'97 F150 tailgate handle broken - Ford Truck Enthusiasts Forums



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'97 F150 tailgate handle broken

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Old 08-24-2010, 11:05 PM
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'97 F150 tailgate handle broken

After I had Line-X sprayed in the bed of my '97 F150 the tailgate became difficult to open, and eventually the latch broke. What is involved in obtaining access to the internal workings of the handle?
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Old 08-25-2010, 12:45 AM
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Put down the tailgate, remove screws on plate in center. After that there should be 2 or 4 screws in there that hold the handle on. Remove them and you can take it right out and fix or replace.
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Old 08-25-2010, 10:26 AM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by phil6608 View Post
Put down the tailgate, remove screws on plate in center. After that there should be 2 or 4 screws in there that hold the handle on. Remove them and you can take it right out and fix or replace.
What he said. While you're in there, lube all the contact points so you won't have to do it again in the near future.....
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Old 08-25-2010, 03:48 PM
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put down the tailgate...

You see, that's the problem... The tailgate won't open. You pull up on the latch and nothing happens.
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Old 08-25-2010, 04:03 PM
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Get in the bed of the truck and work on it there!
After you get the plate off,,,,,you can reach inside the hole and open the gate.
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Old 08-26-2010, 12:29 AM
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You see, that's the problem... The tailgate won't open. You pull up on the latch and nothing happens.
No, I don't see. Your header says you have a broken handle, not a broken latch, but then you go on and on about a latch as if they're one in the same in your post. So what exactly is broken, the handle, or a latch.
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Old 08-26-2010, 03:38 AM
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Sorry, Sorry - so Sorry!

Quote:
Originally Posted by Nightmare97 View Post
No, I don't see. Your header says you have a broken handle, not a broken latch, but then you go on and on about a latch as if they're one in the same in your post. So what exactly is broken, the handle, or a latch.
Didn't intend to cause confusion. To all appearances, the handle that you lift up on, the one that normally causes the truck tailgate to transition from the verticle, secured position to the horizontal, unlocked position - is entirely intact and completely functional. However, the latch mechanism, the part that is somehow mysteriously manipulated by the previously mentioned manipulations of the also previously mentioned handle, is apparently no longer capable of being manipulated by any manipulation of the handle.

There, is that better?
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Old 08-26-2010, 04:01 AM
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Didn't intend to cause confusion. To all appearances, the handle that you lift up on, the one that normally causes the truck tailgate to transition from the verticle, secured position to the horizontal, unlocked position - is entirely intact and completely functional. However, the latch mechanism, the part that is somehow mysteriously manipulated by the previously mentioned manipulations of the also previously mentioned handle, is apparently no longer capable of being manipulated by any manipulation of the handle.

There, is that better?
Much! So here's the hot ticket, anything can be manipulated with a big F-ing Hammer!
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Old 08-26-2010, 04:18 AM
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O.K. It sounds like you're already inside the tailgate and tried to un-latch the latch at the latch itself and it still won't pop. Without tearing my tailgate apart, from looking at the outside, I'd say you're a little screwed. This is what I would do if there's no way the latch is going to pop. Unscrew the pin (it has a torx bit head) that the latch is holding from the inside of the tailgate, then you can remove the latch with the pin. Sounds simple in theory, good luck to you Bro.
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Old 08-26-2010, 10:45 AM
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From inside the truck bed, after you remove the long cover that runs the width of the top of the tailgate (not the plastic cap, but the service cover for the gate) (and you may have to get a razor blade after it if they didn't remove it when they sprayed your liner) you will see a bar on each side running from the center of the gate to the side latches. Pull those bars toward the center to open the gate. If it started this AFTER the liner was installed, I'll bet they removed the cover to spray the gate (the right thing to do) but didn't tape off the opening properly (the wrong thing to do) and you got some liner funk in the handle mechanism causing binding. Once you get the gate down, and the cover off, if you can't find the problem visually, take the mechanism out and clean/lube it real good and you should be good to go.

Also check the latches/strikers at the ends of the gate. You could have some liner overspray there that's binding it up.....
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