Question about 2004 Saturn VUE

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Driver Door Adjustment

I just replaced the hinges on the front driver door of my 2004 Saturn Vue. I'm having a hard time adjusting the door to reclose properly after replacement. No matter how I adjust the door, it seems to drop about 1/2 an inch when you open it. Any suggestions?

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  • ffudetep May 27, 2009

    There is no play in the hinges. The only reason it drops is because the door is shutting about 1/2 an inch too low but is still shutting because it's on the striker plate enough to get the job done. However, I want it to shut perfectly, not slightly off. The gaps around the door are off just a tiny bit, but not much at all. We've tried adjustment but can't get it just right. Are there any special tools or techniques?

  • Samuel Charles Spriggs May 11, 2010

    No special tool I know off.



    The approach I would take is to open door all the way, put a jack under it (use wooden block on top), put slight upward tension on the door, loosen hinges, retighten hinges. Repeat until door is in desired postion.

  • Samuel Charles Spriggs May 11, 2010

    To troubleshoot, first, I would open the door all the way, and move it up and down from the end to see where the play is in the hinges.

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Remember that there is a little play in the hinges, even new ones, enough that just a slight degree of play at the hinge axis will result in several fractions of an inch movement at the latching end of the door. The key here (assuming the lower hinge is still mounted at factory height with respect to latch) is to adjust the angle of the hinge's axis such that the latching mechanism is 1/2 inch higher than the stiker plate BEFORE tightening down the hinge's mounting bolts, then when you remove your support holding up the latch end of the door it should sag back down approx 1/2 inch and line up perfectly with the latch plate. I used to do this on an old '79 Monte Carlo I used to have and even being the smallest of the Monte's, it still had fairly long, heavy doors for back then even and could get the doors to shut/latch perfectly. I own a VUE now-a-days and its door's are featherweights by comparison so they should be fairly easy to adjust and you shouldn't have to tighten the @#$% out of the mounting bolts during the adjustment, just make sure you tighten them good when the alignment turns out correct upon final inspection.
If your adjustment sags again after shutting the door a few times, then you didn't tighten down the hinge mounting bolts enough and will have to go through the adjust procedure again making sure to tighten things up better the 2nd time around.

Posted on Jun 02, 2009

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