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Discussion Starter · #1 ·
Hello guys, my dad and I just picked up an 03 4runner sr5 v8 for $1900. In good shape for its age with little rust and all maintenance records from the previous owner, been well maintained. The only problem is, the rear tail-gate is stuck closed. The previous owner said he tried to free it open but ended up smashing the rear window in the process, so he put a piece of plexi-glass in the place of the window and siliconed around the edges. Now, my dad just picked up a used tailgate from a wrecking yard near toronto, and is bringing it back tomorrow. Now i just spent an hour trying to get the gate open, but to no avail. I took apart the trim and the floor piece and tried pulling up on the 2 levers next to the plastic mechanism but it is jammed shut and refuses to open. Its pretty badly rusted in there, i mean the tailgate itself has a hole the size of a toonie in it because of rust. When you press on the "button" above the license plate, you can hear the motor do something, but it doesn't open at all. This tailgates pretty much trash so i just wanted to ask if theres any other way to open up that gate or anything else i can try before we just cut it all up. I read somewhere that you can stick a huge lever in between the door and the floor and that will maybe open it? Also, if and when we get this new gate installed, do we have to "calibrate" the rear window or anything or will it just plug in and be good to go? Thanks
 

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rock crawler
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I'm not familiar with the hatch on the newer trucks.
I had a similar problem on my 84 a few years back and was able to get it open after going in thru the inside access panel.
 

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Discussion Starter · #3 ·
I'm not familiar with the hatch on the newer trucks.
I had a similar problem on my 84 a few years back and was able to get it open after going in thru the inside access panel.
Thanks, I'm have the inside rear trunk trim all removed and stuff, so i have access to the inside of the tailgate. The only problem is everythings so rusted it nothing will budge. I'm starting to think the only way to get it open is to cut it. The tail-gate on the truck is garbage anyways.
 

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rock crawler
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Bummer, mine wasn't rusted, just in major need of a lube job.
 

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Hey man, did you ever get it opened? I’m in a similar situation and it won’t open, everything is very rusted, but the tail gate is fine so I don’t wanna cut until it. Can I remove the latch from the inside? I hit the motor off, big the actual lock is stuck shut.
 

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If I woke up in your shoes and also had a whole new tail gate, I would put a cutting disc in an angle grinder and start slicing and dicing until I got down to the mechanism where the latch is. Guarantee it's rust and you're not just going to get it to free up. You might have to take Mr hammer to it to finally get it free. Been there before with an old Wagoneer.

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