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Pelican Technical Article:

Rear Door Panel Removal

Steve Vernon

Time:

1 hour1 hr

Tab:

$0 to $300

Talent:

**

Tools:

Trim removal tool, Philips head screwdriver

Applicable Models:

Mercedes-Benz W123 (1977-85)

Parts Required:

Clips if needed

Hot Tip:

Pry as close to the clips as possible

Performance Gain:

Access to other components

Complementary Modification:

Detail the interior

Besides the general wear and tear that a door panel sees, it also hides the mechanicals in the door itself. If your lock, latch, window or regulators fails you will need to remove the panel to access them.

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.

The door design and options changed over the years but the basic procedures for removing and installing them are the same. Over the years your car may have been serviced by multiple people including previous owners and this can lead to parts replaced with different size fasteners and hardware. The sizes of the nuts and bolts we give may be different from what you have so be prepared with different size sockets and wrenches. If something is different on your vehicle please let us know and share your info to help other users. If you have any questions or comments or even a different procedure you would like to share please leave it below and please leave your vehicle information.

Begin by parking the vehicle on a flat and level surface; there is nothing worse than trying to work on your doors while they continue swing open or closed.
Figure 1

Begin by parking the vehicle on a flat and level surface; there is nothing worse than trying to work on your doors while they continue swing open or closed.

Unscrew and remove the lock pull.
Figure 2

Unscrew and remove the lock pull.

Use a Philips head screwdriver and remove the two Philips head screws and the latch surround from the panel (red arrows).
Figure 3

Use a Philips head screwdriver and remove the two Philips head screws and the latch surround from the panel (red arrows).

Using a trim removal tool gently pry out the window switch from the door panel and separate the electrical connection.
Figure 4

Using a trim removal tool gently pry out the window switch from the door panel and separate the electrical connection.

When you remove the panel take care to pass the electrical connection (red arrow) for the window switch through the panel.
Figure 5

When you remove the panel take care to pass the electrical connection (red arrow) for the window switch through the panel. Open and press down on the ash tray and pull it out (yellow arrow).

Remove the ash tray holder by using a trim removal tool and gently prying up in the bottom center clip (red arrow) and pull it out from the bottom.
Figure 6

Remove the ash tray holder by using a trim removal tool and gently prying up in the bottom center clip (red arrow) and pull it out from the bottom.

Open the inner door handle and gently pry the plastic shield out from behind the handle (red arrow).
Figure 7

Open the inner door handle and gently pry the plastic shield out from behind the handle (red arrow).

Remove the Philips head screw from behind the handle.
Figure 8

Remove the Philips head screw from behind the handle.

Slide the trim piece down the arm and remove the large Philips head screw (red arrow) holding the top of the arm to the door and remove the arm rest.
Figure 9

Slide the trim piece down the arm and remove the large Philips head screw (red arrow) holding the top of the arm to the door and remove the arm rest.

Next, remove the two large Philips head screws from the door arm rest (red arrows).
Figure 10

Next, remove the two large Philips head screws from the door arm rest (red arrows).

There are a series of plastic clips holding the panel to the outside of the door.
Figure 11

There are a series of plastic clips holding the panel to the outside of the door. Use a trim removal tool and gently pry the clips and panel from the door. It is a good idea to order extra clips in advance as these tend to break easily. With the panel free lift it up and off the door clearing the door lock pull on top.

If your door still has the plastic vapor barrier on it carefully peel it back so you can reuse it later.
Figure 12

If your door still has the plastic vapor barrier on it carefully peel it back so you can reuse it later.

You now have access to all of the door mechanicals.
Figure 13

You now have access to all of the door mechanicals. Installation is the reverse of removal.

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