The temperature in beautiful Door County Wisconsin has taken a turn for the frigid. After spending the holiday out of town and overeating, I returned home to my truck and started it up to run some errands and the passenger door would not latch shut. After repeated slamming, a few sprays of WD40, and a quick session with the hair dryer,(yes I am aware of how foolish the hair dryer thing is), I still couildn’t get it to latch. Finally I tried moving the lock back and forth with the key, I tried once more, to no avail. I went inside to warm up and came back out later to get something and locked the door and shut the door. It latched shut. I don’t know if it was finally heated up, WD40 seeped in, or the door being locked, but I am afraid to touch it any more tonight. Anyone had this happen before? If so, any suggestions to avoid it happening again? Thanks for the help!!!
WD 40 is not a lubricant, Graphite and lithium grease in a spray can are lubricants. Try those instead.
The hair dryer is not foolish. It got my frozen hood latch to open on my 76 Caprice. It took four seconds.
I used to have to drive to work at 5am most winter mornings in my Eagle Talon with one hand on the driver door handle and the other on the steering wheel. Graphite on the latch helped a lot, but never solved it for all temps. At say 10 f and below the only thing that worked was running the engine and heating the car up for fifteen minutes at least.
WD 40 is not a lubricant Certainly not. But it is a Water Displacement. If the problem is moisture, then WD-40 may be useful. However I seldom recommend it. I would rather use a hair dryer (not a bad idea and it can work) and dry it out that way followed up with a water resistant lube like graphite in locks and lithium for other moving parts.
Wd should get rid of the water…ice
You might try the hair dryer followed by the WD-40 to get rid of any water. If you could leave it in a heated garage overnight would probably fix the problem. Roll down the windows
Maybe the latch isn’t lined up correctly with the post and the cold weather makes things worse. Can you align the door latch with the post better?
I remember that in my Eagle the latch would stay full open, so it never had a chance to catch the pin, until it was warm enough to come into the closed position. The door would just bump off the frame. I sometimes would try to get the latch back into the closed, latching position so that when I closed the door the latch would seat and lock onto the pin. It worked once or twice but often the latch would just open back up and not close onto the pin.
It just occurs to me now (a little late) that maybe the best way to deal with this is to clean the latch as best you can with a degreasing solution such as Gunk and then apply (lightly) some new white grease on the cleaned part. You can find both at any auto parts store.
Not sure what year Silverado you have, but your hinge pins and bushings may be shot–allowing the door to sag and causing it to not align properly with the door jamb post. Partly open the door and try to lift up on it. If there’s a lot of movement, the hinges are probably your issue.
If that is your issue, continued use like this will damage the hinges. I believe they’re welded on, which could be a problem to replace. Replacing the hinge pins and bushings is more straightforward.
Or, the latch in your door may be the problem. Try using a screwdriver to actuate the prong that closes around the door jamb post. As others suggested, white lithium grease is a better choice than WD40.