How to Replace a Cavalier Door Latch

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A broken door latch in your Chevrolet Cavalier is a dangerous thing. So let's face it: Unless you plan to weld the door closed and enter through the window, you must replace the latch to make sure the door stays securely closed while driving. The latch in your Cavalier rests within the door along the outer edge and is directly connected to both the door handles and the lock cylinder. Replacement requires a few basic tools.

Things You'll Need

  • Wrench
  • Trim stick
  • Hooked tool
  • Phillips screwdriver
  • Torx wrench
  • Door latch
  • Disconnect the (black) cable from the car's negative terminal if your Cavalier has power doors or windows. Loosen the clamp bolt on the battery terminal with a wrench.

  • Remove the window control from the door's inner trim panel. Pry off the power controls with a trim stick, and disconnect their electrical connector. Insert a hooked tool into the hole behind a window crank to release the clip and remove the handle.

  • Detach the inner trim panel by removing the mounting screws with the Phillips screwdriver and lifting the panel off its clips. The screws are around the edge of the panel and inside the pull handle. You might also need to unscrew and remove the triangular trim panel near the mirror.

  • Peel away the water shield to reach the inside of the door.

  • Disconnect the rods linking the latch to the door handle and the lock cylinder.

  • Unscrew the three bolts on the outside edge of the door that border the hole for the latch; these bolts should require a Torx wrench. Pull the latch out of the door.

  • Insert the new latch, apply the bolts into the door and reconnect the rods.

  • Install all other parts in the opposite order of removal and reconnect the car battery.

References

  • "Chilton General Motors Mechanical Service"; 2006
  • "Chilton General Motors Cavalier/Sunfire Automotive Guide"; 2000
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