How to Open a Ford Tailgate With a Broken Latch

Written by daniel valladares
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If your Ford truck has a tailgate that will not open due to a broken latch, the latch has likely become stuck. You can access the latch through the tailgate access cover panel and fix or replace it if it is too broken to repair. You can purchase replacement latches at most automotive shops or through online stores. Performing this task should only take you a few minutes.

Skill level:
Moderately Easy

Things you need

  • Phillips screwdriver
  • Standard screwdriver

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  1. 1

    Remove the four screws from the tailgate securing cover in the middle of the inboard side of the tailgate using a Phillips screwdriver. Pull off the securing cover to gain access to the tailgate latch.

  2. 2

    Remove the four screws securing the latch to the vehicle using a Phillips screwdriver. Pry out the latch with a standard screwdriver. If the latch has become stuck, you can now fix it manually by lifting open the latch or removing any object obstructing its performance. If the latch is broken and not functioning at all, use this chance to simply replace it. When replacing the latch, check to ensure the latch cylinder fits snugly into the tailgate.

  3. 3

    Reattach the four screws to secure the latch. Reattach the securing cover, and reinstall its four screws.

Tips and warnings

  • You can open the tailgate without touching the latch, but it requires removing the securing cables and the tailgate hinges. Simply remove the cables' securing bolts and the two screws securing each hinge at the bottom of the tailgate; you can then pull the tailgate from the vehicle.

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