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Discussion Starter · #1 ·
I'm a bit concerned because it looks like the snow is accumulating in the tailgate hinge and when I open it up I can hear the snow / ice cracking...
Is the power tailgate strong enough to create damage to the body / spoiler of the tailgate ?

I had that kind of problem in the past with a honda crv 2017 that was once exceptionally covered with ice, that broke the spoiler and I had about 400$ in replacement parts and labor. I'm just surprised by how much snow can get accumulated at that spot even after I removed it from outside before opening it. Is this the case also for you ?

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Not much you can do. The snow packs solid in there and it's impossible to access with the brush. Best is to loosen it up in the crevice using a thin stiff piece of plastic or cardboard with the hatch closed and then coax it out with your fingers inside with the hatch open. With the cold temperatures and big snowfall, it's a fact of life in our climes. We had a few days of minus 30 Celsius and then got slammed with 48 centimetres of snow in a period of 8 hours.

Anyway, there's no easy or elegant way of removing the hard packed snow in such a narrow area.
 

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2019 Avalon Limited, Advanced Safety Package, BlackVue DR-750 Dash Cam, Ceramic Pro Coating, XPel
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Yeh... a bit frustrating to do so on a 60k$(canadian pesos) car tought...
It's certainly not like it's unique to the Highlander, or is it?

How do other manufactures of 60K$ SUV's handle this issue?
 

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2021 HiHy Platinum AWD
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Of course, there has to be a panel gap, for the hatch to open, which that necessary gap leads to snow and ice getting in there. The motor is strong enough, even with a ton of snow/ice on the spoiler.
 

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👽 e210 (m20a-fks) *6mt*💯
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Every car / suv / what have you that ive owned in my 20+ years of driving has done this in the hatch / trunk area - not manufacturer specific … or price of the vehicle specific.
 

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Can you use some type of rustproofing spray gel lubricant that displaces water in that crevice :unsure:
 

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2020 Highlander Platinum AWD, 2017 Tacoma OR DCLB 4x4
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I don't know if the motor will push hard enough to break anything, but be advised that if it does, the spoiler and door are considered a single part. I.e., you can't order a new spoiler, you have to order a whole new door.
 

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2020 Highlander Platinum - Moon Dust
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I'm a bit concerned because it looks like the snow is accumulating in the tailgate hinge and when I open it up I can hear the snow / ice cracking...
Is the power tailgate strong enough to create damage to the body / spoiler of the tailgate ?

I had that kind of problem in the past with a honda crv 2017 that was once exceptionally covered with ice, that broke the spoiler and I had about 400$ in replacement parts and labor. I'm just surprised by how much snow can get accumulated at that spot even after I removed it from outside before opening it. Is this the case also for you ?
You know that in Canada you are required to brush the snow off the roof of your vehicle? Failing to do so could get you a big fat ticket.

And if you cannot reach the roof by a ladder! :)
 

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Discussion Starter · #15 ·
You know that in Canada you are required to brush the snow off the roof of your vehicle? Failing to do so could get you a big fat ticket.

And if you cannot reach the roof by a ladder! :)
If it was only snow I’d be happy to remove it but once you hit temperatures freezing at night but a bit warmer during the day, ice gets formed within the space between the tailgate door and the rest of the car that you wont see even with a ladder… and a microscope…. Until you press that damn power tailgate button and only then you will start crying because all the ice accumulated in between will pry that tailgate spoiler until it break…(been there, done that!) And because of the location, it wont take the actuators a lot of force to break it (lever effect).

Next time it happens I’ll make a video… So I wont be alone to cry ;)
 

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If it was only snow I’d be happy to remove it but once you hit temperatures freezing at night but a bit warmer during the day, ice gets formed within the space between the tailgate door and the rest of the car that you wont see even with a ladder… and a microscope…. Until you press that damn power tailgate button and only then you will start crying because all the ice accumulated in between will pry that tailgate spoiler until it break…(been there, done that!) And because of the location, it wont take the actuators a lot of force to break it (lever effect).

Next time it happens I’ll make a video… So I wont be alone to cry ;)
I use the end of a shoehorn to break up the compacted snow/ice in that small space. Worked for me.
 

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If it was only snow I’d be happy to remove it but once you hit temperatures freezing at night but a bit warmer during the day, ice gets formed within the space between the tailgate door and the rest of the car that you wont see even with a ladder… and a microscope…. Until you press that damn power tailgate button and only then you will start crying because all the ice accumulated in between will pry that tailgate spoiler until it break…(been there, done that!) And because of the location, it wont take the actuators a lot of force to break it (lever effect).

Next time it happens I’ll make a video… So I wont be alone to cry ;)
I experienced the same issue a few weeks ago. Not sure there is much you can do with the power lift as it will just keep going. I cringed when i heard the ice popping and i then had to close the gate sightly to get access to remove the ice. Not too sure if there is anything that could have been done to avoid it.
 

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It's certainly not like it's unique to the Highlander, or is it?

How do other manufactures of 60K$ SUV's handle this issue?
im on call as a medical courier,i have a tarp that i put some extra grommet rings on,and put rope thru it.i open all 4 doors before the storms,and drape the tarp from front to back with the long end front to back,and the rope on the inside.i make sure to cover the back of the tailgate.when i need to go out,i open either side 2 doors,grab the ropes and pull the ropes and snow away.roof is clean and the tarp goes in the back till the next time.
 

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Discussion Starter · #19 · (Edited)
Just to illustrate a bit better what I was mentioning at the beginning, in the following exemple, snow is removed from the top but ice built up inside the crack and that can't be removed unless putting the car inside to melt it. It's too bad they couldn't design something to avoir that because if to much ice build up, first you dont see it until you open the tailgate and second you might ruin the roof/tailgate/hinge when you press on the button (that happened to me on a 2017 crv 2 years ago). I agree with the tarp solution but it's not always practical I think.

What happen with a bit of ice... imagine more (volume up !):

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