Question about 2000 Ford F150 Flareside SuperCab

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97 Ford F150 Tailgate latch mechanism failure

I have a 97 F150 and the tailgate will not open from the handle. I opened the panel on the back and open it and everything looks fine. I am looking at the lock mechanism. In one posistion, the handle moves but the rods do not. In the other position. The handle tries to move but is too hard. I assume the 2nd position is the locked position, so why does my handle not open? Does anyone have a diagram? I do better with pictures... Thanks, Brian

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  • Anonymous Mar 26, 2014

    Tailgate won't latch

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These latches break all the time there is alot of aftermarket companys making replacements. just pop one in and you ready to go

Posted on Sep 12, 2008

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2 Answers

Rear hatch on my 2001 explorer will not open, rear window will but tailgate hatch will not. how do i open it with out the unlock button, no manual release that i can see...


I had a clip break when I tried to open my tailgate. I had to remove my inside hatch panel and find my way to the handle assembly. A little plastic clip (shaped like a T) had finally worn out, which wouldn't hold the locking arms, and I had to go to a Ford dealership for a $3 part; tailgate has worked fine since then!

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1 Answer

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Either ,something is binding inside the tailgate, or broken.
You can get to the mechanism from the inside panel of the tailgate-- by
removing the screws that down the inside panel.
Once you remove the panel you should be able to open the tailgate by
pulling on the thin cable to unlatch the latches from both ends of the tailgate and a good look at the handle mechanism will tell you what wrong.
Good Luck.

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1 Answer

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There is a tendancy for the Triggers from the handle to Disengage internally to the Latch due to Wear and Tear, or sometimes Stressing the Mechanism when the Tailgate is Locked and someone forgot.
Gently unfasten the trim panels around the Tailgate, from the INSIDE, and if you THINK about the project, you will be able to release enough of this All in One piece enough to trip the triggers by hand, and open the Tailgate. Continue to unfasten the moulded grips, and remove the whole panel. This will then give you the access to fix the Release mechanism, mounted on the Tailgate inner body.
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1 Answer

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1 Answer

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1 Answer

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1 Answer

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1 Answer

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Sounds like one of the control rods has come off in side the tailgate that pulls on the latches to release the tailgate. Here is what you need to do to fix this. Look on the inside of the tailgate and you will see a rectangular plate that you can remove. Take this plate off and it will give you access to the inside of the tailgate. Then you will see which rod has dropped out of it's retaining hole. You may need to get a new plastic clip from Ford to keep the rod in place. Don't worry though. These plastic clips are cheap and easy to replace. Good luck. This plastic part will only be available from Ford.

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1 Answer

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1 Answer

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Jul 12, 2008 | 2000 Ford F150 Flareside SuperCab

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