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Old 10-04-2010, 06:21 AM   #1
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Tailgate problem

I just recently purchased a 2000 wrangler Tj and love it but have a problem with the tailgate opening and closing. It is very hard to do either way. When it is closed and I open the handle it will pop open by itself about 10 inches or so like it is spring loaded. I don't think this is normal. Then once it is open it is very hard to push shut. I can see it putting stress on the body and makes a popping noise. Makes me cringe everytime. I have tried to find others with the same problem but doesn't appear to be common. I am new to wranglers but not jeeps and would appreciate any help from anyone with some advice. Sorry if I posted in the wrong area. Thanks

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Old 10-04-2010, 06:36 AM   #2
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Is your tire to large by chance? I had that problem on my jk

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Old 10-04-2010, 07:32 AM   #3
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Tailgate

Do you have the same problem when the tire is not on the tailgate?
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Old 10-04-2010, 08:43 AM   #4
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Yep, sounds like the hinges are shot, due to carrying an oversized spare on the tailgate...
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Old 10-04-2010, 07:15 PM   #5
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It still has the original spare rim and tire and to the best of my knowledge has never even been removed. I kind of figured the hinges just need to be replaced just wasn't sure If there was a reason or a fix for it. I can imagine that the original tire would cause the problem but I guess it is possible. I thought for sure someone else would be complaining of the same issue though if that was the case. Just does not seem like that would have caused it. Thanks for the replys probably just have to buy new ones. Not cheap though
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Old 10-04-2010, 10:51 PM   #6
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Originally Posted by Bussnutz View Post
It still has the original spare rim and tire and to the best of my knowledge has never even been removed. I kind of figured the hinges just need to be replaced just wasn't sure If there was a reason or a fix for it. I can imagine that the original tire would cause the problem but I guess it is possible. I thought for sure someone else would be complaining of the same issue though if that was the case. Just does not seem like that would have caused it. Thanks for the replys probably just have to buy new ones. Not cheap though
My 99 had exactly the same problem, all i did to fix it was some WD40 and PB Blaster and worked it both ways. Eventually it will free up. I think with the stock spare on it it is caused by not using it. The more you use it the easier it will get too.
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Old 10-04-2010, 11:02 PM   #7
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Originally Posted by 99wranglertj View Post
My 99 had exactly the same problem, all i did to fix it was some WD40 and PB Blaster and worked it both ways. Eventually it will free up. I think with the stock spare on it it is caused by not using it. The more you use it the easier it will get too.
pretty much. had same problem on mine, just use it and spray some wd40 and it should fix itself.
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Old 10-05-2010, 02:24 AM   #8
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Check to make sure the tailgate isn't bent or tweaked, too.

Don't ask how I know but if you use a stinger bumper to nudge your buddy's spare this can happen...

On the plus side he likes the mod. Helps his tailgate to stay open at those odd times you don't want a free-swinging tailgate out on the trails...
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Old 10-05-2010, 03:47 AM   #9
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Better than WD40, use a spray lithium or silicone grease.
WD isn't really a made to be a lube as much as some think it is.
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Old 10-05-2010, 07:01 AM   #10
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Thanks everyone for the advice. I did wd40 the piss out of it first and didn't do a thing. I was thinking that some sort of grease would work better but would be hard to get inside the hinge. It is very likely that it is seized up from little to no use and just needs to be worked a little more. I will continue to lube it and open and close it for awhile see how that goes. I will be on the lookout for a cheap new set of hinges just in case. Thanks again
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Old 10-05-2010, 07:43 AM   #11
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From the description you are giving, it sounds like the gate door has been tweaked as mentioned above. It is putting pressure somewhere because the alignment has been knocked out. Check it closely and see if it is out of whack.
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Old 10-05-2010, 12:15 PM   #12
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This happened to my '00 TJ also. I found out that there was a missing hex screw missing that holds the tailgate latch. I screwed it back on and adjusted the the big bolt like that hooks into the tailgate latch when closed. No more popping noise when opening or closing. Hope this helps.
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Old 10-05-2010, 12:37 PM   #13
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Update I did use some white lithium grease and opened and closed it lots of times and seemed to loosen up now but now it will not close properly. Previously it did close just very hard now the latch side of the door is lower then the body and will not latch properly. I think I will try to remove the latches and trait them without the spare on also. That is always my luck fix one problem and causes another.

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