Question about 2003 Saturn VUE

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Hood latch is broken

2003 Saturn Vue, cable is apparently disconnected from the latch, pulling the cable from car interior is no good: it pulls and there's no tension at all.
Need to open the hood, any suggestions out there? Thanks for your help!

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  • Saturn Master
  • 1,564 Answers

This is not easy, I'll tell you this up front. If it were you'd be missing your battery in the morning....lol. First, you've got to go to a crafts shop or hardware store and find a piece of solid metal rod with a 1/16th diameter and 30 inches long. At one end you want to bend an "L" shape the width of a pair of vicegrips teeth. At the other end you want to wrap the rod around your hand, as best as possible(this will become your handle). With a good small flashlight in one hand and the rod in the other, lie one the ground and look up underneath the bumper towards the hoodlatch at the top of the radiator support. Within this area you'll see a small part of the pull cable. where this connects to the mechanism you want to pull it towards the drivers side fender. Your hood should now pop to the saftey latch position. open the hood and get your release cable replaced asap. Thank you, Dana. P.S. don't get discouraged, this takes patience and some time.

Posted on Sep 24, 2009

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Good question hard problem .
The cable is likely not broken just streched so now the level inside the vehicle can't travel enough to pull the cable far enough to pop the latch.
You need to remove the cable from the inside level eighter by removeing the int. lever and slideing the cable out it has a little drum at the end of the cable that fits into the lever .If you can get the cable out you can take a pair of vice grips and pull the cable the hood should pop if the isn't broken or frozen inside the jacket.
Try to save the cable if you can you can put spacers at the hood latch end I have used cable ties to do this take up the slack .
But the cause of the problem is the hood lacth lack of lubericant you will need to clean it get it moveing freely again and lub .it with white lithium greese .It comes in a spray can .Do all door hinges strickers and latches every few year and they will last longer and not give you problems .

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The purpose of this bulletin is to provide a procedure for opening the hood on the Saturn VUE and ION vehicles should the hood latch release cable mechanism become inoperative.

VUE Hood Opening Procedure Modify the Saturn radio antenna by bending the antenna mast 1 in. (2.54 cm) above the antenna base to a 25 degree angle

Open hood of similar vehicle to locate hood latch release cable to hood latch attachment point.

Using modified antenna, note approximate location that antenna will have to enter in between fascia and hood to access the hood latch cable attachment point. This should be toward the left edge of the Saturn emblem. Also note position of the modified antenna base. It should be angled downward.

Note: Use protective tape on the hood and fascia where the antenna will be inserted to protect the surfaces from scratches
On vehicle with inoperative latch, insert antenna between hood and fascia and depress the hood latch cable until the hood is opened.

Good luck and thank you for using fixya

Mar 15, 2010 | 2003 Saturn VUE

1 Answer

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well yes it strecthes but you can move the hood latch assembly over alittle and it does help alot,,,but yes eventually they need replacing,common on the vue

Sep 24, 2009 | 2003 Saturn VUE

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cable is a little worn,but what you can do is open the hood.on each side or the core support,its the long piece that is above the radiator are 2 black rubber hood stops,you can try bringing them up a little at a time(3/4-1 turn)equally as this will put more pressure on the hood and should pop right open.It may take mor ore less than the turns I said,also lube the hood latch with some good lube not WD-40 hope it works have a good day DB

Feb 12, 2009 | 2003 Saturn VUE

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have you tried to crawling under the car and using a pair pliers to pull on the cable. If you go under the car just in front of the fire wall you should be able to see the cable hanging there. Just pull ******* it.

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The easy part is you just need the latch for the liftgate. The hard part is getting to it and opening the liftgate to replace the latch. You should be able to pull the liftgate trim off most of the way with the gate closed and try to manually actuate the latch to open the gate. You may have to go so far as breaking the latch from the inside to open the gate and then replace your latch.

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