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Thanks for posting the photos. If equipped with side curtain air bags then one of them is located in the space behind the headliner that is over the door. There will also be an air bag behind the A-pillar trim. Do not run any wires or place any insulation in front of the air bags.

I am fairly sure the expanded foam block is for occupant safety so would be wary of removing it.
 

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Discussion Starter · #4 · (Edited)
Yup block sure could be for safety -
but 6 inches in front of block is steel bracket that
sticks out 4 inches that holds the headliner in place

after seeing bracket placement now I kind of think foam
is to hide joint of headliner but who knows -

the metal seams in this area are Sharp -
and there are some Tiny wires that appear
to be coming out of the spot welds that
are Very Sharp so Be Careful in this area

Im going to mount curtain rod up high
in this area - so may cut a hole in foam block for rod
and reinstall foam - not sure yet -

also Removed passenger side foam block -metal sharp there too -
 

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I don't have airbags back there. I've removed mine a few times to run wire.

If someone wanted to pretty them up, a vacuum bag press and some fabric with spray adhesive would work. I saw a video where a guy put fabric on his vintage car dash with a big clear garbage bag and a shopvac! It turned out great.
 

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not that it much matters but the side airbag models appear to have a different metal window frame, it tapers down to what would be the glass on a no glass cargo van, i do not see the taper in that photo but it may just be comparing the medium roof to a high roof?
 

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In the 2015 model year the side airbags were optional. I have the foam blocks but do not have the air bags.

I have removed both but will modify the one above the passenger seat and reinstall it. The space for the removed block above the drivers seat will be used for my electrical control panel.
 

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I thought the foam was there to re-direct the air bag when it goes off? So, it is more downward than straight back if you have the foam there...
 

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I thought the foam was there to re-direct the air bag when it goes off? So, it is more downward than straight back if you have the foam there...
Ford has told me that this is their purpose and after removing them and seeing what they were claiming I would say it is plausible. However, I think they also clean up the transition of the headliner to the van body which is why I think that all vans have them.
 

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my 2 cents

I agree with sschefer

Airbags are installed so they deploy in the direction they are needed, they don't need to be guided.
The foam is a transition piece and to keep the airbag safe.
They could have used plastic, I'm guessing foam is cheaper.
 

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Somebody will make an attractive aftermarket replacement for the vans without airbags. I also think it's their cheap-a-s-s way of hiding the gap at the headliner. It might have cost a whole dollar per piece to cover them with the same material as headliner!
 
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