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Dodge Challenger Door Panel and Front Speaker Removal PDF Print E-mail
Written by Lance   
Thursday, 22 March 2012 02:46

When you are going to upgrade your front speakers, you will have to remove the door panel, speaker/speaker pod, and then re-install with your speaker of choice.




The door panel removal is very easy, and the process hasn't changed from the Mopars of yesteryear...the main difference is the door panels are now plastic instead of upholstered and we have the center pin clips instead of the metal clips and pins you find on your A, B, or E-Body.  It really takes me about the same amount of time to do the Mopar 10 or a B-Body...the nice thing on the M10 is that you don't have as much chance of slicing up a map pocket, getting the vinyl dirty, or breaking the clips/pins.  Removing the speaker and/or speaker pod is just as easy.

Here is a video if you prefer that route, not great, but it gets the job done:


Door Panel Removal


Front Speaker Removal

For those of you that need further reinforcement, or just prefer the text based route, I've got you covered as well.


-#2 Phillips Screwdriver

-T15 Torx Bit

-Nylon Trim/Panel Tools

-Small Nylon Punch or a Small Flat Blade Screwdriver

-2" Painters Tape


First up, if you don't have a small nylon tool/punch run a round of 2" tape over the blade on your small flat blade screwdriver...this will keep the metal from marring the plastic on the push pins.

We will be removing (7) Center Pin Clips and (5) #2 Screws, pulling a few clips out, and disconnecting wiring to get the door panel off.

Step 1: Removing the 7 Center Pin Clips

There are a total of (7) Center Pin Clips on the door panel.  You will find (3) on the door panel side near the front fender.  The remaining (4) are located on the backside of the door panel, near the door jamb side.

Take your selected tool and lightly apply pressure to the Center Pin.  It should depress below the surface of the out housing.  Now grab your trim tool and come in from the side with the most leverage and pry the clip out.

Step 2: Removing the 5 #2 Phillips Screws

You now need to remove (5) #2 Screws.

The first (3) are at the bottom of the door panel and blend in nicely with the black.  The first can  be found below the door reflector...then just trace along the lower edge and find the other two screws.

The next screw is located behind the door handle (ie the handle you pull to open the door).  Carefully use your taped, flat blade screwdriver to pry the cover down from the top.  Once you have access hold the handle open and remove the #2 Screw.

The final screw is concealed behind the door pull (ie the grab in the middle of the door you use to shut your door).  Come in with the taped, flat-blade screwdriver and pry the cover down.  If you slip, or apply too much pressure the cover will pop-out.  Don't worry as you can slide it back in later.  Once the screw is revealed, pull it out and you are ready for the next phase.

Step 3: Release the Door Panel Clips

There are (5) Clips holding the door panel to the door frame.

This one isn't hard, just difficult to explain.  I like to start at the top, outside corner near the lock knob.  Simply pull the door panel out (towards you) and you will feel the clips start to release.  Continue working long the top, sides, and bottom until it is free.  Be careful not to let the door panel "hang" off the lock knob.  An extra set of hands makes this very easy, but I've done it solo many times...

Step 4: Disconnect the Wiring Harness

This is actually the toughest part imo, mainly because some of the connectors are a total pain to release in close-quarters and with the position you will be in...

As weird as it is, I have found that either having a creeper seat support the door panel, or lying on a pit mat and resting the door panel on my shoulder works best...If this sounds crazy, just trust me....you'll know what I mean when you attempt it.

The passenger side obviously has fewer wires...mainly just one for the window/lock and another for the courtesy light (which I think is the biggest pain, despite being the smallest).  I like to pull the connector from the door panel and then disconnect, this only nets you a few extra inches of "play," but it proves helpful to me.

The driver's side will have the courtesy light, power lock/window harness, and then another large plug (mirrors etc if I remember right).

This is really simple and anyone can do it, you will just have to spend a little time playing with the clearances to find what works best for you.

Step 5: Release the Door Release Rod

You know those plastic clips that ALWAYS break on your old Mopar?  This thing is very similar to that, but hopefully more durable.  All you need to do is lift up on the door release rod and swing it out of the way...by far the easiest of this series.

Step 6: Store the Door Panel

This seems obvious, but whatever your last connection, and where ever you are positioned, be ready for the door panel to drop down.  Keep in mind to not forget the door lock knob.  I like to let the door panel drop to my shoulder, then carefully maneuver myself back into a crouched position to lift the panel off the lock knob without pulling it in 18 inches.  If you did do that, don't worry, the stem is very flexible and you can bend it back into position.

Now just find somewhere safe to put the door panel.  If you will need multiple days to get the speakers swapped etc, make sure to keep it out of harms way and somewhere rain won't seep in on it etc.

Step 7:  Remove the Speaker or Speaker Pod and Install the New Speaker

Depending on if you are going with a smaller, "drop-in" speaker, or a massive, aftermarket speaker you will need to either remove the speaker, or the speaker pod.

If you are swapping Bostons in on your 4-Speaker, or adding the Kicker line from Mopar they are drop-in replacements.

Grab your T15 Bit and remove the 4 screws holding the speaker to the speaker pod.  Disconnect the wiring to the speaker and carefully lift it out.

Now install your new speaker, connect the wiring, cinch it down with the T15 hardware, and call it good.

If you are going to install a Kappa or other high-quality aftermarket speaker you will likely need to modify the speaker pod.  Go ahead and just remove the (4) #2 Phillips Screws holding the pod to the door, disconnect the wiring harness, and you are golden.  On the bench, remove the (4) T15 Screws, mod your pod, and put it all back in place.  You can check our “Speaker Pod Mod” article to see how to make the required modifications to fit a larger speaker.

Also note that if you decide to run an amped speaker, you will need to pull the body plug, drill it with a ¼” bit, and route your speaker wire through…We have that detailed in the “Speaker Pod  Mod” article as well.

Granted, you will want to test out the sound from either speaker upgrade route you go, make sure you like it, have it dialed-in to your taste (aftermarket), and then get ready for the installation.

Step 8: Door Panel Installation

Hey, if you removed it, you can put it back on...I think it is actually a bit easier to do this than take one off...mainly because the electrical connections are so much easier to just plug-in.  Take your time to line it all up as things still get tight.

Just reverse the steps above and you are golden.

Before installing any hardware or pins make sure you have seated the (5) Pins.

I would suggest you install the (5) #2 Phillips Screws first, beginning with the door pull (center) and door handle.  Then slide the (7) Clips one-by-one into their openings, push the center pins in once to engage, and once more to seat.  When properly installed, they will sit flush.  Now the only way people will know your door panel was off is when they hear the tunes from your stereo!

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