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Driver Door Will Not Open From Inside or Out

77509 Views 20 Replies 14 Participants Last post by  ponygurl69
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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Identical E36 locked door problem...

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.
Same car, same problem, same BMW quote, same location (Brisbane)...can you please advise the location of your friendly smash repair shop to save me a hundred phone calls?
Since checked an independent BMW trained mechanic who suggested a locksmith...then started with local smash repairers. The first could only remove the door lining; then Western Suburbs Bodyworks got interested. Supplied with a complete latch, they removed the window regulator and chiseled the faulty mechanism until the rotating catch could be released.
In summary, used mechanism $75, two days, $150 intermittent (?) labour, no body damage and only minor damage to tint film on the window glass.
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