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Unread 12-19-2003, 09:19 PM   #1
juanvaldez
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Easy to replace liftgate supports?

I have a 94 Grand Cherokee where the liftgate supports have pretty much stopped working. These are the piston supports that assist with opening and supporting the liftgate.

Has anyone replaced these by themself, and if so, was it a very difficult task?

My 94 Grand Cherokee does not have the rear glass that opens, if that matters.

I would appreciate any recounts of your experiences with this task, and what sort of tools I might need to accomplish the job.

Finally if you have any recommended replacement part brand, that would be great.

Best regards! -juanvaldez

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Unread 12-20-2003, 03:14 AM   #2
Swamp Boy
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They are very easy to change .. There is a small metal clip holding them on and then they pop off..

They sell replacements at many auto parts stores.. Very simple can be done in 20 mins with a single screwdriver and a rubber mallet...

Good luck..


Welcome to the forum..

Carl
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Unread 12-20-2003, 05:00 AM   #3
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Might want to have someone help hold the liftgate up for you or a 6' piece of wood or something would work. Do one side at a time.
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Unread 12-20-2003, 08:05 AM   #4
Swamp Boy
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OOOOH>. Good one.. It would not be cool to take those off without supporting the hatch..

Although I suppose if your hatch is weak you probobly already have a stick..

Good luck..

Carl
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Unread 12-20-2003, 10:51 AM   #5
juanvaldez
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Thanks for the quick replies!

I was wondering if I need to give caution to the supports themselves? Are the pistons going to pop out further once I remove them from the liftgate?

I noticed that the liftgate supports have warnings written on them that they are "high pressure" and that caution should be used when removing.

Thanks,
juanvaldez
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Unread 12-20-2003, 02:58 PM   #6
Big Dumb White Guy
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they are not under pressure - don't worry - you will be fine...
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Unread 12-20-2003, 09:22 PM   #7
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Not under pressure? Ummmm... What holds up the hatch then? They are pressurized, but not to worry - it's an easy job. Just be sure to support the hatch with a board or a buddy - it is heavy!
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Unread 12-21-2003, 01:49 PM   #8
Big Dumb White Guy
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ok Einstien. when you have the lift gate open you are at (almost) maximum extension on the "springs". so when you prop open your gate and take the bolts loose it won't go shooting thru your hand or anything like that.

that is what i meant - unless you take them off while the lift gate is closed, they are not under pressure....
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Unread 12-31-2003, 11:35 AM   #9
juanvaldez
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Hello friends,

I received the new lift support cylinders the other day. Everything was going well until I tried to put the new cylinder on. I matched the left and right supports, but it seems like the ball joint at the end of the chrome rod is facing the wrong direction by 180 degrees.

I am certain that I did not mix up the left and right cylinders, since there is a little metal flange on the portion of the cylinder that screws into the liftgate.

Can I easily rotate the chrome rod so that the ball joint aligns with the ball stud?

Your suggestions are much appreciated!
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Unread 12-31-2003, 01:57 PM   #10
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Quote:
Originally Posted by juanvaldez
Hello friends,

I received the new lift support cylinders the other day. Everything was going well until I tried to put the new cylinder on. I matched the left and right supports, but it seems like the ball joint at the end of the chrome rod is facing the wrong direction by 180 degrees.

I am certain that I did not mix up the left and right cylinders, since there is a little metal flange on the portion of the cylinder that screws into the liftgate.

Can I easily rotate the chrome rod so that the ball joint aligns with the ball stud?

Your suggestions are much appreciated!
Yes.
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Unread 12-31-2003, 01:58 PM   #11
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Never mind - I think I got it. Seems like the ball joint is attached to the rest of the chrome rod on a screw post, so I can just turn it. The left one seemed to rotate just fine. But the right support cylinder was very tight, and using pliers I was able to rotate it, but I think the whole chrome rod rotated, not just the ball joint!

I'll let you know how it goes!
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Unread 12-31-2003, 02:15 PM   #12
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Make sure to use a torx screwdriver, it looks like an allen head but, it is not. If you round it off with the allen one, you're screwed.

I bought my replacement ones at pepboys for like 20 bucks a piece and was done in 20 minutes.

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Unread 12-31-2003, 05:41 PM   #13
juanvaldez
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Did it!

Ordered everything from jcwhitney.com, including the star screw sockets to remove the old lift supports.

A few things I am wondering:

1) Why do manufacturers use star-head screws? I had to buy a separate socket for them - do they add extra strength or anything? I noticed there was enough clearance inside the support to use a standard hex screw....

2) The retaining pin for the ball head looks so fragile. Does it really provide enough support to hold the ball head to the stud?
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Unread 12-31-2003, 08:32 PM   #14
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Quote:
Originally Posted by juanvaldez
Did it!

Ordered everything from jcwhitney.com, including the star screw sockets to remove the old lift supports.

A few things I am wondering:

1) Why do manufacturers use star-head screws? I had to buy a separate socket for them - do they add extra strength or anything? I noticed there was enough clearance inside the support to use a standard hex screw....

2) The retaining pin for the ball head looks so fragile. Does it really provide enough support to hold the ball head to the stud?
1) The star (Torx) head screw offers more surfaces for a driver to push against, thereby offering a stronger, more solid fitment. Also, if you look at an Allen head, the flats are more perpendicular to the center of the rotating screw than the flats of a Torx head.

2) Yes.
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Unread 01-20-2005, 05:59 PM   #15
rlchurch
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96 Grand Cherokee lift support

I have a '96 Grand Cherokee and the rear hatch lift supports need to be replaced. It's not clear how to get the old units off. There doesn't appear to be a torx fastener as referred to above. The upper mount looks like a press fit shaft, but I haven't been able to tap it out. Suggestions?

Lower end is fastened at a ball joint. Will the socket end pull loose or do I have to unscrew the post in the Jeep body?
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