No announcement yet.

Tailgate troubles

  • Filter
  • Time
  • Show
Clear All
new posts

    Tailgate troubles

    For the past 60-90 days, my tailgate window (89 LTD Country Squire) has been intermittent. Sometimes it will work fine, and other times neither the key nor the front seat control works. It got wonky after a dent removal guy straightened out a crease near the hinge, and was 100% functional at the key prior to that (though the dash switch didn't always work).

    My son discovered that if the key switch doesn't work, turning the key and giving the tailgate a Fonzie fist bump or two will make it go again.

    The other day, the lock jammed, in the locked position (of course). The key would turn normally to the right (locked position) but only partially to the left. I was able to get the window to go down and then pry the trim panel off the inside of the tailgate and then force the lock mechanism to get the tailgate to open. I sprayed the stuck part with lithium grease and it seems to be functioning normally again. But while I was there, I figured it would be a good time to see if the switch had any obvious problems.

    Well, it did have one problem--it felt really loose. It wasn't very secured to the tailgate, particularly at the bottom, sort of like a pendulum. But it was in a blind spot, and I couldn't tell how it's supposed to attach, so I could neither remove it to inspect nor tighten it down. And there's a lot going on at that side of the tailgate.

    Any hints or tips on what I should be looking for/feeling for? It doesn't seem right, but I can't tell what's wrong.

    A reply without much value, but it looks like you could use a bump anyway:

    The tailgate window system is complicated. Actually, everything about the tailgate is complicated. That said, this issue jogged my memory and this reply in my wagon thread might be your answer:

    (that being, that the switch inside the tailgate can fail in such a way that both switches stop working)

    There are other photos in this reply earlier in the same thread:

    As for the "pendulum", that is roughly correct. The switch is mounted on a big mechanism that's sort of hard to describe and really needs to be just studied outside of the vehicle to fully understand it. But it's normal for it to swing around a bit; that's part of how it works.

    I don't have a good suggestion for how to isolate the switch to verify it is the problem, installed in the tailgate. Access to study how things work while it's assembled is poor.

    Current drivers: wagon + 91
    Panthers: 83 GM 2dr | 84 TC | 85 CS
    | 88 TC | 91 GM
    Not Panthers: 85 Ranger | Ranger trailer | 91 Acclaim | 05 Focus
    Gone: 97 CV | 83 TC | 04 Focus | 86 GM
    | Junkyards