Rear tailgate -

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post #1 of 12 Old 07-14-2012, 05:49 AM Thread Starter
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1998 ZJ 
Join Date: Nov 2011
Location: Glasgow
Posts: 19
Rear tailgate

Hi Guys

can anyone tell me how to open my Grand Cherokee jeep 1998 talegate, it does'nt open with the key or fob. loosed the two nuts that hold the retaining part of the lock still no joy. I would be grateful if someone could help.


Last edited by Tamistoma; 07-22-2012 at 02:07 PM.
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post #2 of 12 Old 07-14-2012, 07:39 AM
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1997 ZJ 
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Location: Mission
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Have you tried pushing in on the hatch, while turning the key? There's lots of info on this problem, which is fairly common, if you do a search. Try "rear hatch jammed", in the search box found at the top left corner of this page. Sometimes, you need to open up the hatch from the inside by pulling back on the interior trim, and reaching in to be able to pull a section of the latch, that has become disconnected.
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post #3 of 12 Old 07-14-2012, 09:04 AM Thread Starter
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1998 ZJ 
Join Date: Nov 2011
Location: Glasgow
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As the tail gate is in the locked position I can not remove the surround ing trim as there are screws which I can not access. I will try the seach engine.

Thank you for your assistance
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post #4 of 12 Old 07-14-2012, 12:58 PM
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1993 ZJ 
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Have a helper pull on the tailgate handle, while you, inside the jeep, kick very hard on the bottom of the gate.

No guarantees that it will work and you won't break stuff.

93 red ZJ 190k 4.0. Spent more money than I should have ...

Isn't red the only color a vehicle should be?
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post #5 of 12 Old 07-14-2012, 01:03 PM
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1997 ZJ 
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Mine does this every once in a while (read : almost every time). Can you feel it unlock? If so, it's the latch bar is out of alignment. Mine I have to push down on the hatch (down, not in) and then pull the hatch open. Quite often I have to do it several times in a row for it to work.

Never thought to try the "someone pull the latch while you kick the **** out of it from the inside" trick...

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post #6 of 12 Old 07-14-2012, 09:58 PM
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Most likely the handle latch rod slipped,position, there are other ways to get it open if first attempts fail

See this thread
tried everything in the search and i still cant get my lift gate open

Always !! Keep A Firm Grip On Your Tool !!

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Whats the worse that can happen? Your jeeps already broke.

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post #7 of 12 Old 07-15-2012, 05:34 AM
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Better to do preventative clean/lube/adjust maintenance before it fails completely with the liftgate closed.

When that happens... you'll need to use the PolkaPower recovery method seen... HERE
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post #8 of 12 Old 07-15-2012, 06:42 AM Thread Starter
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1998 ZJ 
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Thank guy's for your help, fixed the tailgate this morning by removing the screw I could see from the inside tailgate panel. wedged the panel apart put my arm down and pull the rod. the locking link & the actuator rod had came off, put them back on lubed the lock and surrounding area. Furthermore I cable tied the actuator rod to the lock so it does not jump off again.
Next task is to fix the the bad sensor noise nightmare, the joy's

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post #9 of 12 Old 07-19-2012, 01:08 PM Thread Starter
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1998 ZJ 
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Location: Glasgow
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Bad sensor message

Hi Guys

Just fixed the bad sensor message/noise which I know most of you dislike. What a difference it makes to your journey with out hearing it. A bit of soldering is all it took, once you dismantled most of the dash that is. just a couple more jobs to do "to thats if the talegate does'nt kill me first" (Struts are gased out my next job).

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post #10 of 12 Old 07-19-2012, 04:31 PM
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1998 ZJ 
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Location: florida
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The OP posted "1999 grand cherokee", thats a entirely different critter than a ZJ. They latch on the sides of the gate. Maybe it was a typo.

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post #11 of 12 Old 07-19-2012, 04:57 PM
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Uh, isn't this the ZJ forum?

Am I lost........again?

79' CJ7 - 82' CJ8 - 94' YJ - 96' ZJ
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post #12 of 12 Old 07-22-2012, 02:05 PM Thread Starter
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1998 ZJ 
Join Date: Nov 2011
Location: Glasgow
Posts: 19

In Scotland my Jeep in an S reg which indicates which year it was registered 1999 my mistake. My jeep is ZJ.

Fixed the tailgate struts yesterday what a difference.

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