How to repair automotive electrical connectors by depin and repin

The ability to de-pin a connector is a crucial step of the pigtail repair process.

This process entails removing the existing wiring and terminals from the damaged connector, and then reinstalling in the new, replacement connector.

Fortunately, there are usually only a couple of ways that wiring and terminals are attached to the connector. The process typically involves removing a front cap, opening a secondary lock and then pressing on the catches with a tool from a screwdriver kit or a specialized terminal release kit.

This video Ruston demonstrates how to repair automotive electrical connectors via the depin method.

Two important connector repair tools we recommending using are a mini screwdriver set and a terminal release tool kit.
Both can be found here, on our website:

Many electrical connectors require removal of the front cap, first. To release most terminals, find and press the catch that holds them in place.
Lift up the catch and release the terminal/pin gently and at the same time.
Some automotive connectors also feature a secondary lock, which must also be removed first. The secondary lock can also be situated to the side of the connector. Remove it and pull it to the side with a mini screwdriver.
Be careful not to snap them off or dislodge them from their track.

Sometimes, the catch is built into the connector terminal itself. Push the catch down as you pull the wire out.

Sometimes the terminal release tools come in very handy.
You can see this tool directly, here: