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88 560sl
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Discussion Starter #1
Good morning! I have an issue with the drivers side door on my 88 560sl. I’m hopeful someone has had this same issue and can point me in the right direction. The drivers side door latch is stuck in the locked position. I got the door open but the latch remains in the locked position. The inside locking lever is stuck in the pulled out position. I can tap down on the latch with a screwdriver and it pops down but will not catch once the door is closed, then returns locked when the door is opened. I have the door panel off and unclipped what I think is the vacuum lock control arm, I can move it up and down and it activates the pump and other locks when moved. With that removed it’s still locked and the inside and outside handles move but does nothing for the lock. I have unclipped the rod to the inside locking lever and popped the latch down but still have the same issue. Before I start taking things apart that may not do anything except cause more work than necessary I hope I can get some advice. Thank you all for any help you can send my way.
 

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Premium Member
1983 380SL, 2000 S430, 1991 420SEL (retired) - RHD
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5,206 Posts
It's not difficult to remove the handle and inspect the locking mechanism. Download the manual from the Sticky section.. it's well described and easy DIY.
 

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88 560sl
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8 Posts
Discussion Starter #4
Aussiemerc, thank you so much for getting back to me. So start with the exterior door handle. From the looks of the pics you sent at best it could be possible all it needs is an adjustment, possibly not turning the full 30 deg. Or I might find broken pieces. Okay, thank you once again, I’ll try that tomorrow. Cheers!
 

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88 560sl
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8 Posts
Discussion Starter #5
Good afternoon all.
so I have taken the door handle off and nothing appears broken.Then I removed the latch. While working the levers and tabs manually nothing seems to trigger the actual locking cam to open or unlock it. I would think that moving these parts as the outside handle would, might make something happen. The inside levers associated With opening the door take a bit of force to make them move but still will not unlock that cam. Is there any other test I might try to see if the latch is working and my issue is something else? Also even though my car is a 88 560sl, R107, the door latch Is stamped W126. I have heard these were used on the 88 and 89 models.
Thank you for any and all help
 

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Premium Member
1983 380SL, 2000 S430, 1991 420SEL (retired) - RHD
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5,206 Posts
Sounds like a clean up and maybe some lithium grease to loosen things? Don't know about the 126 reference, I never needed to take my door handles apart on my old 126
 

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Registered
88 560sl
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8 Posts
Discussion Starter #7
Good afternoon all.
so I have taken the door handle off and nothing appears broken.Then I removed the latch. While working the levers and tabs manually nothing seems to trigger the actual locking cam to open or unlock it. I would think that moving these parts as the outside handle would, might make something happen. The inside levers associated With opening the door take a bit of force to make them move but still will not unlock that cam. Is there any other test I might try to see if the latch is working and my issue is something else? Also even though my car is a 88 560sl, R107, the door latch Is stamped W126. I have heard these were used on the 88 and 89 models.
Thank you for any and all help
Sounds like a clean up and maybe some lithium grease to loosen things? Don't know about the 126 reference, I never needed to take my door handles apart on my old 126
Sounds like a clean up and maybe some lithium grease to loosen things? Don't know about the 126 reference, I never needed to take my door handles apart on my old 126
Aissimerc
Sounds like a clean up and maybe some lithium grease to loosen things? Don't know about the 126 reference, I never needed to take my door handles apart on my old 126
Aussiemerc!
Thank you for your advice. I’ll give that a try although the lock assembly is surprisingly clean and appears in very good shape. I’ll clean and grease it up and see what happens. I’ve been looking online at replacement assemblies and the left side is hard to find and when I did find a few they weren’t cheap.
Thanks again
 

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R/C107 Moderator
1986 560SL: '84 500SL: '84 280SL 5 speed: other 107s
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31,897 Posts
The EPC shows the same part number for all 560SLs.

I haven't looked inside a 560SL door but one thing that is different about the 560SL (and a few earlier models) is the factory alarm. Is yours still connected? I disconnected mine soon after I got it. No idea if it could be the problem just throwing it out there.
 

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88 560sl
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8 Posts
Discussion Starter #9
Hey Rowdie!
Thank you for your insight. You know I think it’s disabled, but not sure. I’ve never set it or used it or heard it. Although I have a parasitic draw on the battery and have chased it down so far to fuse bank 6, which I believe involves the alarm and others. That I have chased to under the dash and then realized from there forward It is beyond my pay grade. I just plug in the battery tender and know that’s another issue for another day. As I was cleaning the latch, I was thinking about the outside door handle. Although it seems to be working I’m not sure something isn’t missing or broken off the long plastic piece that might possibly have something to do with unlocking the latch. At it’s very end it is only shaped like a small “t”. I had to turn the key in the lock to get it to release from the latch while removing it but thinking about it, there’s not a lot there that might be strong enough to work the lock. Sorry for the long reply, but I’m learning a lot here and hope somewhere in my lengthy reply someone might be able to recall something they have tried.
thank you again, I really appreciate your help!
 

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88 560sl
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8 Posts
Discussion Starter #10
Problem solved for now. Got some great advice and just bit the bullet and took the handle and latch out of the door cleaned and greased everything and found my problem while cleaning the latch. A small plastic piece had morphed its way between the latch cam and the latch housing. Looks to be a sort of sleeve for the cam to rest in. It’s seems too chewed up to fit back in, plus I have no idea how to do it and guessing it’s going to be a problem again sometime in the future. Everything is back together and working better than ever! Thank you Aussiemerc, thank you rowdie.
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