DIY: Fix seat belt anchor/buckle rattle

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inv4zn

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So my P's (2021 Calligraphy, Canada) had a rather minute but annoying rattle - originating from the belt bucket loop in the B-Pillar right behind your ear. Small movements while having the seatbelt on would cause a faint 'tick' as the buckle assembly moves. It was small, but annoying. Dealership "fixed it" when I brought it up, but it came back a few weeks after.

I had enough and fixed it on my own, here's a short guide if anyone else is facing the same issue. The rattle comes from the belt buckle assembly (the large plate) hitting the head of the bolt when it's moved.

Warning: You do anything and everything at your own risk. If you're not comfortable, don't do it or ask for further help. If you break a clip, that's not my fault. If your air-bags go off (they shouldn't, but just saying), that's not my fault.
Difficulty: 2/10
Parts cost: $0.50
Parts needed: Rubber washer, grease
Time: 10 minutes, max.

No pictures, sorry, but should be easy to follow.

1. Partially remove the door rubber mouldings on either side of the B-pillar. These just pull out, there's no adhesive
2. Take a trim-pry tool, and pop off the "SRS" tag at the top of the B-pillar. There's a notch on the bottom to help.
3. Remove bolt that's now exposed, it's 10mm.
4. Pop off (but don't remove) the bottom trim piece (should be plastic) of the B-pillar, enough to have access to the top trim piece (fabric/suede).
5. Carefully remove clips holding top piece to bottom piece. Now, you can't completely remove this piece because the belt runs through it, but you can shimmy it out of the way so you have full access to the shoulder bolt.
6. Remove bolt, it's 14mm. Carefully remove the red plastic washer, and the metal washer. You may need to "unscrew" the red washer, then remove the belt assembly.
7. Now you should have the 14mm bolt in your hand.
8. Take your rubber washer (any size will do, just not too thick. Mine was 1/16" or 2mm thick. I cut the outside and inner diameters to match), and put it on the bolt.
9. Apply a small amount of grease to the inner face of the rubber washer (the one that will sit against the belt buckle assembly. This is important, as I found out the hard way. Without the grease, there's just enough friction between the rubber and the belt assembly that it "squeaks".
10. Replace belt assembly, metal washer, red washer - in that order.
11. Replace the assembled bolt assembly. Don't over-tighten. You should screw it in enough so that there's still enough room for the buckle assembly to move/rotate, but not so much that it can slide up and down the bolt. Use your judgment. You can put thread-locker on here, there seemed to be some applied from factory. I didn't.
12. Replace bottom and trim pieces, make sure all clips are properly in.
13. TEST THE ASSEMBLY. There should still be free rotation, and the belt should move in/out easily. But now if you 'tap' the sides of the plate it shouldn't make noise anymore.
14. Replace 10mm bolt, rubber moulding.

Photo of rubber washer installed below.

20220114_161139.jpg
 
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