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The hatch (tailgate) opens intermittently.....sometimes it just will not open. How do I go about repairing this?

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  • Cars & Trucks Master
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Four things control the hatch. BCM, switch,wiring and the hatch motor. The kind of vehicle you have does make a difference. But to start, I would look at the plugs going to the switch and BCM. Maybe the switch itself, if you use the hatch quite often.

Posted on Apr 12, 2015

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What year/make/model

Posted on Apr 12, 2015

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Posted on Jan 02, 2017

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1 Answer

Rear hatch won't open on my 2008 Pt Cruiser. It doesn't have power assist, you have to push up under the logo on a rubber sealed switch. How can I open it?


The hatchback vehicle and similar has an inherent problem that has been increasing since the rear screen wiper was first fitted to them. Wires must pass from the vehicle body into the tailgate and at this point the wires flex every time the hatch is opened and closed. Standard wiring is not designed to flex so much, so often, for so long and in such a wide temperature spread yet the vehicle manufacturers use standard cable rather than "extra flexible wire" and arctic rated insulation so it isn't surprising to sometimes find one or more wires at or near that stress point have broken. Usually this isn't a great problem or inconvenience - except when the vehicle has an electric tailgate release and that is the wire that has broken..

The fault with your tailgate could be a lack of supply from the front or a break anywhere in the supply or a faulty release switch or even the release mechanism itself but apart from checking the fuses there are few practical steps to take until the tailgate is open.

I have so far been called upon to open two such tailgates and not being a car thief or a locksmith I know only one way and that is to climb inside the luggage space and to do whatever it takes to remove the interior trim panel from the tailgate. It was then relatively easy to disconnect the release and apply 12 volts to the exposed terminals via a pair of probes and I was lucky and the lock instantly released. One needed a new push button and the other a wiring repair.

Nov 07, 2016 | 2008 Chrysler Pt Cruiser

1 Answer

Light for hatch stays on but its a 2 door soft top


Check the tailgate. It should have a switch on it that warns if the tailgate/hatch is ajar.

Mar 14, 2014 | 2002 Kia Sportage

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Banging or thumping noise on right hand rear side near tailgate


check the top runner on the tailgate on the outside to see if damaged. if not that then check the molds around the gate

Mar 04, 2014 | GMC Envoy Cars & Trucks

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The rear latch does not open easy and doesn;t stay up. Whats wrong?


There should be two hydraulic struts - one on either side of the hatch/tailgate. If these struts have failed, the hatch/talgate will not stay open. Also, since these struts are compressed when the hatch/tailgate is closed, they provide positive lifting pressure when you unlock the hatch, pushing it away slightly from the latching mechanism. Replace the struts, and you should be all set.

Oct 10, 2013 | Buick Terraza Cars & Trucks

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Can hummer h3 tailgate be opened from inside? The rear door/tailgate handle just snapped off.


Yes you can open the tailgate from the inside,if you open the housing that holds the jack and wheel spanner then you will find the hatch to open the tail gate

Nov 07, 2011 | 2008 Hummer H3

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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!

Sep 01, 2011 | 2001 Ford Explorer Sport

1 Answer

Where is the fuse for the rear hatch on a 1993 chevrolet blazer? My rear hatch will not open at all. I can hear it ttrying to unlatch the rear windoiw but nothing happens.


If you can hear it then you don't have a fuze problem. More than likely it can be fixed by adjusting the catch in the tailgate. Open you hatch with the key and lower the tailgate. Remove the tailgate interior panel/cover and you'll see the catch for the window. Adjust the catch a little, tighten it up, raise the tailgate and close the hatch. Try your release on the dash again and see if this fixes the problem. You may have to repeat this a couple of times until you get it adjusted to where it needs to be. If this works, then reinstall the tailgate interior panel and you're all done.

Feb 17, 2011 | 1993 Chevrolet S-10 Blazer

1 Answer

2004 Freestar hatch will not unlock


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.
Regards, DT

Sep 06, 2009 | 2004 Ford Freestar

1 Answer

1995 GMC Jimmy Back Hatch Wont Open


If the tailgate has been used a lot, the wiring that goes from the body to the gate has broken. You will see a weatherproof "boot" connecting the body and tailgate together, and the wires are in there.

My bet is you'll find a broken wire in there, as it drove me nuts on my 1989. Sometimes it would work, and other times it wouldn't.

May 29, 2009 | 1995 GMC Jimmy

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