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Thread: Tailgate Won't Open

  1. #1

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    1989 Dodge Ram 50
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    Tailgate Won't Open

    So, when I open the latch on the tailgate, the tailgate does not open. You can hear something opening/releasing, but the gate will not drop down. Something must not be functioning properly or stuck, problem is that without it opening it's hard to see what the hold-up (no pun intended) is?

    Any help is greatly appreciated!

  2. #2

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    All 3 of my trucks have had a non-functional, janky tailgate. If you look at the striker and striker plate and the linkage that connects to the handle, it's a terrible design. It's the one thing on these that was really poorly thought out. I'd love to figure out an upgrade. Maybe grab one off another model truck with smoother action.
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  3. #3

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    Try opening the panel inside the tailgate to see if you can open it that way then figure how to fix it. It's a couple screws holding the panel on

  4. #4

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    Quote Originally Posted by bobsnewdirection View Post
    Try opening the panel inside the tailgate to see if you can open it that way then figure how to fix it. It's a couple screws holding the panel on
    Yep - That's where the problem was. Popped that sucker off and found that one of the little plastic pieces that holds the arm into the lever which releases the latch was broken an the arm was disconnected. I'll have to find/order another plastic piece, but for now I just zip tied it together.

    On to the next project..

  5. #5

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    Wonder why they cheaped out on plastic on something that's likely to get slammed shut and abused.
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  6. #6



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    those release clips can break easily, but for 25 - 30 years, that is still better than an american car.
    Pennyman1
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    Living the D-50 lifestyle since 1980

  7. #7

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    I agree, almost every ford ever made has a tailgate issue. To make it his long says alot about the import tailgate.

  8. #8

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    The tailgate also has a dent in it where the plastic piece broke. Maybe whatever hit the tailgate also broke the plastic piece... maybe wish full thinking!? ...idk

  9. #9

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    Mine did this exact thing as well, i think it still might have a zip tie holding them together...

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