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Toyota RAV4 Door Panel Removal Guide
How to remove the interior door panel of a 3rd generation 2006 to 2012 Toyota RAV4 with picture illustrated steps.

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2012 RAV4 Door Panel
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Pry Out Door Handle Trim
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Door Handle Trim Panel

This automotive "how-to" guide was specifically written to assist owners of the third generation (2006, 2007, 2008, 2009, 2010, 2011 & 2012) Toyota RAV4 in removing the interior door panels in order to upgrade the OEM speaker, add soundproofing material, or replace the power window motor.

Owners of other Toyota, Lexus and Scion vehicles such as the Corolla, Camry, Matrix, Yaris, Tacoma, Prius, Tundra, Sienna, FJ Cruiser, Venza, Highlander, Avalon, 4Runner, Land Cruiser, Sequoia, IS 250, ES 350, GS 350, RX 350, FR-S, iQ, tC, xB, and xD may also find these DIY instructions to be helpful.

The only tools needed to remove the interior door panels include a standard Phillips head screwdriver, and a small flathead screwdriver.

To upgrade the OEM door speaker, you will need an electric drill and some drill bits to drill out the metal rivets.

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Remove Phillips Head Screw
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Pry Off Sail Panel
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Sail Panel Removed
In order to remove the front door panels of an 06-12 RAV4 you'll first need to remove 3 trim panels and 3 Phillips head screws.

The first screw is below the plastic triangular trim panel located behind the door opener handle. Pry out the trim piece with a small flathead screwdriver and set it aside in a safe place.

Remove the screw behind the door opener handle with a standard Phillips head screwdriver and set it next to the trim panel.

Then gently pull off the sail panel at the top corner of the door panel closest to the vehicle. You may need to loosen it by prying with the small flathead screwdriver. It is held in place by a single "pop rivet" friction fastener.

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Pry Off Door Pull Trim
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Door Pull Trim Removed
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Two Phillips Head Screws
The last two screws are located behind the rectangular trim panel that covers the door pull handle above the arm rest.

Use the small flathead screwdriver to gently pry off the door pull trim panel at the top and bottom edges.

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Remove Lower Phillips
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Remove Upper Phillips Screw
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3 Screws & 3 Panels
Use the Phillips head screwdriver to remove the upper and lower screws in the door pull handle.

Set them aside with the trim panels and the other screw.

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Pull Out Bottom of Panel
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White Pop Rivets Removed
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Door Lock/Handle Cables
Now that the 3 trim pieces and the 3 Phillips head screws have been removed, you can pull off the door panel.

Move to the bottom edge of the panel and firmly pull it towards yourself to separate the white plastic pop rivets from the metal door frame.

Continue pulling the bottom edge and both sides of the panel until all of the friction fasteners have been removed.



 

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Pop Off Bracket
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Press Release Tabs
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Remove Power Connectors
Lift the door panel up and off the lip of the metal door frame.

Angle the top of the door panel towards yourself and locate the black plastic door lock and handle bracket.

Pull the door opener handle and door lock switch assembly out of the bracket on the rear of the door panel. It should lift out easily, so do not use excessive force.

Press the release tabs on the two connectors for the power door lock and power window switches before pulling the plugs straight out of their sockets.

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Front Door Panel Removed
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Metal Door Frame
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Drill Out Speaker Rivets
Now you can pull the door panel away from the door frame and set it aside in a safe place.

To remove the OEM door speaker, you will need to drill out the metal rivets.

You can replace the front or rear door speakers with either 5 1/4" (5.25") or 6 1/2" (6.5") aftermarket speaker sizes.

I'd recommend buying new speakers from Crutchfield since they usually include any necessary brackets or power plug adapters that you might need.

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Replace Power Connectors
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Lock/Window Switch Plugs
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Insert Door Opener Handle
To re-install the door panel, hold the panel near the door frame and push in the connectors for the door lock and window switches straight in to their sockets.

Then insert the door opener handle through the hole in the door panel and snap the lock/handle assembly on to the bracket.

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Door Handle/Lock Replaced
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Insert White Plastic Pop Rivets
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Push Panel At Each Edge
Line up the white plastic friction fasteners on the rear of the door panel with their corresponding holes in the metal door frame.

Firmly push on the door panel to secure all of the pop rivets along the sides and bottom edge.

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Tighten Door Pull Screws
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Replace 2nd Door Pull Screw
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Push On Pull Trim Piece
Tighten the two screws in to the wells on the door pull handle with the Phillips head screwdriver.

If you have trouble getting the screws in to their holes, try attaching the screws to the tip of the screwdriver with some painters tape.

Line up the door pull handle trim panel and firmly push it in to place.

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Snap Trim Panel In Place
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Replace Sail Panel
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Tighten Door Handle Screw
Push the triangular sail panel back in place at the top corner of the door frame.

Insert the screw behind the door opener handle and tighten it with the Phillips head screwdriver.

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Replace Door Handle Trim
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Screw Cover Trim Replaced
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Front Door Panel Replaced
Snap the trim piece back in place behind the door opener handle.

Double check that the door opener handle, door lock/unlock switch and power window switch all work properly.

For more, check out my other Toyota RAV4 Repair & Maintenance Guides.
 

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