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Old 08-23-2012, 08:56 PM   #1
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Door panels cracking at the front area by door window

This topic has been discussed in the past, but from what I recall no fix or cause of failure was noted.
This is the crack that is at the front top of the door panel. It starts from the window area horizontally and works it's way down vertically causing a 1 to 3 inch crack. I pulled my panels off and had some of the interior repair men that sublet these type of repairs for the jeep dealers look at the cracks. They all told me that there is no permanent fix so don't waste your money.
My neighbors Brother is a failure analysis engineer for the Jeep Division and has worked for them for many years on the TJ models. My neighbor called him in the evening and I was able to discuss the crack issue and we talked about the cause of the failure. The reason that only some of us have the crack issue is because some of the door frames were bent in to much at the top were the panels slip over the top door frame to go in place. He said to take a straight edge and bend the door frame to were it is straight so that it pulls even on the panel when installed. I did this to mine and noted a quit a difference in the straightness of the edge.
Next where to find replacement panels, well I called every salvage yard across the country and to no avail. I then priced them at the Dealer $299.00 each plus tax in Phoenix they would have cost me $660.00 terrible. I purchased them from moparonline.com for $205.00 each plus freight and no tax. I am happy that I have corrected the cause of failure and the new panels without the cracks look great. This is being sent to all of you members as a FYI

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Old 08-23-2012, 09:47 PM   #2
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Interesting, mine is cracked also and I wanted to get a new panel but never did because I thought it would crack again. I assume its the top edge of the door frame where the panel attaches that is bent? How did you bend it straight?

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Old 08-23-2012, 09:49 PM   #3
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That crack doesn't bother me one bit. I couldn't imagine dropping over 4 bills for new panels either
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Old 08-23-2012, 10:43 PM   #4
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Quote:
Originally Posted by rayman375 View Post
Interesting, mine is cracked also and I wanted to get a new panel but never did because I thought it would crack again. I assume its the top edge of the door frame where the panel attaches that is bent? How did you bend it straight?
I used a pair of pliers and squeezed the panel to the straight edge. The panel bends pretty easy and yes it is the top edge of the door frame. Mine cracked exactly at the area where the panel edge was bent in the most. I am now confident that it woun't happen again, or I would not have invested that kind of money in trim panels.
I suggest that you pull your panel off and take a look and you will see the cause of the failure. Pulling the panels off was very easy except getting the window handle off. I made a tool from a coat hanger to pull the spring loaded clip loose. Everything else was easy 5 screws and pop the plastic retainer clips lose and it lifts off.
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Old 08-23-2012, 10:53 PM   #5
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Funny that - I test drove 3 TJ's, and bought a '03 X. All had cracked door panels. I thought it was weird - now I know!
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Old 08-23-2012, 11:31 PM   #6
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Mine is cracked. One of the things that bugs me, but after hearing the cost of the panels I think I just got over it haha

Thanks for the info though!
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Old 10-28-2012, 09:05 PM   #7
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It sounds like you're talking about this crack...




I have a matching set of these, one on each door. Is this the issue you're talking about, Old Dogger?
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Old 10-28-2012, 09:16 PM   #8
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Ulf001
It sounds like you're talking about this crack...

I have a matching set of these, one on each door. Is this the issue you're talking about, Old Dogger?
Mine too both doors 06 lj
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Old 10-28-2012, 09:19 PM   #9
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I'm probably about to jinx myself, but I only have it on the driver's side. I don't open and close the passenger side much
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Old 10-28-2012, 09:35 PM   #10
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Junk yard.. Door panels for $4 no joke. Then pain it to match. Easier than it sounds
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Old 10-29-2012, 12:47 AM   #11
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Ulf001 View Post
It sounds like you're talking about this crack...




I have a matching set of these, one on each door. Is this the issue you're talking about, Old Dogger?
Yes, that is the typical crack in the door panel, of which there is no long term fix/repair available, except live with it, or replace them with new. Good luck in finding any non-cracked used ones!
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Old 10-29-2012, 12:57 AM   #12
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