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Chevrolet Cruze Interior Door Panel Removal Guide
How to take off the interior door panels of a 1st generation 2011 to 2014 GM Chevy Cruze to upgrade the OEM speakers.

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2013 Cruze Door Panel
Trim Behind Door Handle
Pry Out Trim Piece

This automotive "how-to" guide was specifically written to assist owners of the first generation (2011, 2012, 2013, 2014 and possibly the 2015 model year) GM Chevrolet Cruze in removing the interior door panels in order to upgrade the OEM speakers, add soundproofing material, fix a faulty electrical switch and replace a broken power window motor or regulator.

Owners of other General Motors vehicles such as the Spark, Sonic, Volt, Malibu, Camaro, Corvette, Impala, Equinox, Traverse, Suburban, Tahoe, Avalanche, Colorado, Silverado, Express, Cadillac ATS, XTS, CTS, SRX, Escalade, Buick Verano, Regal, LaCrosse, Encore, GMC Sierra, Terrain, Acadia, Yukon and Savana may also find these DIY instructions to be helpful.

The tools needed to remove the door panel include a small flathead screwdriver, a Torx T-20 star bit screwdriver, and an automotive panel tool or flathead screwdriver.

Removing the OEM door speakers requires a 7mm socket and ratcheting wrench.

Trim Panel Removed
Remove Torx T20 Screw
T-20 Screw Removed
The first step is to use a small flathead screwdriver to pry out the plastic trim panel behind the door opener handle.

Remove the screw behind the door opener handle with a Torx T-20 star bit screwdriver by turning it counter clockwise.

Set the trim panel and screw aside in a safe place.

Arm Rest Screw Under Cover
2 T-20 Screws Removed
Pull Off Sail Panel
The second screw is located at the bottom of the arm rest pull handle.

Pry up the rubber cover at the bottom of the arm rest pull handle well and remove the single Torx T-20 screw.

(Please note: The rubber cover at the bottom of the arm rest pull handle well was missing on this 2013 Cruze.)

Set the rubber cover and the door pull screw aside with the other parts.

Pull the sail panel at the top corner off the door frame and set it aside. You may need to pry it off with the small flathead screwdriver. It is held in place by two plastic pop rivet friction fasteners.

Pull Out Pop Rivets
Friction Fasteners Removed
Lift Panel Off Frame
Move to the bottom edge of the door panel and firmly pull it away from the door frame to disengage the plastic pop rivet friction fasteners.

You may need to use an automotive panel removal tool or a flathead screwdriver to begin popping out the fasteners.

I usually sit on the ground, place one foot on the outer edge of the metal door frame and then pull out the bottom of the door panel.

Continue pulling out the friction fasteners at the bottom and both sides of the door panel.

Lift the door panel up and off the lip at the top of the door frame.

Door Opener Handle Cable
Lift Off Blue Plastic Clip
Rotate Cable Out
Tilt the top of the door panel towards yourself and support the bottom edge with your thighs.

Lift the blue plastic clip at the end of the door opener cable off the bracket.

Swing the cable away from yourself and lift the metal ball at the end out of its socket.


Lift Metal Ball Out of Socket
Press Release Tab
Remove Power Connector
Press the release button on the black plastic electrical connector below the switch panel and pull it straight out of its socket.
Door Panel Removed
Metal Door Frame
OEM Door Speaker
Set the plastic door panel aside in a safe place.
Remove 7mm Screw
Pull Out OEM Speaker
Press Release Button
The OEM door speaker is held in place by one 7mm screw.

Remove the screw with a 7mm socket and ratcheting wrench by turning it counter clockwise.

Pull the speaker out of the door frame. Press the release tab on the power connector and slide it straight out of its socket.

Power Plug Removed
Hold Panel Near Frame
Push In Power Plug
To re-install the door panel, hold it near the door frame and support the bottom with your thighs.

Push the large black plastic electrical connector in to the socket at the bottom of the switch panel until it clicks in to place.

Door Opener Handle Cable
Metal Ball In Socket
Pop Blue Clip On Bracket
Insert the metal ball at the end of the door opener handle cable in to its socket.

Re-attach the blue plastic clip near the end of the cable on to the black plastic bracket.

Insert Door Lock Stalk
Hang Panel On Frame
Line Up Pop Rivets
Insert the door lock stalk in to the hole at the top outer edge of the door panel.

Hang the door panel on to the lip of the door frame.

Line up the plastic pop rivet friction fasteners on the back of the door panel with their corresponding holes in the door frame.

Push In Friction Fasteners
Tighten Door Handle Screw
Tighten Arm Rest Screw
Firmly push on the door panel all along the bottom and both sides to fully insert the pop rivet fasteners.

Insert and tighten the screw behind the door opener handle with the Torx T-20 screwdriver by turning it clockwise.

Replace the screw in the door pull well and tighten it with the Torx T-20 screwdriver.

Push In Trim Piece
Push On Sail Panel
Door Panel Replaced
Push the trim piece behind the door opener handle back in to place. Re-insert the rubber screw cover in to the bottom of the door pull handle well (not pictured).

Push the sail panel back in place at the top corner of the door frame.

Sit in the vehicle, close the door, and verify that the door opener handle, power window switch and door lock mechanism work properly.

For more, check out my other Chevrolet Cruze Repair & Maintenance Guides.

If you found this guide to be helpful, please consider making a small donation by clicking on the "Donate" button located to the right of this paragraph. Thank you!
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