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Recently I was plagued with a frustrating clunk/rattle coming from the driver's side rear of the Jeep when I went over certain bumps or rough pavement.

I had a friend ride in the back and he was able to pinpoint the sound coming from the tailgate latch.

The fix was very easy and involved adjusting the tailgate support bracket by moving it slightly toward the rear of the Jeep. As the tailgate closes, the tailgate support on the door now fits snuggly in the support holder.

So just in case anyone else experiences this, I thought I would share what I found and how I fixed it.

Tailgate support bracket that I adjusted
temp1.jpg

Tailgate support on door where support bracket fits
temp 2.jpg
 

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Im trying this as soon as I get home! Thanks!
 

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This did not work for me. I bought a smittybilt had tire carier and have a 33 on it. It rattles even more with the Smitty built tire carrier. I have tried adjusting the door guide but have gotten nowhere with getting rid of the rattle. Smitty built also does not return my phone calls or emails or social media posts. Not sure what to do next
 

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This did not work for me. I bought a smittybilt had tire carier and have a 33 on it. It rattles even more with the Smitty built tire carrier. I have tried adjusting the door guide but have gotten nowhere with getting rid of the rattle. Smitty built also does not return my phone calls or emails or social media posts. Not sure what to do next
Make sure that the tire is snug against the tailgate with rubber stops or spacers similar to factory. There is too much movement if the only point of contact is at the wheel.
 

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Discussion Starter #7
Do your door make those sounds too? Mine are driving me crazy........
Currently no, my doors are fine. I'm just over 2,000 miles and the tailgate rattle/clunk was really driving me crazy. Glad this fixed it for me... sure hope my doors don't start this.
 

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Currently no, my doors are fine. I'm just over 2,000 miles and the tailgate rattle/clunk was really driving me crazy. Glad this fixed it for me... sure hope my doors don't start this.
Were you able to duplicate this rattle/clunk yourself by trying to shake the door itself with the Jeep parked? I think I have the same noise, but only does it on bumpy roads. I've tried wiggling the door myself by grabbing the door handle and jerking it around - no noise. I then tried grabbing the spare and doing the same thing - no noise. I can't tell that it's either the door or the carrier, but the sound sure comes from that area when I'm driving.
 

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Discussion Starter #10
Were you able to duplicate this rattle/clunk yourself by trying to shake the door itself with the Jeep parked? I think I have the same noise, but only does it on bumpy roads. I've tried wiggling the door myself by grabbing the door handle and jerking it around - no noise. I then tried grabbing the spare and doing the same thing - no noise. I can't tell that it's either the door or the carrier, but the sound sure comes from that area when I'm driving.
Exact same experience for me! I couldn't get the noise to happen manually by doing any of the things you tried.

Try this, take electrical tape and put two layers of it on the bottom part of the tailgate support... right below where it says FWD. The two layers of tape will temporarily tighten the gap between the bracket and the support before you try the fix I mentioned and will quickly confirm it's the tailgate.
 

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Damn guys I have been wrapping this latch and clip area for years with electrical tape to stop the damn rattle. Never once occured ro try and adjust these. I just rewrapped it again three days ago and silence once again. Now do I rip it all off and try adjusting or go with the tried and true....

That rattle annoyed the living hell out of me.
 

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Were you able to duplicate this rattle/clunk yourself by trying to shake the door itself with the Jeep parked? I think I have the same noise, but only does it on bumpy roads. I've tried wiggling the door myself by grabbing the door handle and jerking it around - no noise. I then tried grabbing the spare and doing the same thing - no noise. I can't tell that it's either the door or the carrier, but the sound sure comes from that area when I'm driving.
Only way I found the rattle was to climb in the backseat with the tailgate amd window closed with a closed fist tap palm side out around the edge of the window frame and tailgate meet. I could hear the same rattle going over bumps or ridges in the road.
 

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Discussion Starter #13
Damn guys I have been wrapping this latch and clip area for years with electrical tape to stop the damn rattle. Never once occured ro try and adjust these. I just rewrapped it again three days ago and silence once again. Now do I rip it all off and try adjusting or go with the tried and true....

That rattle annoyed the living hell out of me.
Up to you but I was able to silence it with tape and then removed the tape, made the adjustment and it's still quiet.
 

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Not sure if this helps but I thought I hade a rattle in my tailgate but turned out to be the emergency brake cable rattling underneath. I was convinced it was the tailgate but nope.
 

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Exact same experience for me! I couldn't get the noise to happen manually by doing any of the things you tried. Try this, take electrical tape and put two layers of it on the bottom part of the tailgate support... right below where it says FWD. The two layers of tape will temporarily tighten the gap between the bracket and the support before you try the fix I mentioned and will quickly confirm it's the tailgate.
That did it!! So you sooo much for this post! It's the little things in life that make a big difference. I can now drive down the road without thinking something is gonna fall off.
 

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That did it!! So you sooo much for this post! It's the little things in life that make a big difference. I can now drive down the road without thinking something is gonna fall off.
Great to hear and glad it worked for you! For me at least, it didn't take much of an adjustment. Probably slid it only about 1/8".
 

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That did it!! So you sooo much for this post! It's the little things in life that make a big difference. I can now drive down the road without thinking something is gonna fall off.
Don't worry something else will start rattling and you will think it is about to fall off. It won't.
Go ahead and put 35" tires on your Honda Accord or Toyota Camry and see if it rattles.
Jeeps rattle, it rides rough, it has road noise...It's a Jeep thing! You will still love it.
Don't get me wrong that damn tailgate rattle drives me insane, but that's when I turn the music louder.
 

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The tire carrier has two metal bars that stop it from getting too close to tailgate. My day Daystar stops were not even long enough.
Hockey pucks can make a good bass to extend rubber baby buggy bumpers out to the tire sides. This is a MUST or you will start getting stress cracks in the tire carrier where it flexes every time you hit a bump.

I used pucks and PVC pipes with TJ tire bumpers on mine.
 

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Don't worry something else will start rattling and you will think it is about to fall off. It won't. Go ahead and put 35" tires on your Honda Accord or Toyota Camry and see if it rattles. Jeeps rattle, it rides rough, it has road noise...It's a Jeep thing! You will still love it. Don't get me wrong that damn tailgate rattle drives me insane, but that's when I turn the music louder.
Oh I know! I'm already trying to isolate a vibration I'm getting in the back when I go over washboard roads. Fixing the tailgate just made this vibration more noticeable. LOL!!
 

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I just want to thank you for this post. I just purchased a 2014 JK and the rattle was so bad that I considered taking it to the dealer. Glad I looked here first. Moving that guide back completely eliminated the rattle. Anyone who has a tailgate rattle on the driver side needs to try this first. I would say I moved mine back 1/4 inch.
 
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