How I Replaced the Rusted Floor Pans in My 1962 Chevrolet Chevy II Nova

I bought my 1962 Chevy II Nova in 1988 from a friend I was serving with in the National Guard. The car was rather sound. There were really no problems and I was able to drive it home, in fact, I did no work to the car for a number of years. I would drive it to work a couple of times a week and again take it out weekends. I was really happy with the car. Three years ago, I decided to repaint it. I know I could have taken it to a body shop, but I wanted to do it myself. I wanted this to be a project my son and I could work on together. I began stripping the car down and this is the beginning of my story.

I figure I will be learning a lot during the process of restoring my Nova back to its original beauty, so I thought I would document the processes I will go through and post them online with plenty of pictures with the intent of maybe helping someone else with their project. So lets’ get started!

I have removed everything that I can remove from the body of the car. I did mount an ignition switch on the firewall so I could start the car and move it around but when the actual painting process begins I will be removing the motor and transmission. I started with the floor pans. There was a descent amount of rust in the front and just a little in the rear. The transmission hump and driveshaft tunnel were fine.

I wanted to buy the entire floor pan and replace it all but it was more expensive than I wanted and I wasn’t sure if I could handle a job quite that big. I wasn’t sure if I had the capability to cut out the entire floor and replace it without possibly twisting or contorting the car (it is a convertible). I decided to buy the left and right floor pan. This covered from the front all the way to the back. After receiving the floor pans, I spent a lot of time thinking and rethinking and strategizing about the best way to go about cutting out the old and welding in the new. Since the entire floor pan was not rusted out, I decided to cut out just the rusted part and cut out what I needed from the new replacement floor pans and weld that into place. I am very happy with this decision. By cutting out just the rusted pieces and replacing with new metal, I was able to avoid any twisting or contorting of the car and probably saved me a lot of time.

I was able to cut out the rusted areas in a couple of hours. I used pneumatic shears that worked very well. Before buying the shears, I tried several other methods such as a pneumatic saw, tin snips and aviation cutters. Trust me when I say that a cheap pair of pneumatic shears will be a lifesaver. I did use the aviation cutters for fine cutting and making small adjustment cuts.

Next I separated the front and back of my new floor pans by cutting them in half. I cut out the front part of the floor pan about 2 inches bigger than what I needed. I then placed this into the front for a test fit. When I had the replacement pan in place, I made it conform to the existing floor pan with a rubber mallet. I then used a can of white spray paint and sprayed around the perimeter of the new pan. By painting around the perimeter, I was able to see where the new pan fit after removing it from the car. I repeated this procedure for the other front side and then both rear areas. This took me about a day to complete.

The next part required welding, please be sure to observe all safety practices when welding to avoid any life altering injuries!

I was now ready to weld the replacement sheet metal into place. This is where my brother was a BIG help! He has a MIG welder. We inserted the new pans and while I held them in place, my brother spot welded each one. After each pan was tacked into place, we stepped back and studied their positions and made sure everything was exactly the way I wanted. My brother then completed the welding process until all four replacement pieces was securely welded into place. I don’t know a lot about welding, but I believe my brother had to spend additional time and take extra precautions since the sheet metal is rather thin. After the replacement floor pan pieces were securely in place, I proceeded to cover the seams with Bondo filler and then I painted the entire floor pan with a rust preventive primer. My brother and I were able to complete the welding on Saturday morning and I took the rest of the afternoon to finish the Bondo. I put several coats of paint on the floor pan over the next several days.

From the pictures on my website, you can tell that it might not be a perfectly smooth floor pan with no flaws, but I can assure you that it is a solid installation that will last many years, even longer if garaged, and will look even better once it is covered with a sound dampening material and new carpet. This worked well for my 1962 Chevy II Nova and I am sure it will work for you and your special project.

Can My Car Floor Mats Cause Me to Crash?

With the recent recalls, there has been a lot of discussion regarding floor mats. These inconspicuous accessories to every automobile on the planet have rarely been the focus of intense discussion. Indeed, most of the time the only way a floor mat is mentioned is if it is dirty or particularly funny/interesting.

But, since the slew of accidents and even fatalities, the spotlight has been rightfully shined on these potential hazards.

How is a floor mat dangerous?

The danger of floor mats don’t come from anything mechanical, but more in their ability to stay in place. If a mat were to slide forward when a driver is actively engaged in using the accelerator and brake pedals, it could cause an unwanted increase or decrease in speed.

Some instances of floor mat disruption involve the brakes. If a mat bunches up underneath a brake it could hamper the drivers ability to depress the pedal. When braking, a person only has a small window to react properly and this kind of distraction has been known to delay reaction long enough to cause accidents.

The other major way mats can be dangerous is causing a sticking effect of the accelerator. Sometimes the mat gets flipped on top of the pedal, other times its gripping nature causes the pedal to stay depressed. In both scenarios the driver does not get the reduction in acceleration when they release the pedal, which can cause distraction and problems when trying to brake in time.

What kind of floor mats are dangerous?

The most dangerous floor mats are after market models that do not properly fit the mold of your vehicle. It is the driver’s responsibility when purchasing an after market mat to make sure it fits, and ideally, works well with any hooks or stabilizing elements your car features.

Also dangerous are mats that are explicitly recalled from companies. These are mats that do not work well with safety measures put in place, or simply do not have enough safety measures to begin with.

Are there any solutions to mat problems?

If you are worried about mat safety, the first and best thing you can do is simply remove the mat. Your car floor may get dirty, but it is much better than suffering a crash.

Continue to err on the side of safety until you can find a model that secures tightly to your vehicle, and ideally has retaining hooks to keep it in place.

The Benefits of Putting Floor Liners To Your Vehicle

Wondering how you can keep the dirt and grime off of your vehicle’s flooring? Putting on floor liners is a great investment to help keep off any substance that will damage the interior floor carpet. This is also a nice addition for your vehicle to keep it in tip-top condition, which helps in retaining its resale value.

You’ll see different floor liner types and brands in the market such as Weathertech, Husky liners, and more. Before you buy one, you have to know the difference between each type and how it would fit onto your vehicle.

Floor coverage

You probably stumbled upon the terms universal and direct fit. Get to know the difference between these terms to see how it will fit onto your vehicle’s interior flooring.

Floor liners designed to precisely fit onto specific vehicles are called direct fit or custom fit. It is not the same as stock floor mats that came with your vehicle.

Custom fit floor mats provides a great coverage on the foot wells since it is created to surround edge-to-edge and fit securely onto the floor. It’s not a one-size fits all because it is designed with grooves and raised edges around the perimeters to trap liquid, dirt and other substances that can ruin your vehicle’s floor carpet.

Depending on the brand and style, it may come in either single or a 2-piece design. Other floor liners for trucks are constructed with one-piece setup that will fit the shifter booth.

How it’s made

Floor liners are made using high quality materials like heavy-duty rubber, pliable vinyl or thermoplastic. There are two types such as all-weather floor mats or the regular ones which is mostly seen on universal mats. Both floor mats are easy to install and easy to clean by just wiping or by giving a quick rinse to remove spillage or sticky substances.

The regular carpet floor mats comes in various designs and colors that will not only keep the floor from any damaging substances, but also add flair on the interior. It is softer and flexible compared to all-weather mats. Some brands have designed their mats with channels, ridges, and deep pockets. However, if you want an extreme protection to the vehicle’s interior flooring, an all-weather floor liner is what you need.

Mud, snow, dirt, and other substances which can damage your floor is no match to all-weather mats. It is designed using high-quality and rigid materials to ensure its durability. It is designed with grooves and raised edges to contain dirt, liquid and other matter that can ruin the vehicle’s floor board. It also has a nibbed backing to keep it in place no matter if passengers or pets may move around. It decreases the chance of floor friction on your vehicle’s interior carpet. It is thicker and heavier compared to the regular floor mats to further shield the flooring against harmful elements.

Benefits of floor liners

Installing floor liners to your interior is a good investment to retain the resale value of your vehicle. Get to know more benefits you can get from this automotive part:

  • Shields the floorboards against any substances that may harm the appearance and value of your vehicle
  • Prevents sticky liquids such as soda, coffee, and other snacks from spilling onto the vehicle’s carpet floor and lead to permanent damage to it
  • Trap dust, dirt, road salt, grime, and other particles
  • Keep off water, snow, mud and other things that got stuck on your shoe before it gets around into your vehicle’s carpet flooring
  • Prevents foot friction that cause rips and premature wear on the carpet
  • Can withstand different weather conditions and gives a year-round protection for the flooring

Car Floor Mats Materials – Which Material Do I Need For My Vehicle?

Automotive Floor Mats are the first line of defense for your car, truck or SUV’s precious factory flooring. That presents floor mats with the tough task of being able to withstand varying levels of abuse on a regular basis whilst providing an additional level of comfort and complimenting the vehicles interior aesthetic.

Vehicle manufacturers have attempted to solve the unique problems floor mats face by creating a multitude of material types, each aimed at providing adequate protection for a vehicle’s intended use.

Aftermarket carpet and floor mat manufacturers offer products using materials and colors designed to match the OEMs whilst offering improvements upon the originals.

What Original Materials Are Available?

Cutpile

– Cut Pile is composed of 100% Nylon yarn.

– Tufted to a 1/8 gauge cut pile, it contains 14 ounces of yarn per square yard.

– Cut Pile has been an original material in most domestic vehicles since around 1974.

– Cut Pile material can have Mass backing. Mass backing is an approximately 45mil thick EVA material. It’s a great sound and heat barrier and increases the overall appearance of the carpet after installation.

– Cut Pile material width is 78 inches.

Loop

– Loop material is composed of 100% 6,6 Nylon yarn called Raylon

– Tufted to a 1/8 gauge, Loop contains 20 ounces of yarn per square yard.

– Loop material was originally used in vehicles that were manufactured before 1974.

– Loop material can have Mass backing. Loop material width is 78 inches.

Nylon

– Nylon is composed of 100% Nylon yarn.

– Tufted to a 1/8 gauge, Nylon contains 12 ounces of yarn per square yard.

– Nylon material was originally used in the late 1960 model Fords.

– Nylon material is available with our optional Mass backing.

– Nylon material width is 78 inches.

Truvette

– Truvette is composed of 100% Nylon yarn.

– Tufted to a 5/64 gauge, Truvette contains 14 ounces of yarn per square yard.

– Truvette material was introduced in the early 1990s for Corvettes.

– Truvette material can have Mass backing. Mass backing is an approximately 45mil thick EVA material.

– Truvette material width is 78 inches.

Daytona

– Daytona weave carpet is composed of Cotton, Nylon, and Rayon yarn.

– Daytona contains 27.5 ounces of yarn per square yard and is a loop style carpet.

– Daytona weave carpet was introduced around 1954 for GM vehicles.

– Foam backing only, Daytona cannot be molded or Mass backed. It is hand cut and sewn with the utmost quality control.

– Daytona material width is 54 inches

Tuxedo

– Tuxedo is composed of Nylon and Olefin filament yarns.

– Tufted to a 1/8 gauge, Tuxedo contains 23 ounces of yarn per square yard.

– Tuxedo material can have Mass backing.

– Tuxedo material width is 52 inches.

Gros Point

– Gros Point material is composed of 100% Nylon yarn.

– Gros Point contains 31.5 ounces of yarn per square yard and is a fine loop style carpet.

– Gros Point was developed for the early model classic muscle and full size passenger cars build in the 1950s and 1960s.

– Foam backing only, Gros Point cannot be molded or Mass backed. It is hand cut and sewn with the utmost quality control.

– Gros Point material width is 54 inches

What Are The Aftermarket Options?

Essex

– Available as an optional upgrade for the majority of our ACC Floor Mats

– Essex is composed of 100% Nylon yarn.

– Tufted to a 1/10 gauge cut pile, Essex contains 22.5 ounces of yarn per square yard giving it a luxurious and plush look and feel.

– Essex has been available as an aftermarket material choice since the late 2000’s. It is a premium, modern version of the Cut Pile material. It can be specified for almost any model vehicle.

– Essex material can have Mass Backing. Mass backing is an approximately 45mil thick EVA material. It’s a great sound and heat barrier and increases the overall look of the carpet after installation.

– Essex material width is 78 inches.