2001 Rio Door stuck locked

03-07-2007, 09:08 AM
Tried to get into my car last night and the door would not unlock when I turned the key. I could turn the key and the latch would pop up but then go right back down and my key would turn back to the middle position also. It feels like there is a spring trying to pull the lock back down when I try and unlock it and I am fighting with that. I can't pull the lock manually open within the car also as that "spring action" pulls the latch right back down too. Any ideas?

03-23-2007, 05:59 AM
Have you tried (after opening from the passenger side) pulling of the door panel? Just to get a better look? Maybe a locking clip came off.

03-23-2007, 12:21 PM
I can't take the panel off as the door is locked shut. I would have to be able to open the door to get to all of the panel screws in order to take it off.

03-23-2007, 06:11 PM
Okay. When you do turn the key you said it pops up and when you let go it pops back down. How about turning and holding it in the unlock position and opening the door handle? BTW: is it power locks or manual?

04-01-2007, 12:27 PM
I used this thread and got it fixed!!


I used the old broken spring and just bent a new loop on the broken end.

Two things to be aware of for anyone else that may get this problem.

1. When you are trying to unlock the door with a wire, etc. make sure you are prying the side nearest you on that side of the rolled down window and not on the side of the window closest to the interior of the car. I tried over and over again to figure out what was meant by the "lever" etc. in the thread above and found that I was trying to do this on the wrong side of the window. As soon as I looked on the side closest to the outside of the car, I opened the door rather quickly. Also make sure you use a strong wire that doesn't bend too easily.

2. Having a captive spring hook (the kind that holds onto the spring on one end and only releases it if you press the top part of the tool, basically holds the spring for you so it can't drop unless you release it or put too much pressure on it). did wonders in retrieving and re-installing the repaired (or new if you go that route) door lock spring. If I didn't have one of those tools I could have easily dropped the spring into "Never never land" inside the metal door panel. You'll understand what I mean as soon as you take the door panel off and get a look in there.

06-29-2007, 08:49 AM
I'm now having the same problem with my 2001 Rio and am sick of climbing through the passenger side. Doesn't make for good viewing. I don't understand exactly what I'm aiming for with the rod. Does this method work with central locking?

Also, how do I relock the car when I'm out and about? I don't have keyless entry, so I'd be forced to lock it by pressing the button or using the key - and here we go again!

08-08-2008, 10:28 PM
We just had this problem with the door lock jammed on the front passenger side. Found a message on this forum (I think it's in the archives : http://www.automotivehelper.com/topic352965.htm ) and found the information useful, but little bit hard to figure out. Took me a while to figure out what I was meant to be doing. So I'll explain it as best as I can.

Firstly, wind down the window. Make a hook on the end of a wire coat hanger. I was thinking I had to try and actually 'hook' something but you don't. Place the wire down between the rubber seal on the inside of the door, and the window. Place it down between the edge of the door and the lock. I was originally placing the wire down in front of the lock, and it wasn't working. Once I moved the wire towards the edge of the door I got it. As I don't know what it looks like, it's hard to explain, but it felt like a lever or something running horizontally. I pushed down on this with my wire and pulled up on the door lock while holding the lever down, and up comes the lock.

Our door lock got jammed last week. I managed somehow last week to pry it up with the button... I managed to jam it again. And it got jammed by pulling on the door handle after the door was locked. We have central locking, and since releasing the door lock, it's working fine...it's not jamming.. So we just have to be very careful not to pull on the handles after the door has been locked.

If you have central locking, you might want to remove the fuse from under the hood for the central locking. Makes it easier when trying to unjam the door. As I was able to half pull up the lock, and it was making all the doors unlock, and as soon as you let it go, they all locked again.

Anyway, for now we have fixed it...but I'm guessing we are going to need a new locking mechanism at some stage. But if you can get it unlocked yourself, then sure beats paying Kia hundreds of $$ to get it unlocked.

Another thing we are going to do, know that we know how to unjam it if it becomes jammed, is to carry the wire with us, so we can quickly unlock if it happens again.

Hope this helps anyone in the future who may run into this problem.

Edited to say that our Kia Rio, is the 2004 model... so not sure if it is different to the 2001 model - as a previous post said they managed to unlock it on the other side of the window - but there is no way I would even be able to get any wire down the 'outside' of the window.

08-09-2008, 11:05 AM
Attach a stick of dynamite to the door, light it, run away fast. The door will open and you will be done with the worthless car !

08-10-2008, 06:15 AM
Thanks for that!
After scanning the internet I thought I'd try the 'tear the panel off' method - easy does it! Not only did I discover what was catching, but found a way to fix it until the spring rusts away. Not anytime soon!
I had to cut a hole into the plastic sheet, but that was easily taped up once I finished.

Wind the window up for protection.
Inside, if you can find how to unlock the door again, you will see a white piece of plastic with a ring. In my case, if that dropped (or was pushed down) the door jammed. If I pulled it up, voila, the door opened. Fiddle around with a wire to figure out if your door's the same.

I went to the hardware store, bought a few (incase I broke some) small springs (approx 5 cm in length) and stretched two of them just short of the distance it needed to go. I left the centre tightly coiled and only pulled the edges away. I hooked one end of the spring into the ring of the white plastic thing and pulled it up until I could hook the other end into a hole higher up, making sure it didn't block anything else. Gotta put some effort into this part.

Note: Don't buy a spring that's too thick, it could brake you're plastic bit, and might be impossible to stretch. Mine has a diameter no bigger than a pencil. Don't overstretch the spring; you'll need it to spring back.

After reading about other people's doors, I decided to do this to both doors, even though only one was jamming and they've both been perfect since.

Hope this isn't complete jibberish. A bit difficult to explain if you don't know what the heck you're talking about.

10-01-2009, 05:06 PM
all i did was replace the tumblers..the 01 rio i have was taken to the dealership for warrenty issues concerning this problem.
they never comepletely fixed the problem.
I broke the ignition switch on this car and ended up buying a hole set--ignition switch and all five tumblers for the doors including the rear trunk tumbler....It never happened again

02-11-2011, 01:51 PM
2001 Kia Rio, Manual. I had the same problem, driver side door locked. Can't unlock with key or by pulling up on the lock inside. This forum pointed me in the right direction. So, I thought I would post some pics to make it a little more clear.

You will need to remove the door panel as described previously. (5) screws and a "U" clip between the window crank and door panel. Once you get the panel out and carefully peel back the plastic sheet, and remove the two foam filler blocks (2 screws each), you will see the latch mechanism covered by a little black plastic shield. You wil lneed to disengage the white plastic clip at the bottom of the rod, by pushing in on the little tab and pushing the tab out of the slot. Also, disengage the top yellow clip (top right corner of the pic) holding the upper rod to the key mech., by rotating the yellow clip CCW, allowing you to pull the rod away from the clip. Then, remove the single phillips screw and carefully "wiggle" the black plastic cover off.


The next pic shows where the missing spring should be.


If you can find the spring, it looks like this. You can see the loop on the right side missing. There is also a clear plastic cover, which I discarded. I pulled the last coil of the spring and formed a new loop. You'll need a couple needle nose pliers, but it works. Otherwise, see if the dealer will sell you this spring. I figure they don't want to sell .50 cent springs, they want to sell $200 lock mechanisms.


After you fix or replace the spring, reinstalling it is tricky. I used a medical hemostat to loop the far end on first, the a small thin screw driver to draw the loop over the other end. It took several tries. Should look like thes.


Just reassemble evrything in reverse order and you should be good to go. How long it will last, who knows. The car is 10 years old with 160K, so, hopefully it will last the remaining life of the car.

Hope this helps.

05-24-2011, 07:44 AM
Thank you for the photos of the spring, I also have made a loop at the end of the original spring, these locks are 30.30 including tax in the UK.

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