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Discussion Starter #1
I have a '99 Suburban with 115k miles. About three years ago the driver's door was not closing completely and had a pretty bad rattle, so I replaced the latch mechanism. That seemed to fix it for about six months, then it began to loosen up again. I put up with it until this summer, when, in addition to the above problem, it became very hard to open from the inside, and the power lock began to fail in hot weather. This time I took it to a body/fender shop, because it seemed to me the fit problem might be with the door itself, and not just the latch. $200 later, this is what they tell me:

- the latch is worn out and needs replacing. Very common with this model, they don't last long
- door is adjusted fine and nothing more they can do
- door handle is wearing out
- lock actuator is failing

I can accept that handle and actuator are failing, but is it reasonable that the latch mechanism only lasts three years (or less)? The other door latches are holding up fine, although I realize the driver's door probably gets the most use. Anyone else have this experience? Thanks.
 

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RE: Driver Door rattles

The latch mechanism most likely failed because of a worn hinge pin. When that wears the door drops or sags. That puts undue pressure on the latch.

If you had replaced the hinge pin when the problem first started you would probably have saved the latch.

If you open the door and then close it part way, grab the bottom of the door and lift the door you will see and feel the slop in the hinge itself. This is usually caused by wear in the hinge pin and the bushing. About a $10 peace that is really very simple to replace.
 

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Discussion Starter #3
Thanks. I checked the door as you suggested, and it's tight. No drop, slop or sagging. Now I am befuddled.
 

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So am I.

Did you mean it rattled before the work was done or now?

Or is this rattle still there?
 

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Discussion Starter #5
It rattled before the work, no rattle now. The last time I replaced the door latch it lasted about six months before it began to rattle again.
 

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door rattle

cbearl78 said:
It rattled before the work, no rattle now. The last time I replaced the door latch it lasted about six months before it began to rattle again.
Sounds like the body shop that did the work replace the hinge pins when they did the work so you should have nothing to worry about for quite a while.

Ask them or look at the bill, it should have a list of parts replaced. I'd be willing to bet there it a hinge pin in there.

The hinge pins were the reason the latch went to begin with. When the pins wear, the door sags, when the door sags it puts undo stress on the latch. Then the latch goes.

You should be fine for quite a while.

Hinge pins will wear first because they have brass or bronze bushings, and like I said when they wear they make the door sag.

Replacing just the latch really didn’t solve the problem. It just made the door close easier because the latch was new.

If the problem comes back check the hinge pins first, like I told you. You can save the latch.
 
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