Sliding Doors won't unlock or lock [Archive] - The Chrysler Minivan Fan Club Forums

: Sliding Doors won't unlock or lock



Solarflyer
10-19-2009, 03:05 PM
My sliding door won't unlock with either the key FOB or the switch inside of the car on the driver's side. At first, this was just occasional for my passenger side door. Then it became more frequent. Now it is constant. We have to reach over (gasp!) and physically unlock the door. Once it is unlocked, we can use either the controls inside of the van or the FOB to open the door with the automatic sliding door option, so that isn't the problem. It just seems to get stuck in the locked or unlocked position. It feels like it is more common during the hot days. When we click the unlock/lock button, you can see the knob try to move, but it doesn't quite make it.

This wasn't the end of the world and I was able to cope as I rarely used that door. However, now the driver's side sliding door is doing the same thing and both sides are rarely functional. Since both doors have decided to act up in the same way, I am suspecting this is some sort of common flaw?

I took the car to the dealership and they want $1300 to fix it, plus $500 to replace spark plugs and fuel injectors (although it is recommended by Chrysler at 100k and my van is only at 56k). I feel as if I am being taken advantage of. Is there any less expensive solution for this problem?

CJ Miller
Chrysler Town & Country, LX, 2004, 56k miles

bulldog van
10-19-2009, 03:31 PM
My sliding door won't unlock with either the key FOB or the switch inside of the car on the driver's side. At first, this was just occasional for my passenger side door. Then it became more frequent. Now it is constant. We have to reach over (gasp!) and physically unlock the door. Once it is unlocked, we can use either the controls inside of the van or the FOB to open the door with the automatic sliding door option, so that isn't the problem. It just seems to get stuck in the locked or unlocked position. It feels like it is more common during the hot days. When we click the unlock/lock button, you can see the knob try to move, but it doesn't quite make it.

This wasn't the end of the world and I was able to cope as I rarely used that door. However, now the driver's side sliding door is doing the same thing and both sides are rarely functional. Since both doors have decided to act up in the same way, I am suspecting this is some sort of common flaw?

I took the car to the dealership and they want $1300 to fix it, plus $500 to replace spark plugs and fuel injectors (although it is recommended by Chrysler at 100k and my van is only at 56k). I feel as if I am being taken advantage of. Is there any less expensive solution for this problem?

CJ Miller
Chrysler Town & Country, LX, 2004, 56k miles


If you are mechanically inclined, do a search for the topic. There was a previous post step-by-step procedure posted before on the forum >>> how to open the sliding door and repair/replace the small latch motor/mechanism, pictures included.:thumb:


Bulldog Van

andyg
10-19-2009, 03:31 PM
I would clean the contacts in the door jamb first. Mine occasionally need to be cleaned because if they get dirty, not enough power will flow through them to move the lock actuator. I usualy give mine a little scuff with 1000 grit sandpaper then wipe them down with brake kleen on a cloth.

I am not certain about their location on the 4th gens, but on the 3rd gens the contacts are located in the doorjamb towards the front of the van. The body side has 2 metal patches and the door part has 2 spring loaded pins.

rockwvu
10-19-2009, 03:45 PM
it may just be the power lock actuator. I replaced that on mine and now it works. I had the same symptoms as you. You CAN buy just the actuator and not the whole board type thingy from the dealer. I think it's less than 100 bucks

atoman
10-19-2009, 05:34 PM
I just solved my intermittent (sliding door) lock problem about a month ago by taking off the plastic (inside door) trim and cleaning and lubricating the linkages and spraying a good amount of silicone lubricant in and around the black plastic assy (actuator / latch I'm not sure) that's towards the rear of the door (where the linkage terminates...I didn't deem it complex enough to look at the manual)

This seems to have solved it for the time being.. and you can definitely feel a difference in effort required to move the lock knob - it will probably have to be done again in a year or two..

Dumpy
10-19-2009, 06:51 PM
Wow I just logged in to check out this problem on the 04 as well.

Just this month (October) noticed the drivers side knob on the sliding door wasn't moving, it will move if pulled or pushed but seems to be sticking.

Thanks for the links above, will post back when fixed!

atoman
10-19-2009, 10:20 PM
If anyone attempts to lube the locks..
(esp.) when you spray silicone lube, give the lock a workout (move it up & down about a dozen times) - you may need to spray and jiggle it a few times.. you'll feel that it starts to move a lot easier

sapp4l
10-20-2009, 12:51 PM
I have an 06 van with the same problem.

I used silicone lube a couple of times, but the issue always came back.

I used the DIY that the previous poster described to do a "lock-ectomy", and replaced the power lock actuator in the door. See: http://forum.chryslerminivan.net/showthread.php?t=9113

I pulled a used one from a local boneyard, as it is much cheaper than new, and I learn how to do the disassembly on a non-critical component.

If I remember correctly, you just pull off the plastic trim panel (a couple of screws and many of the trim plugs), a couple of screw (probably torx) holding the lock assembly in, and a couple of screws holding the actuator to the lock assembly. Really not that difficult -- maybe 45 min job. Solved the problem.

BTW: The actually is actually a little electric motor, rather than a solenoid. Manually operating the locks looks like it would stress the worm gear/motor assemble. I saw one post that suggested used only the electric actuator to open/lock the doors. Seemed to make sense.

arcman
10-21-2009, 03:19 PM
Same problem with my '99.

I also had to remove the (slow/sticky) motor in the actuator and clean it with contact cleaner. That helped a bunch but now it rattles when unlocking and locking. There is a small fixit part from Chrysler that has maybe a grommet and o-ring to fix it. I'm about to order it. Part no. 05072507AA. Hopefully that will take care of the noise.

Solarflyer
10-23-2009, 12:37 PM
I cleaned and then followed the instructions for the "lock-ectomy", and replaced the power lock actuator in the door.

The parts from my dealership were about 100 each but I didn't have to take apart the actuator as the link indicated - just replaced the actuator. Worked like a charm.

Still a little annoyed at the dealership for attempting to charge 1300 for something that I fixed with limited know-how in 90 minutes for $200. After reading all the boards, it seems to be a common problem - plus the guy at the parts desk said he had sold three sets of the actuators that day. I feel as if the dealership knows but just tries to take advantage. Thanks so much for your help! It was very very appreciated.

CJ

MN Michele
02-10-2010, 02:25 PM
I agree with the mentioning above of the door actuators. Both of my sliding doors would act up at various times, replacing the actuators solved it. My brother, a mechanic, suggested replacing both door actuators at the same time since having a weak one will short out the new one faster, something about the circuit. Mine had to be replaced twice due to the dealership putting in one faulty actuator and since they couldn't duplicate the problem, they only replaced the one side and two months later the second side completely failed. (That dealer went out of business.) *Beware: If your doors aren't unlocking chances are they aren't always locking either, as mine did. I had to manually check and lock both sliding doors until I got the actuators replaced, what a pain. I found out by opening the sliding door when the rest of the van locks were locked! After that, I always checked the doors after locking the van up only to find one of the sliding doors was usually unlocked about 50% of the time. Good luck.

atoman
02-10-2010, 09:55 PM
it's been a few months and I have not had the problem reappear even once (yet...)