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Old 01-11-2012, 06:35 PM
527 posts, read 1,843,230 times
Reputation: 428


I have a Honda Accord 1999 EX that i bought few months back. Suddenly a problem has cropped up.
The driver's side door does not lock / unlock when i press the remote buttons, nor when i press the buttons on the door, inside the car. Rest of the doors lock and unlock normally but not this one door.
I am a total car amateur so i am not well informed about car issues.
What may be the probable issue and what it may take to repair it?

Those car repair shops like Firestone etc will charge a lot just to check the door.
Being an amateur in this, what can i do to troubleshoot ?
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Old 01-11-2012, 06:46 PM
11,256 posts, read 43,191,290 times
Reputation: 14904
Being an amateur isn't a good qualification to troubleshoot this problem.

There's a lot of potential areas that can be the causation, and you'll need the wiring diagram and the troubleshooting diagnostic tree information to make a meaningful assessment of the problem as well as the repair(s) needed.

This is one of those tasks best left to a professional with the appropriate tools and service information.
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Old 01-11-2012, 07:20 PM
Location: Minneapolis
1,617 posts, read 4,690,007 times
Reputation: 1207
It's not the whole car that's having a problem, it's just the door, a subsystem of the larger machine. If you're handy and mechanically inclined, the overall process is not much different from troubleshooting a vacuum cleaner or clothes dryer.

By that I mean you take it apart, mentally noting how it was put together and being careful not to break it, look at it and manipulate it for awhile to figure out how it's supposed to work, and figure out why it doesn't. Then you remove the bad parts, put in good parts, test, and put back together without parts or fasteners left over.

If that's not something you'd ever do with any other machine, you probably shouldn't start with your car.

I'm just saying you shouldn't necessarily be scared of it just because it's a car instead of a computer or home appliance.

I had a 99 Accord for a long time, but I never experienced a similar problem, so I couldn't tell you exactly what's in the door, but I'd guess you have lubrication issues with the mechanism, or the motor/solenoid that physically moves the lock mechanism has burned out. That's all I can say without being there myself.
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Old 01-11-2012, 07:32 PM
527 posts, read 1,843,230 times
Reputation: 428
Thanks for the quick replies.
I myself am not really much keen on opening up the door. So i would actually like a professional to check. But can anyone suggest me how to and suggest where to go about to get this thing checked ??
I am sure firestone etc will charge for an hour's labor just to open up and then if there is a replacement is to be done then more charges.
Not to sound stupid, but can anyone suggest me a reasonable way to get it checked and may be rectified.
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Old 01-11-2012, 07:47 PM
Location: Minneapolis
1,617 posts, read 4,690,007 times
Reputation: 1207
That's how most mechanics work now. You bring it in with a problem, and agree to pay for an hour or some minimum for diagnostics and an estimate. That cost is almost universally waived if you tell them to go ahead with the repairs.

Instead of Firestone (which is more of a tires/brakes/oil changes place that doesn't necessarily have the most skilled techs), I'd bring it to a body shop, or a well-recommended independent shop, especially if they focus on Hondas/imports. They can probably save you money by sourcing used parts. Just be sure they'll give you a warranty in case the used part goes bad in 90 days (or a year, but that would be extra generous on used parts).

And if you just want to get it over with fast and have it right the first time, and don't care if you pay a few bucks extra compared to somewhere else, there's always the dealership. It will be more expensive mostly because they will use brand new genuine Honda parts. In my area there are five Honda dealerships and lots of other good shops, so dealership labor rates are pretty competitive with the best independents, but your mileage may vary. The major difference in my area is the cost of new Honda parts vs. Chinese knock-offs and rebuilds.

Last edited by Thegonagle; 01-11-2012 at 07:55 PM..
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Old 01-12-2012, 07:00 PM
11,256 posts, read 43,191,290 times
Reputation: 14904
A competent tech will verify the problem and start with the simple stuff to diagnose the problem. Tearing the door components apart to get a visual inspection on this system is asking for trouble; ie, this is not a particularly easy door panel to remove and to get to the control unit for someone not used to working around these spaces.

You might want to check Fuse #27 (20 amp) that it is OK. That's the power supply feed to the central locking unit.

The diagnostic tree for this car then has one checking the central unit input, which requires the door panel removal. From there, a tech can check the inputs as well as the ground circuit, which is the white wire at the control unit wiring harness connector. G501 is the ground terminal which needs to be verified.

Diagnostic time for this may be the majority of the repair, so I would expect that a shop would charge for the diagnosis; installing a replacement control unit is trivial compared to getting to it to check out the harness and ground.

This isn't one of those repair areas where "cheap Chinese knock-offs" are available. You'll either buy the correct OE part or you won't be buying a replacement. Of course, with a car of this vintage, you may be able to purchase a used item at a boneyard ... but you need to know in advance if that's what you need.
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Old 01-12-2012, 07:11 PM
8,402 posts, read 20,276,166 times
Reputation: 6774
First I'd hit some Honda forums to see if others have had similar problems, and look for their solutions. Most every car problem I've had in the last few years has been addressed in a vehicle specific forum.

I'd stay away from chain places like Firestone, because as someone else said, they're best at swapping parts, not really troubleshooting. The dealer could do it or better yet a local shop that specializes in Hondas. They're everywhere.

Door locks systems are simple, especially on your car. This shouldn't be a major problem to get fixed.

Some systems will not allow the drivers door to lock if the system or car thinks the door is open. Is there anything to suggest this might be the case?
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Old 01-13-2012, 09:08 AM
14,780 posts, read 35,873,121 times
Reputation: 14353
If it's only the one door that isn't working, then I am willing to bet that the problem is the power door lock actuator in that door. Each door in a powered system has their own door lock actuator. If only one door has a problem, it is almost always the actuator. Thankfully this is a pretty easy DIY job as the module is basically plug and play.

Here is a link to the module:
Auto Parts Warehouse

There are multiple write-ups online about how to do it. Bascially you remove the interior door panel, locate and remove the old module (usually attached to the door frame with a couple screws and has a wiring harness attached). Plug in the new module, test it out, bolt the module back in and put the door panel back on.
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Old 04-10-2013, 10:36 AM
1 posts, read 73,495 times
Reputation: 12
My honda city 2006 idsi with different problem. All doors not locking using the remote or using the central door lock switch, but i can unlock all doors using the remote or the switch. All doors also not locking when i press the brake pedal or when i manually lock the driver's door. Any idea how to fix this?
(remote with new battery, all doors with new actuator)

Last edited by Juan Paolo; 04-10-2013 at 10:39 AM.. Reason: typo error
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Old 09-07-2013, 04:09 PM
1 posts, read 69,321 times
Reputation: 13
change the actuator, you can buy it on line for about $11 shipped free from china, a better improved unit.
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