How do you adjust freeplay nut at door latch (Passat B4) ???

Andrei Rinea

Veteran Member
Jan 21, 2002
Europe, Romania, Bucharest
VW Tiguan 4Motion 2.0 TDI 170HP (engine CBBB)
My passenger door opens difficult and I noticed it is because the freeplay seems too large. Also the junction seems a little loosy, but I would start with adjusting the freeplay nut.

Ok, had the plastic cover off the latch, found the nut but it seems a bit inaccesible to a wrench... Should I / Can I take the latch off by unscrewing the 2 inner-hex nuts? Or could this be a big error? and then how do you adjust the freeplay?


Veteran Member
Mar 18, 2001
union maine
2004 jetta wagon (365k)2001 wagon tire burner 6spd 2003 wagon(417k)
I have a 96 and did not know of any adjustment nut i just bent the fingers on the inside to take out the play. wish I knew of that before.


Well-known member
Oct 18, 2002
Little Egg Harbor, NJ
Passat Sedan and Wagon, 1997, Green

Check my reply to your previous post at : .

Make sure you head the reverse thread warning.

I have two replies in the thread that explains the full adjustment.

You can adjust in place with a 5.5mm wrench or do as I did and remove the whole latch mechanism and use a socket.

If you are adjusting the driver's door handle, be aware that there are additional items attached to the latch mechanism, if you have the central locking system on your car. You may need to remove the door panel to pull the mechanism out. This is because pulling on the latch mechanism causes the central locking to function, and that pulls the mechanism back towards the door. I removed the door panel and unplugged the central locking mechanism.

It is much easier if you can find a 5.5mm wrench to do the job. I tried an adjustable wrench and had no luck - not enough to get a grip on.

Hope this helps

Matt Ross
1997 Passat TDI