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Panasonic KX-T616 top latch weakness and repair

Started by 280Parka, July 28, 2018, 07:58:38 PM

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I had always noticed that the top latches on my Panasonic KX-T616 units were always a little more difficult to unlatch than the bottom latches.  The catches on the lid should spring out after depressing the buttons on the base but my top latches never would and always required a certain amount of fiddling to eventually get them to open up.  The top latch on my home unit finally failed completely and wouldn't open at all.  Taking the case apart I could see that the latch should be held in place at the fulcrum in a u-shaped slot on each side of the latch piece.

(Photo 1) shows the location of the broken u-shaped areas with the latch removed.  The arrows point to where the two pins had broken off.

(Photo 2) shows the latch removed and the two broken pieces of the "U".

(Photo 3) shows the un-broken lower latch for reference. Note that the lower latch has additional plastic that strengthens the "U" and keeps the plastic pins from breaking off.

(Photo 4) shows the latch, screws, return spring, and the two sheet metal pieces that were fabricated to hold the latch fulcrum in place and take the place of the broken pins of the "U".

(Photo 5) shows how the original screws are used to hold the new sheet metal holders in place and the final assembly with the return spring in place.

(Photo 6) shows the entire assembly in place in the unit.

I'm sure there are other methods but this one worked for me.


At the least, if you find that your upper latch is sticking and difficult to open and you don't want to take the time to fix it permanently, I recommend covering the hole of the door catch with tape or something so that it can't latch (Photo 7).  Otherwise, it could latch permanently.  It took a lot of work to finally get my home unit door open so that I could take it apart and repair it.  I have another 616 unit installed at the office and I used the tape method since it was already wired up and would be a pain to take down and repair.  The bottom latch appears to be sufficient enough to keep the door closed on its own.