Driver's is door is locked, won't open

oldschool

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175
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Barrie, Ont
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'03 Buick LeSabre, '07 Allure CXL
So the door won't open from inside or outside. If I could get it open then I could take the panel off and see what's up. Anybody know how to get the door open? Has anybody else had this problem? Seems to be common based on a google search I did this morning. Car is 2007.
 

Spriteman

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1998 Buick Park Avenue - Base - 132K Miles
Will the window roll down?

If so - you may be able to get a slim jim type bar/wire to get at the door opening linkage and give it a pull.

You'll have to look in at the door catch with a good light to see if you can see why it's not moving.
 

92sub

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Motor City
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87GN (gone), 2011 CXS (gone), 98 Regal GS
Usually it's the latch itself that has failed.
If it is the latch you probably have to destroy it to get the door open.
But hey it could just be a rod that fell off;)
Unfortunately you have to remove the door panel 'in place'. That usually causes damage to the panel too but you might get lucky.​
 

oldschool

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Barrie, Ont
Buick Ownership
'03 Buick LeSabre, '07 Allure CXL
I managed to get the door open yesterday. So I pulled the fuse for the electric door locks and I'm not locking the drivers door anytime this week. I'll get the panel off this weekend and see what is happening. At least now when I stop for gas or other things I don't have to crawl out the passenger side.
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oldschool

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Barrie, Ont
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'03 Buick LeSabre, '07 Allure CXL
Well I think it's fixed. I took the panel off yesterday and didn't see anything unusual so I went to the dealer and bought a new latch assembly. Installed it and the panel, everything was good. Went for a drive to do some errands and the door was locked again and wouldn't open. When I turned the key from the outside I couldn't feel the normal pressure of the lock. So this morning I was able to get the panel off far enough to reach in and release the lock. Once I had the panel off I could see the little rod from the key to the latch had fallen off at the top. Reinstalled the rod and all seems good for now. I'm going to leave the panel off for a week just in case. What a pain but hopefully it's fixed.
 

micosan

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TX
Buick Ownership
2010 LaCrosse
Well I think it's fixed. I took the panel off yesterday and didn't see anything unusual so I went to the dealer and bought a new latch assembly. Installed it and the panel, everything was good. Went for a drive to do some errands and the door was locked again and wouldn't open. When I turned the key from the outside I couldn't feel the normal pressure of the lock. So this morning I was able to get the panel off far enough to reach in and release the lock. Once I had the panel off I could see the little rod from the key to the latch had fallen off at the top. Reinstalled the rod and all seems good for now. I'm going to leave the panel off for a week just in case. What a pain but hopefully it's fixed.
You were able to remove the panel with the door closed? Please tell us how you did it?
 

oldschool

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Barrie, Ont
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'03 Buick LeSabre, '07 Allure CXL
With the door closed you can not get the panel completely off. You can however remove the three bolts that are holding the panel in place, then you can pop the anchors along the sides and bottom. This gives just enough flex to lift the panel slightly and pull it inwards at the back. You can then open up the plastic lining at the back of the door and reach in to feel the latch. I'll take some pics tonight when I get home so you can see how the latch looks and where the rods attach. This video is not very good but gives you an idea of how the panel is removed. You could practise with the other side. It doesn't take long to get the panel off. Just need a small flat screw driver to pry the small covers off and a 10 mm socket with ratchet.
http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=bQxAE3_-1g8
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oldschool

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Barrie, Ont
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'03 Buick LeSabre, '07 Allure CXL
A couple pics. If your door won't open but you can get the panel partially off then you can reach in and unlock by moving the small lever up that is attached to the small rod which goes to the spot where the key goes into the door. In the first picture you can see the small rod that attaches at the top with a blue clip. That is the rod and lever that must be moved up to unlock the door. The rod which is in the yellow clip comes from the outer door handle. The cable which attaches to the latch with the blue collar comes from the inside door handle. The other rod with the four bends at the bottom is the door lock button. I'm not good at typing but I think if someone looks at the pics it becomes clear how this thing works.


 

oldschool

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Barrie, Ont
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'03 Buick LeSabre, '07 Allure CXL
I went out and looked at the old latch, when you push up on the small rod with one hand you should pull up on the door lock/unlock button at the same time to ensure the latch does unlock, then the door will open.
 

oldschool

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Barrie, Ont
Buick Ownership
'03 Buick LeSabre, '07 Allure CXL
Well, it's done it again. The drivers door latch has failed. Just over a year with the "new and improved" latch, as the parts guy put it. What a piece of junk.
This will be the last Buick in my driveway. It's a death trap. Had to crawl in from the passenger side tonight so I could come home from work. Can't get out quickly if I had to.
Getting gas will a PITA tomorrow.

Hopefully I can find the receipt for the latch I bought just over a year ago and GM will be good enough to give me a replacement. Not holding my breath though, they build junk cars so I don't expect the parts counter guy to be of higher quality.

It's too bad the auto locking function can't be disabled, this is what is wearing out the latch if you ask me. At least on the older Buicks the auto locking function could be disabled, I did it on my wife's LeSabre.
 

oldschool

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Barrie, Ont
Buick Ownership
'03 Buick LeSabre, '07 Allure CXL
Does anybody know if this problem happens on other GM cars or is it just the LaCrosse and Lucernes with this issue? Seems to be confined to 2005-2009.
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BuickLacrosse

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Out in the sticks
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2006 LaCrosse CX 3.8L
Hate to dig up an old thread but ...

Went to the store the other day. My mom was with me so I didn't bother to lock the car. When I came out the driver's door had popped open. Weird huh? My mom hadn't opened it, I asked just to be sure. When I got in and shut the door it wouldn't latch onto the peg. I noticed the power locks had been applied (mom). I hit the locks and the door latched up just fine. Wrong. Boy did I get a surprise then I got home. The driver door wouldn't open no matter what I did. The locks worked fine but the door wouldn't release the peg. What a treat it is to crawl out/in the passenger door. After reading the above thread I decided to pull the battery cable (hey, you never know). Left it off for about 5 minutes, reconnected and the door opened no problem. It's been working fine ever since. Hope I never need to get out in a big hurry. Scary stuff.

Anyway, thanks for the above info, it did the trick.

(fyi - I lubed the crap out of latch, lock and hinges (what the hell) and all seems okay.)

BL
 

oldschool

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175
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Barrie, Ont
Buick Ownership
'03 Buick LeSabre, '07 Allure CXL
I think you will have a problem with the latch again. It's been almost a year since I changed the latch and I'm waiting now for it to happen again. I've got two unservicable latches kicking around in the garage. If I remember right there is two sections in that latch.
The locking section and the latching section with a couple electric switches tossed in. The lock part of the latch doesn't fail, the latch section wears out.
I lubed the crap out mine but that doesn't help.
 

BuickLacrosse

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2006 LaCrosse CX 3.8L
oldshcool,

Yeah I'm expecting it to happen again. Just hoping it's not when I need to get out fast. Don't like the idea of becomming a well-done marshmellow.

I noticed the lock section worked fine. It looks like the latching part is causing the problem. I'm guessing it'll work fine until we hit cold weather again. Hopefully not until next fall.

Did you check Buick recalls and service bulletins?

If I have time this afternoon I'll do some searching and see what comes up.

BL
 

oldschool

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175
7
18
Barrie, Ont
Buick Ownership
'03 Buick LeSabre, '07 Allure CXL
Last edited:
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Detroit, USA
Oldschool,

What did the replacement latch cost you? Did you go to a Buick dealer?

My driver's door has locked me out for the last time. It's time to replace it.

Thanks,
BL
Hello BuickLacrosse,

We are terribly sorry to hear that you are experiencing these concerns with the door of your Buick, and sincerely apologize for any inconvenience this concern has caused you. We understand that you are currently seeking advice from other users on the forum, however please know that our team would love the opportunity to look into these concerns further and help determine your best course of action moving forward. If this is something that would interest you, feel free to send us a private message with your full contact information, VIN, vehicle mileage, and the name of your preferred dealership so that we can proceed. We look forward to hearing from you soon.

Sincerely,

Steven A.
Buick Customer Care
 
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