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Old 12-21-2017, 10:32 PM   #11
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What I used...

I know that there are many manufacturers and sources for the metal cable ends, but these are the ones that I used:

https://smile.amazon.com/gp/product/...?ie=UTF8&psc=1

Unlike some of the other sets I read reviews on, for me anyway, these didn't need to be modified in any way and were relatively easy to install. I watched a good hours worth of youtube videos on other installs and it really helped out.

I replaced the four ends on both of the cables in my right rear door. Initially I only planned on replacing the one cable end that was broken when I pulled the door panel off, but the three other cable ends broke while I was trying to replace the originally broken one. The plastic ends were so brittle that they came apart with just my fingernails. If I had to guess, I'll be replacing the ends on the three other doors in the not too distant future.
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Old 12-26-2017, 06:09 AM   #12
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FWIW anyone dealing with door latch cable issues Dorman makes replacement cables for what I think is dirt cheap money. Searching on Rockauto.com in your van's year "body" section look for "door latch cable".

(Link for my own 2005 e350 as an example: https://www.rockauto.com/en/catalog/...ch+cable,13709)

All too often door latch/handle issues are directly related to failed cables so these being available make this a (relatively) easy repair.

Also the cable end repair kits linked to eBay by BoyWonder are nice too--I bought and trial fitted a few to damaged cables I had laying around. I'd prefer an entire new complete cable but those are good alternatives.

HTH
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Old 06-09-2018, 05:08 PM   #13
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I buy the metal ends off amazon. Over the past 3 years I've replaced all the ends in the van.
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Old 06-12-2018, 05:22 AM   #14
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Quote:
Originally Posted by jblaze5779 View Post
I buy the metal ends off amazon. Over the past 3 years I've replaced all the ends in the van.
That's not a bad strategy if a van is 10-15 years old & still using original cables.

As with so many small annoying things failed cables always seem to happen at the absolutely most inconvenient time.
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Old 06-12-2018, 08:29 AM   #15
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Quote:
Originally Posted by JWA View Post
That's not a bad strategy if a van is 10-15 years old & still using original cables.

As with so many small annoying things failed cables always seem to happen at the absolutely most inconvenient time.
Yeah nothing like being on a roadtrip for a couple weeks and the passenger rear door won't open...

Pretty sure I've done every door by now
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Old 06-12-2018, 10:34 AM   #16
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Pardon my lack of knowledge, but where do these cables go and what do they do?
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Old 06-12-2018, 11:29 AM   #17
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They connect the door handle with the latch mechanism that releases the door to open it. When the plastic parts disintegrate, the cable is pulled, but not enough to release the latch so the door gets stuck closed.

The metal part replaces the plastic piece that disintegrates. I have had ok luck with the metal replacements. Worked ok on one door, on the other I had to pay $75 for a totally new latch kit and that makes it work perfect.
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Old 06-12-2018, 02:25 PM   #18
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I love that feeling when you go to pull the latch and you can just feel that bastard break off in the door. Then I get to yelling.
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Old 06-13-2018, 06:17 AM   #19
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Grampswrx View Post
They connect the door handle with the latch mechanism that releases the door to open it. When the plastic parts disintegrate, the cable is pulled, but not enough to release the latch so the door gets stuck closed.

The metal part replaces the plastic piece that disintegrates. I have had ok luck with the metal replacements. Worked ok on one door, on the other I had to pay $75 for a totally new latch kit and that makes it work perfect.
One thing too often overlooked is IF the cables break WHY did that happen? Was the actual latch showing its age or long-term lack of lubrication putting excessive strain on the door latching release mechanism? Or it is due parts failing after their expected life has passed?

Buying new latches with cables is one way to go and probably the best in terms of longer-term reliability but if I went that route I'd double-check door alignment and hinge-pin wear, another often overlooked area of concern.

As simple as door latches seem to be they're the proverbial "deep water" of vehicle maintenance.

HTH
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Old 06-13-2018, 10:45 AM   #20
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I think the issue here is almost entirely on the plastic end piece being heat cycled and fatigued continually over its service life. Every failed cable I've seen has just disintegrated out of the latching mechanism.

The metal replacement ought to last a lifetime.
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