The rock salt used to treat winter driving conditions unfortunately helps to rust cars out faster than normal. A rusty car can be an eye sore, but it doesn't mean that the car can't continue to run well. The bottom of doors typically rust out faster than other parts on a car, and to make the car look good again, all you have to do is replace the doors with ones that don't have rust on them. Now that spring has arrived and the weather has warmed, now is a good time to replace a rusty car door. Here is how you can replace an old, rusty door that has powered windows and locks with a new one.
Removing the Door
Open the door and set the far end down on blocks. Set the height of the blocks so the door stays level to relieve the pressure on the bolts holding the door hinge to the car frame. If the door sags down, it will be a lot harder to remove the bolts and control the door.
There is a rubber accordion-looking sleeve that runs from the car frame and into the door frame. The wires for the powered doors and windows are in the rubber sleeve. Push the end of the sleeve down until you find the clip in the harness that connects the wires from the car to the ones in the door frame. Unclip the harness to separate the wires.
There will typically be four or five bolts connecting the door hinge to the car frame. Remove the bolts. You should be able to easily steady the car door on the blocks as the bolts are removed. Once the bolts are removed, take the door down off of the blocks and set it aside.
Installing New Door
Set the new door onto the blocks and slide the hinged end up to the car frame. Adjust the height of the door so the holes on the hinges for the bolts line up perfectly to the bolt holes on the car frame. You don't want to screw the bolts in on an angle or you could end up stripping the threads. Stripped threads will let the bolt slide out of the frame and cause the door to droop down.
Bolt the hinges of the new door to the car frame. Push the rubber sleeve back until you find the wire harness. Take the end of the clip of the wires going inside the new door and connect it to the end of the clip for the wires coming from the car. Pull the sleeve back up and push it inside the sleeve opening on the door.
Remove the blocks. Open and close the door several times to make sure it works well. You should also operate the powered doors and windows to make sure they are working well, too.
You can find replacement car doors fairly easily by shopping at local aftermarket car parts dealers, such as Parts Chain, so look around at your options for replacing your rusty door.