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Discussion Starter #1 (Edited)
Hi, I picked up a nice 2005 Grand Caravan recently from Ohio. We like it, but I to make a long story short, I would like to make the power sliding doors manual operation. They are power. The right side does not work. the left side does. We would rather open and close them on our own. Can I disconnect the motors, so that they can be used smoothly without them? We have two other vans - '03 & '07, manual doors. I would like to eliminate these if possible. I'm mechanically inclined, but want to make sure they will work alright before I start anything. Thanks for any help with this in advance.
 

Drivin' Maniac
2002 Grand Caravan ES 3.8L
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You can operate the sliders manually, can't you? If they are binding (stiff when pushed) they may just need the motor clutches cleaned. (That is an OLD issue, try a SEARCH here)

I had manual - slider vans for 20 years before we got our 2002 GC ES with the power doors, so I always open & close them with the handles. 馃構 The wife & grand-kids prefer the B pillar buttons, though.:whistle:
 
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Discussion Starter #3
Oh, didn't realize that. So you're saying that these power sliders should move just as freely when using manually? Remember, we've had gen 4 caravans since 2008, but never power sliders. This is new to us. They definitely do not work easily when using manually. It's tough for my wife to do. Thanks!
 

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it's also much harder for me, my van has one power door and one manual, the manual one is much easier to operate by hand
 

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Discussion Starter #5
Yeah, I think it is because the gearing on the bottom, along with the drive cable and the motor itself are all spinning when you manually open and close the doors. If these mechanisms were disconnected, I think it would free it up and let it move freely like the manual versions.
 

3rd gen > all others
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I think there should be a switch to turn them off. The roller bearings may need to be oiled for smooth operation. I need to check mine, as one door binds a little more than the other.
 
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I remember when our passenger side rear power sliding door was really hard to open manually. It turned out to be the motor that opens/closes the door automatically. Once I replaced the motor, the door moved just as easy as our manual sliding door. (We have the EX model that only came with one power sliding door)
 
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2009 GCV SE
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I'm not sure if it's the gearing or because the motor is always spinning even when you manually open and close the doors, but on vans with the power sliding doors in the manual position they are noticeably harder to open and close then the non powered doors.

I went to a local dealership earlier this year, and I got to sit inside a 2019 SXT with most of the options of that year. On the overhead front console you can actually disable the power function for the doors, I tried it and it was quite a bit harder to open them. I have an 09 SE without the powered doors, those doors open very easily.

Not sure what you'll need to do to get rid of the "stiffness", you'll probably have to take the door out and remove the motor.
 

Drivin' Maniac
2002 Grand Caravan ES 3.8L
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Post 8

I KNEW I saw the answer here. (And @Jeepman thinks my memory is shot from drinking so much coffee.... :ROFLMAO: 馃構 )

PS: Our sliders (power both sides) do not take excessive effort to close, even 160K miles in. I'm SURE it not because I have 馃挭.
 

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My passenger slider door has (likely) the failed or intermittent wire harness. (I've got bigger fish to fry)
Most times when I try to use the button to open, the door pops open, but does not move.

I find that once I have tried the "electrically open" option, that completing the opening by hand requires much more effort.
 

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Discussion Starter #11 (Edited)
OK, I just went out and disconnected the drive cable coupled to bottom gear of the door. Wire lied the end of it in place on top of bracket. Way easier to move, now just like a manual sliding door that never had power setup. One more problem unrelated - right side doesn't latch open to the rear locked slid open position. No click. Never noticed this, as I really haven't used it since I bought this van in March. Investigating that next. There's always something else.....
 

Drivin' Maniac
2002 Grand Caravan ES 3.8L
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Perhaps you should read this (rather long) Topic on Sliding Doors



Covers many of the issues with the slider, motors, door actuators, etc.
 

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Discussion Starter #13
Th
Perhaps you should read this (rather long) Topic on Sliding Doors



Covers many of the issues with the slider, motors, door actuators, etc.
Thanks!
 

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Should have a weight inside the "B" pillar, that slides up and down. Down to close the door.
Or maybe a bungee cord fastened to the rear view side mirror.
Just some thoughts on a more trouble free design. :)

You ain't seen nothing yet until you replace the lock actuator on a 5th Generation sliding door.


 
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Discussion Starter #15
Trying to stay with Gen 4 vans as long as I can. Although '08-'10s would be OK that still have the 3.3L or 3.8L drivetrain. After that, no way with that cam phaser garbage. Also, the cracking plastic oil filer holders. That's some scary stuff!
 

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Discussion Starter #16
Should have a weight inside the "B" pillar, that slides up and down. Down to close the door.
Or maybe a bungee cord fastened to the rear view side mirror.
Just some thoughts on a more trouble free design. :)

You ain't seen nothing yet until you replace the lock actuator on a 5th Generation sliding door.


Wow! This guy is almost comical, only in the way that he says it's all "straighttforward", and then keeps piling on with all of the items he had to disconnect or unbolt. Those things are ugly! Great job by him for sure!
 
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