How to Remove the Inside Door Panel on a Subaru

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Removing the interior door panels on a Subaru is widely standardized, no matter what the model. If you must replace a side-view mirror, replace the power window module or motor, or upgrade the stereo speakers, removing the panel itself is much easier than the work that awaits you underneath the panel. Although there are slight variations in procedures depending on the year and model of your Subaru, you can still figure out how to remove the panel by following these steps.

Things You'll Need

  • Phillips-head screwdriver
  • Flat-head screwdriver
  • Interior trim panel pry tool
  • Roll the window to the down position. Power it down, if you can, in the event it's electrical. Remove the keys from the ignition to prevent accidental power supply during the procedure.

  • Remove the upper-corner triangular cover from the inside door panel that covers the side-view mirror. In some Subaru models, this component features the door speaker from the stereo. If so equipped, pry the rubber plunger seats from the retainers of the speaker when revealed. If it's just a molding, unsnap it using a pry tool.

  • Find and remove the retaining screws from the door panel. On some Subaru models, these screws are in the hand cup of the armrest beneath a snap-in cover. Others are beneath color-coordinated caps pressed into the door panel. Pry out the caps to reveal the screws. Another screw is in the door handle assembly. Pry the door handle bezel from the door once you have removed this retaining screw. If your Subaru has power windows, there may be another screw beneath the window control module.

  • Gently pry the window control module away from the armrest of the door panel, using the pry tool or a flat-head screwdriver. Disconnect the wire harness clips attached to the window control module.

  • Begin to pry the door panel away from the frame, starting at the bottom and working your way up each side. Use the trim panel tool as your pry device. There are snap retainers under the door panel that hold it in place to the door frame; pry the snap retainers out of their seated position.

  • Hold the door panel close to the door frame when you have removed the panel. Be sure there are no other wire harness connections attached to the panel, such as interior door light or speaker wires. Unplug any of these harness connections if applicable. Remove the door handle rod from the assembly if applicable.

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