Pair of Door Lock Actuators with Rivets for 1979-1993 Mustangs with Power Door Locks.
Door lock actuator failure is a common problem for older Fox Mustangs. If you're door locks are stuck and nothing happens when you hit the lock or unlock button, your actuator is most likely faulty.
This pair of replacement door lock actuators and rivets will fix your problem. You can save time and money buying this convenient kit and replace both actuators in one shot!
Today we’re going to show how to replace a door lock actuator in your Fox body Mustang. If you own a Fox, there’s a good possibility you’ve had a failure at some point in time and are going to have to replace this part. The installation can be fairly intimidating, but it’s actually fairly simple to do. The door lock actuator itself is controlled by the door lock switch. The door lock actuator receives power from your door lock switch to open and close the lock. When it fails, your lock simply won’t open. Worst case if it fails, it can fail in the open position, which will actually allow you to not lock your doors, which is the worst case scenario.
Your door lock actuator will include the rod to connect to your door lock as well as a mounting bracket. The place where you can save time in the installation is by actually reusing your original bracket, which will save you from drilling out the rivet and having to purchase an expensive rivet gun to install the new bracket.
For this installation you’ll need a flashlight, panel removal tool, needle nose pliers, Philips head screwdriver, flat head screwdriver or a small pry bar, small flat head screwdriver, ten millimeter socket, short quarter inch extension, quarter inch ratchet, spray lubricant and safety glasses. We’ll be installing door lock actuator on this 93’ Mustang LX Hatchback. When you hit the switch we can hear that the door lock actuator on the other side is working, but this one is not budging at all. Worst case when you turn the key we can unlock, but we can’t lock our car.
The door lock actuator is mounted in the bottom of your door below the latch. The rivet on the outside here is what holds on the bracket. The first step to accessing it is to remove the door panel. We’re going to start by removing the Philips head screw that holds on our mirror cover as well as the screw that holds on our door cup. We pulled our door panel cup and we found that it was cracked. It’s pretty common for these to break and this would be a good time to replace these parts as well, while you have the door panels off. Now we’ll remove the screw that holds in our lower speaker grill. Next step it to remove your armrest assembly. It’s held in place by two Philips head screws and two ten millimeter bolts underneath these covers.
We’re going to start with the screws. The screw is pretty deep in the armrest, so it may not actually come out all of the way. Make sure that it’s loose enough that you can remove the armrest as a whole. Next you want to carefully pry away the bolt cover in the armrest then remove the ten millimeter bolt inside. One you remove the two bolts your armrest is now free and can be removed from the panel. You want to pull it down and slide it slightly up to release the clips from the panel itself. Now we need to remove the switch assembly by first taking off the cover plate. Push from the back and the plate will pop up and slide it up and out. Now remove the two Philips head screws that hold the switches to the plate and separate the plate from the switch, put the plate aside and the switch will not fit through the armrest and you can put the armrest aside.
Now you’re ready to remove your panel. The panel is held on now at this point by plastic clips. You want to grab some sort of a trim panel removal tool to remove the clips. It is very common for them to break, so you may want to get some new ones ahead of time. Our clips are pretty worn, so we’ll want to replace while we have the door panel off. Once you’ve removed all the clips, you pull up on the door panel, lift it off, fish the switches through and put it aside. Our actuator looks worn out as expected, but the bracket looks pretty good, so we’re going to try to use the original bracket.
Your new actuator includes a bracket; you can simply remove by pushing it upward. You don’t expect the original one to come off quite so easily, so we’re going to spray some WD-40 in there to loosen it up. We remove the white anti-theft cover, so you can get a better view of the latch and see how the door lock actuator connects to it. We’ll remove the original door lock actuator by pressing down on it to remove it from the bracket the same way we did with our replacement.
This is going to be the most difficult part of the installation. You need to remove the original actuator from the factory bracket located in the door, which will look just like our assembly here. It’s buried pretty far down in the door, so you’ll want to use a screwdriver to be able to reach it. The easiest way to get the factory one out is to get your screwdriver underneath the factory bracket and turn it either from down here or up in this way. That will release it from the bracket and allow you to twist the actuator to get it off. This can be a little time consuming, it wasn’t actually meant to release from the bracket, but this will save you from having to drill this out and replace the bracket.
Now we have our actuator clear of the bracket, we’re going to remove it from the car. Pull the actuator up at 90 degree angle and that’ll allow you to slide it out of the lock and you can disconnect the plug. You can see our factory actuator has seen better days. See the top of the factory actuator has this little hook on it, our replacement actuators’ not going to include that, it’s going to include several different versions, since it can be used on different cars. All you simply do is grab the cracked one that matches up with your original and then line up the hole and then slide your slide pin through. Now we’re going to spray a little lubricant on the mounting tabs of our new actuator and now you can plug it back into the factory harness. Plugs right in and now you want to attach it to our door latch. The same way you took it out, go straight in an angle and then turn it downward, fits just like the stock one would and we’re going to line it up with our original bracket and force it up into place.
Before you reassemble your door panel, it’s a good time now to test the lock and make sure it’s working properly. Simple grab the switch and you can see it is unlocking and locking as it’s supposed to. Now we can put our door panel back on. Before we install the door panel we want to replace all the worn out clips. Here you can see what the worn clip looks like compared to our brand new clips. Clips are easy to replace, simply slide it over the larger opening, remove it, grab your new clip, put it in and slide it into place. We replace all the clips with new hardware and there should be 12 total holding your door on. The case of our door panel is actually missing several clips, so it should fit better than it did before. Reassemble our door panel in the opposite that we took it apart.
The first step is to feed the switches through the panel, make sure the door is unlocked, make the knob harder, so you can line it up and now I want to start pressing in the door panel clips. Fish our lock and window assembly through, grab our trim plate, place it on top and now we’re going to replace the screws, hold the plate to the switches and now install the switch assembly back into the armrest, the tab underneath the bottom and then tighten that down. Now we can put the armrest back on the door panel. Line up the two tabs on the end, slide the metal pieces over and down, push it up into place and grab your hardware.
Now we’re going to install this new Ford tooling door cup in place of our original. The new Ford tooling cup comes with a seal already on it, so it’s ready to be installed. Careful not to over tighten the door cup, because you can crack it. You can see that our door lock actuator works properly and it allows us to lock our door and unlock it with the button. More importantly, our door lock actually works properly now and we can unlock and we lock out Mustang. As you can see the door look actuator repair isn’t to back. As long as your original brackets’ in good shape, you won’t need anything besides normal hand tools. Because the difficulty of removing the actuator from the bracket, give yourself around an hour to do this installation and then you’ll be back on the road.