Opening rear doors of FZJ80 when handles are not working

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Dec 29, 2017
Opening rear door on FZJ80 when exterior and interior handles are not working.

Tools needed for this task:
Panel pry tools, though 1” putty knife will suffice
2 feet of 1/4” round rod, available at any home repair store

Lower window and wedge a gap between exterior window seal and window. You will not need more than 1/4”.


Looking into the newly created gap, shine flashlight into the gap, illuminating the back, or inside portion of the door handle assembly.

Feed the 1/4” rod into the gap and direct it into contact with the latch linkage. The rod will feed in at roughly 45° angle as seen in the picture above.


Once in contact with the latch linkage, gently push down. Click, door is open.

I had read many posts about people having to struggle though removing the door panel to accomplish is task, having to remove the seats and prying off various trim pieces in order to remove the panel and gain access to the latch assembly. Some would break apart the plastic door handle, sacrificing it in order to get to the linkages so that they could open the door. I figured that there had to be an easier way and stumbled my way to this easy solution.

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