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Hi everyone,

The fuel door on my Lexus ES300 1997 stuck open and does not close. What could it be and what replacement parts do I need?

IMG_1900 (1).jpg

IMG_1898 (1).jpg

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Your second picture tells the tale. From the center of that rusty circle of metal on the right side, a small black plastic plunger is supposed to be sticking out. When you close the gas door, that plastic plunger catches in that rectangular notch on the black plastic piece in your top picture and locks it into place. Since your plunger no longer exists, the door won't lock.

The only fix is to replace the entire plunger cable. You could price it at the dealership, but I don't think it'll be cheap. Not only that but most of the plastic interior pieces on the rear driver's side of the car have to come off to get at it. That's not hard to do, but someone with experience should do it to keep from breaking the trim pieces. You might be able to strip a wreck in a junk yard to get a used one, but it will take time to do.

Baring that, you might be better off to just live with it.

To keep the door from springing open, take a look at the door hinge in your top picture. That black piece of metal around the hinge rod is what pops the door open when its released. If you can remove that black spring, the door may stay closed on its own. Worth a try!

Sorry that I don't have better news for you.

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@gbhrps Thanks for the detailed explanation. I'm thinking of attaching a magnet on the interior of the door. Hopefully that will be enough.

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It appears that plastic plunger just got stuck because it was covered with rust. Found that out just today.

What kind of liquid would be safe to use at this location to clean it up from rust and lubricate?

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