Of all the parts of a vehicle we take for granted, the doors must be near the top of the list. We open them to get in, lock them, and use the rear child locks to keep the kids safe. But what in the world happens when you can’t open or close one or more of your vehicle’s doors?
Let’s say you get to your destination and go to shut the door and it just won’t latch closed. Now you have a problem. You can’t lock the vehicle. And when you go to drive it, it’s unsafe. The problem could be several things. You could have a stuck latch, door alignment problems, a handle malfunction, or electrical issues. Maybe freezing weather is the culprit.
Now, what happens when the door won’t open? That is not only inconvenient; it’s a safety issue. If you’re in an accident, you must be able to get out of the vehicle quickly. You may have a bent latch; the lock may be broken, or corrosion may have rusted the mechanism.
Needless to say, this is a difficult situation. There are so many different reasons vehicle doors get stuck; this is a repair to take to your NAPA AutoCare Center. So many times, people will try a do-it-yourself fix and wind up causing more damage.
If the problem is a door that’s stuck open, the safe way to get it to the repair facility is to have it towed. Some people will try to bungee or strap the door closed and drive slowly on back streets, but that can be dangerous. If it’s stuck closed, hopefully, it’s only one door, and there’s another door that allows you entry, so you can climb in the driver’s seat and head to the repair facility.
Doors get used hundreds of times a year, so it’s not surprising they can develop problems. To have the best chance of not having this happen to you is to maintain your doors like you do the rest of your vehicle. Door locks, hinges, and latches should be regularly lubricated. Make sure your locks are kept clean. Since a lot of locks are now electronic, know how to use the mechanical lock in case the power fails in your key fob or vehicle. Have your NAPA AutoCare technician make sure latches are lined up, and the doors aren’t sagging.
Dakota Ridge Auto
13074 W Ida Ave Unit A-2
Littleton, CO 80127