How to Remove the Door Panel on a 2001 Mazda 626

Mazda became famous in the U.S. through the early 1970s with its rotary engine-power machines, but they didn’t sell well thanks to poor fuel economy and frail design. In 1979, Mazda launched a new piston-style engine, the 626, in an attempt to turn its fame into fortune. With 22 years in the books, the 626 was winding down its production life, with the Mazda6 soon to take its place. Removing the door panel on the 2001 626 is nearly the same process on both the front and rear doors.

Step 1

Pull outward lightly on the window crank and look behind the crank to find the U-shaped clip securing the crank to the regulator shaft. Guide a window crank tool behind the crank, so its prongs engage the ears on the U-shaped clip. Press the crank tool toward the U-shaped clip to disengage it. Pull the window crank off the regulator shaft and press the U-shaped clip back into its slot on the crank. If your 626 has power windows, proceed directly to step 2.

Step 2

Remove the screw behind the door handle, using a Phillips screwdriver. Pull the handle assembly outward slightly and pull the linkage from the clip on the rear of the handle. Remove the handle assembly.

Step 3

Pry the screw cover inside the pull handle out with a flat-head screwdriver. Remove the screw under the cover with a Phillips screwdriver.

Step 4

Remove the screw from the bottom of the front door panel only, using a Phillips screwdriver.

Step 5

Find the two push-pin-style fasteners, one on the rearmost part of the panel and one in the upper front corner of the panel on the front door and three on the rearmost edge of the rear door panel. Pry the center pin from each fastener with a flat-head screwdriver until the center pin stops moving. Pry each fastener from the door panel with a flat-head screwdriver.

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