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Discussion Starter #1
HI,
whenever I open the doors from the inside, I have to push the interior door handle forwards (locking position) to be able to have the door stay closed. It does not automatically allow the door to stay latched.

if i open from outside handles, no problem, closes and latches properly.
 

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Problem with the latch mechanism, seems to me. Probably sticking due to dried up grease lubricant on the latch mechanism. Before you get all "take the door panel off and start adjusting", try spraying all the latch mechanism from outside the door casing through the latch hole with WD-40. WR-40 is not really a lubricant, but it does well in the short run in loostening sticky parts like the latch mechanism, and most people have WD-40 around the house. If the WD-40 gets the latch working, you can follow it up with a spray lubricant. You can even get white grease in spray form.

Try this first. If it doen not help, you have lost little. If it works, you just saved taking off the door panel.

Robert
 

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Discussion Starter #3
HI,
I tried that before, and no luck. I have the entire interior removed, i am doing a restoration. So there is access to inside the door. Any other thoughts? Thanks
Rande
 

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Rande,

My '91 has the same problem, but only on the passenger side door. I trained my wife to push the door handle forward when closing the car, but am looking forward to learning of a better solution.

HI,
whenever I open the doors from the inside, I have to push the interior door handle forwards (locking position) to be able to have the door stay closed. It does not automatically allow the door to stay latched.

if i open from outside handles, no problem, closes and latches properly.
 

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George above has your solution. what he means is , from the inside, after pulling the handle to open the door, be sure to push it back to the default position, as far as it will go, before closing the door again.

my driver door has been like that forever, and i just unconciously always do it
 

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But Mad North-Northwest
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I think you guys just need to lube the hell out of everything with some white lithium grease.

If you've got the panels off, Rande, it's not too tough. Just grease everything that moves form the lever back to the latch, work the mechanism a bit, then spread the grease around some more. Try not to get any on the window as it makes a mess.
 

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HI, is there a spring in the door handle, or linkage?
must be (somewhere!), as my interior handle springs back when I pull it......and my doors open and latch fine....
 

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But Mad North-Northwest
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Rande, you're the man with the door panel off. You try looking? :D

IIRC, at minimum there's a spiral spring at the rear of the door for the latch and a spring in the handle. Anyway, I suspect what's happening in your case is that the handle linkage is just sticking a bit towards the "open" direction and is not letting the latch properly latch closed.

Just follow all the linkage parts and lube the hell out of all the pivots, springs, and contact points. Odds are that'll fix things.
 

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As noted above by rande in 2010, my passenger side inside door handle also does not return to it's neutral position. So good to know this is a common problem. I already had the door panels off anyway, so, being a glutton for punishment, I took the whole mechanism out. It was just bugging me and I'm into this to learn a few things, so I decided to try to fathom how it works. My wife, who barely will ride in the car because there's no passenger air bag, is reluctant to be trained.

The process means that the window had to come out but I did that before when I replaced the window regulator on the other side. I've attached a few pictures of the thing. There are springs at both ends and the entire piece seems to be in excellent shape, although very dirty and greasy. I was originally thinking that the problem must be at the inside handle end but if I hold the bulk of it and turn the handle, it does return. So, I think that end must be meeting some resistance at the other. It IS rather gunked-up. Would anyone agree that perhaps it just needs a good cleaning and re-lubricating? Or are there any other ideas?

I also wonder why only the passenger side is affected. Are the mechanisms the same? Or perhaps I'm unconsciously pushing the handle back after opening the door?

I know this doesn't really belong in this thread but after reading posts by vf31rhill, I replaced the window regulator with one of the modern aftermarket devices without the wires. THAT was a learning experience! It works great but it immediately became apparent that the window would not descend all the way - just a bit (maybe a 1/4 of a inch) of glass is showing. No big deal but is that to be expected? I remember noting that it was the design and size of the parts at the bottom that kept it from letting the window go all the way down.

Thanks in advance for any advice. I hope the pictures will be of help to others...if they want to bother getting into it. I LOVE this stuff!
 

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