Ford F150: How to Replace Door Lock Actuators

Has one of your power door lock actuators given up on life, leaving you unable to lock or unlock your doors? This article will walk you through the process of replacing your actuators to get those locks working properly once again.

By Brett Foote - May 20, 2016

This article applies to the Ford F-150.

Power door lock actuators are an important component in your power lock system, and though they are a pretty simple device in operation, failure can lead to a non-working system. Actuators feature a small electric motor that turns a series of gears which turn the actuator rod, which in turn locks or unlocks your doors. Whether the motor fails or the gears break, eventually actuators will need to be replaced. Keep reading and we'll walk you through the process.

Ford F150: How to Replace Door Lock Actuators

Materials Needed

  • 5 and 10mm sockets and ratchet with extension
  • Small flat head screwdriver
  • Putty knife
  • Rag
  • T27 Torx driver

Step 1 – Remove the door panel

Remove the two bolts on the bottom of the door panel, then pry off the trim piece in the front middle section (over the door speaker). Remove the bolts holding the speaker in place, pull it out, and disconnect the harness on the back. Pry off the door switch assembly and disconnect the harness on the back. Remove the bolt behind where you pulled the door switch assembly out from. Pry off the trim piece surrounding the door handle and remove the bolts behind it. Pull the handle out and lift up on the door panel to release it, then disconnect the harness from the back and remove the door panel.

  • ford f150 power door lock actuator motor remove replace how to change DIY
    Figure 1. Remove the two bolts from the bottom of the door panel.
  • ford f150 power door lock actuator motor remove replace how to change DIY
    Figure 2. Remove the speaker cover.
  • ford f150 power door lock actuator motor remove replace how to change DIY
    Figure 3. Remove the speaker.
  • ford f150 power door lock actuator motor remove replace how to change DIY
    Figure 4. Remove the door switch assembly.
  • ford f150 power door lock actuator motor remove replace how to change DIY
    Figure 5. Remove the bolt behind the assembly.
  • ford f150 power door lock actuator motor remove replace how to change DIY
    Figure 6. Remove the door handle, and then whole panel.

Step 2 – Remove the power door lock actuator

  • Carefully peel back the plastic rain shield attached to the door to avoid ripping it.
  • Pull off the two plugs on the outside of the door to reveal two 10mm screws, then remove the screws.
ford f150 power door lock actuator motor remove replace how to change DIY
Figure 7. Remove the bolts from the side of the door.
  • Remove the two 10mm nuts inside the door holding the door handle in place (Figure 8).
  • Pull out the front of the door handle and slide it forward, then twist it up at the front and pull down to remove.
  • ford f150 power door lock actuator motor remove replace how to change DIY
    Figure 8. Remove the screws holding the door handle in place.
  • ford f150 power door lock actuator motor remove replace how to change DIY
    Figure 9. Remove the door handle.
  • Remove the three T27 Torx screws from around the door latch.
  • Remove the window guide 10mm screw and pull the guide out.
  • Remove the clip holding the lock rod in place and lift up to release it.
  • ford f150 power door lock actuator motor remove replace how to change DIY
    Figure 10. Remove the Torx screws from the door latch.
  • ford f150 power door lock actuator motor remove replace how to change DIY
    Figure 11. Remove the bolt holding the lock mechanism.
  • ford f150 power door lock actuator motor remove replace how to change DIY
    Figure 12. Pull the lock rod out.
  • Push in on the clip near the bottom of the door using a screwdriver to release it.
  • Pull the entire lock mechanism up and guide it out of the door.
  • Unplug the harness from the mechanism and use a screwdriver to push out the clips holding the actuator to the mechanism, then pull it off.
  • ford f150 power door lock actuator motor remove replace how to change DIY
    Figure 13. Release the clip holding the mechanism in place.
  • ford f150 power door lock actuator motor remove replace how to change DIY
    Figure 14. Pull the mechanism out.
  • ford f150 power door lock actuator motor remove replace how to change DIY
    Figure 15. Remove the actuator from the assembly.

Step 3 – Install new door lock actuator

Point the lock rod up and push the new actuator in place. Reconnect the harness and feed the assembly back in the door. Push the bottom clip back in the door. Reinstall the T27 screws near the latch to hold it in place. Clip in the lock rod and reinstall the cable. Re-clip the harness and reinstall the rest of the screws near the latch, then tighten. Reinstall the door handle as well as replace the bolts behind it and in the side of the door, then replace the rubber plugs. Reinstall the plastic water shield over the inside of the door and reinstall the speaker as well as door panel.

Featured Video: How to Replace Door Lock Actuator on F150

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