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Old 05-31-2011, 10:05 AM   #1
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Door adjustment on a 2000 VW Jetta?


I have a 2000 VR6 and the driver side door is out of adjustment. It's causing my door panel to rub the inner sill and it's already broken my door panel. My Dad and I compared it with the passenger side door on Saturday and noticed it's misaligned. Does anyone know how to fix this? Thanks!

Jesse

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Old 05-31-2011, 07:59 PM   #2
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Door adjustment on a 2000 VW Jetta?


was it bought new or used?

i'd start with inspection of hinge where it is attached to the frame. normally, there's a thick rod that goes through a bracket and it has a sleeve on it. that sleeve sometimes gets worn and results in a door out of kilter.
sometimes that rod is worn out itself.
if it all looks identical on both sides, and door hinges are pretty stout steel, i'd assume there was some damage to that side. or the frame. it does not "just happen".
you can try undoing brackets from the frame and moving them ever so slightly. you need to keep in mind that a slight slide at the bracket results in a lot of angular change at the outer door edge.

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Old 05-31-2011, 08:36 PM   #3
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Door adjustment on a 2000 VW Jetta?


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Originally Posted by ukrkoz View Post
was it bought new or used?

i'd start with inspection of hinge where it is attached to the frame. normally, there's a thick rod that goes through a bracket and it has a sleeve on it. that sleeve sometimes gets worn and results in a door out of kilter.
sometimes that rod is worn out itself.
if it all looks identical on both sides, and door hinges are pretty stout steel, i'd assume there was some damage to that side. or the frame. it does not "just happen".
you can try undoing brackets from the frame and moving them ever so slightly. you need to keep in mind that a slight slide at the bracket results in a lot of angular change at the outer door edge.
Is the door attached to the frame? It appears to just be attached to the cab or?
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Old 05-31-2011, 10:18 PM   #4
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Door adjustment on a 2000 VW Jetta?


well, look at your car. there should be 2 hinges and 2 brackets, attached to the frame below pillar A. hinges are attached to brackets via rods.
there must have been a mechanical damage somewhere. 2000 should not give on rod/sleeve so soon. unless you have a 2 door coupe, as those doors are verylong and create a lot of downward force on hinges. still shouldn't.
try this. loosen attachment brackets. swing door out and shim with something underneath the door lower edge, using level to get door trim panel pefectly level. re-snug bracket bolts. see what happens.
that's why i asked if it was bought new or used. if it was used and wrecked....
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Old 06-01-2011, 07:57 AM   #5
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Door adjustment on a 2000 VW Jetta?


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Originally Posted by ukrkoz View Post
was it bought new or used?

i'd start with inspection of hinge where it is attached to the frame. normally, there's a thick rod that goes through a bracket and it has a sleeve on it. that sleeve sometimes gets worn and results in a door out of kilter.
sometimes that rod is worn out itself.
if it all looks identical on both sides, and door hinges are pretty stout steel, i'd assume there was some damage to that side. or the frame. it does not "just happen".
you can try undoing brackets from the frame and moving them ever so slightly. you need to keep in mind that a slight slide at the bracket results in a lot of angular change at the outer door edge.
I bought it used. I took a look at the hinges closely over the weekend, but I couldn't really tell if anything was worn out or not, nor could I tell really how to fix them if they were. I do remember a few winters ago, I was opening the door and there was a lot of snow built up between the door and the front fender. This made it really hard to open so when I pried on it, it bent the lower left corner of the door, outward. I'm thinking this threw the hinges out of whack resulting in the door now closing unevenly. However, I can't really tell just by looking at it, where to start. Ideas?

Jesse
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Old 06-01-2011, 09:56 AM   #6
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Door adjustment on a 2000 VW Jetta?


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... a few winters ago, I was opening the door and there was a lot of snow built up between the door and the front fender. This made it really hard to open so when I pried on it, it bent the lower left corner of the door, outward. I'm thinking this threw the hinges out of whack resulting in the door now closing unevenly. However, I can't really tell just by looking at it, where to start. Ideas?
Under these circumstances, SOMETIMES something as simple as a well placed piece of 2x4 between the door and jamb, accompanied by a firm push in the proper area of the door, probably along the back edge of it, as if you were trying to close it, can tweak things back into place. You may need to do this in two or three steps, in order to first make sure that it is moving in the right direction, and that you don't go too far. The first thing that needs to be done though is to assess where the problem lies, and whether the planned attack makes sense, and this is something that you have to actually be there to determine. It takes a bit of mental geometry, as you have to evaluate how the pivot of the hinge affects various points of fit. A local body shop should also be able to assist you with this as well, for a reasonable cost.
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Old 06-01-2011, 10:06 AM   #7
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Door adjustment on a 2000 VW Jetta?


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Originally Posted by ukrkoz View Post
well, look at your car. there should be 2 hinges and 2 brackets, attached to the frame below pillar A. hinges are attached to brackets via rods.
there must have been a mechanical damage somewhere. 2000 should not give on rod/sleeve so soon. unless you have a 2 door coupe, as those doors are verylong and create a lot of downward force on hinges. still shouldn't.
try this. loosen attachment brackets. swing door out and shim with something underneath the door lower edge, using level to get door trim panel pefectly level. re-snug bracket bolts. see what happens.
that's why i asked if it was bought new or used. if it was used and wrecked....
I was looking at the rods going through the hinges, but I couldn't figure out how to loosen them. They didn't seem to be a shape that I could put a tool on. I'm going to put a level along the lower edge of the door and see what happens. From there, I'm going to investigate the hinges further to see if I can figure out how to adjust them. Thanks again.

Jesse
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Old 06-01-2011, 03:03 PM   #8
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Door adjustment on a 2000 VW Jetta?


this is the way to start, Jesse. find out if the door is actually level.

if it was bought used, who knows what might have happened.

unfortunately, this is very hard to detect via internet. like the other poster said, you have to approach this yourself and do your best common sense judgment.

i am assuming you have more gap down at the pillar B door jam, and less at the top. Pillar A is where windshield is installed, on the side. Pillar B is next to your left shoulder. Pillar C is the rear glass one. Pillar B is shared by 2 doors, front and rear, on four door cars.

anyhow, doors, if the sag naturally, tilt downwards, with pillar B lower door edge going down. if that's the case, and you want to try brutal force approach, you can find several suitable stable pieces of wood, like 4x4s, and stack them underneath the lower door panel edge. not the door skin! the solid metal, the flare. make that stack taller than distance from the panel to the ground, with door swung wide open. jack stand the car, then, position that stack so that open door will rest on it, and start slowly lowering door onto the stack. basically, you are using car weight to force door back up. you have to go very slowly, tediously, and recheck on results many times.

rod through the hinge, even if it has small ground areas in it, may cause some sag. keep in mind, it's ANGULAR CHANGE. a little bit of sag at the hinge gives a lot of change at the door edge.

btw, latch in pillar B can also be adjusted. usually, those are held in place by 3-4 bolts, when loosened, they permit a lot of slide in latch. every car i have seen so far has this. you may try fooling with that too. as that latch pulls door with it, when shut. plastic pieces in it might have worn out.
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Old 06-01-2011, 03:09 PM   #9
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Door adjustment on a 2000 VW Jetta?


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Originally Posted by ukrkoz View Post
this is the way to start, Jesse. find out if the door is actually level.

if it was bought used, who knows what might have happened.

unfortunately, this is very hard to detect via internet. like the other poster said, you have to approach this yourself and do your best common sense judgment.

i am assuming you have more gap down at the pillar B door jam, and less at the top. Pillar A is where windshield is installed, on the side. Pillar B is next to your left shoulder. Pillar C is the rear glass one. Pillar B is shared by 2 doors, front and rear, on four door cars.

anyhow, doors, if the sag naturally, tilt downwards, with pillar B lower door edge going down. if that's the case, and you want to try brutal force approach, you can find several suitable stable pieces of wood, like 4x4s, and stack them underneath the lower door panel edge. not the door skin! the solid metal, the flare. make that stack taller than distance from the panel to the ground, with door swung wide open. jack stand the car, then, position that stack so that open door will rest on it, and start slowly lowering door onto the stack. basically, you are using car weight to force door back up. you have to go very slowly, tediously, and recheck on results many times.

rod through the hinge, even if it has small ground areas in it, may cause some sag. keep in mind, it's ANGULAR CHANGE. a little bit of sag at the hinge gives a lot of change at the door edge.

btw, latch in pillar B can also be adjusted. usually, those are held in place by 3-4 bolts, when loosened, they permit a lot of slide in latch. every car i have seen so far has this. you may try fooling with that too. as that latch pulls door with it, when shut. plastic pieces in it might have worn out.
Great advice, thank you. I'd be a little nervous about lowering the car down and using the weight of the car to do the bending, but what if I did the same thing only put the 2x4s on top of the jack, underneath the door and the jacking the door up? I have a nice jack, but when it releases, I'm pretty sure it drops suddenly.

And you're right about the gap. When I close my door, just before it latches, you can see clearly that the top right corner of the door is lower than the other side.

I'm going to try to jack up the door with 2x4s on top of the jack. I think that should be a good start. Thanks again.

Jesse

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