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Old 07-12-2010, 10:39 AM   #1
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The Tailgate is Givin' Me Attitude

So lately I have been having issues with my tailgate locking. When I would put the key in it would turn to the right (as to unlock it) but it would not turn to the left (to lock it). This wasnt too much of an issue for me so I just let it be. Well yesterday I was taking some stuff out of the back, the tailgate shut, and now it wont open at all. The handle doesnt feel like it does anything, it just lifts but doesnt feel like its catching at all. Whats the trick to getting it open now? And once I get it open, is there anything I can do to make the latch work better and possibly fix the locking mechanism?

Thanks Guys

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Old 07-12-2010, 10:43 AM   #2
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try crawling over the back seat and removing the access panel to see the inners of the latch...sounds like a rod came loose or a clip broke....

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Old 07-12-2010, 11:29 AM   #3
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Hopefully you have an 03 or newer....they have a plastic cap that snaps over the mechanism. If it's an 02 or earlier, you have to deal with torx bolts!!
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Old 07-12-2010, 11:34 AM   #4
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Quote:
Originally Posted by T-BONE N BIXBY View Post
Hopefully you have an 03 or newer....they have a plastic cap that snaps over the mechanism. If it's an 02 or earlier, you have to deal with torx bolts!!
Ya its a 99 unfortunately...but the torx isnt a new thing...you have to deal with them on every other project on the jeep, so Im used to it
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Old 07-12-2010, 07:06 PM   #5
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They are very easy to work on, first remove the cover. On the bottom left side you will see or feel a lever that moves horizontally, slide it towards the latch side(when you are in the back it will be toward the right. This will unlock it. then look to see where the handle rod connects to the lock and push it down. whala the door should be open. now you can see where the rods came off and reconnect them. Sometimes the plastic connectors break, they are really inexpensive from the dealer or a good auto parts store.
Good luck let me know if you need anything else. S
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Old 07-12-2010, 10:11 PM   #6
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They are very easy to work on, first remove the cover. On the bottom left side you will see or feel a lever that moves horizontally, slide it towards the latch side(when you are in the back it will be toward the right. This will unlock it. then look to see where the handle rod connects to the lock and push it down. whala the door should be open. now you can see where the rods came off and reconnect them. Sometimes the plastic connectors break, they are really inexpensive from the dealer or a good auto parts store.
Good luck let me know if you need anything else. S
Thanks oranjeep, I figured it was pretty straight forward. I will probably look into it this weekend to see what I can get figured out
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Old 07-19-2010, 03:22 PM   #7
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So I looked at this over the weekend, turns out there was nothing wrong on the inside of the latching mechanism. I think what had happened is my tailgate came around and latched very lightly and got stuck inbetween the half latched and full latched positions and caused it to not work right. Got it fixed and cleaned out. Thanks for the input everyone.

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