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How do you Change, Replace, or Install Broken 2001-2006 Dodge Stratus Front Door Handle (Exterior) Replacement

Fits Years: 2001, 2002, 2003, 2004, 2005, 2006


Tools required:

  • 8mm socket/ratchet with extension

  • Phillips screwdriver

  • Flathead screwdriver

  • Door Panel Clip Tool (or putty knife)


Step 1: Open the vehicle's door. Be sure that the window is UP.

Step 2: Pry and lift the small trim panel inside the interior door pull. Remove the Phillips screw (1).

Step 3: Pry and remove the small trim panel inside the interior door handle. Remove the Phillips screw (1).

Step 4: Loosen and remove the Phillips screws (4) that line the bottom and side of the interior door panel.

Step 5: Pry and remove the small trim panel that covers the side mirror's mounting area.

Step 6: Using the door panel clip tool (or putty knife), pry and remove the interior door panel.


A series of retaining clips hold the interior door panel to the frame. You will hear them "pop" as they disengage.

Step 7: Disconnect the locking rod from the back of the interior door panel. Also, disconnect the wiring harnesses to fully remove the panel.

Step 8: The door panel should now be completely free of the vehicle.

Step 9: GENTLY peel back the water shield. Be careful not to tear it, as we'll need to reattach it later!

Step 10: Disengage the retaining clip (1), which in most vehicles will be RED, that secures the locking rod to the door. Do the same for the clip near the TOP of the locking rods.

Step 11: Loosen and remove the 8mm bolts (2) that secure the exterior door handle to the door frame.

Step 12: You can now pull the door handle assembly through the EXTERIOR of the door.

Step 13: Transfer the locking rod from the OLD ASSEMBLY to the new one.

Step 14: Pry and remove the retaining ring (1) that secures the locking cylinder to the door handle. Attach it to the NEW one.

Step 15: Insert the new door handle into the door. Secure it by tightening the 8mm bolts (2).

Step 16: Re-engage the retaining clips (2) to secure the locking rods to the handle and the door.

Step 17: Reattach the water shield.

Step 18: To reattach the door panel, re-engage the locking rod to the back of the panel, and connect the wiring harnesses.

Step 19: Move the panel into position, and with a FIRM, but not too firm, strike near each retaining clip, "snap" the panel back onto the door frame.

Step 20: Tighten the Phillips screws (4) along the outer edge of the door panel.

Step 21: Tighten the Phillips screw (1) inside the interior door handle. Reattach the trim panel.

Step 22: Reattach the trim panel near the side mirror mount.

Step 23: Tighten the Phillips screw (1) inside the interior door pull. Reattach the trim panel.



These Part Change / Installation Instructions Apply to
06 2006, 05 2005, 04 2004, 03 2003, 02 2002, 01 2001 Dodge Stratus Front Door Handle (Exterior) Replacement Instructions
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