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Chris (aka- Moose)
Chris (aka- Moose), Technician
Category: Ford
Satisfied Customers: 47990
Experience:  16 years experience
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Ford Escape My front passenger side door is completely stuck

Customer Question

My front passenger side door is completely stuck in my '02 escape. The body shop said the door latch was messed up and needed to be replaced but seems they never even got down there to look at it. What ways do I have to get the door open? I have tried to take to rod out of the interior door opener and move it manually (doing it many times) but nothing happens. I have tried to take the driver side door panel off to see if I could gain any access to the door latch mechanism but do not see how I can get it open. Is there something I am not trying?
Submitted: 6 years ago.
Category: Ford
Expert:  Pavlin Koev replied 6 years ago.

Pavlin Koev :

Hi and Welcome to Just Answer! My name is Pavlin and I will do my best to help.

Pavlin Koev :

it is hard task, and some damage will alsway be to interior panel, but best is to remove the seat, so you will have room to work, worst come to worst, after door panel is removed, you will have to use drills and dremels to cut latch.

JACUSTOMER-oezdlnre- :

THis answer really helps in no way sorry I am not accepting

Expert:  Chris (aka- Moose) replied 6 years ago.

Hello, I'm Chris.
I will do my best to answer your question fast and accurate using the info you have provided. Thanks for visiting Just Answer.


Different tech here, would you like me to help you?

Customer: replied 6 years ago.
Expert:  Chris (aka- Moose) replied 6 years ago.

Is the interior door trim panel off at this time?


Customer: replied 6 years ago.
No I can not open the door I can get about half of it off. Enougt to get my hand to where I can pull the electrical connection off the door latch area.
Expert:  Chris (aka- Moose) replied 6 years ago.

Ok you are going to need to get that panel off to get into the door for repair. The easiest approach is to remove the seat by just unbolting it and unplugging everything and pushing it towards the rear seat, now remove the door panel.


Download for removing the seat.

Download for removing the trim panel


Now once your into the door you need to remove the exterior door handle. Then you need to work the latch manually from inside to try and free the faulty door lock actuator built into the latch so you can get the door open so you can replace the latch. In the below directions on the latch, you will not be able to remove it with the door closed so that info is just so you have some pictures and to use once the door is open.


Download for removing the exterior door handle

Download for removing the latch.


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Customer: replied 6 years ago.
The problem with removing the door panel is that I can not access the screw towards the front of the door. It is blocked because the door is closed.
Expert:  Chris (aka- Moose) replied 6 years ago.
I forgot about that one screw near the dash vent. You are going to have to remove what you can to get a pry bar into the door panel and pry the panel at this front location and pull the screw through then when you go to reinstall it put a washer on the screw so it can hold again.
Customer: replied 6 years ago.
Will it be possible to pull that screw out since it is going back into the dash essentially? Or am I trying to break the head?
Customer: replied 6 years ago.
Also I have gotten to the inside pull door handle string like thing and have used pliers to try to move it back and forth. Is this what you are trying to get me to do?
Expert:  Chris (aka- Moose) replied 6 years ago.
I am trying to get your hands to gain access to the latch. You are trying to pull the head of the screw throug hthe plastic trim to allow trim remoal then just fix it later once the door is open. Whatever repair is needed there will not matter since its hidden.
Customer: replied 6 years ago.
Ok I am not in front of the car right now but lets say I pop off the latch will the door panel pull out even though it is semi wedged in the dashboard so to speak?
Also when it is off I took the driver side off to see what im dealing with.. I didnt really see how I could access they latch itself to pop it open. I say this because I dont think it is either of the 'opening' mechanisms that are messed up but the latch itself
Expert:  Chris (aka- Moose) replied 6 years ago.
Working on the latch from inside the door is the only way to get the door open. I have had to go to extreme measures like chiseling the latch apart just to get a door open before. Whatever you do dont pry the door open, I have had customers bring there vehicles to the shop after doing so and need a new door and body work. That latch is made to hold up against a 55mph impact in the door.