doors won't open with outside handles unless it's freezing outside | Ford Explorer Forums - Serious Explorations

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doors won't open with outside handles unless it's freezing outside


New Member
February 28, 2016
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Year, Model & Trim Level
2005 explorer sport trac
Hopefully someone will be able to tell me what's going on here, because I've already wasted about $300 at the dealership trying to get this fixed. The 2 front doors won't open with the outside handles, most of the time, except when it's really cold outside. I can reach through the window or back door, and open with the inside handle, but I don't want to leave my window down all the time, and it's a huge pain to have to go through the back door!
The lock doesn't seem to be the problem. The key, key fob, and keypad all work to unlock it, but when I pull the handle nothing happens.

I should also mention the truck has a short somewhere in case it might be causing this.

I went through a period of time when I disconnected the battery every time I shut the truck off, just to keep the battery from running down over night. My doors used to lock automatically until I learned to shut off that's why.... imagine the doors (all 4) locked. Battery disconnected. Then a do-gooder comes along and shuts the hood! Front doors won't unlatch. No way to unlock back doors to reach in and access front door handles. No way to get to hood latch.

My issue ended up being the actual door latch that clicks into the striker. Something broke inside and it wasn't releasing. $10 at my local junkyard and an hour to install it back at home and now everything works as it should.

I lived with reaching through the back door to open the front (inside handle would work, just not outside handle) for months until one day I broke the back handle too. Same day I got the latch, I also picked up a door handle as well. Painted the rear door with some rattle can I had laying around. Not the prettiest paint job, but hey I didn't have to pay anything for it.