The release inside the car is broken and my battery is dead. I need to get into the hood to charge the battery but it seems the mechanic who replaced my fuel pump has broken the release latch to the hood. Is there any way to pop the hood without that latch? It's a 1999 Mercury Cougar.
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If your cable is broken, not easy, so I assume you are pulling release and it is not opening hood, which is typical reason for not being able to open hood. You will need to identify where break is first, and this is the tough part, sometimes it is simply a stretched cable which happens before it snaps completely. You may have to trace cable to hood latch, you may have to cut cable to access inside wire and then use vise grips to release and then replace whole cable. FREE-PPV.com
try to reach up under the front of the car with your arm and try to locate the latch with the hood release cable attached to it. Use your fingers or plyers to manipulate the latch to release-pull on the cable. You may have to remove the grill to access it.
you need too get some sort of hook on the end of a handle, something smaller but still strong enough to pull against with out bending or breaking. then standing at the front of the van using a flashlight look through the grill until you find the hood latch, then locate the black cable running into the side of the latch hook on to it and pull as hard as you can while simultaneously bouncing pressure on the font center area of the hood with your other hand until you hear/feel the hood latch release or "pop"!
Apply some downward pressure on the hood (careful not to dent it) to relieve some of the pressure on the latch, and have someone else pull the release handle. If the cable is broken you are going to have to wiggle under the engine bay and hope you can manually release the hood latch. I hope this helps!
ok if you can access the end of the cable from inside the car try using a set of vise grips to hold it and carefully pull to open the hood. if you need to access the latch from the grill its a tight squeeze but I recall that a thin screw driver was able to move the lever to release the latch.
see the attached pic the unit is upside down try to push the lever towards the drivers side