armrest cover and am trying to install it. I followed the pics above but I haven't been able to get the rear temperature plate off after hours of trying. I can get the top two clips out but the bottom two and the screws (wherever they are) I can't loosen. I'm on the verge of damaging the plastic around the temperature plate. Any more detailed pictures or steps here that I can follow? Thanks so much for the help, can't believe there are no other postings on this or online manuals....
 

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Discussion Starter #9
Hi, I have the same problem with my '08 Highlander Hybrid. I bought the replacement armrest cover and am trying to install it. I followed the pics above but I haven't been able to get the rear temperature plate off after hours of trying. I can get the top two clips out but the bottom two and the screws (wherever they are) I can't loosen. I'm on the verge of damaging the plastic around the temperature plate. Any more detailed pictures or steps here that I can follow? Thanks so much for the help, can't believe there are no other postings on this or online manuals....
I don't have my Highlander anymore to take any more pics. But have you taken the center console completely out and taken the two larger pieces apart? There are 2 screws that are only accessible once the thing is completely apart. Without those screws coming out, that temp control will not come off without breaking.
 

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Some time ago another member investigated a repair on his armrest. Looked like too much work and took it to some shop. May have been an auto upholstery shop. The tech came out and had the top off right away. The member was surprised how easy it was. I hope he chimes in.
 

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Patrick, I was hoping to avoid taking the whole thing apart like you did but it sounds like I have to to get at the two screws you mentioned. Unless someone else replies otherwise, I'll try that when I get another chunk of time. Your original post said: "There are a total of 16 screws holding these two pieces together. 5 on each side, 4 in the bottom of the upper console storage and 2 in the back behind the lower console door..." I know where the 5 on each side are and the 4 on the bottom of the upper console, but I don't know where the last 2 are. Can you provide a bit more detail on them? Also, it looks like you had to separate the console from the shifter console too, right? Thanks, Ted:thanks:
 

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Discussion Starter #12 (Edited)
Patrick, I was hoping to avoid taking the whole thing apart like you did but it sounds like I have to to get at the two screws you mentioned. Unless someone else replies otherwise, I'll try that when I get another chunk of time. Your original post said: "There are a total of 16 screws holding these two pieces together. 5 on each side, 4 in the bottom of the upper console storage and 2 in the back behind the lower console door..." I know where the 5 on each side are and the 4 on the bottom of the upper console, but I don't know where the last 2 are. Can you provide a bit more detail on them? Also, it looks like you had to separate the console from the shifter console too, right? Thanks, Ted:thanks:
I think it's the 7th pic down that shows those last two screws. It should make sense once you have the console out. You basically have to take out the compartment that holds the middle back seat.

Yes, the area of the console where the shifter is stays in place. The first thing you need to do after the HVAC dash piece comes off is to pop the top piece off where the shifter is. It seems a picture might be missing from above but I'm not sure what it showed. It's been a while.
 

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Buy a new console cover. Call you dealership, give them you vin number and buy the console cover assembly. I bought mine a lakeland toyota. The get into you back seat. Take off the rear temperature plate by using a utility knife, and sliding into top of plate. The unit will come out. Snap open the piece the piece that holds the console cover in. You will see a plate in the back the has four screws. Unscrew the unit and remove console cover. Might take a little moving around. Then take new console cover, put back into place. Keep the lid up, and then screw console cover back into space using bracket and four screws. Toyota dealership wanted $300 for fix, I bought console cover online for $135 and did fix myself. Very easy fix once you take off temperature control plate and snap open clips. Then you can remove cover, and put back in. Literally a 10 minute job.
The original post here with all the photos looks very involved and difficult. Your explanation looks really easy. Can you give a little more detail about how to snap open the piece that holds the console cover in?
 

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Well, for what it's worth, there is an easier way to get the console cover off. This was mentioned above in the post by medetz. Here's some pics of the procedure.

Start by removing the rear AC controls.







Once the control panel is off, you can remove the 4 screws holding the console cover on place.





Then you have to pull the faceplate out slightly from the top. Be careful with this part. I have a feeling that if you pull too far, the piece will crack due to the screws that hold it in place on the bottom. It was a tight squeeze getting the console cover out.



Once you have enough room, you can wiggle the metal piece that has the springs and mounting bracket attached. Once again, tight squeeze. Once out, here's the final product. I plan on taking this to an upholstery place in the next day or so to get an estimate for repair. Otherwise I guess I'll just order the replacement from Toyota.



Finally, if you need to remove the cupholder, here's an image of where the spring like clips are holding the cupholder in place. I had to use a screwdriver to try to get it to release. I took this out in case I dropped a screw (which I did). It was also easier to get the faceplate pulled out far enough with this piece out.



Here's hoping the install goes as smoothly as the removal when the time comes.
 

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Cracked Center Armrest Easy Repair

Like many 2nd generation Highlanders my wife's SUV developed a cracked center armrest. After searching the threads I noticed 2 repairs that others have tried. Unfortunately our 2008 does not have rear AC controls so popping that panel off to gain access was not an option. To remove the arm rest I opened the armrest and removed the 4 screws on all 4 corners. I then removed the 2 latch screws and inserted a flat screwdriver between the plastic inner cover and armrest edge and the cover popped off. With the inner cover off there are 4 philips head screws holding the armrest to the hinge. I took the armrest (black) to the local fabric store (JoAnn's) I'm sure most chain stores have the same materials. I purchased 1 yard of black vinyl that matched my original material and went home to start the repair. After removing the staples from around the edge the factory vinyl comes right off. It was obvious how thin the factory material is. Toyota could have done better and should have known that material was crap. At any rate my hand stapler was unable to penetrate the plastic underside so I used #6-1/4 inch pan head screws it took 20 to attach the new vinyl which is thicker and softer. It took 1.5 hours start to finish but that was mostly because of my OCD nature ensuring the material was tight and looked original. New lid from Toyota was 150.00, my DIY total cost was 20 dollars..... could have been less but I bought 1 yard of material. Probably could have gotten by with only 20 inches and saved more. Very gratifying to fix this and my wife is happy.

Happy New Year!



P.S. tried to attach pictures but upload keeps failing
 

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Send me a private message about your picture upload issue and we'll see if we can get it working. :thumbsup:

Also, sweeney or me will figure out which past armrest thread your repair belongs to best and merge your thread with that. Thanks!
 

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Help!

My boyfriend and I have a 2007 Tundra and the center console lid has been completely demolished. The dealer wants almost $600 for a replacement lid. Is there somewhere else I can order JUST THE LID and install it ourselves without having to pay a ridiculous price? It looks easy enough to install but there is no way we are going to pay $600 for a new one...
 

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My boyfriend and I have a 2007 Tundra and the center console lid has been completely demolished. The dealer wants almost $600 for a replacement lid. Is there somewhere else I can order JUST THE LID and install it ourselves without having to pay a ridiculous price? It looks easy enough to install but there is no way we are going to pay $600 for a new one...
Check with/ message Gary (Toyotapartsman - http://www.toyotanation.com/forum/219261-toyopartsman.html), he's a site vendor and should be able to give you a quote on a new lid.

And :welcome: to TN! Let me know if you can't figure out how to get in touch w/ him.
 
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