Can't open drivers door - Kia Forum
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#1 (permalink) Old 03-27-2011, 09:36 PM
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Default Can't open drivers door

My '04 Rio's front door won't open. Both the inside and outside handles are inoperable.
I'm not sure if it's the lock not operating internally (although the lock on the top of the panel moves) or if the handle has disconnected.
I need to remove the interior panel to diagnosis the problem but if I cant open the door how is it possible to remove the panel without damaging it?
I thought of using a slim jim to open the door but I don't really know what to pry on or if that will even work.
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#2 (permalink) Old 03-27-2011, 10:19 PM
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Not sure if the panel can be removed without the door open. Sounds like the latch assembly has seized up. When this situation happens I usually use the slim jim/lockout kit method. If you place a wedge between the outer door panel and the window you can follow the rods from the outer door handle to the latch assembly. You'll have to actuate the latch in the same direction as the rod does (easier said than done, but it usually works).

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#3 (permalink) Old 03-28-2011, 07:12 PM
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More than likely you have a small spring broken, approx 1/4" x 3/4". It will need to be replaced. Yes it it possible to get the door open without destroying the inner door panel, not easy but it can be done. Panel needs to be pryed open and the lock mech, operated with a heavy wire to hold latch open. Once door is open then the panel can be removed.

Good Luck

BTW after helping a friend who owned a used car business with this I replaced all springs on all 4 of my doors.

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#4 (permalink) Old 03-26-2013, 10:43 PM
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Edit: Oops just realized I responded to a very old thread...


When you pull on the door handle does it make a sound like attempts to unlock, like a pop?

If so, you might have the same problem I did, which is one of the screws that hold the latch assembly has come loose and jammed in the door when it was closed. You should remove all the trim around the door panel and remove the bolt that holds the seatbelt in place to remove the side trim. after that you should have just enough room to see where the latch latches in place on the car. use a flashlight to see if there are any bent screws there.

Last edited by pir8skin; 03-27-2013 at 03:34 AM.
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#5 (permalink) Old 03-27-2013, 05:02 PM
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Every little bit help's thank's for that info. Someone will do a search for the same issue and maybe your suggestion will help.

Last edited by ronjohn; 03-27-2013 at 05:10 PM.
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