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How to Fix a Door Lock on a Jeep Cherokee

This article is a collaborative effort, crafted and edited by a team of dedicated professionals.

Contributors: Muhammad Baballe Ahmad, Mehmet Cavas, Sudhir Chitnis, and Zhen-ya Liu.

✓ Verified & Tested Information

This blog post will show you how to fix a door lock on a Jeep Cherokee.


If you want to fix a door lock on a Jeep Cherokee, the first thing you will need to do is to prepare for the repair. This includes gathering all the necessary tools and supplies, such as a screwdriver, a wrench, replacement screws and/or pins, lubricating oil, as well as safety goggles. Additionally, you should make sure to have clear access to the door lock and to the interior of the car. Once you are prepared, you can begin the repair.

Gather tools and materials

If you want to fix a door lock on your Jeep Cherokee, you will need to gather the right tools and materials before you start. You’ll need a Phillips screwdriver, a flat-blade screwdriver, a star bit driver, pliers, and an adjustable wrench. For materials, you’ll need several circuit board pins and two or three small zip ties. If possible, have spare doorknob actuators on hand just in case one of them is broken. Additionally, have some lubricant handy so that you can lubricate the lock cylinder and associated moving parts once the repair is complete. Once all the necessary tools and materials are ready to go, you can begin the repair process with confidence!

Disconnect the battery

Before attempting to work on your Jeep Cherokee door locks, it is important to disconnect the battery. This will help to prevent electrical shocks and other dangers which can arise when working on cars or motorcycles with electric components. To disconnect the battery, simply open the hood and locate the negative and positive terminals. Using a wrench, unscrew the nuts that are holding them in place and pull them off. Take care that no metal parts come into contact with each other until you have completed all the necessary work. When you have finished working, put the nuts back in place but do not overtighten them – this could damage your vehicle.

Remove the Door Panel

Removing the door panel is the first step in fixing the door lock on a Jeep Cherokee. This will give you access to the inner workings of the lock mechanism, making it easier to diagnose and repair the problem. You will need to get an appropriate screwdriver and maybe some cloth to protect the door panel from damage. Let’s explore this process in detail.

Remove the screws and bolts

Before you can remove the door panel, you must first remove the screws and bolts located near the interior handle. Most Jeep Cherokee models have three screws located at the upper end of the door, near the interior handle. You may have to pull away part of the lining from inside the door in order to access these screws and bolts. Using a screwdriver, carefully remove each screw from its mount on the frame, then set them aside where they won’t get lost. Depending on your particular model, there may be other screws or bolts that need to be removed as well. See your vehicle manual for specific instructions.

Disconnect the wiring harness

In order to remove the interior door panel of a Jeep Cherokee, you must first disconnect the wiring harness. The harness attaches to many parts within the door frame, including the window regulator and the lock actuator. To disconnect it, locate the plastic retainers around the harness and carefully pry them up with a flat head screwdriver. Then gently pull each connector away from its mate until it is completely disconnected. Once complete, you can begin removing other components from the door in order to access and repair or replace your Jeep Cherokee’s door lock.

Access the Lock Mechanism

Replacing a door lock mechanism on a Jeep Cherokee requires access to the lock assembly. In order to do this, you’ll need to remove the vehicle’s interior door panel. Fortunately, this is a fairly simple process that can be done in a few steps and does not require any tools. Let’s take a look at how to access the lock mechanism and get started on the repair.

Remove the screws to access the lock mechanism

Once you have the interior door panel off of your Jeep Cherokee, you can then access the lock mechanism. Begin by removing the screws that are located at the bottom and sides of the door using a Phillips head screwdriver. Carefully remove each screw, placing them in an organized fashion so they don’t get lost. Make sure to check for any other small screws or components that may need to be removed before you can access the lock mechanism.

Once all of the screws have been taken out, use a flat-head screwdriver to pop out any plastic retaining clips around the edge and top corners of the panel. Be careful not to damage or lose any of these pieces as they are essential for reassembling your door correctly. Once all of these components are removed, you should be able to carefully lift up and pull out the door panel from its place, protecting any wires or cables from snagging on anything in order to keep them intact.

Disconnect the linkage

Before you begin servicing the lock mechanism, it is important to disconnect the linkage from the mechanism. To do this, locate and remove any pins or screws that secure the linkage then carefully pull off the connections. Use caution when removing these components to prevent damage to yourself or other parts of the Jeep Cherokee. Once all of the connections have been freed, you can begin working on the lock mechanism itself.

Replace the Lock Cylinder

Replacing the lock cylinder on a Jeep Cherokee is a straightforward task that involves removing the interior door panel. This process will give you access to the lock cylinder and the components needed to replace it. You will need to purchase a new lock cylinder to replace the broken one. After you’ve acquired the new lock cylinder, you can begin the process of replacing the old one.

Remove the old lock cylinder

In order to replace the lock cylinder on a Jeep Cherokee, first the old one must be removed. To do this, start by finding the small hole near the keyhole of the lock cylinder. Take a paper clip and unbend it until it is straight to create a small tool. Insert it into the hole and press in as you rotate the key 180. When successful, you should hear an audible click as the release pin pulls away from the axle of the lock cylinder.

Next pull out on the same key while continuing to rotate in a counter-clockwise movement until the entire lock cylinder comes free from its mounting bracket inside of your door handle. Be sure not to lose any of the pieces or internal components that may have been in place before pulling out because these will need to be re-inserted into your new lock cylinder correctly for it work correctly once installed.

Install the new lock cylinder

Once you have the new lock cylinder ready, install the cylinder by first inserting the key (without turning) and then using the key to rotate the cylinder. Push it all the way in until it clicks into place. Secure the cylinder with two screws that were provided with your new lock kit or use the screws that were removed from your existing lock.

Now it’s time to connect all of the wiring of your new lock system. Connect each colored wire according to its color code; for example, if one wire is labeled “red,” that means it should be connected to a red-colored wire on another component. It’s important to double-check each connection and make sure it’s properly secured before moving on to install additional components of your system, such as door panel inserts and mounting plates.

Once all wiring is securely attached, follow instructions included in your kit for attaching any door panel inserts, testing gear mechanisms, or mounting plates necessary for rebalancing spring tensions and assuring correct operation of your door locks. Make sure you understand what type of adjustments are necessary based on whether you’re replacing a broken lock or installing a brand-new system – details will vary depending on which type of job you need to do.

Reassemble the Door Panel

After you have properly installed the door lock, the next step is to reassemble the door panel. The door panel is what covers the interior of the door and provides an aesthetic look to the vehicle. It is important to properly reassemble the door panel in order to ensure that the door lock is correctly secured and the door looks good. Let’s look at the steps of how to reassemble the door panel on a Jeep Cherokee.

Reconnect the wiring harness

Connecting the wiring harness to the Jeep Cherokee door panel is an essential part of reinstalling the panel. To begin, locate the wiring harness connected to the door lock mechanism and remove it from its position in the door by disconnecting its two plastic clips. Also disconnect any electrical wires that may be connected to the door panel or to other components on either side of it. Once all of these connections are detached, use a screwdriver or other tool to remove any screws that hold the door panel in place.

Next, insert one arm of the wiring harness through a hole at one end of the door panel and secure it with a bolt or wing nut. Reattach all electrical wires that were disconnected at earlier steps as well as any additional pieces that will ensure proper function and stability. Finally, firmly press each side of the wiring harness into position until they click into place. This will ensure reassembly is successful so your Jeep Cherokee will be able to lock properly again!

Reinstall the screws and bolts

Once the panel is in place, you will need to secure it with screws, bolts and nuts. These components will have been removed when you took apart the panel. Reassemble these components using the original parts from your vehicle.

Start by reinstalling all screws and bolts, working from the inside of the door outward, in a clockwise rotation. Ensure that each screw and bolt is tightened down snuggly with the proper wrench size – don’t overtighten them or try to force them into place. Once all screws and bolts have been reinstalled, check around the door panel for any gaps or sticking points which indicate a misalignment. Make any necessary adjustments and continue on to reinstall the nuts.

Reinstall each nut into its appropriate tightened spot on its corresponding screw or bolt head, turning with fingers until snug. Then use an adjustable wrench to finish tightening it down completely – but not too tightly as this can easily strip out threads or crack plastic parts! Once everything has been secured snuggly into place your door lock should function as intended once again!

Reconnect the Battery

The first step to fixing a door lock on a Jeep Cherokee is to make sure the battery is properly connected. If the battery is not connected, then the door locks may not respond to you pressing the power unlock button. Therefore, check and make sure the battery is connected properly and securely. Once the battery is connected, you can move on to the next steps.

Reconnect the battery

A Jeep Cherokee door lock can sometimes need to be reset when connections get disconnected, which can interfere with its functionality. To fix this issue, the first step is to reconnect the battery. This will help ensure that electric signals are sent reliably from the controlling device.

To reconnect the battery in a Jeep Cherokee, you will need:
-A Phillip’s screwdriver
-A Flathead screwdriver
-Safety glasses or eye protection
-Battery terminal cleaner or a baking soda and water solution

Once you have gathered all of your necessary tools and supplies, you need to locate the battery posts in your vehicle. On most Cherokees, these are located at the front of the engine compartment on either side of the radiator. Using a Phillips screwdriver, remove both negative and positive cables from their respective posts. Clean each post using either a battery terminal cleaner or a baking soda and water solution applied with an old toothbrush. Make sure there are no corrosion particles left on either post.
dOnce both posts are cleaned, loosen each terminal clamp with a flathead screwdriver for optimal connection before reattaching them to their original post locations. After both cables have been connected, tighten each one securely with the corresponding tool before running any tests on your newly reset door lock system.

Test the new lock cylinder

Once the lock cylinder has been replaced, it’s time to test it out and make sure everything is working properly. You will need to reconnect the battery in order to do this. First, locate the + and – terminals on the battery and connect them securely. Make sure you exercise caution when handling electrical components.

Once the connections are secure, start up your Jeep Cherokee, insert the key into the new lock cylinder, then turn it clockwise to unlock the door. You should feel a slight tug upon doing so – that’s a good sign! To test for a full unlock action, open and close your doors several times as needed. If everything works correctly, you’re all done! Be sure to dispose of any old or used parts properly.

How to Fix a Door Lock on a Jeep CherokeeCheckout this video:

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