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Driver Door Lock and Door Handle Springs

Discussion in 'Stock 1995 - 2001 Explorers' started by fixt, May 20, 2017.

^^Searches ExplorerForum.com^^





  1. fixt

    fixt Active Member

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    Woe is me.
    My driver door lock spring broke inside the lock. OK so no problem, I'll replace the lock.
    I get the lock, get the old one out finally. It's much more an exercise in spatial relations than the the driver side rear door. Dang linkage snitty gitters running everywhere. I get the old one out and the old door lock actuator is busted as well. Now I have to go back into the thing to install the door lock actutator when it gets here, probably Wed or Thur.
    I have developed an abiding dislike for explorer door locks.
    Woe is me.

    Does anybody have drawings for those stupid linkages?
     
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  3. fixt

    fixt Active Member

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    OK I got the thing back together and everything works as it should. Linkages are lubed and used spray silicon in the window guides while I was in it along with spray lithium grease on the window regulator linkages. So its back together until the new door lock motor gets here.
    Keep in mind if you do this to study the linkage carefully and in particular the order in which things go back.
    You will have to remove the door latch side window guide rail first just to get it out of the way.
    Be careful with all the little plastic linkages... if they break you are screwed because I have never seen those things for sale anywhere.
    Also you'll have to reinstall linkage on the door latch before you put it back in. Then when you do reinstall it, you'll be working the lock in three dimensions to get the linkage back in the right places.
    Its all in all right regular pain in the arse, and don't be upset if you have take it back out a time or two to get it back right.
    I could not get a picture in there, its just to tight. Good luck to you if you have to do this.
     
  4. swshawaii

    swshawaii Elite Explorer

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    Door latches, actuators, and handles are EXTREMELY common failures with these vehicles. I replaced two front latches and three actuators in a two year period. It "may" be possible to replace your faulty actuator without drilling the rivet or much disassembly if it has a removable latch rod. IIRC, some were permanently attached to the actuators.
    Door Lock Actuator Motors Identical | Ford Explorer and Ford Ranger Forums - Serious Explorations

    Here's a source for OEM quality small parts at a fraction of dealer pricing.
    http://www.clipsandfasteners.com/Ford_Clips_And_Fasteners_s/63.htm

    Door Lock Rod Clip | Door Lock Rod Clip Assortment | 75473 | Dorman Products
     
  5. fixt

    fixt Active Member

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    I feel for you doing it that frequently. Its one of those things you don't want to do so often you get good at it. I've done the driver side rear where it failed closed and I had to remove the seat and panel from inside and then just screw with it until I got it open so I could replace it.

    It does have a removable latch rod. I'm not so sure about the new one.
    The little metal clip for the actuator mounting does not need to be drilled out. You have enough room to reach in and spread it slightly with your fingers and the actuator comes out from between two mounting bosses that mount into the clip itself. The actuator mounting itself is easy. Its just the getting to it and I'm not sure if I'll have to remove all that stuff to hang the actuating linkage together. I know the window guide rail will have to come out again... its in the way of everything but its not so much a big deal as handling and trying to fit linkages in three dimensions. All while both cursing and praying to the gods of mechanics and holding your mouth just right.

    EDIT: Thanks very much for that link. I dug through that and found the door lock rod end clips, Something I had never seen for sale before. I have always been very careful when removing them.
    I bookmarked that site.
     
    Last edited: May 22, 2017
  6. fixt

    fixt Active Member

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    OK, I got the driver. door lock motor replaced without incident. Everything works as it should.

    I found two springs with the tang broken off on the door latch handle itself. It would appear that you have drill the door handle rivets out to replace them. This makes the door handle feel very weak and with little return power.
    The manual calls for a heavy duty rivet but I don't see why a steel pop rivet with backer plate won't work.
    Anybody done this?
    Where did you get the springs?
     
    Last edited: May 27, 2017
  7. toypaseo

    toypaseo Flunked daycare Elite Explorer

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  8. J_C

    J_C Well-Known Member

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    Some people have used 1/4" button head screws and locknuts for the handle. The springs on it, I've never seen a source so I bought a 4 pack of handles on eBay.

    The springs (at least on my '98 handle version) can't be swaped easily, would require drilling out rivets on both handle hinges they're on, then putting a new rivet or bolt on both sides. IMO, easier to just put the whole new handle on.
     
  9. swshawaii

    swshawaii Elite Explorer

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  10. toypaseo

    toypaseo Flunked daycare Elite Explorer

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    After trying to bend some hardware store springs, without success, and finally using some OEM springs I harvested out of the junkyard, with success, IMO it is easier to just replace the whole unit. Since my 96 has a "hard for me to find in the junkyard" green exterior color, I pulled three of the correct color when I ran across them.

    Here's a tip to make drilling of the rivets easier: take a bungee cord, one end at the top of the door, the other end holding the door handle up. It sucks trying to hold to handle up while drilling, and since mine are the painted metal ones, it reduced the chances of paint damage.
     
  11. fixt

    fixt Active Member

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    OK, I read through all the threads linked and now I see how those stupid springs work. I looked at some of the door handles on Ebay also that had good views of them.
    Thanks for those links.
    I'll inquire at local Ford about painted ones, Deep Jewel Green, but I'm betting I will not like their price at all. I don't see getting used door handles with used springs. Next option will be primed and then paint/clearcoat myself. I'm not not gonna get 4 chromed locks just to make all 4 doors match. I'll have to see what NAPA has for duplicolor paints; they usually have a good selection to choose from.
    I have a heavy duty rivet tool with interchangeable heads, no problem there. A wide selection of rivets and backer plates though I'll double check those before I start. So I have a plan now.
    Thanks everyone for the help. I still hate those freakin door guts though.
     
  12. J_C

    J_C Well-Known Member

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    That's the one thing I like about my '98 plastic handles, that the underlying plastic is semi-gloss black and that matches close enough to my trim so they're not painted. Why can't ALL plastic have molded in color ?????????????????? !!

    Yes I know it's not shiny enough to mesmerize monkeys in their market surveys... but I'd be all for brushed, anodized aluminum wherever it can be used.
     
  13. toypaseo

    toypaseo Flunked daycare Elite Explorer

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    Duplicolor does not list my 96 green online. There is a NAPA 30 miles from me that does offer custom aerosol spray cans, but I am not sure on what colors are available, and how custom of a color you can get. Another option is online sources, such as https://www.paintscratch.com for example, but they are quite pricey. So, when I ran across the correct color in the junkyard, I pulled some. Only $6 each.
     

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