Instructables

Fix Toyota Tarago/Previa jammed rear-door latch (with door closed)

Picture of Fix Toyota Tarago/Previa jammed rear-door latch (with door closed)
Recently we had our rear window of our Tarago (also known as Previa) replaced because one morning we found it mysteriously shattered.

All was good until about a week later when the rear-door wouldn't open anymore... oh no!! I climbed in the back and had a look. Since the door was effectively locked shut then everything is nasty and difficult.

I was certain of the cause... glass in the latch mechanism. How to get that out?!  I tried lots of stuff for many hours and here is a summary (with success!)
 
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Step 1: Check the easy stuff...

First I checked the easy stuff... pull the plastic lining from the door (easiest way is to get your fingers under the plastic at the top, near the window and yank). It will be "stuck" around the inside door handle (bottom-left inside of door) unless you can either remove the handle or break the plastic (I didn't do either - you can still get to everything inside the door).

The latch and electric locking mechanism is at the bottom centre of the door and has a cable running to the door handle

Try locking/unlocking the car. The white piece of plastic on the latch mechanism moves up when locked and down when unlocked. No problems with that for me.

Get someone to squeeze the outside handle - the cable should pull a lever on the latch/lock to the right. Try pushing it directly to see whether it can move further (the cable could be stretched or not attached properly). Again nothing so simple for me.

The picture of the lock/latch mechanism was taken much later when I finally got the door open.



Step 2: The door latch

Next thing to attack is the door latch itself

I tried breaking the black plastic on the latch and then shoving in a bit of wire. I hoped to dislodge the glass but that was a fail. I couldn't see inside the latch - I didn't know where the glass was nor the internals of the latch. Better try something else (2 hrs later!).