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Stock 1995 - 2001 Explorers Questions related to non-modified 1995-2001 Explorer, Mountaineer, Ranger and '02+ Sports and Sport Trac. Problem solving, maintenance, TSB, service bulletins, owner reviews, specifications.

Driver Side Door Lock Problems!!

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Old 05-27-2008, 03:06 PM   #1
Rayz2000Sport
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Exclamation Driver Side Door Lock Problems!!

Recently my driver side door lock has been acting up. As in, it is extremely rare that it unlocks when it should. It would take multiple (sometimes to a ridiculous degree) tries, wether it was with the keyless or with the key itself. I took some athletic tape and anchored it to the "button" that pops up when the door unlocks in order to give myself some leverage.

Over the weekend, I took plenty of lubricant and sprayed it all around the latch. Once I locked and unlocked it a few times it seemed to improve the overall operation of the lock.

Today, I was re lubing the latch when I noticed a spring that was just kind of sitting there. So, after a few tries I got the spring out. Here are some pictures of it.......





It looks like the one end is broken, I do not know if it will show up to well in the pictures, the long end away from the spring body.

My question is, what is this spring and how do I fix the door? I have the door unlocked and I am leaving it that way until I find out about this part.

Do I need a new latch, or is there more to it than that? If I do need a new latch, where is a good place to get one/get one fast? Online source perhaps??

Any help will be very appreciated.




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Old 05-27-2008, 03:47 PM   #2
Rayz2000Sport
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I also just realized that if I drive the truck, it will automatically lock that door. So, I suppose I am not driving anywhere until I get this figured out.




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Old 05-28-2008, 12:43 PM   #3
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I had the same lock problem on my 97 Explorer. On mine a return spring inside the latch mechanism broke. Looked like I might have to put in a new latch. With the door panel off, I kept locking and unlockin the door key until it "jammed" again. By moving the control rod between the door handle and the latch mechanism I could make the key work every time. So I placed an old carb spring, much like the one in the picture, between the latch rod and the door handle spring. Works fine - two years now.
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Old 05-28-2008, 02:12 PM   #4
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I had the same problem too. I just used the same spring and bent a new hook on it.

http://www.explorerforum.com/forums/...d.php?t=189495

Mine is in there the way the factory had it, but some people hook the spring back in differently. They hook the end of the spring on something that's easier to get to outside of the latch.




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Old 05-28-2008, 05:21 PM   #5
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Thanks for the info guys. I really appreciate it. Anyone have a pic of what I need to do?? I am not really clear on where the spring was connected originally, reason being I found it once the good end was unhooked and the broken end was still in place.

Thanks




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Old 11-15-2008, 06:18 PM   #6
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Driver Side Door Lock Problem!!

Well, I am always sure to find answers to just about anything on the internet. Good thing I found this page. I also had the dreaded busted spring, on the driver side door, on my 2001 XLT Explorer. The spring was just like the pics Rayz2000Sport provided in his post. My spring had the long end hook broken off also. After reviewing all of your fixes and then tackling the side panel removal, (it's pretty simple just don't force it, easy motion back and forth with some leverage). I looked over the mechanism and saw what LIZARD had described in his post. I made a new hook at the long end of my original spring, (I did not make a real big hook, a small curve is all you will need). You need to remove the window glide, remove the one bolt and undo the two electrical connections to move it out of you way. I then took the good hook end and hooked it just above the yellow block on the lowest thread. Then using needle nose I clipped the new hook side to the big hole on the latch mechanism just below the little wire harness you remove when getting the window glide out of the way, (you will know what I mean when you get there). Tested it and the fix is good. For good measure I then took a little thin piece of Tuck Tape and wrapped it around the end hook just above the yellow block thingy to insure that it would not slip off that thread. I am quite sure this will last for a long time. Seriously this is the way to go. If you are unable to locate your spring then try to match the spring you see in the posts.
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Old 11-15-2008, 07:31 PM   #7
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hahaha, mine just started to act up and I was about to search this, no need to search now! I love this site




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Old 11-15-2008, 10:38 PM   #8
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my spring came out when i shut my door on my '98 Ex. but i never have any problems with the locking mechanism, it opens and shuts just fine.

i think the only difference i have now is the door actually shuts with a thud sound. like new cars do. before sometimes i had to shut it twice before it actually cloessed properly. so for now im just gonna leave it unless it starts giving me more problems
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Old 11-22-2008, 11:52 AM   #9
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i had the same problem with my '00. same spring broken. i couldn't find where it hooked to so i went to the dealer and got a new latch. it was only $51 surprisingly and they had it in stock.
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Old 01-07-2009, 10:27 AM   #10
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This just started with me a couple of months ago. I have found a work around, jiggle the handle, literally. If I lift up on the handle (numerous times) while using the keyless entry, it'll eventual come up. But now I can tell my handle's getting loose, so I guess it's time to really fix it. Does this sound like the same issue you guys had? I found no spring.
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Old 01-07-2009, 03:30 PM   #11
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sounds like the same problem i had. you have to take the latch itself out of the door. its kind of a pain in the a$$ but once its out, its not hard to put back in. as i said in my other post, i just got a new latch from the stealer and put it in. problem solved.
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Old 03-14-2009, 04:29 AM   #12
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door latch

i have the latch lock problem also. i replaced latch because spring was sticking out.when put back together it would not unlock rite. the ext. handle needs replacing and is pushing the open lever enough to interfer with un locking.
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Old 03-18-2009, 12:44 PM   #13
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hey can i get a picture of where this spring sits...and where it was found..because i can't figure it out...i have this same problem




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Old 03-18-2009, 03:16 PM   #14
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This link covers the door latch mechanism problem and the loose door handle problem, pics included.... http://www.explorerforum.com/forums/...ht=door+handle
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Old 03-30-2009, 01:46 AM   #15
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Old 06-05-2009, 11:59 AM   #16
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My passenger side actuator went out and now the power lock does not work. All you get is the whirring noise of something spinning inside the door. To make things worse the inside handle then broke. It will pull open but then stick in that position and not do anything.
The outside works, but you have to manually unlock the door from outside with the key.
Does anyone know if you fix the problems the same way? I need to be able to have the power lock work again AND have people open the door from the inside.

Thanks in advance
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Old 06-05-2009, 05:28 PM   #17
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All you need to do is replace the spring. I bought one of those boxes of 100 random springs for like $4, found one that was close to the stock size and installed it. Works perfect. You need to take the door cover off, but it's simple. Just go slow as not to break off any of the plastic clips.

Take the door panel off the passenger side door if you can't figure out where it goes. A flash light is helpful too.




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Old 06-09-2009, 08:09 AM   #18
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Similar problem myself....but to add to it - I've noticed the pop rivits on both front doors are 'broken'....and the keyless won't lock it (neither will driving it). And the keyless won't unlock the driver door either.

( I have similar issues with my 01 Windstar, so I assume its a Ford issue )

Anyhows, if someone can explain what's rivited to the door itself before I start taking things apart (so I have spare parts on hand) I'd appreciate it.....




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Old 06-09-2009, 08:31 AM   #19
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if the springs that return the door handle to the snugly held closed position are broken or weak they cant hold it tightly enough against the door, giving the effect that your trying to unlock a door while the handle is being lifted. both the springs on my handle were busted so i replaced them with one spring from ace hardware, looking back i wish i just got a new handle because the ace spring was twice the strenght and is a pain in the butt to make work.




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Old 08-01-2009, 08:54 PM   #20
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Yup. I had the same problem with door not locking/unlocking. Here's my 15 min fix:
1. Take door panel off by taking the 2 screws from behind the handle and prying the bottom of the door panel off.
2. Remove the left window guide by removing the single bolt in the lower left. Trust me, super easy.
3. Find a weak spring, I found a rubber band, to lift up the part the has a yellow latch and goes up to the handle (I think). You should lift it with your hand to verify that the door locks/unlocks electronically.
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