Door not open from inside

I have a 1994 Ford Escort LX sedan and I have to roll down the window and reach out using the outside handle to open the door. The people I ask said it could be very costly depending on what the problem is and other things breaking in accessing it. I also am wanting to sell the car and they said not then worth the money. I think the car would be much harder to sell unfixed and I would have to take several hundred less. I appreciate your help.

You’re talking to the wrong people.

You’ll have to remove the inner door panel to ascertain why the door won’t open, but this is neither difficult nor expensive. The rod from the handle to the latch may have come off, or something may be broken. This is fixable at very low cost with junk yard parts. The Escort is a simple car. That’s one of its virtues.

With directions from a service manual, such as Haynes, and a few simple hand tools, you could probably fix this yourself. I can’t imagine why anyone would tell you this is costly to repair. If you don’t want to DIY, find a reputable independent mechanic to do this for you. It would be a piece of cake for a mechanic.

The worst possible case should still be less than $100 to fix. This is not an uncommon problem.

Thank you so much for replying quickly and for your advice. When the problem began this winter I had got the Haynes manual and some others at the library to see if it was something I could fix without prior experience. It seemed to me fixable, but I don’t think I’d have the necessary tools and maybe strength(am older F). I am so glad to learn you agree so will pursue getting it fixed

Thank you for replying so quickly and for the good news. I was told there is usually lots of problems that happen when repairing this problem and it would cost me several hundred to 4-5 hundred dollars with parts. Therefore people don’t usually bother to fix it in a 90’s car.

Not to over-simplify, but just a thought. This car doesn’t have child safety handles that may have been accidentally activiated, does it? These are litle levers that you engage disabling the inside handles so children can’t open the doors from the inside and fall out of the car. On the rear edge of the door, where it hits the door jam, look for a little lever that might have been “clicked” by an errant grocery sack or suitcase.

Oops…sorry. They only put the child-safety latches on rear doors. Yours is a front door, isn’t it.

Thanks for trying to help and you are correct in that this car has those safety handles on its rear doors. If only this was as simple!

This kind of problem is usually simple to repair. It’s often caused by the inner rod popping loose from the latch assembly (out of the clip or broken clip) or by a latch assembly hanging due to aged lubricant and dirt.

In either case the door panel has to come off to determine the cause but either one is simple to cure.
In the case of broken plastic clips what I do is use spring steel carburetor linkage clips as a fix. These can be obtained cheaply at most auto parts stores.

Just to add here, if you can’t do the work yourself, and if you don’t have a good independent mechanic, then probably the cheapest place to go would be an auto glass shop. Yes, this is a lock and not the window, but they are used to taking door skins off and the should know how to fix the handle.

Thank you so much for taking the time and sharing your knowledge and experience and explaining what might be causing the problem. This is the first time I ever submitted a question and I have received so much help and information it has been a tremendous gift. I will never feel again so vulnerable to what a repair person says but I will come here to this site first to become educated.

I would have never thought to call them! I certainly will do that as I have not found my own good mechanic though I keep searching. Thanks for that “info”.