Rear Hatch Door will not open!!! - DodgeTalk : Dodge Car Forums, Dodge Truck Forums and Ram Forums
 
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#1 Old 01-05-2010, 09:29 AM
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Question Rear Hatch Door will not open!!!

My rear hatch on our '01 Durango 5.9L won't open, either with key or remote!! So how do I get it open? I tried going inside but can't get to any screws to remove the inner lining!! Any ideas would certainly be appreciated, Thanks in advance.
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#2 Old 01-05-2010, 03:16 PM
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Unlock all doors with the power lock button in the front door panel, then pull the handle from the outside. Is it frozen down? There is no way to open it from the inside, even if you were to take off the paneling. It doesn't automatically open, its just like the regular doors.

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#3 Old 01-05-2010, 08:34 PM
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Someone else had this problem. It might've been another dodge forum. IIRC, they pulled the inside trim off (no screws) then maybe pulled bottom part away enough to reach the mechanism. From there they found the broken pin?

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02 Durango (build 11/01) SLT┼ AB/BLACK INT 4.7L NGC 45RFE PT3.55 LSD 4X4 - Superchips 3715 Performance - Sensatracs - Chrome Nose - Carriage Works Billet Grilles - APC Clear Corners - Infinity 6022i's w/stock tweeters - - Hidden Hitch - Silverstar 9007ST's - K&N high-flow 33-2175 air filter- TFP Chrome Handles - 33K Miles - (MB Gunner Chrome Wheels + General Grabbers wintering in basement) Hammered blue factory rims
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#4 Old 01-07-2010, 11:41 AM
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Rear hatch won't open!!!

Thanks for the info Big D...but I know the hatch won't open automacticley & that it's just like regular doors....and no it is not frozen!! I had noticed that the handle just wasn't feeling right the last week....and sure enough I can't get it to open at all now. I guess I'll have to take it into the dealer and see what they say about it!!
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#5 Old 01-07-2010, 05:39 PM
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Lol no prob. I didn't know how new you were to Durango's. I work in Technical Support for Sony PS3 so as you can image it's best to start with the simple stuff and work your way up. Little things need to be checked because a lot of the time those little things are missed and ends up being the problem.

In order to get the rear paneling off it requires the removal of some screws, which require that the rear hatch be opened. You would probably have to ruin the paneling to get to the lock mechanism. From there it would still be a pain to open. Good luck though, I hope you can get something figured out!

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#6 Old 01-08-2010, 08:21 AM
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When I had my 99 I had the same problem. Basically a little bit of rust will get in the mechanism and make it not open. Mine would make a weak sound when trying to unlock it with the remote but not pull the lock. My key was also not working in the lock (messed up lock)

What I would do was crawl in the back, grab at the top edge of the trim (below the rear window) with my finger tips and pull it out in the center. Then I would just stick my arm inside and feel/look for the lock rod and give it a pull. If you are somewhat gentle you won't break the rod (or bend it for that matter). Once I would get it open, I would use a little gun oil (thats all I had handy) and lube up the visibly rusty spot. It wouldn't keep working forever, I'd just repeat the process as needed.

Edit to add: I didn't do any damage to anything, trim, lock, or anything else doing this...
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#7 Old 01-08-2010, 02:24 PM
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Wink About the Rear Hatch!!

Thanks D-roCk, I'll give it a try if I can get my big old hand in there.....if not then Dodge Dealer here I come!!!!!
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#8 Old 01-08-2010, 04:09 PM
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You should be fine getting in there. As long as its not really cold the plastic should bend without a problem. You will scratch your arm up a little stuffing it in there so be prepared. Definately worth it to save a little dealer labor (that stuff isn't cheap!). Heck thats probably what they would do to fix it anyway, I don't think there is another way in there...
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#9 Old 01-08-2010, 05:07 PM
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Put a piece of cardboard between your arm and the plastic! Or wear long sleeves...

Paul
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#10 Old 01-09-2010, 07:36 AM
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Its not going to cut your arm up, it might not even do anything of the sort. Just think, it might save you $60/hr or more in having a dealer open it. Plus then you will know what to do when it happens again.

Trust me, it will keep happening unless you go all out and replace the lock/latch assembly and all the weather stripping for the rear hatch. I know that every Durango I have been in or looked at had the same problem. The design of the weather strip lets dust in right at the latch. I don't know if it started out like that or if it shrunk and opened the gap but it was there. Combine that with moisture from a handle thats just not sealed and you get a small amount of rust on the "popper" mechanism. Of course it may be more of a problem for some than others depending on location. I'm sure my being in Minnesota and getting snow built up everywhere for a couple winters added to the problem.
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#11 Old 01-10-2010, 03:37 AM
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My local dealer's at ~$100/hr. A chebby dealer I went to charged different rates for sedans, minivans, vettes, suv's (the most). They explained that suv's needed bigger tools. They're a bunch of tools if you ask me.

Paul
02 Durango (build 11/01) SLT┼ AB/BLACK INT 4.7L NGC 45RFE PT3.55 LSD 4X4 - Superchips 3715 Performance - Sensatracs - Chrome Nose - Carriage Works Billet Grilles - APC Clear Corners - Infinity 6022i's w/stock tweeters - - Hidden Hitch - Silverstar 9007ST's - K&N high-flow 33-2175 air filter- TFP Chrome Handles - 33K Miles - (MB Gunner Chrome Wheels + General Grabbers wintering in basement) Hammered blue factory rims
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#12 Old 01-10-2010, 08:39 AM
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Originally Posted by B1G BLEU View Post
My local dealer's at ~$100/hr. A chebby dealer I went to charged different rates for sedans, minivans, vettes, suv's (the most). They explained that suv's needed bigger tools. They're a bunch of tools if you ask me.
I can believe it. They figure thats the biggest part of the market and all the yuppy blinged out Tahoe owners will pay it.
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#13 Old 01-17-2010, 11:45 AM
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Thumbs up

Well I finally got a chance to crawl (275lbs) into the back of my dodge and snapped the moulding around the back window out, which revealled 2 screws that had to be removed in order for me to start snaping out the bottom section of the rear hatch. Once I had it pulled back enough, I had to also pull on the piece of heavy plastic which covers the entire back piece of the hatch door. Then it revealed the rear lock mechanism...I then took a pair of pliars and hooked onto the lock release bar, pulled up, and the rear hatch opened!! Once open, there were 4 screws (2 each side) that I removed, also twisting the rear hatch light loose, so the whole back piece could be removed!! While looking at the lock mechanism I noticed that there was a small bar that was not in the right spot (it had a small notch that a plastic piece snapped into)....I took a very small hammer and tapped it back in place and then greased everything that moved in there!! I put everything back in reverse order and it nows works perfectly!! I had called the local Dodge dealer to see how much a replacement piece costs and I saved $167.00!! I really surprised myself!! Thanks for the responces to this thread!!
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#14 Old 01-17-2010, 12:29 PM
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I had a similar problem with mine a while back. The finger on the latch handle broke off, so the handle had to be replaced. Now lubing all the latches is part of my regular maintainance.

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#15 Old 01-17-2010, 04:58 PM
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Good to hear you got it. Now that you know how it works, it will be easier next time. I would bet it will happen again. My issue came back several times, although it was slightly different in nature.
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