I need to remove my Rav4 rear door and replace it with a new one. i have the new door arriving shortly, but would like some advice on removing the locking mechanism and swapping it out for the lock in my current door so that my original keys still work with it. can you help?
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The short answer is that it is not bolted on and it isn't meant to be removed. The vehicle is uni-body construction, meaning that it is all welded together to form a unit structure and anything that changes the structure could be life threatening. Here is s picture of a Rav4 with the tail light out:
To get the outer sheet metal off you need to take out the interior trim and covers to expose the welded structure. The spot welds can be drilled out with a spot weld cutter. Not a job for most people. If it isn't welded back in place correctly, it will affect wheel alignment, rear door sealing and worst case the rear suspension could fall out on the highway. I suggest only a trusted body repair shop handle something like this.
The easiest way to tell if you have 4WD is to look under the car for a driveshaft under the rear floor, that is connected to the rear axle. If you have a driveshaft, you have a 4WD vehicle. No Driveshaft, no 4WD. The 2WD Rav / 4 are, for some reason, also called Rav/4s there is no 'Rav / 2"
Slide a small screwdriver under the tab in the middle of the blade and the arm, while pressing the tab in, pull blade away from the arm, this may need some extra wiggle. Remember you dont want it to fall off when driving..