Question about 2001 Toyota Sienna

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Driver Door Latch Problem

My 2001 sienna driver door only opens from the inside. The outside handle does not engage the latch mechanism. It’s like the door is locked. We tried the keyless entry and the manual lock button on the door but neither makes any difference.
To open the door, my wife has to open the passenger door and reach up to the inside front handle to open the door or she has to get in the passenger door and crawl across the seats. Nether is easy for her considering she is 8 months pregnant.
Any help or suggestions would be greatly appreciated.

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Sounds like you are the victim of the slim jim. what happened is the clip for linkage either broke or got knocked off. you have to remove door panel and repair/replace clip

Posted on Nov 16, 2008

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With the window all the way down, carefully use a long flat tip screwdriver, to push down on the lever for the door latch mechanism, to open the door. Make sure the lever for the door lock, in the door latch mechanism, is in the fully unlock position.

This link may help show you the inner door hardware, I'm referring to above,

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You can see that when you pull out on the inner door handle, it pulls a rod forward. This rod is attached to a Bellcrank. The Bellcrank in turn pulls down on another rod, which pulls down on a small lever in the door latch mechanism, to release the door latch.

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2.The Door Latch Mechanism. Make sure it is functioning correctly. It, along with the various door hardware parts inside the door, needs to be lubricated at specific intervals. The more it's used, the higher the interval rate goes up. (I find that owners seem to Skip this task a lot! I use Lubriplate White Lithium spray)

To replace the door latch mechanism, I suggest you buy a manual for your car, so you can view all of the door hardware to remove, to remove the door panel. Then view how the spring clips come off of the rods, and the three screws come out of the door latch mechanism.

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