Frozen door locking mechanism

Ado Sigal a.sigal at
Tue Feb 6 21:26:47 EST 2007

Hi all

First to say that in emergency to defrost locks and exposed door lock 
mechanism one can use a gas lighter to warm up the key, in case of 
frozen barrel, and heat up the mechanism parts, until it start operating.

Regarding shrunk weather strip, there is no real solution except 
changing the strip or extending it via gluing the missing part cut from 
a scraped car w/strip.

For weather protection of rubber and plastic parts, the nest to use is 
pure silicon grease, from HT components, door seals, glass channels etc. 
It has to be applied very sparingly (once in two years on door seals), 
and great care needs to be taken not to touch the paint work, because it 
creates great problem with paint adhesion, and is very difficult to clean.

Lithium grease or any other grease is no good at all for lock barrels, 
because its to thick to get to the lock pistons and springs. Graphite 
powder is used for this purpose, but because it is the moisture inside 
the lock or locking mechanism has frozen, that moisture must be expelled 
first, and that is done with WD40 and its dehumidifying and lubricating 
properties, and compressed air. Only after the l/barel and inner and 
outer door mechanism has been cleaned, graphite dust is applied to the 
lock barrel, and lithium grease, pure synthetic grease or silicon grease 
is applied to the locking mechanism. The grease in the spray form works 
a treat. But folks, here in CH, its called "winter preparation procedure".



Gwen Agboat wrote:

> However; I did have the problem with the frozen doors and locks on my 1989
>Audi 90Q several times this year and last year.  On more than one occasion,
>I had to drive with one hand holding the door closed and the other steering
>and changing gears - in order to catch the early morning train to work.
>Last week, it was so frigid, but I had to clean my car, so I hand washed it
>with a bucket & soft brush, including all the gaskets around the inside of
>the doors.
>I towel dried the car, gaskets and all.  I then sprayed a generous amount of
>white lithium grease into the locking mechanisms through the key holes and
>from the side of the door (with the doors ajar where the mechanisms are
>exposed).  I wiped up the excess, sprayed the gaskets around the doors and
>used the excess on the towel to rub the lithium grease into the gaskets.
>The gaskets are supple and seal well now, none of my doors stick anymore
>despite the wet followed by extreme cold (-29 C) we've had these last couple
>of weeks.  The locking mechanisms don't freeze at all anymore.
>Lithium grease is supposed to be better for locks than WD-40 because
>apparently WD-40 builds up and then dries out (I'm not 100% on this) but my
>favourite locksmith told me lithium grease is much better for locks.
>>Problem has been isolated to the window weather strip at the bottom edge of
>>window. This strip has shrunk due to old age. When it rains or snows, water
>>will run down the window and thru the weather strip gap and drip onto the
>>locking mechanism. During the night, when the temps drop, the water freezesand locks up the locking mechanism. I sealed the opening with masking tape, and so far so good. Its been testedin rain, snow and below 20F conditions - No more frozen locks. But I cant open the window of course.
>>Now the Question:
>>Has anyone "extended" this weather stripping? Can I add a piece (from
>>junkyard) of weather stripping and somehow bond it to the existing strip?

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