Isuzu Rodeo
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How to remove the front door panels on an Isuzu Rodeo?

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2011-09-13 05:44:02
2011-09-13 05:44:02

I have experience with the inner front door panels--the rears should be similar, but I haven't removed one.

FIRST: Prepare to support the inner door trim panel. If you have electric window lifts and a courtesy light in the door, you can disconnect the courtesy light, but the window lift wiring is continuous from the steel door "fair-lead" to the window switch(es). The panel will dangle from the wires if you don't have something to hold it up. A tool box works well. It also helps to use a vice-grip to hold the tool-box handle upright to form a catch point for the panel to rest against. You'll understand when you get there, and it's nothing to worry about.

NEXT:1. Remove screws: a - 4 at bottom of door behind removable plastic plugs b - 1 in plastic backing panel behind door handle c - 2 in door pull pocket in arm rest

2. Gently pull balance of panel away from door. It is held in place by "snap-in" fasters attached to the panel that fit through holes in the sheet metal door panel behind the trim panel. This may feel "wrong" or a bit scary, but most car door trim panels are held in place with similar methods. Be gentle but firm as you pull so that you don't bend/distort the trim panel.The wrap-around design of the trim panel prevents slipping a flat bar between the panel and the steel door until you've pulled it nearly hard enough to remove it, but you might assist with a Stanley "Wonder-Bar"--a flat "crow-bar" used by carpenters.

3. The top of the panel hooks over the window gap, so you just lift up and off the door-lock knob and out of that channel. Very easy.

While you're in there, CHECK THE BOLTS HOLDING THE CENTER TRACK ON THE WINDOW LIFT. These bolts may have backed out to the point they fall out in your hands, or they may be loose. These bolts are the principle cause of window lift failure. The guide track is in the center of the door, and one of the bolts is behind a removable sheet metal "shelf" that holds up the arm rest and attaches the door pull in the arm rest. If the bolts are loose, BUY "PERMANENT" LOC-TITE and apply liberally to the threads and reinstall the bolts. I repeat, these kill the electric windows.

If you're having problems with the electric windows and the motors still run, I've invented a repair that's superior to replacment. It costs $1.00 for hardware, but it requires some rudimentary skills. See email below if you want to pursue this.

To replace the panel, position it over the lock button and nurse the lip down over the window gap opening. This is not difficult, but it can require a bit of wiggling and patience. Once the panel is seated on the top edge of the window gap, gently press on the perimeter of the panel and snap the plastic fasteners into their holes. There is one in the middle of the panel, too. Then replace the screws and trim bits and you're done.

One other tip. It's helpful to have a small sheet of building plastic handy to repair/replace the protective plastic behind the trim panel. If you are removing the panel, I assume you're fixing something or installing speakers in the door.

Note on in-door speakers: There's not much room in the door panel of doors that have electric window lifts. The motor pulls a "bicycle brake cable" in both directions to raise and lower the window. The cable is routed past places where you might want a 6 1/2" speaker, so look before you leap. A saber saw could damage a $450 (installed) window lift mechanism.

Good luck. I have broken up the email address and substituted the word "AT" for the @ symbol to inhibit address harvesting by automatic SPAM software. It's all one word before the @ and pretty obvious after the @.Jim Moore 13 AT yahoo dot com

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