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Removing Mercedes Benz Front Door Panels
 
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Pelican Technical Article:

Removing Mercedes Benz Front Door Panels

Steve Vernon

Time:

20 min

Tab:

$0

Talent:

*

Tools:

Phillips screwdriver, trim removal tool, needle-nose pliers

Applicable Models:

Mercedes-Benz W201 (1984-93)

Hot Tip:

Door panels are expensive, take your time

Performance Gain:

Doors that work

Complementary Modification:

Replace switches

Over the life of your Mercedes, the front driver's side door will get opened and closed more than the other doors, trunk and hood combined. It can take a tremendous amount of abuse however sooner or later something will fail. If you need to service your 190E locks, door stays, door actuator, door handle, speakers or window regulators then you will need to remove the door panel.

This article will show you how to remove your front door panels. It is not a difficult job, but door panels can be very expensive so take your time and double check things. Also, if you are going to be working on your own car, it is a good idea to purchase a set of trim removal tools. They are a set of hard yet flexible plastic tools of different shapes and sizes that are used in removing trim pieces.. They work a lot better than a flat head screwdriver and there is nothing worse than ruining a "do-it-yourself" project by scratching up your car or damaging expensive interior pieces. Pelican sells a full line of these tool sets for under $20.

Before you begin removing the door panel, you should park the car on as level ground as possible. Nothing is more frustrating than working on the door while it is swinging. It is also a good idea to get yourself a small box or container to keep all your parts organized.

First remove the plastic lock along the upper ledge. It unscrews counter clock wise. The door panel is only held on by two (2) attached pieces of hardware. The first is the door lock trim piece. Remove this piece by unscrewing the Phillips-head screw and pulling the trim piece straight back.

Second is the door pull handle. Begin by removing the set of control switches for the power seat. Using your trim removal tool, gently pry off each piece. The seat switch rides on a small cylindrical post that has a circlip attached to it. Remove this clip using your needle-nose pliers. Once the clip is off you can use you trim tool to remove the cover plate for the seat switches. Remove the screws holding the switches to the door and pull them out from the door.

Next using your trim removal tool, remove the trim piece at the top of the pull handle. Underneath, remove the 10mm nut. Now you can slide the housing for the interior door handle forward and out of the panel. Once it is forward, you can remove the actuator rod that connects the handle to the lock assembly behind it.

You have now removed everything that is bolted to the door panel. Mercedes-Benz door panels are different from most other manufacturers in that they do not use compressible clips to hold the panel to the door. These panels are held on to the door by hard plastic hooks that sit within pockets in the sheet metal of the inner door. Once you have all the hardware off the door, you simple need to lift the panel up and away from the door.

With the door panel removed you will see what is referred to as a "vapor barrier" between the panel and the door. It is really just a piece of plastic held on by glue, and is used to keep out any wind, weather or noise from entering the vehicle. If you are going to be doing further work on your door, carefully, and I mean carefully, try and remove it in one piece so you can reuse it when putting the door back together. If you damage it, you can get some thin plastic sheeting from your hardware store and recover the door with it.

Installation is the reverse of removal.

Shown here is the interior door panel.
Figure 1

Shown here is the interior door panel. You will need to remove the door lock pull (green arrow) lock trim piece (blue arrow), and the trim pieces by the door pull and seat switches (red arrows).

Begin by removing the door lock pull.
Figure 2

Begin by removing the door lock pull. It unscrews counter clockwise.

Next, remove the lock trim piece by removing the Phillips screw and pulling the trim piece straight back.
Figure 3

Next, remove the lock trim piece by removing the Phillips screw and pulling the trim piece straight back.

Using your trim tool remove the plastic pieces for the seat controls.
Figure 4

Using your trim tool remove the plastic pieces for the seat controls.

You will need to remove this small circlip (red arrow) before you can remove the trim face.
Figure 5

You will need to remove this small circlip (red arrow) before you can remove the trim face. Once the circlip is off, pull off the face plate.

Remove the door pull handle trim piece and unscrew the 10 mm nut behind it.
Figure 6

Remove the door pull handle trim piece and unscrew the 10 mm nut behind it. Once this is removed you can slide the complete handle piece forward and out of the door.

Figure 7

After the handle unit has been pulled forward, reach in and remove the actuator rod from the handle (red arrow)

Here is the interior of the door panel.
Figure 8

Here is the interior of the door panel. You can see the six hooks that hold it to the door (green arrows). Insert upper right shows the plastic hooks.

With the door panel removed, you'll see the plastic moisture barrier on the door.
Figure 9

With the door panel removed, you'll see the plastic moisture barrier on the door. You'll want to carefully peel this off the inside of the door starting at the rear edge of the door. The idea is to peel it off in just a way so that it can be glued back onto the door later.

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Comments and Suggestions:
BrianBBrown Comments: Very helpfull, thank you. I found the 10mm bolt under top of door handle on my 190E. Plastic cover popped out, and a small bit of foam to remove.
Thanks heaps!
September 2, 2014
  Followup from the Pelican Staff: Thanks for the follow up and sharing your experience
- Nick at Pelican Parts
 

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