REMOVAL & INSTALLATION
- Matchmark the hinge-to-body and hinge-to-door locations.
Either support the door on jackstands or have somebody hold it for you.
- On models with a center door check, push in on the claw and pull out the stopper pin.
- Unbolt the door check from the door.
Depending on equipment, it may be necessary to disconnect various wires running into the door.
- Remove the lower hinge-to-door bolts.
- Remove the upper hinge-to-door bolts and lift the door off the hinges.
- If the hinges are being replaced, remove them from the door pillar.
- Install the door and hinges with the bolts finger-tight.
- Adjust the door and tighten the hinge bolts to 1522 ft. lbs. (2030 Nm).
- Install the door check.
When checking door alignment, look carefully at each seam between the door and body. The gap should be constant and even all the way around the door. Pay particular attention to the door seams at the corners farthest from the hinges; this is the area where errors will be most evident. Additionally, the door should pull against the weatherstrip when latched to seal out wind and water. The contact should be even all the way around and the stripping should be about half compressed.
The position of the door can be adjusted in three dimensions: fore and aft, up and down, in and out. The primary adjusting points are the hinge-to-body bolts. Apply tape to the fender and door edges to protect the paint. Two layers of common masking tape works well. Loosen the bolts (using SST 09812-00010, if necessary) just enough to allow the hinge to move. With the help of an assistant, position the door and retighten the bolts. Inspect the door seams carefully and repeat the adjustment until correctly aligned.
The in-out adjustment (how far the door "sticks out" from the body) is adjusted by loosening the hinge-to-door bolts. Again, move the door into place, then retighten the bolts. This dimension affects both the amount of crush on the weatherstrips and the amount of "bite" on the striker.
Further adjustment for closed position and smoothness of latching is made at the latch plate or striker. This piece is located at the rear edge of the door and is attached to the bodywork; it is the piece the latch engages when the door is closed.
Although the striker size and style may vary between models or from front to rear, the method of adjusting it is the same:
- Loosen the large cross-point screw(s) holding the striker. Know in advance that these bolts will be very tight; an impact screwdriver is a handy tool to have for this job. Make sure you are using the proper size bit.
- With the bolts just loose enough to allow the striker to move if necessary, hold the outer door handle in the released position and close the door. The striker will move into the correct location to match the door latch. Open the door and tighten the mounting bolts. The striker may be adjusted towards or away from the center of the car, thereby tightening or loosening the door fit. The striker can be moved up and down to compensate for door position, but if the door is correctly mounted at the hinges this should not be necessary.
Do NOT attempt to correct height variations (sag) by adjusting the striker.
- Additionally, some models may use one or more spacers or shims behind the striker. These shims may be removed or added in combination to adjust the reach of the striker.
- After the striker bolts have been tightened, open and close the door several times. Observe the motion of the door as it engages the striker; it should continue its straight-in motion and not deflect up or down as it hits the striker.
- Check the feel of the latch during opening and closing. It must be smooth and linear, without any trace of grinding or binding during engagement and release.
It may be necessary to repeat the striker adjustment several times (and possibly re-adjust the hinges) before the correct door to body match is produced.