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Discussion Starter #1
This is maybe my worst wrenching mistake.

I did some work on the door latch in fits and starts over several weeks. Long story short I buttoned up the door card without confirming the interior and exterior handles actually open the door.

You can see where this is going — neither latch works and the door is closed.

I need to get to the door latch mechanism to open the door and am looking for ideas that don’t require destroying the door card.

Any ideas that may take the knot out of my stomach?
 

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Take a breath. We've all been there. I'm sure someone will come up with something to try.

But, I'll start with the first question: Is the window up or down??
 

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Do you know if either of the handles are connected to the latch? You might be able to snake something into the door skin and tug on the cable or handle rods attached to the latch.

There's also a fairly good chance you can remove the retaining screws/nuts from the door card lower edge from inside the vehicle. It would be easier if you remove the seat closest to that door though, which might prove difficult. But once it's out, there's a small gap between the sill cover and the door card that a very small right-angled driver could fit. The door pull can be unbolted from the inside, so the only thing you might potentially have to tweak or ruin is the vent cover area, and its 2 fir tree fasteners.

Even if you can only get the lower trailing edge of the door card separated enough to get your arm in the access hole you might be able to feel around and open the latch. Of course the security cover is there to sort of prevent that, so it might take some time.
 

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Discussion Starter #5
Thanks Agent.

Neither seems to be attached. Your idea seems workable. I may need to remove the other seat / tunnel too. Do you know if the leather door will can be removed without opening the door?
 

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Discussion Starter #7
Funny, I was cleaning out a garage in a house we sold and tossed a slim Jim. My thoughts was “I haven’t used this in 30 years — what are the odds I will use it again?”

The last thing I did was install the security shield. I don’t think it will be practical to catch the cable but I might get the rod from the inside.
 

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Neither seems to be attached. Your idea seems workable. I may need to remove the other seat / tunnel too. Do you know if the leather door will can be removed without opening the door?
I'd give the slimjim a try first, as CO posted above. The arrows he added are the areas I had in my mind as well as things to tug on. If the battery isn't flat, you might have a better shot with the window rolled down.

Also, the door card can't be removed with the door closed; the front leading edge near the speaker and A/C vent are too close to the adjoining dash pieces.
 

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I was also thinking along the line of a slim Jim. Maybe one of those Pop a Lock guys might be a good last resort?
 

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I don't know what year car you have, but on the older cars with the door sill button:

"Normal operation of the locking functions is performed electronically via the transmitter fob (see Section MR), but if necessary, the doors can be locked mechanically. The LH door can be locked by using the key in the exterior lock barrel. Both doors can also be locked individually by lifting the exterior release handle (with door open), pressing down the door sill button, and keeping the handle lifted, shutting the door. This action will also disable the interior release handle. Once locked in this way, the RH door can be unlocked only by using the transmitter fob or by raising the door sill button after opening the LH door via the mechanical key."

Any chance this is what happened and door is just locked?
 

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Discussion Starter #11
Chrome - it is a 2010 so, yes this is something I need to investigate. I tried lock/unlock with the key but will revisit.
 

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Discussion Starter #12
Eurika!

Thanks for the help and words of support. :grin2:

I was able to us an 1/8" diameter piece of music wire with a 90 degree bend on the end (1/2") to snag an area behind where the cable attaches. I think something has bound up because pulling on the cable attachment proper didn't work.

Definately not my worst wrenching mistake. Knowing door latches have been out of stock for a year raised real questions about the practicality of getting a new door card.
 

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That didn't take long.

San
 

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Discussion Starter #15
No, it wasn't that hard. It is mostly back together (only with the door handle bolts) and is working as expected. The odd thing is that everything seems to be where it should be -- there was nothing to fix. The first time I re-fitted the door it something was causing both the handles to not work. Now they do. It seems something was binding.

I do have to order more plastic screws for the bottom of the card. I had to cut two of them because they were stripped.
 
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