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Door rust

 
Old 05-16-19, 09:17 AM
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heartygrn
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Default Door rust

I have the dreaded door rust on the passenger door just above the chrome trim on my 04 LS430. I'm at 188K and I feel like the car could run forever so I'd like to keep it a while. I found a great looking used door near me with only 34k on it for $350, same color, I know it won't match 100% but I'm not sure I care at this point, and it will definitely look better than rust bubbles. Would I then transfer over the electronics for the smart lock to work? Anything else to worry about with that option? I read you can also buy the door skin and have a body shop install it and paint match. Is this a better option?
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Old 05-16-19, 09:24 AM
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Originally Posted by heartygrn View Post
I have the dreaded door rust on the passenger door just above the chrome trim on my 04 LS430. I'm at 188K and I feel like the car could run forever so I'd like to keep it a while. I found a great looking used door near me with only 34k on it for $350, same color, I know it won't match 100% but I'm not sure I care at this point, and it will definitely look better than rust bubbles. Would I then transfer over the electronics for the smart lock to work? Anything else to worry about with that option? I read you can also buy the door skin and have a body shop install it and paint match. Is this a better option?
Id choose the door skin route if the skin wasnt too expensive. Why take apart and install a used door?
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Old 05-16-19, 09:29 AM
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I think I'd rather keep the original door and have it repaired.

OP, are you the original owner? I remember seeing this problem a lot on a UK thread, is it common on the US cars too?
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Old 05-16-19, 09:37 AM
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I think repairing is going to be as expensive or more that getting new (used) door, and that rust is going to come back.

Personally if I am doing this, I would get a door with same color, but a complete door (the door, the insulation, the internal, glass, etc) I just want to bolt it on, and maybe swap the interior and wood pieces to match the internal color. Transferring the electric bits, glass, rubber moldings, etc sounds like a lot of work and time consuming.

Having said that, I am not sure about the smart lock. I would imagine the computer that control smart lock is not on the door, but you need to confirm it by looking at the diagram.
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Old 05-16-19, 09:42 AM
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Second owner, bought it with 90K 7 years ago and it's been a great car, this just popped up in the last year or so. I think it's pretty common in areas that use a lot of road salt like New England. Apparently water collects where the clips are for that lower plastic panel and it rusts from the inside out.
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Old 05-16-19, 09:47 AM
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shoot....maybe it should be a new skin then....my own experience is if I myself ground that off, primed and painted with ordinary paint, it just comes back again maybe in a year....I don't do as good or thorough of a job as some youtubers, but it seems that rust always comes back, especially as if from the inside, out....let us know what you decide and good luck!

p.s. or if you could live with it, it's relatively small, maybe just superficially fix it. Then, you have the same decision 1-2 yrs from now. Not everybody is going to notice if that small area is repaired....it would be like my drip rail where 1" is peeled off on the pass side. I just leave it alone....
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Old 05-16-19, 10:56 AM
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Originally Posted by Johnhav430 View Post
shoot....maybe it should be a new skin then....my own experience is if I myself ground that off, primed and painted with ordinary paint, it just comes back again maybe in a year....I don't do as good or thorough of a job as some youtubers, but it seems that rust always comes back, especially as if from the inside, out....let us know what you decide and good luck!

p.s. or if you could live with it, it's relatively small, maybe just superficially fix it. Then, you have the same decision 1-2 yrs from now. Not everybody is going to notice if that small area is repaired....it would be like my drip rail where 1" is peeled off on the pass side. I just leave it alone....
POR-15 is a paint that will chemically render the rust inactive, and dries to a rock-hard coating.

Classic car guys use this all the time.
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Old 05-16-19, 11:38 AM
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I contacted a body shop that recommended a used door vs a panel. They said it's usually cheaper. Tempted to snag that really low mileage door since it's local to me and any repair is going to be more than $350. The only other issue I can think of is the vins won't match but I don't really care and resale value does not matter to me.
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Old 05-16-19, 12:44 PM
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Originally Posted by heartygrn View Post
I contacted a body shop that recommended a used door vs a panel. They said it's usually cheaper. Tempted to snag that really low mileage door since it's local to me and any repair is going to be more than $350. The only other issue I can think of is the vins won't match but I don't really care and resale value does not matter to me.
Any concerns that the used door (which might be from the same region) can also have rust lurking somewhere as it is a common problem at your location? Just a thought.
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Old 05-16-19, 01:08 PM
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This takes me back to my first car, a 1975 Volvo. The seller was a salvage yard and said I'll even throw in 2 doors (maybe 2+" along the bottom rusted away.) Being the tough negotiator I was, I said if you install them, you've got a deal. Sounds strange, but I loved that car...pretended it was a turbo 740 wagon, which at the time was my dream car...

jmo I don't think I would want a used door, I'd want the original..and repaired...
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Old 05-16-19, 01:10 PM
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I did think of that but the one I found has crazy low miles, like 35k, so I'm guessing it wasn't out much. Verified the mileage on My Lexus. Can't see any rust in pictures.
https://www.nationwideautorecycling....MBLY_FR/70237/
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Old 05-16-19, 02:31 PM
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Originally Posted by Bocatrip View Post
Any concerns that the used door (which might be from the same region) can also have rust lurking somewhere as it is a common problem at your location? Just a thought.
Maybe spray the inside of the new door with some sort of rust protection. I like Fluid Film but there are other choices.
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Old 05-16-19, 06:06 PM
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Replacing yours with a used door is definitely the way to go if the replacement door and that side of your car both still wear their original paint. That way you should have a pretty good paint match.

Skinning the door or repairing the rust both raise potentially serious paint match issues.
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Old 05-17-19, 06:03 AM
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I think how long you want to keep this car is important. In other words likely $350 is a no brainer, but what is it out the door....I would spend $350 on my car, but not $700....
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Old 05-17-19, 07:36 AM
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I'd pick it up and do the swap myself so $370 w/tax. It's either that or live it with it. I definitely don't want to pay much more than that for this issue.
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