Fix Toyota Sienna (or Any Car) Power Sliding Door the Fastest and Cheapest Way




I have searched the internet and YouTube to find out how to fix my Toyota Sienna XLE 2006 sliding door problem. They were time consuming, high risk, and more expensive. My method is cheap, about $4 ($6.70 after tax and shipping in Minnesota) each door and it took me less than an hour, seriously !!!

My method is pretty generic, it may apply to other car models. By the way I am a semiconductor engineer and not a mechanics.

Step 1: Symptom of Sliding Door Latch Problem


When you press a button to automatically open the sliding door it makes noise attempting to open the door but fails. But if you pull the handle and hold it for a few seconds the door opens.


The sliding door latch is not working (see the picture of the latch unit). The door is supposed to unlatch first before it triggers the motor to pull it open. Most common problem is the motor of the latch fails.

My simplest solution:

Replace only the motor of the latch instead of the entire latch unit.

Step 2: Open the Inside Door Panel

What other people did:

There are many resources such as YouTube of how to open the inside cover panel so I will not go into detail here. What other people do is removing the cover panel then remove the inside metal panel to gain access to the latch unit. It's time-consuming and many things could go wrong. After removing the metal panel, it is still not easy to remove the latch because it uses non-standard fasteners. I saw on YouTube people struggled with removing the latch unit.

My method:

Only partially open the cover panel, lift its bottom up and use a box (or anything) to hold it up. No need to remove the inside metal panel.

Once you partially open the cover panel you will see the latch (see the picture).

Step 3: Replace the Motor of the Latch

I used a rotary tool (1st picture) to cut open the latch where the motor was (2nd picture, red circle where the motor is).

The 3rd picture shows what you see after you cut it open, the motor of the latch. The 4th picture shows a closer look at the motor. Remove the motor. The 5th picture shows the cutout piece of the latch.

The label on the motor shows the part number (6th picture). In my case the part number was PAN14EE12AA1 for Toyota Sienna 2006 XLE, I ordered it from DigitKey for $6.70 (after tax and shipping) for each door.

After getting a new motor, insert the motor back. You may need a magnifying glass to view the flat side of the motor shaft. Align the flat shaft of the motor and insert it. The motor has two electrical plug-ins, they should face outside.

I used a hot glue (7th picture) to glue the cutout piece (5th picture) back to the latch.

The last step is simply put the cover panel back and you are done. I finished it in less than one hour the first time, the 2nd time would be even quicker after knowing exactly what to do.



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    10 Discussions


    6 months ago

    I had just replaced the door motor and cable assembly when I realized that the door actuator motor was ALSO gone. By that point, I had put most of the door back together. I LOVED your method of getting at the motor. Worked like a charm. Thanks!

    1 reply

    Reply 4 months ago

    Thanks for the compliment and glad it helped.


    4 months ago on Step 3

    Thank you very much for posting your clever creative shortcut, you saved me a lot of time and money I'm sure. Your instructions were clear and easy to follow as if I were reading a repair manual, I actually scored mine with a heavy duty box cutter,as I did not have a dremel or small cuttin tool available. Also did not have glue gun, so I used 5 minute epoxy to stick the cover back. I would have not gotten that far without your instructions, so thanks again for taking the time to share your ideas and enginuiaty.Man the Internet rocks but only because people like you take the time to share.

    1 reply

    Reply 4 months ago

    I am glad it helps. I am a semiconductor engineer and not a mechanics, kinda think outside the box. Thanks for writing this compliment.


    1 year ago

    You saved me time and money and my car is working again! I love your resourcefulness! I have never used a rotary tool before and I was a little nervous but the cover basically cracked off after I cut most of the way, and it's all good now. I had just replaced the entire pulley assembly for the power sliding door, (2nd time!) and after spending hours and a lot of money it was so disappointing to still not have a power door. I can't believe how quick and easy your fix was! A tip - Digikey will not charge shipping if you mail them a check (my total was $5.05 with tax in NY).

    1 reply

    1 year ago

    I appreciate it. You saved me time and money. In my case i checked the motor and put it back and it works! I don’t know exactly why but i think it was poor contact.

    1 reply

    2 years ago

    Good job Uz.