Review & Install Video
Hey, guys. Adam here with americanmuscle.com. And today, we're taking a closer look at and installing the MMD ABS Rear Window Louvers, available for the 2015 and newer Fastback Mustang. Now, for the owner of an S550 Fastback, you might be in the market for an exterior styling piece that makes a huge difference on your appearance. This part from MMD is a textured matte black, ABS plastic, rear window louver that adds that retro styling, the retro muscle car styling to an otherwise very modern Mustang design.It's using all of the best quality materials, a textured black, impact-resistant, crack-resistant, UV-resistant, matte black finish, with a textured grain, which uses a really angular aggressive stealthy design when compared to some of the options in the category. Now, in my opinion, I really like the ABS finish, I've had this exact same louver on my old SN95 or at least something very close to it from MMD. I'm a big fan of it, but of course there's aluminum options out there, there's smoother options that aren't as angular, it's all personal preference, but at the end of the day it's a very impactful, bold styling piece for the rear end, something that you can even see on your side profile.A couple of other things I'd like to note about this particular MMD option which I think makes it stand out a little bit more from the rest is, underneath of each one of these louvers is a nice weatherstrip padding right at the edge here where it contacts the windshield. That's gonna help prevent any rattling at highway speeds which is some of the complaints in some of the other options in the category when it comes to louvers. Sometimes these guys at highway speeds will have a rattle, but this includes that padding to make sure it's got a soft touch and you're not gonna hear anything from inside the cabin.In addition to that, this one, even though it is a textured matte black finish, you can paint it right out of the box, you want to take it to a local paint shop of your choice. In our case, we have a 2018 Eco, which is orange fury. We can get this paint matched to this color if we'd like. Personally, I like the matte black finish, but that really comes down to personal preference, the option is there for you to choose if you'd like.Now, this one comes in right around 400 bucks which is gonna be a pretty expected price tag for rear window louvers. It doesn't stray too far from some of the other options out there, given that it's MMD modern muscle design, designed by none other than Chip Foose himself. It definitely has a reputation behind it and I'm a big fan of MMD parts, same thing goes for this guy here.Now, the install for this is gonna get a very simple one out of three wrenches on our difficulty meter. Literally anybody can tackle it in the driveway at home, in about 30 minutes to an hour from start to finish. I'm gonna walk you through every step of the process but keep in mind it is recommended to also have a helping hand on deck. So if you have a friend that can help you get this installed properly, it goes a long way to make sure it's lined up on both sides as you install it.Also, one thing to note before we jump into things is, once you do install this with the 3M brackets to the windshield and you tighten them down with the nuts, it's recommended to remove the louvers and let the adhesive on the brackets installed on your windshield cure for up to 24 hours before permanently putting on your louvers, something to keep in mind. One thing I really do like about this, again, before we jump into things here is they are removable. So anytime you install it and it comes time to wash your rear windshield, you can unscrew these nuts, pull off the one-piece louver, clean your windshield and pop them right back on without having to break out any serious hand tools which makes life a whole lot easier and make sure your Mustang can get cleaned in every aspect.Now, again, I'm gonna show you every step of the process. What do you say I shut up and we get to it? Tools used in this install include a ratchet and an 8-millimeter socket, deeper short, clean microfiber and a bottle of soap and water is also recommended. All right, so just to kick things off here, of course, what we're gonna do is take the 3M applied brackets and we're going to install them on the backside of our louvers. The way you want to do this is all of the brackets included have a lock nut and a washer, you want to take the lock nut off as well as the washer. And you're basically going to apply this to the open pre-drilled hole on the louver, with the 3M on the backside.You want to take the washer and put it through the stud on the other side or on the, you know, the outside and then tighten it down using the nut. Now, we're only going to get them finger-tight for now, you don't want to tighten them down too much with a socket or anything like that because once we apply it and install it onto the windshield, we're just gonna take the louvers right back off to do a silicone sealant and to let it cure before permanent installation.So once you have that, you're gonna repeat this for each one of the brackets, there's two on each side, three on the top, two on the bottom. So let's do this exact same process for all of them. Now, when you install them, you want to make sure you're installing them the appropriate way. So this would be the appropriate way, the 3M on the inside. If you flip it around the other way, it'll be sticking out over the edge and it will be really ugly in appearance once you install it on the windshield. So just make sure they're facing the appropriate way, you don't want anything overlapping the edges. Just want to make sure that the spacer, the washer is on the other side as well on the nut side and then just keep it moving.All right, now that we have every one of our brackets applied, what we're gonna do now is go to the backside of the 3M, peel off the backing on each one of the brackets. And each one of the brackets does have two strips of 3M, so you're doubling down on each one of the brackets, peel those guys off. If you want to apply adhesion promoter, you can do so now. I would suggest doing that if you want a more permanent solution to installing these brackets. Of course, you will be able to remove them anytime, you'll probably need a heat gun to get them off though if you're using adhesion promoter, but if you want that added peace of mind, it's included in the kit, apply them to the backside of the tape. It's a little sponge you can just wipe that over with and then you'll be good to move on.Now, for the purposes of this video, afterwards, we're gonna be uninstalling them, so I'm not using adhesion promoter on our fleet vehicle in the shop today, but again, if you want that added peace of mind, it's a very simple step, use that sponge and apply it to the tape. If you need to, you can use a knife or a blade to just squeeze under there because it can pretty tight, so we've got a little blade here. I'm just working up the edges and peeling off the backing.Next step, guys, we're gonna toss this stuff aside, we're gonna head over to our vehicle behind me. You want to use the two alcohol wipes included in the kit to wipe down the windshield to free it of all dirt and dust. Now, this is a very important part you do not want to skip. Some of the horror stories you hear over the years is people having their louvers fly off and that's mainly attributed to skipping the step or neglecting the step of cleaning the windshield. If you don't clean it properly, you'll have dirt and dust prohibiting a good bond between that and your 3M tape, which can cause them to come off after a while, especially at highway speeds.Clean off the windshield using the alcohol wipes here, we're gonna focus on the edging all around the windshield, top, bottom and the two sides. You also want to focus on right below your third brake light because as you can see, there will be 3M in there as well, so we'll do that with our alcohol wipes. Now, you can use a soap and water mixture as well if you want to, the alcohol included in the kit will definitely do the trick. Just avoid using chemicals like Windex and other cleaners because they do have added chemicals that can prohibit the bond as well. You really want to stick to these.Once we have that taken care of, we'll be able to use a helping hand of a friend to get this aligned and apply it into place. And from there, I'll teach you guys what you've got to do next. So for now, we're gonna toss this aside, let's get in the windshield. Now, I don't know if you can see this on camera but our windshield is extremely dirty, it's got a lot of pollen all over it too. So I'm actually gonna use soap and water first with a microfiber, clean the entire windshield, and then I'll go back to the edges where the 3M is with the alcohol wipe just to double down.Now we can take the alcohol wipe and focus on the edging here where the 3M will apply. You want to focus on about a 4-inch gap from your paint out into the windshield. We're just gonna go back and forth, making sure that that's really clean. You also want to focus on right under that third brake light like I said. All right, so I'm gonna do about half the windshield with this one. We do have another one in the kit, so you want to make sure you're swapping out to the other one.Next step, we're gonna install the louvers and I got my buddy Joe here to help me out. You definitely need a helping hand, don't try to do this by yourself. You want to make sure it's aligned properly on both sides. You really have one good shot at it because the 3M already has the backing removed. So what we're gonna do is line this guy up, making sure you're keeping the third brake light in mind. Go from the top, up into that corner, bring her down. It's looking good on my end.All right, from there you can put pressure all around, firm even pressure on each one of the brackets and let it sit for a minute to cure and then we're gonna take it back off. All right, so the next step is actually to remove the louvers. So in order to do that, we're just gonna unscrew those little nuts on the outside and lift straight off. Our brackets will stay applied to the windshield and that's exactly what we want. If any of them come off, you want to make sure you're reapplying that and maybe use the adhesion promoter to make sure it's sticking properly.But what we're gonna need to do is remove this, we're gonna use our silicone sealant and then allow it to cure for up to 24 hours without the weight of the louvers applied to the brackets. That makes sure that it gets the good bond, the louvers aren't dragging them down while it's still in the curing process, we want it to get the best bond possible. Once it's done that, we'll be able to reapply the louvers, tighten them down, grab a socket or a wrench, and make sure they're nice and tight and not going anywhere. But for now, remove the nuts on each one of the brackets and set the louvers aside. You also don't want to forget about the washers as well.From here, let's gently lift up on the louvers to detach them from the bracket. Should get them off of those studs there. Go over to the other side, if you can't get it off there, just pop them off of those studs. Here we go, let's set this guy aside. Next step, once you have your louvers uninstalled, it's recommended to use the silicone sealant included in the kit. In your kit, you'll find this little tube here. All you'll need to do is take the cap off, put this cone top on, and you're basically going to apply this around the edges of the brackets that are sitting on your windshield. This will really give it a weatherproof, waterproof seal around the 3M and to make sure nothing can undercut that 3M and loosen it up over time.Now, this isn't required but it is heavily recommended if you really think you're gonna be using your louvers in the longterm. This makes sure that these last the lifetime you want them to without coming off beforehand. So what you're really gonna do is make sure that you have this on. You'll poke a hole in the cap here or cut the tip of the cap and follow around the edges here on each one of the brackets. Hit all four corners and if you need to, you can push it in by hand to flatten it and really tighten it down.Now, again, because we are just going to be removing these from our 2018 here, I'm not actually gonna be applying this myself, but I did want to give you that step, all you gotta do is go around the edges and repeat for each one of the brackets. Let them cure after you're done for up to 24 hours and then we can put our louvers back into place.All right, we've let it cure for 24 hours and we're gonna put our louvers into place now. So what you're gonna do is, you really only need one person for this job. We're just gonna lift it over, find those studs and insert them into those holes. All right, seated on all of them, just want to double check, and up there on the third brake light. Perfect. Let's grab our washers and our nuts and tighten them back down. I'm gonna finger tighten all of them and then come back with a socket.Final step and it's an easy one. Grab an 8-millimeter socket, deep or short, quarter-inch ratchet does the trick as well and just tighten these guys down. Now, you don't want to overtighten them. Keep in mind, you are installing this to an ABS. If you tighten them too much, they can start to put too much pressure on the plastic, so just get them nice and snug and then maybe a quarter turn after that and it should be good. All right, with that last one wrapped up, you can put your socket away, you're good to go.Well, guys, that's gonna wrap up my review and install for the MMD ABS Rear Window Louvers, available for the '15 and newer Fastbacks. A lot of good things I like about this part as we expect from MMD. If you want to get this one for yourself, you can do so exclusively right here at americanmuscle.com.