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How do you Change, Replace, or Install Broken 1996-2000 Dodge Caravan Front Door Handle (Exterior) Replacement

Fits Years: 1996, 1997, 1998, 1999, 2000


Tools required:

  • 10mm socket/ratchet with extension

  • Phillips screwdriver

  • Flathead screwdriver

  • Door Panel Clip Tool (or putty knife)

  • Window Crank Removal Tool


Step 1: Open the vehicle's door.

Step 2: Using the window crank removal tool, pry and remove the window crank.


NOTE: Be sure that the window is UP.

Step 3: Pry and remove the screw cover (1) just above the interior door handle. Loosen and remove the Phillips screw (1).

Step 4: Loosen and remove the Phillips screw (1) located inside the interior door handle.

Step 5: Loosen and remove the Phillips screw (1) located inside the interior door pull.

Step 6: Using the door panel clip tool, pry and separate the interior door panel from the door frame.


A series of retaining clips secures the door panel to the frame. You will hear these clips "pop" as they disengage, releasing the door frame.

Step 7: You can now lift and remove the interior door panel. Disengage the retaining clip (1) that secures the locking rod to the back of the interior door handle.

NOTE: If any clips stayed with the door frame, which is quite common, be sure to pry them free and reattach them to the back of the door panel.

Step 8: GENTLY peel back the water shield. Be careful not to tear it, as we'll need to reattach it later!

Step 9: Disengage the retaining clips (2) that secure the locking rods to the latch mechanism.

Step 10: Loosen and remove the 10mm bolts (3) that secure the door handle to the door.

Step 11: You can now pull the door hand through the OUTSIDE of the door.

Step 12: Disengage the locking rod from the BACK of the handle. Slide this rod into the new assembly. Also, transfer the lock cylinder to the new handle assembly by removing the retaining ring, sliding the cylinder from the old handle, and attaching it to the new one.

Step 13: Insert the door handle assembly into the door, and secure it by tightening the 10mm bolts (3).

Step 14: Re-engage the retaining clips (2) that secure the locking rods to the back of the handle.

Step 15: Reattach the water shield.

Step 16: To reattach the interior door panel, re-engage the retaining clip (1) that secures the locking rod to the back of the interior door handle. Lift the panel OVER the locking lever, and move it into position.


With a FIRM, but not too firm, strike near each retaining clip, you can "snap" them back into place.

Step 17: Tighten the Phillips screws (3). Reattach the screw cover (1).

Step 18: Snap the window crank handle back onto the stud.



These Part Change / Installation Instructions Apply to
00 2000, 99 1999, 98 1998, 97 1997, 96 1996 Dodge Caravan Front Door Handle (Exterior) Replacement Instructions
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