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How to fix Bose deck rattle and improve sound quality

After using the search function on Maxima.org at length to get a feel for all the ways people have fixed their Bose deck rattle, I decided to completely remove the rear seats, C-pillars, and rear deck from the car and put my ears to work. The


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rattle problem is NOT the carpeted rear deck rattling on the metal shelf. I found the rattles were there 100% with the deck removed from the car. The source? Two spots: General resonance from the metal around the sub and significant rattles from 2 of my 3 seatbelt units. I removed the seatbelts from the car completely and found this to be true. I reinstalled them and found that if jammed my finger in between the seatbelt kit and the plastic molding around them the rattle disappeared. Obviously removing the seatbelts isn't an option for a permanent fix, so I ran out to Circuit City and bought a door kit of Tsunami Silencer (12 sq. ft.). This is a generic sound deadener that's supposed to be comparable to Dynamat Extreme. Came to around 60 bucks.


I added the sound deadener inside the plastic seatbelt cases and wedged small squares on the side of the cases to tighten the units. I also removed the metal sheet the sub mounts to and added Silencer to it as well. Before reinstalling everything, it was time to crank it up. The results? The rattles were gone! However, the sub sounded really weak. Then it hit me, no shocker, the seats are out. The Bose sub is designed to operate as a "free air" baffle setup, so without the seats installed the sub can't perform properly. I threw everything back together, and WOW. What a difference. No more muddy bass! The sub sounds significantly clearer and stronger and is much tighter than before. Now it's still no "boomer" (I miss my 2 Orion 10's...), but this was an impressive improvement. I've gotta think this is what Bose had in mind. I know many have claimed installing foam mattress pads on their rear deck has fixed their rattle. However, I think this is just "masking" the rattle since the foam covers up the sound of the rattling seat belts and metal around the sub. In my opinion, using Dynamat in the manner below is worth the extra $$ because it not only removes the rattles, this fix actually produces cleaner and stronger bass. I spent $60, but I had quite a bit left over. I used it to do my plate and still have enough left to do my front speakers later.

Steps to remove the rear deck in order:
1. Remove bottom seat cushion (pull two white tabs under seat)
2. Fold back seat down and remove the 2 bolts on the back of each seat at the bottom
3. Remove black plastic trim around trunk pass through
4. Remove 2 side seat pieces by removing bolt at bottom and lifting up
5. Unbolt seat belts
6. Unhook plastic snaps below rear deck that hold the deck cover on
7. Remove rear deck by lifting up and pulling

Rear deck completely stripped:

To remove the plastic Philips head pop tabs, unscrew the head with a screwdriver, but try not to push it in. It will work itself out far enough that you can pull it out with your fingers:

Sub mounting tray before Silencer was applied:


Sub mounting tray with Silencer. As you can see, I highly recommend getting your girlfriend's assistance. Be sure to use gloves. The material has very sharp edges:

Rear deck with Silencer sans sub tray:

Here is the seatbelt unit with small pieces of sound deadener to make the fit tightly into the plastic housing to eliminate the seatbelt rattle. I applied around 3-4 pieces on each side until it was very difficult to slide into the plastic housing:

I also added Silencer inside the plastic seatbelt housing itself:

The seatbelt unit installed in the plastic housing with sound deadener:

The completed rear deck. I didn't add deader all the way back to assure the deck could still slide into the blue plastic clips:


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