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Central Locking - Passenger Door Lock Will Not Open, But Will Close


Wallybally
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Hi all.

I've got an LS 400 1991, which I got as a gift from stepdad !

It has been sitting in a garage for 12 years, and a few things were not working, but the one thing that really bothers me is the fact that when I use the key to unlock the doors, all doors except the one on the passenger front side opens. Then if I open it manually, when I use the key on the drivers side it will close.

I have dug around in the postings here, but only found referrals to the actuator.

However, when I just got the car 2 months ago, the door did open, , and after a few days it just stopped doing that.

Then I drove the 1390 km back to here, and it now starts to annoy me :wacko: .

I am thinking this is an electrical problem. On the same level - the switches for registering that te door is open both on the right side did not function properly, and I fixed that with some WD40, and now they are back to working order.

Would there be a similar fix for the lock actuator ? Just spray in some WD40 and move things in and out so the electrical connection comes back ?

Similar problem for the gear lever indication lights in the dash. P-light sometimes will not come on, Neutral does work, but the Drive-light stays off.

Makes me think that theres a board attached to the gear stick that moves a connector, and the copper just has been oxidizing, I just don't know how to get to it so I can clean it up.

Any help with these is welcome !

Thanks

Wally

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do a search on the trunk hinge wiring, and see what all kinds of problems it caused... there were many. I never had a 90-92, I started in 93-94, and missed all that. check out lexls.com also, there is a world of info there.

good luck.... if it set for 12 years without starting or driving, change oil, flush radiator, transmission fluid, differential oil, pack wheel bearings and inspect power steering for leaking on your alternator, it will kill it. for sure.... and by the way, welcome to the club.

where do you live?

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Hi,

Well, it has been maintained over the years, but it was driven very little.

The one thing I know is that no ECU problems have occurred, because I think it has been swapped out already, when my stepdad got it from the dealer. Why do I think this ? Of the 3 plastic bolts underneath the kick plate only one remained, so they were in there to do stuff.

I live in the Netherlands, so plenty of Toyota dealers around, that can do the timing belt next year.

I thought there was trouble with the ECU because of irregular rpm at idle, but after burning two full tanks for the trip from France to here, that problem has gone away. It seems old fuel gets bad.

Als, the battery terminals were replaced, and a new battery installed, so the french mechanic did a good job. I am keeping an eye on the things you said, but it runs very smooth, and the only thing I see coming is the throttle pisition sensor, which is something they can do together with the timing belt.

Also, a friend of mine works at Denso, so parts I need can be arranged easily, and a new alternator and starter motor will be available when the need arises.

Thanks for the info.

Walter

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Yes, welcome Wally!

I am a bit confused on your lock description when you say the "door will open". I think you mean the lock mechanism actuates(goes to the "unlocked" position). Is this correct?

With that, I would try a simple test. Using the inside drivers side switches on the door, can you push up/down and get all door locks to unlock/lock properly? If so, then your actuators and levers within the door are working correctly. If not, then there is, most likely, an electrical connection issue.

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Hi,

Yes, when I operate the switch on the drivers door to open all doors, only three doors will open, the front passenger side will not. When I open it manually, when I push the button to close them all, they all WILL close. So that's an electrical issue of the actuator ?

Not sure where the connector is, probably inside the door somewhere, so I will have to take it all off and see where it is.

Does anybody have a manual somewhere of how to take the panel off, or should I just take my trusty electrich screwdriver an screw away ? Lol

Thanks.

Walter

Thanks.

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YES yes YES... go to lexls.com there is a lot of information there for you.

just take time to learn about the LS400's..

ps, I think you are not answering Landar's question... opening the door, or UNLOCKING the door.. think about it..

listen to him, he has forgot more then most of us even knew..

http://www.lexls.com/

LexLS.com: The Ultimate in LS400 DIY
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To answer Randall, indeed by 'opens' I mean unlocks.

Operating the switch operates the lock actuators, but the one in the passenger front door will not open, it will close.

I will check out the link, thanks.

Sorry for the confusion.

Brw the link you sent geve me an error page lol.

W.

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Wally, that is what I thought you meant ;-)

So, it does sound like it is the actuator not operating in the 'open' direction, whether just worn mechanism or sticking levers but...the door panel will need to come off. I do not have a service manual, however, I think there may be threads showing how to remove it. And no, you do not want to just go at it with your trusty screwdriver. A "Sawsall" reciprocating saw is much quicker ;-) LOL.

Seriously, the basic way to remove the door panel is to GENTLY pry up the edges of the center wooden trim piece with a flat blade screwdriver. And it is recommended that you wrap some masking tape around the tip of the screwdriver to add protective cushioning. After you get the wooden trim up a bit, you will discover more screws that you can remove. Then there are clips at the bottom of the panel and throughout. I know this is quite general but that is about all that I know on this subject. I do not believe the LexLs site has a tutorial on door panel removal but you can double check -> http://www.lexls.com/tutorials/

If I find a site with door panel removal instructions, I will let you know.

[edit] I just did a search and Billy is correct that the LexLs site has a tutorial -> http://www.lexls.com/tutorials/body/fdoorpanel.html

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Hi,

Thank you all for the info.

I've got three days off work, so I have some time to tackle this.

I still think this is an awesome car, but you need to drive it, not let it rot away in a garage somewhere.

Thanks !

W.

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  • 2 weeks later...

Just to tell you all, I've got some new information about the door lock actuator :

I found something silly when I picked up a friend.

We drove for a while, We got to where we were going, and then the strangest thing happened.

The engine was not running, key was in the ignition in the off position, my side (driver) door was closed, he opened his door, and because he knew that I had trouble with the passengers side door locking/unlocking, he tried to lock it manually, like you would when in an old car without central locking.

Here it comes : ALL the doors were getting a signal to open and all did, so the one thats is normally not opening, opened !

Repeatable. Key has to be in the ignition in off position (just stick it in). Open door, close the lock, and all will open. Even the one that normally doesn't.

This assures me that this is an electronic problem that I don't know where to look for.

Maybe any of you have an idea where the unit is that controls this ?

Thanks.

W.

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So what you are saying Walter is this: All doors will unlock except the passenger door... unless you have the key in the ignition, in which case, they all unlock?

And you confirmed all of this with the key in and then out?

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Well, I am saying that the affected door will not open when using the key in the door or using the switch in the driver's door.

When that door is open, it will close by using the key in the door or the switch inside the driver's door.

Only when the key is in the ignition, and the door is unlocked and open, manually locking the door (whlie the door is still open) i.e. using my finger to flick the knob to 'locked' results in a signal that opens all doors.

Probably a safety system, perventing you from locking the doors manually when the key is in the ignition.... LOL

Therefore, the actuator is fine, it's just a problem of a signal not reaching the door somwhere.

Still with me ?

;-)

W.

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  • 2 weeks later...

I have been experience this issue as well. On my 97 LS, the door locks sometimes will not close or open based on the temp of the locking actuator. During the summer, the older locks tend not to work when the car is hot from sitting in the sun, however, at night or in the morning, they will come back to life. This is due to age effecting the condition of the part. You can either replace it with a used pulled part from a low mileage car from the north or wait for cooler temps to come back.

See if the temp is what makes the difference or not.

Adrian

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Hi Adrian.

Nope, temperature is not an issue, so I suspect an electrical connection somewhere being corroded.

I haven't had time to deal with it, so I'm leaving it for now.

I just replaced the old radio in the head-unit and have some issues to deal with there.

The wiring on these cars is a very very very very tricky....

Thanks.

W.

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  • 9 months later...

Just an update for anyone that is interested :

After 1 year of use, the engine started to run on 7, sometimes 6 cylinders.

This made me order some parts, and do some work;

replaced coils - the issues were still there, running very uneven, car was still shaking.

repaced wires and plugs - very interesting issue found :

After removing all air intake parts, I got to the wires, took them off.

Then I stuck my trusty 16 mm wrench (is that what you call it ?) in there, and was able to unscrew all plugs BY HAND !!!

They were leaking very badly, none of them were clean.

I replaced them, used a torque wrench for 18 nm, then put on the new cables. This was a challenge because the were a bit too long, so very fiddly work.

Put everything back in place, reconnected the battery and voila !

Running very smoothly. After some investigation into the service history got me the info that the last time anything was done like this was 14 years ago.

Has anybody ever heard of the plugs coming loose by itself after that amount of time ? Very strange.

Other than that, I think the last mechanic may have been in a hurry and never took the time to put the torque wrench on.

There never was anything wrong with the ecu, I tested it on the car. It may run a little richer than the new one, but it works.

Also, The doors work fine now. Used WD40 for all the locks.

W.

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Plugs coming loose? Yes, if they were not torqued properly. I have even heard of plugs 'freezing' (welding) into place. They are under a lot of pressure so they must be properly torqued. Sounds like whoever replaced the plugs forgot or just snugged them by hand and underestimated. In any case, glad you are back in business and thanks for posting the outcome. BTW, WD40 may not last long. If it does this again, consider using a better lubricant like a teflon based lube or grease.

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Actually, a mechanic I know says that WD40 has the added advantage of pushing out the moisture, which was a problem 6 months ago.

I could not get the key in the lock on the drivers side, it was frozen solid.

I tried teflon, but that didn't work at the time.

But WD40 is a electrical contact fluid as well, so the electrical connections in the lock itself seem to work better now.

So when it fails again, i got the spray in the trunk.

WD40 has lasted 7 months now, no issues yet.

Thanks !

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