When the door locks on your 1996 Ford Bronco or F150 truck go from automatic to manual, it's time to start troubleshooting. The good news is that there are really just a few things it could be and once you narrow it down to the door actuators for the sake of this post, this is how you go about fixing the problem.
The steps for fixing the lock actuators in this video actually cover all 1983 to 1997 Broncos, F150s, F250s, and F350s with automatic locks and windows.
[Modified Script from Tutorial Video Below]
Today I've got a guest mechanic named Brad and we're going to replace some door lock actuators in my 1996 Ford Bronco.
I'm going to skip doing a video of taking the door panels off of my 1992-1996 Bronco because I've already done a video tutorial for that. So let's just get some tools to get started.
Once you've got your door panel removed:
Step 1: The next step will be removing your vapor barrier.
Note: The window is down to get the door panel off. It makes it easier. Now we need the window off so we can get into the actuator area.
Step 2: Next step we'll be removing the window track bolt. It's a 7/16. That'll swing the track out of the way.
Step 3: Now we're going to remove the harness from the body of the door as well as the track on the inside using auto trim pry tools.
Step 4: Brad will reach inside the door and get his hands on the actuator inside.
Note: We have the harness loose and the window track bolt out so we can move that around inside to give us more room to work and get the actuator out
Step 5: I'm going to drill out the aluminum rivet that holds it in and then I'm going to swing it up and out. Then unclip it from the latch.
Step 6: Fish out the old actuator from the door and unplug it. Be gentle not to break the plastic retaining clip on the old plug because the plastic gets brittle over time. There will be another wire-organizing clip that you need to pop loose.
Step 7: Measure old parts vs new parts we got from Jeff’s Bronco Graveyard to make sure everything matches up.
Note: Get the correct size actuator arm and that one matches the shape of the old.
Step 8: Slide the new arm into place and snap it in.
Step 9: Now we're going to separate the mounting bracket from the OEM actuator and then reattach it to our new actuator
Step 10: Take OEM mounting bracket and install it on the aftermarket actuator. It really is just a matter of popping it back in place.
Step 11: Put it back in the door and fish it through. Don't forget to hook up the electrical connector because once you put it in there it's really tough to get to it.
Step 12: Next thing we're going to do is reattach the window slide bracket but before that, you want to make sure that you get all your harnesses plugged back in. You always want to hand tighten these so you don’t strip out those bolts.
We've got the new lock actuator in!!
We didn’t demonstrate WHY we needed to replace the old actuator but trust me when I say it was time. The old lock actuator for my 1996 Ford Bronco was on its last leg. It was really slow to unlock my doors and sometimes I had to hit the button more than once to even unlock them. Needless to say that these new lock actuators from Jeff’s Bronco Graveyard saved the day.
If you want to know how to remove the door panels check out the video blog below for reference.
Lock Actuator Links