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Any alternative fixes for broken door check strap weld?

44339 Views 16 Replies 10 Participants Last post by  junglebunn
I've got the dreaded door check strap weld that broke after the warranty for it expired. I'm not paying ~$1k for a repair that might fail again or $2k to get the entire door replaced with the new bolt style plate.

So I'm wondering if any of you have tried some alternative method of fixing it that doesn't require taking the entire door apart. In my particular situation, only the bottom weld broke, so the cup flops around making banging sounds each time the door check strap decides to pop in or out. I'm thinking maybe a strong epoxy or even superglue might be able to grip that bottom piece of metal well enough to make a good fix. Since the only pressure pulling apart the glue would be the door check strap pressing in, maybe the glue is enough.

Has anyone tried this as a fix? Any reason you think this would not work?

I've gotten so used to and annoyed with the sound of the drivers door pop, that when I enter the passenger side the rare times I do, it feels so good to open a door and hear nothing and feel no ridiculous resistance. I really want to get the drivers side fixed, I wish toyota wouldn't have set such a low time limit on this warranty. These things don't break on any other car I've ever seen.
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I didn't try any bonding agent (glue, JB weld, etc), but did do the drill and bolt it method. I only had the bottom broken at the time as well. I went ahead and bolted both the top and bottom. It lasted about 6 months or so and then the metal of the cup itself started to tear and break loose. I don't think the bond method will work as it does appear to take a fair amount of stress as the bolts and flange of the cup were still tight.

Now the door doesn't make any noise and the stop itself works in that it stops the door at the end of its travel, but it doesn't provide any friction to keep the door open in any position short of the full travel and it won't hold it open at full travel if facing up an incline. We have just decided to live with it at this point or until at least until the door falls off.
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I routinely lubed ours. Unfortunately, we weren't the first owners, so I don't know if it was lubed prior to us. Regardless, lubing only quieted it down for a while, didn't seem to stop the damage (unless the damage was done prior to us).
Because of the internal bracing in the door and the window channel, pictures of the back of the cup would be difficult. I tried to take some when I was doing the repair, but they didn't come out well.

Removing the door panel is easy. There are instructions one here somewhere, but basically, remove the mirror trim cover (just pops off), remove the arm rest pocket. There is a screw if I recall, that holds it on and a screw in the door pull. It slides towards the back of the door before you can lift it out. The front of the pocket has a tab that slips into the door panel. Once it is free, you can unplug the harness going to the window controls. There is a large screw in the center of the panel under the door pull and a plastic "screw" on the panel at the back edge of the door panel. It is actually a fastener that has a plastic screw center. The door panel itself is held in place by a number of panel clips that press into holes in the door. A panel puller works best to remove these to insure the least likelyhood of breaking one, but it can be done with a screwdriver (as wide of a blade as possible). Once you have all of the panel clips loose, the door panel needs to be lifted straight up towards the top of the van to remove it from the window track. Once you have it completely loose, you have to reach around and release the two door lock/latch cables and the panel should be free. You will also need to remove the speaker to get good access to the front of the door where the cup is. The speaker just has 4 screws holding it in.

I've done it so many times between replacing speakers, doing sound deadening and repairing the door check, it took longer to write out this description than it does for me to remove the panel now. It doesn't take much pressure at any point, so if something isn't budging, stop and see what you may have missed.
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First time, probably about 30 minutes disassembly and probably 20 assembly. The biggest issue to watch for is breaking the clips on the door panel. Once you see how everything fits together, subsequent times will be much faster. It probably takes me about 5 minutes now. In another life, I used to install car audio, so I did have the advantage of being more familiar with interior panel removal.
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