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TJ door stuck in lock position

14991 Views 4 Replies 4 Participants Last post by  tzukows
Recently my passenger door could not be opened. Both inside and outside handles would not work nor would the inside lock-release or key from the outside. I went online and read all kind of advice. Probably the one that made most sense was to remove the inside door panel. Well !!! Maybe if you remove your front seat first it might work, but I was not about to get that deeply involved.
I decide to try my Slim-Jim. It would have been nice to have a picture of what I was working with but I couldn't find anything that helped. My drivers door was working so I removed the inside panel to get a look at the latch mechanism. After knowing what I had to do to release the lock, I began digging in with the Slim-Jim and put a mark at apprx. 9 inches. Standing outside the passenger door I put a slight bend in the Slim-Jim back toward the inside of the door. The hook at the bottom was open and facing to the front.
I inserted the S/Jim to the 9 inch mark and very close to the rear of the door and worked the tool until I felt it grab the lock mechanism. Once I had a hold on the mechanism I pulled up while at the same time turning the key to open the door. I don't think it took more than 5 minutes to lock onto the latch.
Picture one is a sketch I made looking at the passenger door from inside the jeep. The latch looks like a small boomerang. The rod on the
bottom goes to the inside lock release. The rod on the top goes to the key cylinder. In order to unlock the door both rods must move to the hashed position on the sketch. It's hard to see but I've marked the point where the S/Jim needs to attach.
Picture two show the latch in the locked position. The green plastic clip attaches the rod to the inside lock release. The purple plastic clip attaches the rod to the key cylinder.
Picture three shows the S/Jim attached to the pivot point. And picture four show the latch lifted with the S/Jim still in place.
Once the door is opened, I removed the inside panel and sprayed the latch mechanism with a liberal amount of white lithium grease.
Good luck to anyone with a stuck door.


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Looks like good but one question

Did both inside and outside unlock and or open stop working at the same time

If not the moral is do not lock door if part of mechanism has stopped working

Does happen to some after installing new outside handle and closing door without first testing adjustment (best done without inner panel installed

People have removed inner panel with door closed but is a real chore

Another option is cut latch look loop with sawall just doable with door closed but you have to buy a new loop

Your solution sounds better still
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Hey Digger, I appreciate your comments. As to your question, yes both inside and outside lock mechanism stopped working at the same time. No, there was no warning it just happened one day. Nothing was changed nor added and I've had the 2000 TJ for more that three years.
I just replaced my external door handle on my 1999 Jeep Wrangler TJ. The next day I locked the door and noticed when it locked it, it had much more tension than before. Now my door is shut and locked and I cannot unlock it from the inside or using the key on the outside. So far... I have removed the door panel with the door closed, but even with me manually attempting to unlock the locking mechanism, it will not bugde. I am even placing a set of pliers directly on the locking mechanism and it still won’t unlock. I read that some folks have cut the door latch striker and replaced the striker and locking mechanism. Is there no easier way??? So frustrated.
My inside button binds on the driver's side. If I lock it from inside, I can't use the inside button to unlock. I can use the key, but not the inside. This is only an issue if I have a brain fart or someone else driving decides to lock the door for me. I don't lock the doors and other people driving my TJ does not happen often. With the exception of misplacing my favorite face mask yesterday, right after having worn it home from my mother's place... The brain farts don't happen too often either. (So far...)
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