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Just wanted to see if anyone else has experienced difficulties with the manual locks on older vans. I've seen a lot of threads on here about the electric locks going bad but I don't have power locks.

It has gotten to the point where it's a real pain to get it to unlock with the key from the outside or even from the inside. The locking mechanism doesn't click over like it used to. It seems really weak and worn out. I guess that is to be expected.

I haven't found the time to remove the door panel and investigate yet but that is added to my list. Curious to see if anyone else has fought with the door over 10 mins. to no avail. The worst is when it unlocks and opens partially so I get open door light on the dash but I can't get it fully closed or open...

At the point where I'm permanently leaving it unlocked so I don't have to deal with it. I also do like leaving the doors unlocked either....
 

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Mine started giving me trouble about 5 years ago. My wife and daughter would be stuck in the back until we cycled the lock (Manual or power) as many as 10 times until it unlocked. Mine seems to unlock better from the outside.
Of course when I would get time to pull the panel off it would be working fine and I could never find any problems with it. I had it apart 3 times to clean and lube everything it still happened.

SO what I did was disabling to 10 MPH rolling lock feature and I have had very little trouble with it for years now. I think the constant locking action several times a day is one of the factors since it is just been beating the lock mechanism further and further into the lock position several times a day for almost 20 years now.

Since you don't have power locks your should not have as much wear on things. Hopefully your just needs cleaned and lubed up? Also mine never gave me the partial lock treatment. :eekkkk:
 

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Mine started giving me trouble about 5 years ago. My wife and daughter would be stuck in the back until we cycled the lock (Manual or power) as many as 10 times until it unlocked. Mine seems to unlock better from the outside.
Of course when I would get time to pull the panel off it would be working fine and I could never find any problems with it. I had it apart 3 times to clean and lube everything it still happened.

SO what I did was disabling to 10 MPH rolling lock feature and I have had very little trouble with it for years now. I think the constant locking action several times a day is one of the factors since it is just been beating the lock mechanism further and further into the lock position several times a day for almost 20 years now.

Since you don't have power locks your should not have as much wear on things. Hopefully your just needs cleaned and lubed up? Also mine never gave me the partial lock treatment. :eekkkk:
That is until last night!:angrya:
My passenger front window regulator cable unraveled last night just before 9 PM, So after I spent and hour getting the door panel off and the window held back up (in the balmy 15' night air) I went to open the sliding door so I could put the door panel and loose parts in for safe keeping, I wasn't too happy when it refused to unlock.:angrya:
I was able to find a regulator/motor on Ebay for $39 shipped just before the offer expired so at least I can get that working again cheaply enough. I will fiddle with the sliding door lock on my lunch hour. We should be in the heat of the day by then... 23':cool:
 

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I'd like to know the fix for this - I've disabled the lock feature on my slider on 2 1994's in a row now (I put black tape over the contacts at the front part of the door opening). These things bind up all the time as they get older.

Somebody needs to come up with a definitive fix for this.
 

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I'd like to know the fix for this - I've disabled the lock feature on my slider on 2 1994's in a row now (I put black tape over the contacts at the front part of the door opening). These things bind up all the time as they get older.

Somebody needs to come up with a definitive fix for this.
That someone could be YOU ?!?:cheerlead:cheerlead
 

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I only had slide door lock problem on one of my caravans. "all" it did was pretend to be open-closed-open-closed and so on. the switch just wasn't pushed as much as it needed. Interior lamps were turning off and on again and since I had 20mph door locks enabled, it unlocked-locked and so on.

The switch is on the rear side of the door and can be adjusted simply by pulling it out.


sorry, I know this is not the answer to your question but I thought somebody might use it in the future....
 

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That is until last night!:angrya:
My passenger front window regulator cable unraveled last night just before 9 PM, So after I spent and hour getting the door panel off and the window held back up (in the balmy 15' night air) I went to open the sliding door so I could put the door panel and loose parts in for safe keeping, I wasn't too happy when it refused to unlock.:angrya:
I was able to find a regulator/motor on Ebay for $39 shipped just before the offer expired so at least I can get that working again cheaply enough. I will fiddle with the sliding door lock on my lunch hour. We should be in the heat of the day by then... 23':cool:
You jinxed it! That's why it refused to unlock
 

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Well, a good friend of mine with a nearly identical 1994 Grand Caravan now has a side door that refuses to open. Mine finally opened after over 10 minutes of wiggling and cussing.

I'm going to take it in to my mechanic - but it is somewhat alarming to me that here, on a large internet forum - Nobody seems to know or be able to help.....

C'mon. This is a very common problem. Can anyone offer an actual fix?
 

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Discussion Starter · #10 ·
I took the side door panel off today and took a look at the locking mechanisms. It seems like there is a little slop in my lock/unlock lever. It locks fine but the lever/switch bottoms out when I manually push it in from the inside. If I pull on the horizontal connecting rod that goes to the back of the door it will click over all the way. I just ended up lubricating everything and it helped a little bit. I think I would have to install a new door handle/lock assembly and that seems like too much hassle for me especially since the bottom of the sliding door is succumbing to rust pretty bad. Luckily, it's not the main family vehicle or that would be a pain fighting with the door every time to get the kids loaded up. I guess I'll have to live with it for now.
 

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A little up date on this issue.
My side door wouldn't open again the other day. What I found was the locking mechanism isn't going into the full lock position, meaning after several manual "locking" attempts I heard the mechanism CLICK into lock., after this it unlocked and worked fine.
I have not pulled the panel off to see what going on.
I thought you 2nd gen owners might find this info useful?
 

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Lock actuator (not very substantial) is weak or maybe a little lubrication of the mechanism is required. Lock actuator has to do its job of unlocking before the power door operation will work (if you have a power sliding door).
 

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This issue happens weather I'm using the manual or power lock.

POWER DOOR! :lol: This is the archive/low rent section of this forum!
It wasn't until the 4 gen you could get the modern luxury of a power door.. :biggrin:
Heck, these gen 2 vans only have the one slider.....:cry:
 

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This issue happens weather I'm using the manual or power lock.

POWER DOOR! :lol: This is the archive/low rent section of this forum!
It wasn't until the 4 gen you could get the modern luxury of a power door.. :biggrin:
Heck, these gen 2 vans only have the one slider.....:cry:
:biggrin: Maybe rig up some pulleys and a couple of weights. :thumb:
 

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I am glad these 1st and 2nd gens have only one slide doors and I have seen a few of 3rd gen with only one slide door.

Why am I glad? It is because of kids and stupid teenagers (like me) opening the door and getting out once I stop without even looking behind the car. When there are slide doors on right side only, I am not afraid my passengers will kill themselves while exiting MY van. C'mon, nobody would want to take a ride with me after third or fourth dead passenger :biggrin:

Sent from AutoGuide.com Free App
 

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I think we need a definitive fix for this.

I've seen that a couple of you have pulled the sliding door panel to access the guts - tell you what, if you post step-by-step instructions on how to open up the door, I'll get in there and try to design a fix or adjustment that fixes this once and for all.

Note: One of the two vans in my life doing this right now has a side door that no longer will unlock regardless of how much I fiddle with it. Can the door panel be removed without opening or removing the door?
 

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it can be removed with the doors closed but it is kinda hard.

there are about 6 bolts on the edges of the door (you can find it easily) and then there are three plastic things (looks like bolt covers from the outside) on the bottom of the door that need just to pull out with pliers. you will remove just the lower part of the interior panel and a part of rear side behind the window. then just pull, there are those metal springs that need to be taken out of the door by force.
 

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I was finally able to get my door to act up with the inside panel off. What I found was if you try to open the door with the outside handle while in the locked position, the handle will contact the locking mechanism and cause it to get hung up.

All I had to go is slightly bend the mechanism out of the way and all has been fine for over a month now.
I hope these pictures will help.

The way its suppose to be:


When it was hung up:
 
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