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Door AJAR Switch Replacement on 2002XLT


john cris

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2003 ford explorer XLT
Instead of replacing the switches just remove and clean/lube each of them. After to remove them a few times it's pretty easy. What I've found is the switches tend to stick and can be freed up. I did this on all door switches last year and have had no issues since. From now on I'll just pull each switch once every spring and lubricate them.
YMMV
 


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whitebread

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I've already pulled the switches, and all 3 are free, and test out fine... the wiring however, both sides ground out.... not to enthused about chasing the entire bundle of wires through the hinge/roof without a schematic of what wire goes where.... everything else works.... did I mention hat I loathe electrical work? :confused:

Darin
 




john cris

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Yeah chasing down electrical gremlins can be challenging. Chances are a ground fault at one location may affect all the others. Start with the drivers side door and work your way through other most used locations.
 




whitebread

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Yeah chasing down electrical gremlins can be challenging. Chances are a ground fault at one location may affect all the others. Start with the drivers side door and work your way through other most used locations.
problem is, that I'm getting continuity on both terminals on all 3 locations on the hatch... isn't one side supposed to be power? this is why I'm looking for a wiring diagram to be sure...took the switches out and tested across the terminals, and they are working like they should...all the other doors trigger the chime when you open them.
 




oldmanmechanic

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2003 Explorer XLT
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
 




oldmanmechanic

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I am replacing my drivers door ajar switch following advice from Borland. Doing OK, but do not get any of the pictures he says should be there. What am I doing wrong?? Thanks, oldmanmechanic
 




dpierri

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Just ordered my "Door Jamb Switch" for the front passenger (right) door - part number #1L2Z14018AB, SW3966 - from rock auto - part number 1S3681 - WVE/AIRTEX/WELLS. for about $15 with shipping and tax included. I've been spraying WD40 and PB Blaster onto the doors for about 7 years now. Got tired of the smell in my truck, so as soon as I get the switch I am replacing it. My neighbors are ready to run us out-of-town if that alarm goes off once again at 3 am. Good luck with your repairs.
 




TOM fONTAINE

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2002 Explorer
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
Thank you so much
 




wheredidigowrong

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2002 Ford Explorer XLT
I once again encountered the "ghost" in my 2002 which was activating the door ajar switch, dome light, causing both to activate when beeping the horn and having the radio turn off when turning off the truck as opposed to when opening the door. I went back into the A Pillar and found a 2nd broken wire (I repaired one less than a year ago). Things seemed perfect for a while until the ghost reappeared. I had replaced the drivers door ajar switch back in 2013 (my post on that experience is in this thread a few pages back) and figured there's no way a little spring activated switch could cause THIS many electrical issues so I ripped apart the drivers side door and went back into the A Pillar again. I thought one of my repairs had to have gone bad so I clipped my repairs and redid them both from scratch.

Much to my surprise this DIDN'T correct the situation. I took apart the front passenger door, removed the door lock assembly and played with the plunger switch on the door jamb switch and found it was making the electrical system go crazy. I realized this switch must have gone bad. I wanted the job done immediately and found an Auto Zone near me with a Dorman replacement switch available for $75 (why the passenger side is $75 and the drivers side $35 is beyond me). After replacing the switch everything is smooth and silent and I am a happy camper.

If you encounter this situation and have the time and patience I'd suggest using dpierri's part number above and order from Rock Auto as that part is MUCH cheaper than Auto Zone. Me, I was willing to eat the upcharge to get the job done "on the spot".

It still boggles my mind that a small, relatively insignificant part can cause so many significant electrical problems and suggest if you encounter the same issues you try and test the door switches as that very well could be your problem as well.
 




splib

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I have seen it mentioned several times but I have not read all 6 pages of this thread. does turning the dimmer switch all the way off alleviate any of the symptoms ? Would a simple battery disconnect switch prevent the alarm from going off randomly at 3 AM ? - thanks !!

Also, mine is a 19 yo truck that gets clouded in dust. The future for any of these types of parts looks grim. Instead of trying to fix or replace, what is the result if you simply remove the sensors ? They (4 of them at least) send signals to the ECM and the alarm goes batshiat. What about that signal ? If it is dead ??
 
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mountaineer2004

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I had the door ajar problem, and solved it by pig tailing the wires going to the door ajar sensor.

The black connector, not the gray one! All, except the driver's door, of course. Problem solved!
 




splib

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" 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. - You sure about that ?
B. Reset the alarm again, - by turning the ignition on/off ? 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. "

I need clarification on this before I rip and snip. All 4 doors and the rear glass portion of the lift gate give an door alarm warning, audible, when they are "cleared" - Ignition to off, wait 30 seconds, then re-engage to accessory position. This does not diagnose anything with which sensor, if any is at fault. It does not fit any scenario shown above. My alarm goes off BEEP with no instrument notification. The horn/lights have gone off 3 times in the last 2 weeks at precisely 9 PM. Any comments before I pigtail the door ajar wires ? - thanks
 




mountaineer2004

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You can pig tail the black connectors, but keep enough wire to reconnect it later if you choose.
I did doors, rear liftgate and rear glass. I didn't touch driver's door. It solved my problem.
Glad it did, too, because it could have been an electrical gremlin and those are tough to solve.
 




splib

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will a simple OBD2 scan provide any meaningful codes ? How about a full Ford dealer scan ? - thanks
 




fordysenior

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I ended up taking mine to the dealer and they were spot on with their analysis -- including telling me the new Napa switch I had purchased was defective. I never did learn how to use code readers very well. I had replaced the drivers door switch with the defective part, and the real problem culprit was the front passenger door. I tried silicone spray in all the doors and saw no improvement. I hate paying dealer prices, but I hate switching out non defective parts even more.
 




splib

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I ended up taking mine to the dealer and they were spot on with their analysis -- including telling me the new Napa switch I had purchased was defective. I never did learn how to use code readers very well. I had replaced the drivers door switch with the defective part, and the real problem culprit was the front passenger door. I tried silicone spray in all the doors and saw no improvement. I hate paying dealer prices, but I hate switching out non defective parts even more.
thank you Senior !! Afraid to ask but I gotta . .. . ???? How much ??
 




fordysenior

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It was right around $100.
 




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