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Old 05-11-2017, 04:08 PM   #1
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Storage Door Latch Won't Open

One of my outside storage compartment latches has malfunctioned and now I can't open that door. With my model it is a compartment that is enclosed with the generator on the opposite side, so there is no crawling through and removing the latch from the inside.

Any suggestions out there? Right now I am considering taking one of the other ones apart to see how they work internally, not that I will learn anything about how to trip this one. Unless they make some type of slim jim tool that could possibly trip this open I guess my only option would be to try to pry out the outside cover and use a hacksaw blade to cut the 4 little bolts.
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Old 05-12-2017, 12:31 AM   #2
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You aren't getting any quick responses. Maybe a picture of the latch would help.

If the problem is the key lock, you might try using a big screwdriver in the key slot to turn the entire lock. That's one of the weaknesses of the CH751 locks in many of the RVs. If you have the more heavy duty latch, that may not work.
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Old 05-12-2017, 01:18 AM   #3
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I would order a new one. After it arrives, drill out the broken latch and replace it!
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Old 05-12-2017, 11:04 AM   #4
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Originally Posted by gbrown View Post
I would order a new one. After it arrives, drill out the broken latch and replace it!
That's my thought as well - just drill it out. I have several doors like this, but I suspect that it is due to me driving the motorhome back from Florida to Ohio and at the tail end of winter, and getting road salt into some of the locks. I have had to spray WD40 into the locks several times, but one lock is still acting up on me. I may just replace them with better locks before I break the key off in one of them.
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Old 05-12-2017, 11:39 AM   #5
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I had a lock freeze also. The door was open so I was able to get to it. When I took the lock apart, there is a small spring and ball bearing that had rusted inside. I took them out and cleaned them up and lubed the whole area. It works great now. Make sure you put the spring and ball bearing back in the correct order. It happened on an upgraded lock so I guess good maintenance is required.
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Old 05-12-2017, 11:58 AM   #6
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a locksmith told me Not to use WD-40 but to use Dry lube or graphite. my 2 cents!!
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Old 05-12-2017, 12:04 PM   #7
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Originally Posted by Jegdrum5050 View Post
a locksmith told me Not to use WD-40 but to use Dry lube or graphite. my 2 cents!!
You're correct, but it was all I had with me at the time!
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Old 05-12-2017, 12:29 PM   #8
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If your unit is still under warranty, contact Thor and they will send you a new latch. Happened to me but I was able to remove the jammed latch cause it was next to a compartment open to it. Now I have a spare latch. I found that these latches jam cause the pin that rides on a column needs to be drilled larger and then lubricated. Once I did that to all latches, I've had no issues. I can post some pics if you're interested.
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Old 05-12-2017, 01:12 PM   #9
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Joe-FL View Post
One of my outside storage compartment latches has malfunctioned and now I can't open that door. With my model it is a compartment that is enclosed with the generator on the opposite side, so there is no crawling through and removing the latch from the inside.

Any suggestions out there? Right now I am considering taking one of the other ones apart to see how they work internally, not that I will learn anything about how to trip this one. Unless they make some type of slim jim tool that could possibly trip this open I guess my only option would be to try to pry out the outside cover and use a hacksaw blade to cut the 4 little bolts.
Might want to specify whether it is a knob or key latch and further define "malfunction".

If it won't rotate use liquid wrench or similar for a good soak and tap/vibrate it many times during the soak to see if you can "bust it loose".

If it does rotate but doesn't unlatch, the screw on the end has probably backed off to the point where the cylinder is not rotating the latch arm. Might try pushing the door in to relieve any friction pressure on the latch arm and work it back and forth multiple time to see if you can get the latch arm to rotate out of the way.
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Old 05-12-2017, 02:08 PM   #10
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If key turns full 90 degrees from vertical to horizontal try pushing in really hard on lock housing while pulling out on the paddle. Had similar problem and that is what worked for me. Once opened disassemble lock and check latch bar to see if bent. It will take some bending before metal fails. lube moving parts. If latch bar still sticking try adjusting the four inside screws - one corner screw a bit loose can make a big improvement in how freely latch slides. I have developed habit of pushing in on housing every time I open a basement door. I have been lucky and not had to drill one. The biggest problem is service techs plugging coach into power with cord thru door and the closing door on the power cord. That bends latch bar.
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Old 05-12-2017, 02:36 PM   #11
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Quote:
Originally Posted by schreinertms View Post
If your unit is still under warranty, contact Thor and they will send you a new latch. Happened to me but I was able to remove the jammed latch cause it was next to a compartment open to it. Now I have a spare latch. I found that these latches jam cause the pin that rides on a column needs to be drilled larger and then lubricated. Once I did that to all latches, I've had no issues. I can post some pics if you're interested.
Yes please post some pictures when you get a chance. I would appreciate it.

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Old 05-12-2017, 03:22 PM   #12
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Angry Stuck RV Door Latch

What you need.
1. screw driver
2. ice
3. umbrella
4. grown son
5. hammer
6. daughter in law
7. ticket
8. screw driver
9. lawn chair

Instructions to free up and open the door.

Call up your son and his wife. Tell them you are letting them use your RV for the weekend if he agrees to fix the stuck door. Leave the hammer and screwdriver with your other tools in a working non locked storage compartment in the RV. Use your ticket to fly to a warm sunny beach. Once there plant your umbrella in the sand, put some drinks on ice and have a seat in your lawn chair while you watch the waves bound in and slide out. When you get home you will have forgotten all about the stuck door latch problem. Why? Well your genius little prodigy used the hammer to break out a window because your daughter in law locked the keys inside, they used the screwdriver to start the RV with after that because the baby dropped the keys down the toilet. The stuck door works fine now because they skinned the entire side of the RV on a telephone pole as soon as they pulled out of your driveway. In spite of all this your daughter in law assures you the burn marks on the wall in the RV kitchen area will "wash off".


ps; in the materials list you can substitute a mother in law for number 6 but the repair time will be longer.
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Old 05-13-2017, 04:48 PM   #13
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Having removed the door next to my stuck door, was able to reach 2 screws holding catch plate to cut them off with hammer and chissel.

Finally was able to post pic of inside of latch. Screw holding trip arm had backed out so this door was never going to open. I called Thor and the tech said they had never heard of this happening. It would be an easy fix if this happens to just crawl through from the other side and remove the latch plate from the inside. But when this happens to a door where you can't crawl though, or on you generator door, or even on the convenience door, big issue.

Going thru every latch today and making sure this screw is adjusted properly plus greasing interior moving parts. This may go on my annual maintenance list. Certainly do not want it happening again while on the road.

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Old 05-13-2017, 06:51 PM   #14
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Joe-FL Thanks for the report. Far to many times we never hear the outcome. Your post will help a lot of Thor owners. Thanks again
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Old 05-13-2017, 09:00 PM   #15
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Kev - Sorry for the late pic but I am stealing Joe-Fl picture with some markup as I have not had time to take a new pic, hope you don't mind, Joe-Fl.

I had the same issue with the screw (circled in pic) backing out and the compartment would not open but I lucked out cause the compartment next door had access to the trouble latch compartment. I had issues with almost all the latches sticking/jamming and I found that by removing the screw then taking the piece next to the arrow (in pic) drilling the hole on the that piece just the next bit larger, then lubricating all moving parts, since then, I have had no issues with sticking or jamming latches.
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Old 05-18-2017, 01:05 PM   #16
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Hadn't thought about drilling the extra hole bigger Kev. When I had mine apart I noticed white grease present. When I took apart the other 12 latches I lubricanted with white grease. I had always shot WD or some type of silicone spray up into these type of sticky latches, but from now on I'm treating them like wheel bearings!
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Old 09-24-2017, 07:52 PM   #17
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Thumbs up

Quote:
Originally Posted by Joe-FL View Post
Having removed the door next to my stuck door, was able to reach 2 screws holding catch plate to cut them off with hammer and chissel.

Finally was able to post pic of inside of latch. Screw holding trip arm had backed out so this door was never going to open. I called Thor and the tech said they had never heard of this happening. It would be an easy fix if this happens to just crawl through from the other side and remove the latch plate from the inside. But when this happens to a door where you can't crawl though, or on you generator door, or even on the convenience door, big issue.

Going thru every latch today and making sure this screw is adjusted properly plus greasing interior moving parts. This may go on my annual maintenance list. Certainly do not want it happening again while on the road.

Attachment 4894


Thanks so much for the info! This was very helpful, as we also had a door we couldn't open. We were able to cut the 2 screws same as you, but we were lucky & didn't have to remove the door next to it, just open it & had access to the screws. As mentioned above, the screw holding trip arm was loose. Everything is fixed now & all other latches were serviced today.
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Old 09-24-2017, 10:28 PM   #18
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I'm late to this party, but I agree 151% with those who said to only use dry lube or graphite on locks.
All of the locks on my rig were sticking horribly when I got it home...
Got a tube of graphite lock lube, and now they're all just like butter!
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Old 05-14-2018, 08:56 PM   #19
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I have been having the same problems described by the rest of the posters and I'm in the process of adjusting/lubricating all of latches. I'm intrigued by your fix but I cannot for the life of me understand how the hole your arrow points to in the photo is involved in the latch's operation. Can you explain?
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Old 05-14-2018, 09:38 PM   #20
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Scowall - the arrow is only pointing next to the piece you remove once the screw (circled) is removed then drill a slightly bigger hole in the piece you removed that is secured by the screw.
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