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Audi A4 Front Door Tumbler and Handle Replacement
 
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Pelican Technical Article:

Audi A4 Front Door Tumbler and Handle Replacement

Steve Vernon

Time:

2 hours2 hrs

Tab:

$365

Talent:

**

Tools:

T20 Torx, Flathead screwdriver

Applicable Models:

Audi A4 (2002-05)
Audi A4 Cabriolet (2003-06)

Parts Required:

New handle

Hot Tip:

Try everything before you reinstall the door panel

Performance Gain:

Locks that work

Complementary Modification:

Really clean the glass

The front driver side door is the only lock or tumbler on the vehicle, so if it starts to act up, it is a really good idea to replace it as soon as possible. The tumbler and keys are coded. If you want to retain the key code system in the vehicle, you will need to order the replacement from the dealer with, as it is VIN specific to your car. Replacing the front door handles on an Audi A4 is not a difficult job, if you take your time and use care. The biggest issues are removing the door panel and using care so you do not scratch the paint. If you are worried about the paint, place some tape around the handle before you begin.

If you need to remove the interior-mounting piece for the handle, you will also need to remove the lock. Please see our article on lock removal for further assistance.

To begin, you will need to remove the door panel and the door component carrier. Please see our article on removing your rear door panel and component carrier and complete the work there before starting this project.

Tumbler Removal - The front driver side door is the only lock or tumbler on the vehicle.
Figure 1

Tumbler Removal - The front driver side door is the only lock or tumbler on the vehicle. If it starts to act up, it is a really good idea to replace it as soon as possible (red arrow).

Tumbler Removal - Use a trim removal tool and remove the body plug on the rear inside of the door (red arrow).
Figure 2

Tumbler Removal - Use a trim removal tool and remove the body plug on the rear inside of the door (red arrow).

Tumbler Removal - Use a T20 Torx and completely unscrew the Torx screw behind the plug.
Figure 3

Tumbler Removal - Use a T20 Torx and completely unscrew the Torx screw behind the plug. The screw will unscrew but not come out or fall into the door, as there is a brace in the handle mount that will hold it in place (red arrow).

Tumbler Removal - It is a good idea to put some tape on the area surrounding the door tumbler to protect it.
Figure 4

Tumbler Removal - It is a good idea to put some tape on the area surrounding the door tumbler to protect it. Next, use a trim removal tool and gently pry the tumbler out from the handle (red arrow).

Tumbler Removal - Once you can grab it, pull the tumbler out from the door (red arrow).
Figure 5

Tumbler Removal - Once you can grab it, pull the tumbler out from the door (red arrow). If you want to keep using the factory key and the key code system, you will need to order a VIN specific tumbler from the factory.

Tumbler Removal - When re-installing the tumbler, you may need to wiggle the plastic wheel on the back of the tumbler so that it will mesh with the wheel in the mechanism (red arrow) and sit flush in the door.
Figure 6

Tumbler Removal - When re-installing the tumbler, you may need to wiggle the plastic wheel on the back of the tumbler so that it will mesh with the wheel in the mechanism (red arrow) and sit flush in the door.

Handle Removal - Look inside the upper rear section of the door between the outer and inner skin.
Figure 7

Handle Removal - Look inside the upper rear section of the door between the outer and inner skin. You will see a small Teflon clip with the door lock pull in it. Take a small flathead screwdriver and push the plastic towards the outer skin and off the pull rod (red arrow).

Handle Removal - You can slip the pull rod out from the door handle (red arrow).
Figure 8

Handle Removal - You can slip the pull rod out from the door handle (red arrow).

Handle Removal - The exterior section of the handle is held in place by a plastic bracket with a sliding lock clip.
Figure 9

Handle Removal - The exterior section of the handle is held in place by a plastic bracket with a sliding lock clip. Insert a screwdriver into the center of the bracket where there is two bends (red arrow) and push/slide the bracket towards the front of the door (yellow arrows). This will allow the two plastic posts on the handle to slide out of the backing bracket.

Handle Removal - Carefully move the handle and bracket until you can remove the handle out the front of the door.
Figure 10

Handle Removal - Carefully move the handle and bracket until you can remove the handle out the front of the door.

Mounting Bracket Removal: If you want to remove the inner mounting bracket (red arrow), you will need to first remove the door lock (yellow arrow).
Figure 11

Mounting Bracket Removal: If you want to remove the inner mounting bracket (red arrow), you will need to first remove the door lock (yellow arrow). Please see our article on front door lock removal for additional assistance.

Mounting Bracket Removal -This photo illustrates the rear of the handle and the two posts that will fit in the bracket.
Figure 12

Mounting Bracket Removal -This photo illustrates the rear of the handle and the two posts that will fit in the bracket. Installation is the reverse of removal.

Mounting Bracket Removal: With the door lock removed you can simply reach in and remove the mounting bracket.
Figure 13

Mounting Bracket Removal: With the door lock removed you can simply reach in and remove the mounting bracket. This photo illustrates how the tumbler will fit into the mounting bracket mechanism (yellow arrow). Installation is the reverse of removal.

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