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Old 07-26-2013
LonesomeSTX's Avatar
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I am: Louis Moore
Join Date: May 2013
Location: Columbus, GA
Vehicle: Ford Ranger
Posts: 146
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Would you like to know how to release a jammed seat belt?

Recently I posted a question about the seat belt I have in my 2000 ranger that was jammed. I had gutted my interior and both the seat belts fully retracted. I received advice stating once I reinstall them they will sit in the correct position and release. That was true for the driver side but not the passenger. It remained locked up even after I tried manipulating it with my hand and tapping on it with a small hammer. However, a buddy of mine had the same issue and told me how to fix it and it worked. So, I will now share that information with you all.

Sorry ahead of time for not posting photographs. I did not have a camera with me at the time I did this job. Also, I do not know what kind of seat belt you may have but this method does work on the later model Ford seat belts. It may work on others as well. Anyhoo, the first thing you need is a jammed seat belt. If you do not have one go get one.

This step is the tricky part. I thought if I popped the plastic cover off it would ruin the seat belt. It will, if you do not do it correctly. Gently work the sold plastic cover off with a small screw driver. Yes, you will break the plastic rivets. However, if you take your time and work it off slowly it will snap back on. DO NOT remove the side with a two piece cover. That is where the coil is and that will pop off easy. Luckily I caught what I was about to do before that coil sprung out.

Once you get the cover off a white gear might fall out. Do not worry; you have to remove it any way to keep from losing it. It rides in the center of the mechanism and just sits in place. Just make sure the other planetary gears stay where they are.

Next, gently remove the plastic gear assembly. There are springs, levers and so in place. It will remove as a unit, but be careful to keep everything where it is suppose to me.

Now you are at the problem area. Too much belt has retracted into the roll and the locking piece does not have enough room to release. Just hold down the metal lock and reroll out the seat belt by hand. At that point it will work on its own.

Once you get it to where it will spin and lock freely; use a pair of locking pliers to prevent it from retracting again.

Then just reverse the process. Make sure along the way that everything is still working as it should.

If you removed the plastic cover with care, it should snap back into to place.

That is all there is to it.
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