Driver's side front inner door handle inop - Alfa Romeo Bulletin Board & Forums

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post #1 of 32 (permalink) Old 09-10-2009, 07:33 AM Thread Starter
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Driver's side front inner door handle inop

Get in my car this morning and then need to open it again and nothing happens when I try to open it. I don't think the handle has broken but something in the latch mechanism or a rod has come off. Something has been rattling inside the door for some time now when I drive down the road and the handle has felt "funny" the past day or two when using it, so no big surprise when it stopped working this morning. Any common inner latch problems besides the common handle breakage? Anyone had a rod come loose? Maybe I can look into it later this evening or this weekend.
Charles

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post #2 of 32 (permalink) Old 09-10-2009, 07:43 AM
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There is a return spring at the base of the rod. It pushes against a plastic mount that is captured in the door sheet metal. If this clip has broken (I saw that happen on a Milano) then the bottom of the rod may be free to move and it -could- move away from the door handle fork. But that fork might itself be broken. That's one of the failure modes of the inner door handles on the 164. I think all you have to take off to look is the armrest and the finisher in it of that which covers one of the armrest mounting screws. You might be able to tilt the armreset up instead of having to release the uppermost mount slug captured in the spring clip.

Michael
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post #3 of 32 (permalink) Old 09-10-2009, 09:04 AM
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Yes - releasing that armrest upper mounting is worth avoiding if possible, IMHO. The way to do it easily is to remove the upper door trim panel, which you can't do until you have the armrest unscrewed anyway. The panel has a screw inside the demister vent, but also one hidden under the fabric/padding at the bottom of the panel, under the armrest, near the back of the door. Mirror trim triangle comes off too. Then, the armrest just lifts off with the panel. Guess you know all this already.

The handle fork acts on a sort of washer with a spring behind it (on the release cable), I've managed to push on the washer with my fingers to open the door, so you'll hopefully find the same. As Michael says, hopefully the end of the cable has come adrift and it will be an easy fix.

If not (and the handle fork is broken), well, at least the driver's side for you guys is the passenger's side for us, so assuming the driver's handle breaks more often, we should reach a worldwide equilibrium of barely-adequate supply. I managed to score three more spare handles a couple of months back. Someone on here also reported that 'Muggyweld' creates an acceptable repair - sorry I can't remember who

-Alex

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post #4 of 32 (permalink) Old 09-10-2009, 06:18 PM Thread Starter
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Sure enough, the fork was broken off. Luckily, I had a new one in the bag ready to go.
Charles
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post #5 of 32 (permalink) Old 09-11-2009, 03:02 AM
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Save that inner door handle you can add a new steel fork with a little dremel tool work on rib in handle then drill a hole and attach with small nut and screw. I have repaired two of them that way.

Also when last one broke door latch was the culprit. I took it out cleaned and lubed and door handle now takes very little effort to open door.

I need to do that to the rest of the fleet hopefully before I break another inner handle.

Ciao, Alfisto Steve
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Daily drivers: USA models - 1991 164S Black Beauty II ALFISTO;

Daughter's current ride: BB1 my 164L and Her Granddads 2002 Ford Taurus is back up.

New parts hauler but not car hauler 2004 Jeep Grand Cherokee Overland 4.7L H.O. V-8

Needing TLC non-blackbeast the 93 164L

"A day without an Alfa whine is like a day without sunshine"

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post #6 of 32 (permalink) Old 09-11-2009, 06:12 AM Thread Starter
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So Dremel the rib out on the middle to create a flat spot to attach a steel fork to? Sounds like a plan. This one has probably been on the car for ~50,000 miles or more. I remember, my dad had it replaced years ago. The last time the handle end broke off IIRC. The latch seems to work OK, but I might find the time to go in and take it completely out and lube it up good this weekend. I want this one to last as long as possible, since I don't know where the next one will come from. Anyone have a picture of their repair to one of these?
Charles

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post #7 of 32 (permalink) Old 09-11-2009, 06:21 AM
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I have a repaired handle sample I think I took pictures of so will post soon or take more.

Ciao, Alfisto Steve
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Daily drivers: USA models - 1991 164S Black Beauty II ALFISTO;

Daughter's current ride: BB1 my 164L and Her Granddads 2002 Ford Taurus is back up.

New parts hauler but not car hauler 2004 Jeep Grand Cherokee Overland 4.7L H.O. V-8

Needing TLC non-blackbeast the 93 164L

"A day without an Alfa whine is like a day without sunshine"
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post #8 of 32 (permalink) Old 09-11-2009, 10:48 AM
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I have repaired a couple of these using JB Weld. I put a little grove in both pieces, lay in a small piece of steel rod for reinforcement and slop on the epoxy. Mine are still working fine.

Randy
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post #9 of 32 (permalink) Old 09-11-2009, 10:59 AM Thread Starter
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I'm half tempted to reinforce my new one with small steel rod and JB weld.
Charles

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post #10 of 32 (permalink) Old 09-11-2009, 01:31 PM
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Thumbs up Alfa 164 inner door handle repair pictures (1987-1993)

I did this repair to L/H inner door handle for a 91-93 USA model but same procedure will apply to 87-93 pre facelift models. The 94-97 models uses different set up.

Little crude homemade bent in the bench vise with a hammer and hacksaw PLEASE forgive the Primitive Pete method this home boy used.

I did use an electric drill to drill holes for mounting screw and a dremel tool to trim down rib on old handle so metal repair plate would lay flush on handle.

Sample of L/H front inner handle broken pieces below the L/H front arm rest with a repaired handle ALSO also has broken flat handle and I am working on a repair for that, too as many rear inner handles also break off flat handle but not fork.

Remember two of my many sayings - you can never have to many spare parts AND never throw away an Alfa part that maybe can be repaired when you just can't find a replacement part.
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Ciao, Alfisto Steve
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Daily drivers: USA models - 1991 164S Black Beauty II ALFISTO;

Daughter's current ride: BB1 my 164L and Her Granddads 2002 Ford Taurus is back up.

New parts hauler but not car hauler 2004 Jeep Grand Cherokee Overland 4.7L H.O. V-8

Needing TLC non-blackbeast the 93 164L

"A day without an Alfa whine is like a day without sunshine"

Last edited by Alfisto Steve; 03-06-2012 at 04:57 AM.
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post #11 of 32 (permalink) Old 09-11-2009, 03:12 PM Thread Starter
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Excellent. I appreciate the images. I was wondering how to attach the steel plate exactly and this is gold. Certainly doesn't matter if it's pretty or not. I'm glad there is a lot of extra room in the armrest for extra material on the handle. I'll probably throw in some JB for good measure as well. Thanks again Steve.
Charles

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post #12 of 32 (permalink) Old 09-11-2009, 03:52 PM
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How do you repair when the break is at the handle end? And, could we have this added to the maintenance sticky?

Red 1991 164S, Black 1991 164S, Red 1987 Milano, 1972 Berlina, 1973 Berlina rebuilding SPICA engine
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post #13 of 32 (permalink) Old 09-11-2009, 08:21 PM
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Originally Posted by Richard2 View Post
How do you repair when the break is at the handle end? And, could we have this added to the maintenance sticky?
I am still scheming on handle end repair. I have a rear one with break in middle I have a boxed rectangle sleeve I am try to fit over break like a splint.

Now the inner one I have in picture broken off flush with end of handle will take some doing with a 90 degree angle piece.

I added this thread to my sticky above.

Ciao, Alfisto Steve
Virginia Beach, VA
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Daily drivers: USA models - 1991 164S Black Beauty II ALFISTO;

Daughter's current ride: BB1 my 164L and Her Granddads 2002 Ford Taurus is back up.

New parts hauler but not car hauler 2004 Jeep Grand Cherokee Overland 4.7L H.O. V-8

Needing TLC non-blackbeast the 93 164L

"A day without an Alfa whine is like a day without sunshine"
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post #14 of 32 (permalink) Old 09-26-2009, 04:38 PM
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any work yet?

anyone can buy a Porsche, only Drivers drive a Alfa Romeo
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post #15 of 32 (permalink) Old 09-26-2009, 09:17 PM
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I repaired my handle with a fabricated steel fork. Lasted 3 years until the handle broke off. Had a spare, but knowing parts are drying up, I looked for a way to repair it. Muggy Weld Super Alloy 1. Solders at 350F so you can use it on pot metal. Also screwed and soldered a strip of alumimum to the backside goove to take the load when pulled. Handle still working a year later.

Tom

Last edited by iecoupe; 09-26-2009 at 09:44 PM.
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