Buick Regal
Door Panels and Handles
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How do you fix a front exterior door handle on 1993 Buick Regal that doesn't open from outside?

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September 13, 2011 1:51AM

Quick Fix

It is likely you do not need any new parts. Follow the directions below until you get to the note about the "Lever" (the threaded rod). Turn the adjuster out a few rotations and your door should open like new.


I just replaced my 1994 Buick Regal exterior door handle (same one) with an aftermarket one for $47 I found online. I should have taken pictures, but it really was not hard to replace.

Tools I used: Adjustable wrench (I'm sure you could use a socket wrench) T20 Torx screwdriver Philip and flathead screwdriver

Open the car door, and using your adjustable wrench or socket wrench, remove the two black caps (screws?) with big rounded tops from the top of the door by turning them counter clockwise.

Use your Philips screwdriver to remove the screw from the bottom of the piece of door covering the handle apparatus.

There is another screw inside that with a Philips head that needs to be unscrewed that is keeping the door handle in place, just below the lock and toward the outer edge of the door.

You are almost done removing the door handle, all that needs to be done is separating the exterior door handle from the interior parts. This is done in two places:

1) There is a metal piece with screw threads on the end, and a rounded part that is on the threads. This rounded part connects to the door handle through a hole, with a metal covering to keep it in place. We are going to call this the "Lever" from now on. Using the flat side of your screwdriver, gently lift and loosen the covering from the old door handle so you can remove the Lever from the hole.

Note: If your door handle opens too easily, screw the round part down a little further on the threads, and if you can't open the door, the round part needs to come up a little on the threads.

2) Using your T20 Torx screwdriver, remove the screw just below and medial to the door lock.

Remove the old door handle, taking care to separate the door lock from the handle without pulling on the wiring.


1) Slide the new part into the door so it fits just right. 2) Attach the top big black cap (screws to the top part of the door handle using your socket wrench or adjustable wrench. This will hold the handle in place better for the rest of the attachment. 3) Replace the Philips head screw used to tighten the handle to the door. This is the one located just lateral and inferior to the door lock. 4) Put the key lock in its place, and replace the Torx screw to tighten it in place. 5) Use your flathead to lift up the tab on the part of the door handle where the Lever will go and slide it out a bit. Insert the round part of the lever into the hole, and tighten the covering, making sure the latch goes back into the hole you slid it out of.

TEST THE DOOR. If it does not open when you pull on the handle, follow the part for removing the lever and adjust the round piece higher up. If it opens too easily, adjust it lower down. TEST THE DOOR. Repeat until you get it just right.

Place the door handle cover in place, and screw the big black cap into place, followed by the Philips screw that should be remaining at the bottom of the cover.

Your door handle should be replaced and working great! I just did this to my door this morning, and fixed the passenger side door (which would only open when we yanked it really hard). Both open easily now!