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Hi Outbackers,hoping someone can help,my roof has rust spots around the roof rails,ive search here & internet & rail removal seems like a big job but as you see in pics ive attached its not a good look.
My question is, can i remove the rails by cutting them off & exposing the bolt heads then cut them off ,repair & paint?will the nuts & rest of cut off bolt drop into the cavity between roof liner & roof?
i hope im not opening a pandoras box but it looks like it needs to be investigated.
Cheers.
 

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I understand the attachment method varies with the model. In general there is at least one bolt, but most probably three per side.

The roof rails themselves are usually part number 91151* (where the asterix represents model specific code letters and numbers). Many of the online parts stores will have illustrations. So if you search for 91151 or 'roof rail' for your year and model, you are likely to find a picture that shows how many bolts and roughly where they are.

If you cut the bolt heads the nuts will fall into the roof liner cavity.

A better method would be similar to this thread: Installing JDM roof rails on 2015 Outback where you lower the roof liner to access the nuts. Again there will be minor differences between models.
 
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