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Door AJAR Switch Replacement on 2002XLT

Discussion in 'Stock 2002 - 2005 Explorers' started by borland, July 12, 2009.

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    1. borland

      borland New Member

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      I’ve had the false “DOOR AJAR” warning lamp on my instrument cluster for some time. This is on my 2002 XLT.

      This problem is intermittent, but seems to be reoccurring more often now than before. Often enough that I've been leaving the courtesy dimmer switch in the off position for about a year.

      From searching the prior posts, apparently it can be either a bad switch or a broken ground wire at the door. Since mine is intermittent, the switch is the likely problem.

      If you think your switch is bad, wait until you have the warning lamp and then immediately do the following troubleshooting to isolate the specific door causing the warning, using the alarm and wireless remote entry to set the alarm:

      A. With all the windows in the down position, activated the alarm and waited about 30 seconds. Then open one door only from the inside door handle. If the alarm goes off that means that door switch tests OK.
      B. Reset the alarm again, trying this on each door. Unfortunately, you can’t do this test on the rear liftgate and rear glass. At least not on my truck.
      C. If no doors sounded the alarm, you probably have a problem not related to the switches on the doors or door's ground wires.

      On my car, the driver’s door switch tests to be the problem area.

      If you think your problem is the ground, checked the wires in the rubber sleeve between the door frame pilar and the door. If any damage is found it should be repaired.

      The door ajar switch is attached to the bottom of the latch mechanism. The latch assembly is held to the door by 3 screws and two rods. The screws you could access from the outside of the latch. The rods are hold in place by two yellow plastic clips.

      This assembly has two electric plugs one for the lock actuator (the biggest of the two) and another for the ajar switch.

      There are several post claiming spraying wd40 through the outside door handle fixes this problem. The switch appears to be sealed so not likely that the spray could get inside the switch. If the warning lamp is intermittent, the spray repair may just be coincidental and actually have no affect. So I suggest replacing the switch.

      Here’s how I removed the door panel and the AJAR switch.
      1. Remove the plastic cover around the door handle. There are two forward clips, so use a putty knife as shown to pry from the front and then pull out.


      2. Lift up the door switch panel from the front and remove. Disconnect the electrical plugs.



      3. Remove three screws holding the door panel in place. One screw at the top, two along the bottom.


      4. Lift the panel enough to reach the electrical connector to the outside mirror switch. It helps to insert a small flat blade screwdriver between the switch and the plug so as to relieve the detent holding the plug locked in place.

      5. Slowly pull back the window liner from the bottom corner enough to permit working inside the door as shown in the photo. Use one of the window wiring plugs to grip the corner to hold it back as shown.

      6. Disconnect two latch rods (one vertical, one horizontal) by disconnecting the ‘yellow’ clips. Here's a photo showing the AJAR switch way in the back using an inspection mirror. Annotated is (1) AJAR switch, and (2) the AJAR wiring harness and connectors.


      Here's the latch mechanism pulled out enough to allow removing the AJAR switch. I've annotated with the (1) marker pointing to the switch.

      7. The AJAR switch can be removed by rotating it 90 degrees toward rear of the latch.

      8. Reinstall in reverse order.

      After removing the switch, I found I was sent the wrong part. The part they sent is very similar but has a rectangular electrical connector, while the one I need is square. So I have reassembled everything and will wait for the correct part.

      Hope this helps anyone with this common problem.

      borland
      2002 XLT
       
      Last edited by a moderator: February 8, 2015
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    3. thepotroast

      thepotroast Well-Known Member

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      That is a great write up.

      On a side note, before going through a complete replacement of the switch, you can spray WD40 into the door latch opening on each door, as these become stuck sometimes....and this can alleviate the issue.

      This worked for me, after going for more than a year of the "door ajar" light coming on occasionally...mainly after a car wash, high humidity, or rain....making me unable to lock/arm the vehicle from the door keypad and keeping the dome lights on. Worth a try....it worked for me :thumbsup:
       
    4. EasyRhino

      EasyRhino Well-Known Member

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      I am currently surviving on the WD-40 (actually spray brake parts cleaner) trick; however, I expect to have to replace them someday, so thanks.
       
    5. thepotroast

      thepotroast Well-Known Member

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      Try WD40 instead of the brake cleaner...different solvents....brake cleaner evaporates, doesn't lube.
       
    6. Mussin

      Mussin Member

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      excellent write up.. Does anyone know the correct part number for the door ajar switch? Can you pick this up at autozone or advance auto parts or is it a dealer item?

      THANKS

      Jeremy
       
    7. thepotroast

      thepotroast Well-Known Member

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      I believe it's called a "door jamb switch" and they are about $15 online at http://www.directfordparts.com Select your 02 Mountaineer and then type "door" in the search box, first 2 parts that pop up....one for the right side, one for the left side.
       
    8. borland

      borland New Member

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      Following up to my post….

      With the correct part from Ford I was able to complete the switch replacement.

      On the 2002 XLT, the AJAR switches come in left or right doors, so order accordingly. I replaced the switch on my driver door (left):

      p/n 4L2Z-13713-AA


      I think the switch has been redesigned, because I used a depth gage and measured both switches and the newer switch is slightly longer by 0.16mm. Also the new switch has less spring tension on the plunger.


      I placed a liberal amount of white grease on the tip of the switch and dabbed some inside where it fits into the latch assembly before reassembly.

      Also I forgot to mention that prior to removing the three screws holding the latch assembly to the door, I marked their position with masking tape for alignment reasons. So later, on reassembly, it was easy to tighten them in the same position as they came out.
       
      Last edited by a moderator: February 8, 2015
    9. Critter92X

      Critter92X Active Member

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      Thanks for the write-up.I am getting ready to tackle this same thing.I had been getting by on the wd-40 trick for about 2 years.Every 2-3 months I would spray it and the problem would go away but about a month ago the wd-40 would no longer do the trick.It will be nice to see my message center again,instead of the "door ajar" warning.
       
    10. quickblue02

      quickblue02 New Member

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      Thanks!

      Folks, thanks for the help. Got the door adjar alarm reset with some WD40. Thanks for the tips. If I need to replace the switch in the future, I will use you instructions. :cool:
       
    11. 1992explorer

      1992explorer New Member

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      WD40 has stopped working for me. I want to punch a hole through my door beacuse the door ajar light goes on and off and is accompanied by the "BEEP!!!" It's enough to drive you crazy. I will be getting on this ASAP. Thanks for the write up!
       
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    12. edwx

      edwx Active Member

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      Great write up. Way to go!
       
    13. RickM

      RickM Active Member

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      Great write up.

      I ordered a switch off Ebay a while ago for my driver side front door, and, as mentioned in a related thread, the switch was of the wrong configuration (sold on Ebay as MOTORCRAFT #SW5528 / FORD #XF1A-14018-AA). The electrical connector is rectangular as opposed to square and the nib on the nipple of the switch is in a different position.

      I will now purchase the proper 4L2Z-13713-AA as stated above by Borland.

      FWIW, the original switch in my Explorer is FORD OE part # 1L2T-10B997-AA
       
      Last edited: November 2, 2009
    14. RickM

      RickM Active Member

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      Update on the Door Ajar switch for my '02 XLT;

      According to Mike @ Direct Ford the 4L2Z-13713-AA is for an '04 Explorer and not my '02. The correct P/N appears to be 1L2Z-13713-AA for vehicles produced up to 12/2/02.

      Moral of the story here is to have the vendor of choice use your VIN to select the proper component.
       
    15. jlbanderasb

      jlbanderasb New Member

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      WD-40 worked properly for me on driver's side. Keep in mind using WD-40 is a band-aid, the latch assembly needs to be inspected and cleaned out as well.....Good Luck!!!
       
    16. RGK

      RGK New Member

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      !
       
      Last edited: March 28, 2010
    17. RGK

      RGK New Member

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      Thanks for a great writeup, the best I have found to solve this problem. A question; is this switch magnetic or plunger activated and is it part of what looks like a button surrounded by a black plastic retainer that comes thru the door jamb below the latch? I ask because my driver door has a hole there and I think the switch has come loose, The passenger side has the button/retainer. I'll try to get a picture and edit this post with it.

      Until I figure this out I have removed the relay located over the driver side rear wheel well. This keeps just the lights and chimes off.

      Thanks

      Update;

      The 1997 version is a bit different than what is described in this post. The part at Rock Auto is part # DS850, which fits front/rear, left/right sides, a picture can be found at this link,

      http://www.rockauto.com/catalog/moreinfo.php?pk=319619

      It is located on the top of the latch assembly and attached with a single screw. The latch assembly does not have to be removed. Remove the screw, give a half twist to the switch and then disconnect from the harness which contains one lead. Very easy, just place a paper towel or rag at the bottom of the inner door in case of droppage. The part is also available at Silverstate, but no picture or part # is availbale, however the price is about half of Rock Auto.

      What I described in my original post is the attachment point for the power lock mechinism. Apparently mine broke off. It is a rivet so I am going to try and tap what's left and use a small machine screw and washer to re-attach it.
       
      Last edited: April 2, 2010
    18. tpritch

      tpritch New Member

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      Great post...but I have a question

      Great post. Excellent detail and super timely for me.

      We've been able to go step by step through your instructions, but got hung up on disconnecting the latch rods. Is there a trick to this. Frankly I don't want to push/pull to hard for fear of breaking something and turning a "small" problem into a larger one.

      Any input is greatly appreciated.

      Tim
       
    19. edwx

      edwx Active Member

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    20. rlgdguy

      rlgdguy Member

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      I just went to order my parts at direct ford parts and the right side "Door jamb switch" is $33.31, where the left side (drivers) switch is $15.16. A difference of $18.15. What in the world could be the explanation of the higher price? Price and demand perhaps? I'm going to order it, but it seems a bit unfair. When I called to inquire, the guy who answered the phone ( who was very friendly and polite) said he's been in the business for 20 plus years at that same place and could not give me an absolute answer, other than the right and left sides are made by different manufactuers. One charges Ford more for their parts and one charges less. Oddly enough, these prices were still cheaper than two of my local Ford dealers. How do you figure?
       
      Last edited: August 6, 2010
    21. rlgdguy

      rlgdguy Member

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      Got my parts today (ordered Friday), outstanding service! Put the part in and the "door ajar" light went out. Again, outstanding! Now I have to tackle the door lock actuater issue. I got a call from the Silver State Ford dealer before they shipped the parts out Friday (again, superb customer service!), who told me that unfortunately, Ford changed out the manufactuer of the actuater halfway through 2002. The problem is the 2nd company they utilized, used a different plug. If I have the different one, it's gonna cost me another $38 just for the adapter. He couldn't tell if my car was part of the switch over by the vin, as Ford did not keep good records he claimed. I'll keep you all posted.
       
    22. RoboRob

      RoboRob New Member

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      I just finished the successful repair of the driver's door door ajar swith. Thanks for posting all the photos. They were quite helpful.


      FWI the horizontal yellow clip comes undone by pushing down on the part that surrounds the rod.

      It's not real clear how to undo the clip on the vertical rod - took me a while fiddling with it. It seemed there was a little part of it that moved up.

      There is a third rod that works the door lock. That got on the wrong side of the window channel during my repair. I loosed the window channel screw and fiddled with it all after finally disconnnecting the vertical rod yellow clip.

      The door latch screws are 27 torx head metric 6-1 screws BTW.

      Amazingly it all went back together and fixed the problem. Thanks all.
       
    23. damienlike

      damienlike New Member

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      02 Door Ajar issue

      To everybody that posted for this issue, I say thank you. It was really helpful in replacing the sensor. I have WD40'd the crap out of every door, back glass, and liftgate. I have replaced the driver side sensor since it seemed to be giving me the fits. Here is what I have now. With the key in the ignition and all the doors closed, there is no warning (ding ding) happening. When you open the door you the warning sound starts and when you close it, it stops. The door ajar light is still on, and I am at my wits end with this. Does anybody have any suggestions? What is the GEM? and would that have anything to do with it? One last thing, I stopped by local parts store so that they could put the code reader to it, thinking that it would tell me which door was in error, but they came up with nothing. Any insight into this torment would be greatly appreciated.
       
    24. LoKo498

      LoKo498 Member

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    25. edwx

      edwx Active Member

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      You can swap the actuator units w/door ajar sensors attached, from front to back, but not left to right. That's what I did. I swapped the rear to the front and then put the new one in the rear. The actual door ajar sensors themselves, that snap into the actuator housings, I don't about. They might be one size fits all. It might be the same part on all four doors, but like I said, I'm not sure. You'd have to remove a left and right and compare them, or check the part numbers.
       
    26. RoboRob

      RoboRob New Member

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      I believe as mentioned somewhere else on this site you have to go to Ford and give them your VIN number as the parts change slightly depending on when the car was made.
       

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