It’s not uncommon for things to break on cars, but sometimes strange things fail for no apparent reason.
The link door stop on my Nissan Patrol is one such example. It’s the little bar that stops the doors from swinging open too far and it died an abrupt death.
Incredibly abrupt, in fact. One day I opened the passenger door as normal and then it suddenly wouldn’t close. Considering how bent the arm on the stop was when I removed it, the sudden failure seemed almost impossible.
Anyway, removal and replacement of this item is not a particularly difficult task, at least on my vehicle. The interior door trim needed to be removed, the plastic weather seal pulled back and three bolts removed to have the failed link door stop out of the car.
At this point I reassembled the door because I didn’t have a replacement unit (that was an easy online order away) and I couldn’t close the door without removing the broken stop.
It’s perfectly okay to drive around with no link door stop, you just need to be careful when using the door. Losing grip of it in high winds or on sloping ground could potentially cause hinge or panel damage if the door swings to its maximum with force.
When the new item arrived (genuine Nissan part, no less) installation was an easy reversal of the removal process. The end of the stop that attaches to the body of the car must be slid through the mounting hole from the inside of the door. Three bolts tightened and the job is done. Whack some grease on both ends of the link door stop to ensure it operates smoothly.
On my GU Patrol (series 3) there are a few things to watch for when removing and reinstalling the door trim. I found the plug for the power window switch was tough to disconnect and the small triangular trim at mirror level can be hard to get off. You don’t necessarily have to remove that piece to remove the whole door card, but doing so does make life easier when putting everything back together.
Most other parts clip together easily enough and the plastic tabs seems to be fairly robust. Check the back of the door trim before you reinstall as I have found the press clips often fall out of their recesses when the trim is removed.
Sit the door trim over the top of the door and press the top into place first. Ensuring the pull handle is in the right place is the easier way to make sure you have the trim located correctly. From there, tap the edges of the trim to push the clips in then screw the three Phillips head screws back in. Reconnect and clip in the armrest section with the window switch and then clip in the padded armrest piece. One more screw in the grab handle and reinstall of the smaller trim piece at the top and you’re done.
It’s an unusual repair in my opinion as I’ve never had to replace a link door stop before in twenty years of driving. The good news is, on an older vehicle like a GU3 Patrol it’s pretty straightforward. More modern vehicles may pose other disassembly problems but the basic principle will remain the same.