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Go Back   Bimmerfest - BMW Forums > BMW Model Discussions > 3 Series / 4 Series > E36 (1991 - 1999)

E36 (1991 - 1999)
The E36 chassis 3-Series BMW was a huge hit among driving enthusiasts from the first moment the car hit the pavement. The E36 won numerous awards over the years it was produced and is still a favorite of many BMW enthusiasts to this day! -- View the E36 Wiki

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  #1  
Old 08-09-2012, 03:37 PM
tehnards tehnards is offline
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Driver Door Will Not Open From Inside or Out

Hey there,

Been struggling with this problem for a while. Figured I would try my luck here.

e36 sedan. Driver door will not open from inside or out. I've taken off the panel and the actuator, since it works. It seems the latch is stuck in a closed position and neither of the handles will activate it.

Is there a place on the door lock that I can press or pull that will manually activate the latch? I've tried almost everything, besides drilling into the door which may be next..

Thanks in advance.
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  #2  
Old 08-09-2012, 03:49 PM
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hornhospital hornhospital is offline
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Have you tried using the key and make sure the door is unlocked first? The locking mechanism may be stuck and preventing the latch from opening.

Since you're in the door already, try pulling/prying up on the metal hoop on the latch. It's what connects the outside handle with the latch. If that won't open the door, it's either locked or the latch is broken. Metal hoop circled in picture below.....
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  #3  
Old 08-09-2012, 03:54 PM
tehnards tehnards is offline
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Thanks for the quick reply. I definitely have unlocked it by way of both connections (the key and the lock knob that sticks up). That metal hoop gets pulled as well with no result. I think it should be a stuck latch..

Last edited by tehnards; 08-09-2012 at 04:08 PM.
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  #4  
Old 08-09-2012, 04:00 PM
tehnards tehnards is offline
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OK. I did a bit of drilling to expose the area a bit more. Here are some photos.








Last edited by tehnards; 08-09-2012 at 04:04 PM.
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  #5  
Old 08-09-2012, 05:53 PM
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drivinfaster drivinfaster is offline
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wow...a little more cutting and you could just cut the door out...


hope you can repair that, though.


have you tried wiggling the levers to see if there is any free play, or looked into the bottom of the door for tiny broken bits that would indicate something has jammed??

you might need to get a little more umph behind it, but something should movewith enough leverage.

sorry to say, though, i have no keen insight other than what has already been offered.




df
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Old 08-09-2012, 06:03 PM
tehnards tehnards is offline
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Thanks for the reply. I've messed with every lever you can see, no luck.

As for the cutting, It doesn't matter. I just want the damn thing open. I have another door.

Last edited by tehnards; 08-09-2012 at 06:04 PM.
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  #7  
Old 12-23-2012, 11:42 AM
Jahnaboi Jahnaboi is offline
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Did you ever sold this problem?
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  #8  
Old 12-23-2012, 02:57 PM
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drivinfaster drivinfaster is offline
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i believe there was another door won't open thread, and the op took it in to a shop that (apparently)m had the door open in a matter of minutes.

i have *no* clue as to how or what was done to accomplish this, but if there is some strange alchemy in regards to how to do this i wish that those that do know would share. it would be a wonderfull addition to the sticky's....




df
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Old 12-23-2012, 05:07 PM
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dc_wright dc_wright is offline
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Is it just me or does this latch mechanism look like its locked?
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Old 12-23-2012, 06:34 PM
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J. Koopman J. Koopman is offline
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My DS door gets a little tough to open in cold weather. I pull up on the handle but it feels like the parts in the door don't like to move very freely when it's cold. I just have to be a bit careful with it. Does yours feel like that or does it all feel like it's seized up inside?
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Old 12-25-2012, 01:24 PM
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drive by72 drive by72 is offline
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Could be a sign of a broken door handle. If the handle likes to "stick", that may indicative of the handle's frame being broken.
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Old 03-11-2014, 04:17 PM
Hamishc Hamishc is offline
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E36 Drivers Door won't open from Inside or Outside

I have a 1994 320i (E36), the drivers door would not open from either the inside or outside it was like the door mechanism was deadlocked. I tried a number of different suggestions as described in various forums however nothing worked. In the end I came to the conclusion that the mechanism was broken and would require replacement. I purchased a second hand door mechanism and took the car to a smash repair shop as I expected they would know how to get parts apart and have the tools to cut open car parts after an accident. They were able to get the mechanism out without cutting the door frame and replaced the the unit with the second hand one I bought. I understand that they had to cut and chisel the old mechanism out, destroying it, to release the door. The cost was under $AUD100 plus the cost of a second hand lock mechanism (BMW quoted $800 for the part and time, approximately $AUD1100 all up). If the door completely dead locks this is probably the only way that you will get the door to reopen to make repairs. Hope this helps, good luck.
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