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Defender 90 door opening while driving

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I have a 1993 Defender 90 200tdi. After getting it back after having its engine replaced a few months ago i had an issue where the passenger door would open during driving at speed (50-60mph) or taking a right hand corner. this was solved by adjusting the striker plate which had become very worn.

A few months later the right had door started doing the same, i did the same and adjusted the striker plate, this solved the issue for a short time before the problem reappeared. You could pull the door closed but it would get stuck on the first 'step' of the catch, if that makes sense, but you could not completly close it, and if you leant on it, or drove it would eventually open. I had to relaly slam the door to get it to close.

SO i replace the striker plate and that seemed to solve the problem, you just had to pull the door a little just to get close fully, and all was well. however now the problem has come back, i can close the door, and it will seem fully closed (the door wont move if you try to rattle it and is solid if you push it) only for it to open while driving (sometimes at no speed atall, this morning as i was leaving a supermarket car park the door opened) and the only way to get it to close is to open the door (as it only goes to the first step of the catch) and try closing it agian, which is something you dont want to do at 60mph!

I've looked at the lock and it seems to work fine, if i set it with a pen and then try to get it to open, it wont budge, it like the lock just isn't fully engaging when you pull the door closed, but engaged enough to make it look and feel like it is.

i've got some new heinges i might try, but just woundered if anyone had any ideas what to do, or experenced this themselves.

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I recently had this problem and tried to alter the strikers but found the problem to lie more with the deal on the door.

I had replaced the seals but due to having rusty bulkhead corners thought the problem was in the door dropping (which it does to some degree) but I found out a couple of weeks ago that the seal had a thicker section just as the curve of the frame came out. I presume the insert was there to provide some extra wear and tear time as I imagine the kink in the seal probably breaks there quite a bit.

Well I was less fussed about having a harder wearing seal than keeping my son and his child seat in the car so made a small incision and removed a thicker tube from within.

the door still requires a slam as it does drop on the bulkhead and has other damage that needs replacing but requires less of a slam and shuts quite easily.

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In my case the problem was caused by the hinge end of the door being bent, not helped by the amount of corrosion in the door's steel framework.

The cure in my case was to jam a broom handle inside the hinge end of the door and try to close the door. This bends the door back to something close to its original shape and the door latch then works properly again. The process needs repeating on a fairly regular basis.

I've stripped off and thrown away the door lining panels since I'm not in the least bit interested in the aesthetics or the sound deadening properties and all they were doing was acting as a moisture trap. This means I have a full view of the state of the steelwork in the door. If you've never looked inside the lining you may find that the fact the door is no longer closing properly is an indicator of the corrosion hidden by the lining panel so it could be worth taking a look.


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T.S. Ram, it is just a matter of adjusting until you get the latch engaging. I raised the latch (to the pillar) to several levels until at one point it clicked. SWIMBO almost fell out one day we went drivingph34r.gifhuh.gifohmy.gif !! Whhhheeeew. She thought I wanted to get rid of herhuh.gifdry.gif . One thing you could try tickling the belly of the door. And you will find out how rusty it is!!!

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Thanks for all the replys, nice to know i'm not the only one!

I have got some new hinges, and looking at the door it does tend to rattle where the pins have worn, so i'm guessing that most likly the problem. Rust wise the door is ok inside (had to remove the panel when the window dropped into the door). I'm going to refurbish all the inners of the door as since i've been slamming, the inner sheet of metal (the piece the window regulator bolts to) has bent so i'm going to take the opentunity to replace all the parts with new ones. hopefully that will solve the problem for good. All i need to do now is find somewhere that sells a screwdriver big enough to undo the screws on the hinges!

Thanks once agian for all the help.

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I picked up a pozi 4 bit from screwfix without any bother, £3.50 ish

probably try it in a ratchet to get better leverage.

I found that, even with the correct bit in an impact driver I couldn't budge them, they were rusted solid....!

I ended up drilling the heads off then replacing the screws and captive nuts. I'd advise you to get them before you start just in case, don't believe they're expensive.


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