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Thread: Door lock issues

  1. #1

    Default Door lock issues

    I recently replaced the drivers side front door lock actuator for the second time. I didnít like the fit of the aftermarket one so I bought a stock equivalent (I say that because it looks stock but has a different curve at the end) and after a while it became harder to lock. A few months ago it stopped locking. Hitting the button makes the actuator move but it doesnít lock. And if you try to turn the key to the right to lock it it wonít budge. Unlocking is smooth though. Today I put a new lock rod bushing on the passenger side because the old one fell off and the actuator would hit the door when the switch was cycled. Now it wonít lock either. Could it be the actuators or something else?


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  2. #2
    I'm an air-conditioned gypsy gadget73's Avatar
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    water in the actuators will seize them up and cause this problem. Bad dew wipes on the door make it extra bad. There should be a plastic or rubber shield above the actuator to keep water from dumping on them but if the shield is missing and/or the dew wipes are shot the actuator just gets soaked and fails.

    86 Lincoln Town Car (Galactica).
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    91 Lincoln Mark VII LSC SE, triple black (Timewarp) - poly front bushings, KYB struts and shocks, Holley SystemMax1 lower intake, SilverFox AOD valve body,

    1984 Lincoln Continental TurboDiesel - rolls coal

    Quote Originally Posted by phayzer5 View Post
    I drive a Lincoln. I can't be bothered to shift like the peasants and rabble rousers

  3. #3
    2 decades of DDing Box Panthers, now in a Whale VicCrownVic's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by gadget73 View Post
    water in the actuators will seize them up and cause this problem. Bad dew wipes on the door make it extra bad. There should be a plastic or rubber shield above the actuator to keep water from dumping on them but if the shield is missing and/or the dew wipes are shot the actuator just gets soaked and fails.
    ^What he said.
    On my last 3 boxes (the ones that I had for more than a few years) I disconnected the actuator (rod and electoral connector) and just ran with manual locks up front for the past 16-17 years.

    Later model actuators may be less prone to this issue. If a little modification/fabrication isn't a deterrent for you (maybe you want to stay stock?) then these threads would be a starting point for that retrofit option:
    Some pre-discussion: http://www.grandmarq.net/vb/showthre...-lock-actuator
    Then the actual retrofit: http://www.grandmarq.net/vb/showthre...uator-retrofit

    I would still recommend replacing the dew wipes though. A recent thread on that topic: http://www.grandmarq.net/vb/showthre...7019-Dew-wipes
    and the stickied thread: www.grandmarq.net/vb/showthread.php?29894-The-Official-Dew-Wipe-Replacement-Thread
    Vic

    ~ 1998 Mercury Grand Marquis LS - new DD
    ~ 1991 Mercury Grand Marquis LS "The Scab" - plenty of rot, summer DD
    ~ 1997 GMC Yukon - wannabe winter DD - returning summer 2020, I finally have an engine
    ~ 1991 Mercury Grand Marquis GS "The Ice Car" - My rotting winter DD
    ~ 1989 Mercury Grand Marquis GS - Rotting Retired DD
    Gone but not forgotten:
    ~ 1988 Country Squire ~ 1987 Ford Crown Vic

  4. #4
    I'm an air-conditioned gypsy gadget73's Avatar
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    keeping as much water out of the door as possible will do nothing but help the doors not rot to death. Also it makes the windows not rattle, cuts down on the air noise, and you can actually get the glass clear on a foggy morning. Good things all around. Once you get done with the job at least, it kinda sucks to do.

    86 Lincoln Town Car (Galactica).
    5.0 HO, CompCams XE258,Scorpion 1.72 roller rockers, 3.55 K code rear, tow package, BHPerformance ported E7 heads, Tmoss Explorer intake, 65mm throttle body, Hedman 1 5/8" headers, 2.5" dual exhaust, ASP underdrive pulley

    91 Lincoln Mark VII LSC SE, triple black (Timewarp) - poly front bushings, KYB struts and shocks, Holley SystemMax1 lower intake, SilverFox AOD valve body,

    1984 Lincoln Continental TurboDiesel - rolls coal

    Quote Originally Posted by phayzer5 View Post
    I drive a Lincoln. I can't be bothered to shift like the peasants and rabble rousers

  5. #5

    Default

    The dew wipes are dry rotted and shrunken on it, I was planning on eventually replacing them.

    However I should add that they driver move up and down freely. I can watch them move when I cycle the locks but even when I hit the lock button and the actuator moves the lock rod it still isnít locked for some odd reason. Maybe its not travelling all the way, I donít know. Its just frustrating. Iíll take a video later.


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  6. #6
    2 decades of DDing Box Panthers, now in a Whale VicCrownVic's Avatar
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    Oh, I've had the manual lock rod adjusted in a way that I manually lock the door but when I close the door it is not locked.

    The rod in the armrest that attaches to the bottom side of that manual lock lever should just pull straight down. It's held in by a very tiny clip that is very easy to lose. Some times the bottom of the manual lock lever can break, so some caution should be used.

    I found that if I bend that rod away from or toward the door that the effective rod length changes due to the couple of bends already in this rod. So if it is a matter of the manual lock lever catching and not allowing the lock mechanism to fully engage, bending this rod slightly could help. It might have even taken a couple of adjustments at both of the bends, I don't remember. Although to really get a good look at both bends in that rod I think it might be easier with the door panel off. You could also try just disconnecting the manual lock lever and see if the problem resolves with that disconnected. If so, adjust it with some bending.

    Other rods in the system could potentially cause the same issue, I suppose, not allowing the lock mechanism to fully engage. Although the manual lock lever seems to have more chance of being dicked with by others in the past.
    Attached Thumbnails Attached Thumbnails Box-Door_Switch_Panel.jpg  
    Vic

    ~ 1998 Mercury Grand Marquis LS - new DD
    ~ 1991 Mercury Grand Marquis LS "The Scab" - plenty of rot, summer DD
    ~ 1997 GMC Yukon - wannabe winter DD - returning summer 2020, I finally have an engine
    ~ 1991 Mercury Grand Marquis GS "The Ice Car" - My rotting winter DD
    ~ 1989 Mercury Grand Marquis GS - Rotting Retired DD
    Gone but not forgotten:
    ~ 1988 Country Squire ~ 1987 Ford Crown Vic

  7. #7

    Default

    I bet something is bent. The previous owner literally dug the locks out of the doors. Iíve had the door panels off a few times so the manual levers are not attached. For some reason the last time I reinstalled the door panels the rods wouldnít go into the sliders no matter how hard I tried pushing it in. Iíll have to try it again.


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  8. #8
    Stow It! GM_Guy's Avatar
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    Did you put fingers on every bushing? I had a couple go brittle in my '89, and partially breaking causing either lock or unlock issues.
    Is the little spring retainer still in the manual lever? Or the plastic broken? Those manual sliders won't hold up if you are always forcing them.

  9. #9

    Default

    I put my hands on everything I could touch but I guess it probably wasnít as thorough as it could be. I think something is bent because it got slowly harder and harder to open the door. I have to force the key all the way to the left while pulling the door handle or else it wonít unlock. And it locks as soon as you move they key over slightly. Even from the inside you have to pull the handle more than before just to open the door.

    As fat as I can tell the sliders and retainers are ok its just that I cannot push them into the levers anymore. Iíll pull at least the drivers side switch and check today if I can.


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