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Old 06-29-2019, 01:18 PM   #1
David R
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2009 Astra XE
1997 SW2
Default XE Rear Doors - Wiring

Many of you have had this issue with the wiring hardness' that connect the body wiring to the rear passenger doors. Door locks, power windows, rear speakers not working or intermittent. Comes from the wires inside the rubber boots flexing then breaking from fatigue.

I spliced in new wiring to the connector on the right rear door. Then the left rear door started acting up. Finally the right rear is acting up again. Probably right at the connector this time, as that where soldered to.

I've searched the UK and EU sites for replacement options. Pretty pricey once the conversion to Canadian dollars is done, specially if you want 2. Many of the listings are dead-ends as well.

I'm thinking of just hard-wiring directly into the doors. Before I go this route I was wondering if someone had found a cheaper source for the repair kit.

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2009 Astra XE 5sp 200K km
2000 Honda Civic SI 5sp 172K km, AKA EX Coupe - Gone
1997 SW2 DOHC Auto 330K km - Stored for winter, used in summer

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Old 06-29-2019, 02:38 PM   #2
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Default Re: XE Rear Doors - Wiring

That sounds irritating. The left rear door window has been stuck up on our Astra for years and I have no inclination to fix it.

I thought the main issue was that the wires were too short. But then again, I haven't looked so have no experience there just reading a lot of posts in Europe.

If I were in your shoes and interested in fixing this, I would just try to identify all the failures, any ground issues, any worn wires. You might have damaged wires further out than you expected so need longer wires. I would lengthen every single wire. There are some very robust splices you can find online. Make sure wires are uber clean before soldiering so you get good bonds. You might use heatshrink tubing for each wire and maybe the bundle and maybe some cloth electrical tape or corrigated tubing. This helps prevent water ingress, grounding issues, wire wear, and breakage but you need some level of mobility for door movement so not quite sure what is optimal.

FYI - There was a water ingress problem with the front two doors on my Astra. Water can enter the doors, soak the front rug, and travel along the high plastic foot sill at the bottom of the doors and soak the back rug. I haven't seen that as a cause for electrical issues anywhere.

You might find some use for tube sealant but you may need to inspect for leaks on occasion.

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Old 07-03-2019, 09:56 AM   #3
David R
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Default Re: XE Rear Doors - Wiring

Thanks for getting back. Yes on these cars, or any car I guess, you just get to a point and live with it. Particularly if it involves dismantling the interior.

I'm all to familiar with the "rain and front door leaks" feature. I figure the car will rust through the floors before anywhere else on the car. Though the paint has suddenly started flaking off the front-right door.

The story I have on the wiring is that it is pretty common in the UK and EU. Vauxhall and Opel appear to have chosen to ignore it. The problem occurs across several models as well. There are several things that came together to make this problem, the type of insulation, the number and thickness of the strands, and the length. When I pulled my wiring apart the insulation was stiff, brittle and cracking. Wherever the insulation cracked that became the most flexible point, quickly wearing out the stiff copper wiring. How the length plays in I'm not to sure, other than flexing is focused in a small region. Must play a roll, otherwise the front doors would have a problem on both the XE and XR. I also came across some references to the hatchback connector having problems as well.

I've attached several images from when I did the right rear door. I replaced the wire all the way forward of the B pillar, soldered and heat-shrinked. Unfortunately I had to reuse the contacts and wire stubs right at the connector, so probably the source of the returning troubles in the right-rear door. I'm sure the left-rear is a broken mess at this point. And yes that is a splice from a previous repair, possibly the dealer.
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2000 Honda Civic SI 5sp 172K km, AKA EX Coupe - Gone
1997 SW2 DOHC Auto 330K km - Stored for winter, used in summer

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Old 07-03-2019, 01:23 PM   #4
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Post Re: XE Rear Doors - Wiring

I discovered something unique years ago when headphones had radios in them. These headphones allowed walking everywhere without wiring since the radios were built in. The pvc ear pads quickly disintegrated from human oils. I tried silicone spray once a week after use, left them in a large baggie over the weekend, took them out and wiped off any residue. The ear muffs softened and lasted longer than others left untreated.

My guess is wire insulation is some form of pvc and perhaps wiping some silicone grease on the most flexed portions of wiring might prolong their flexibility against hardening leading to insulation cracks. A tooth brush can force grease into and around bundled wiring for an even coating.

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Old 07-04-2019, 08:28 AM   #5
David R
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Default Re: XE Rear Doors - Wiring

I do believe you're right that it is PVC insulation on the wires. Unfortunately by the time we found out there was an issue, it was to late. One doesn't think of preventative maintenance on a car as including treatment of the wires. Well maybe the connection points.

I will try your trick on some alligator test leads I have. All the boots for the clips have become so hard I can't squeeze them, much less use them.

Thanks

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Old 08-06-2019, 10:31 AM   #6
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Default Re: XE Rear Doors - Wiring

Had same issue - drivers side rear door locks n window not working. Pulled the door panel to get at the components then the boot between pillar and door - my pictures of the wiring look the same, 6 broken wires. Soldered in extensions using same gauge wires and taped with self vulcanizing electrical tape. Prior to my fix, it was only the drivers side rear locks/windows not working - now it is all locks and both rear windows not working. You can hear the locks trying to go but not actually moving - Am positive all wire splices are correct (but will check again) - Anyone have a thoughts on what would cause this - something upstream i.e. main driver window control? Where is main ground for the window/locks located? Any help appreciated
Judy

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Old 08-06-2019, 03:12 PM   #7
David R
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Default Re: XE Rear Doors - Wiring

My guess would be that if, it was mostly working before and now nothing is working then you have switched/crossed wires while splicing. The crossed wires are possibly causing an in series circuit behavior for the rear door circuit. For example, maybe the door lock solenoid is in series with the window power and the other door lock, so nothing works.

Or

If you didn't re-splice all the wires, now another wire is broken.

Or

Even though you spliced the wires, now one of them is broken else where. I replaced about 10" of wire, but I still had to use the stubs of wire on the connector. I did the rear passenger last year this time and the lock doesn't work again. Window and speaker still work.

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2000 Honda Civic SI 5sp 172K km, AKA EX Coupe - Gone
1997 SW2 DOHC Auto 330K km - Stored for winter, used in summer

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Old 08-07-2019, 12:18 PM   #8
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Default Re: XE Rear Doors - Wiring

Thanks for reply - Went thru it all again, this time splitting the boot that goes from pillar to door and found another broken wire. In the process managed to blow a fuse which explains the locks not working - Note to self - disconnect the battery lol. Re-soldered all connections again and sealed with heat shrink. All is good now but am going to put a flex wire cover about an inch long in the middle of the boot and seal it with the self vulcanizing tape to waterproof. Seems the problem is that the boot is too short and the covering on the wires to brittle. Thanks again for advice
Judy

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Old 08-12-2019, 08:21 AM   #9
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Default Re: XE Rear Doors - Wiring

valuable information

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Old 08-14-2019, 09:03 PM   #10
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Default Re: XE Rear Doors - Wiring

Quote:
Originally Posted by Judy'sAstra View Post
Thanks for reply - Went thru it all again, this time splitting the boot that goes from pillar to door and found another broken wire. In the process managed to blow a fuse which explains the locks not working - Note to self - disconnect the battery lol. Re-soldered all connections again and sealed with heat shrink. All is good now but am going to put a flex wire cover about an inch long in the middle of the boot and seal it with the self vulcanizing tape to waterproof. Seems the problem is that the boot is too short and the covering on the wires to brittle. Thanks again for advice
Judy
Same problem on my 5 door plus the rear hatch does not release. Where exactly are the fuses for the door locks and the hatch?

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Old 08-25-2019, 10:22 AM   #11
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Default Re: XE Rear Doors - Wiring

Quote:
Originally Posted by PaulR View Post
Same problem on my 5 door plus the rear hatch does not release. Where exactly are the fuses for the door locks and the hatch?
There are two fuse boxes - one in front and one in back behind access panel on drivers side. Fuse for locks is 25 amp (square and mine had purple see-thru top) The manual shows position number and think it is 25 or 28. Bit of a bugger to get out but persistence pays off. Put a 30 amp one in that I got from Auto wrecker (they have lots) cause local NAPA here wanted $8 for one fuse. Not sure on hatch fuse but manual should show you.
Judy

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Old 09-02-2019, 12:52 AM   #12
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Default Re: XE Rear Doors - Wiring

Quote:
Originally Posted by David R View Post
Many of you have had this issue with the wiring hardness' that connect the body wiring to the rear passenger doors. Door locks, power windows, rear speakers not working or intermittent. Comes from the wires inside the rubber boots flexing then breaking from fatigue.

I spliced in new wiring to the connector on the right rear door. Then the left rear door started acting up. Finally the right rear is acting up again. Probably right at the connector this time, as that where soldered to.

I've searched the UK and EU sites for replacement options. Pretty pricey once the conversion to Canadian dollars is done, specially if you want 2. Many of the listings are dead-ends as well.

I'm thinking of just hard-wiring directly into the doors. Before I go this route I was wondering if someone had found a cheaper source for the repair kit.
Did you mean this repair kit sold on eBay? It is all the way from jolly old England but both sides go for $80 and this guy has a 100% rating.

https://www.ebay.com/itm/Opel-Vauxha...e26c%7Ciid%3A1

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Old 09-03-2019, 12:41 AM   #13
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Default Re: XE Rear Doors - Wiring

Im in a bit of a pickle here and hoping that someone can chime in on my issue.

The previous owner snipped and taped off all the wires in the wire loom of the drivers side rear door. Due to that, the power window, door lock and the speaker didnt work.

I recently went over to the local pick and pull and removed a harness from the exact same door. Today I had the chance to remove the old harness. Afterwards I soldered in the harness that I obtained at the pick and pull, and taped off all the connections.

I decided to test out the new wiring only to find out that the only thing that works is the power door lock .

What else should I be checking for? I dont really want to rip my whole interior apart just to trace the wires for the power window and the speaker. I cant imagine them being snipped anywhere else. Im so confused.
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Old 09-03-2019, 11:39 AM   #14
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Default Re: XE Rear Doors - Wiring

That sounds painful. Glad you have the lock working which is the most critical of the systems. I just leave the rear window closed and speaker off.

Did you check all the fuses?

I see in David R's photo below, he has a lot of wire cracking at the rectangular connector. Did you check/replace wires to that point?

There is a fair chance the pick and pull harness had broken wires also that intermittently work and are cracked inside the insulation in several places.

Also check all the male and female pins both visually and with multimeter. It is possible several female pins are overbent so need to be tightened.

Double check your rewiring colors are all correct. An Astra owner made that same mistake last month and swapped two wires for perfect operation.

At the connector end, I would quickly check continuity for all grounds to body. Then check power with multimeter. Wiggle the wires a bit to see if any change readings.

I don't see the window or speaker breaking on these. You could test them insitu for fun. The speaker will show some resistance. I can't remember if the window switch is just on-off or some fancy scheme.

Alternatively, you could remove door panel and check wiring. The door panel comes off easily but a bunch of plastic tabs fell off my front door and I had to epoxy them back together so that took more time than expected. I wouldn't bother doing this as the wiring harness seems to be the typical issue.

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Old 09-03-2019, 02:09 PM   #15
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Default Re: XE Rear Doors - Wiring

Quote:
Originally Posted by AstraFasta View Post
That sounds painful. Glad you have the lock working which is the most critical of the systems. I just leave the rear window closed and speaker off.

Did you check all the fuses?

I see in David R's photo below, he has a lot of wire cracking at the rectangular connector. Did you check/replace wires to that point?

There is a fair chance the pick and pull harness had broken wires also that intermittently work and are cracked inside the insulation in several places.

Also check all the male and female pins both visually and with multimeter. It is possible several female pins are overbent so need to be tightened.

Double check your rewiring colors are all correct. An Astra owner made that same mistake last month and swapped two wires for perfect operation.

At the connector end, I would quickly check continuity for all grounds to body. Then check power with multimeter. Wiggle the wires a bit to see if any change readings.

I don't see the window or speaker breaking on these. You could test them insitu for fun. The speaker will show some resistance. I can't remember if the window switch is just on-off or some fancy scheme.

Alternatively, you could remove door panel and check wiring. The door panel comes off easily but a bunch of plastic tabs fell off my front door and I had to epoxy them back together so that took more time than expected. I wouldn't bother doing this as the wiring harness seems to be the typical issue.
Buy the repair kit. I went to the local pick and pull also and found the wiring broken or cracked in the same exact spots on the only two cars in the yard. The wire insulation the factory used was junk and the way that they routed the wiring was just plain stupid.

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Old 09-09-2019, 07:11 PM   #16
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Default Re: XE Rear Doors - Wiring

Quote:
Originally Posted by PaulR View Post
Buy the repair kit. I went to the local pick and pull also and found the wiring broken or cracked in the same exact spots on the only two cars in the yard. The wire insulation the factory used was junk and the way that they routed the wiring was just plain stupid.
Where would i be able to purchase a repair kit?

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Old 09-09-2019, 08:57 PM   #17
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Default Re: XE Rear Doors - Wiring

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Where would i be able to purchase a repair kit?
Look on eBay. This guy from jolly old England sells them under "Vauxhall/Opel Astra (mk5) rear door wiring replacement repair kit (2004-2010)". Mine are on order, one each, left and right and should be here within a week. I contacted him and gave all of the pertinent information on my Saturn version, such as rear electric power windows and key ignition start. In Europe their Astras, of course, have the same miserable problems as ours when it comes to the wiring to the rear doors. It seems that they have sold some of these kits across the pond to the Americas and they have worked on our Astras just fine. They claim it really is a, (20 minutes for each side), plug and play operation.

There are two options: one where the boots, or they call them gators, are already assembled on the replacement wires and one where you put them on. That is why if you look, there is a slight difference in price. The price is rather steep at about $75 USD shipped for the pair, but should be worth it because there are no solder splices to come undone and the new wiring insulation is much more flexible.

After I complete this crummy job on my XE5. I will then give a full report, with pictures, back to the S2, ha ha.

Oh, by the way I went on You Tube and found a video from Great Britain on how to open my unpowered and locked rear hatch door. There is a bung plug, (tee hee), the guy calls it, at the lower bottom of the interior panel. Take out the plug and turn a flat tip screwdriver in the hole to release the latch. Now why did none of you people tell me that a year ago?

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Last edited by PaulR; 09-09-2019 at 09:04 PM..

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