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I searched around and was unable to find any good instructions on how to remove the door lock and handle from the driver's side door of my 2004 Honda Civic EX coupe. I'm swapping out the door after a collision and needed to remove the old door handle and install it into a new door.
If you look in that hole where the arrow is pointing you'll see the inside of the lock and door handle.
Looking through that hole you'll see a small gap attached to the top of the lock (where the two arrows are pointing):
I purchased two hook tools at Harbor Freight (~$5) a while back for use in doing routine valve clearances on my motorcycle, I used these same tools in the next step:
You'll note the small broken piece of metal in the next picture (the little gap that the double arrows point to two photos above), I broke it in a previous attempt to remove the lock, yours won't be broken...
First I pushed hook #1 into the above gap, the straight tool forced the small gold clip outwards. Then I used #2 to reach under the gray metal and hook onto the clip. Once hooked I pulled straight out and removed the clip easily:
Once done the lock will slide right out (toward the interior of the door.) I put the clip back on the lock so that you can see where on the lock it clips to when it is installed:
Install is the reverse of removal, and installation of the clip will look something like this:
Hope this helps if you're having difficulties with this procedure. Once you know where and what needs to be removed the actual removal is pretty easy.
As a side note, in the above pictures with the lock still installed you'll notice that several pieces of the lock are missing (spring, white collar, inside rod holder, and upper C clip) I removed all these pieces trying to figure out how to remove the lock . In the final two pictures, everything has been reinstalled; it is not necessary for you to remove any of these pieces during this procedure.
This post is awesome. The clip is visible but you can't see enough to figure out how to remove it without instructions. I'd only add that, rather than using hooks, you can loosen the clips by hand.
You simply reach down behind the bracket to the top of the lock cylinder. There, you'll be able to feel the two top ends of the clip. By pushing down on one end then the other from the top, you'll soon have the clip hanging down. You can then reach the lower part of the clip with tools.
Reinstalling the clip partially by hand also worked from me. I found that if I tried to reinstall with pliers I couldn't get the clip in the correct groove very easily. If you wiggle it up there by hand you can feel around until the clip is in the correct groove and then push the clip on part way. Then, you can use pliers to finish installing the clip.
Thanks Much! I googled this article just before the Locksmith was about to give up! He couldn't find the hidden clip until I found this. He still took a while to get it off, but all is well now.
I replaced the drivers side door handle on my 01 LX Coupe today. Did *not* work out like this DIY did.
That slot at the bottom of the lock? Blocked by that metal contraption that is behind the door handle. So I couldn't push anything into it to get the clip down to hook it. I started at 5:30 in the evening. I gave up shortly after 9pm and went to Autozone where the guys there proceeded to help me ghetto work it with a 2' long Phillips and some 11" needle nose pliers. They were out of the hooks. Managed to push the C clip down enough to grab it at the bottom with the pliers. Finished the job there in the parking lot about 15 minutes after they'd closed and the guys went home.
Upshot? I have a new non-broken door handle on the drivers side now, and I replaced the lock actuator while I was at it.
Downside? Original plan was to replace the door handle, and replace the actuators and speakers on both sides.
Honda really engineered **** to be a bitch and a half to fix on these cars didn't they.