1997 Mercury Cougar door lock/latch problem


Old 06-01-08, 12:19 PM
chartreuxcat's Avatar
Thread Starter
Join Date: Jun 2008
Location: Roseville, CA
Posts: 2
1997 Mercury Cougar door lock/latch problem

Here's the problem:

1997 Mercury Cougar w/99K miles.

My daughter and her friend got into a "tug-of-war" with the passenger door. Pretty sure the door was clicked in the "lock" position with the door open.

The door was slammed "shut" but now it won't close. It bounced open, sounded like metal against metal. Looks like the little lower "gear" in the door lock mechanism is stuck in the locked position.

Arugghhhhh, teenage girls having a hissy fit....

I cannot figure out how to release the gear that perhaps got pushed/jammed/hyper-extended in the locked position.

No help from my trusty Chilton's manual.

Sorry in advance for knowing so little about cars!
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Old 06-01-08, 12:27 PM
Unclediezel's Avatar
Join Date: Dec 2006
Location: Northeastern PA.
Posts: 2,230
OPen the door, unlock it,.

At the rear edge of the door, put a Pen, or a small screwdriver, into the latch. Pull up on the door handle and pull the pen towards the inside of the door. The latch should release.
Old 06-01-08, 12:51 PM
chartreuxcat's Avatar
Thread Starter
Join Date: Jun 2008
Location: Roseville, CA
Posts: 2
Thanks, but I guess I didn't explain myself very well...

The door won't close, so I can't open it. I'd need a rope or bungee cord to tie it closed if I need to drive anywhere today.

Also noticed that the outside door handle that you pull up on to open the door is stuck...it sticks out like a mini-wing instead of being flush with the body. It will not stay flush - it just pops up.

I tried your suggestion to no avail. I'm not sure, but I think that the two overlapping lock/unlock gears(??) got jammed pretty good from the door being slammed while being in the locked position?
Old 06-01-08, 09:15 PM
Speedwrench's Avatar
Join Date: Apr 2008
Location: Oklahoma
Posts: 1,698
hold up in the unlock position on the inside door handle and pry the latch halves open they are jammed. that usually will work. it will take a good bit of force to unjam them.

Murphy was an optimist.

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