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Discussion Starter #1
The tailgate on my '02 Dakota wont close unless I reset the mechanisms on the latches, on both sides. You can see in the pics where im talking about... I have used parts cleaner on it, then tried both white lithium grease & then WD-40 to keep it luibricated hoping it will work normally... But I think it is something in the handle.


Here is where the latch stays after the tailgate is opened... The arrow points to the part that needs to be moved...


Once the latch is reset to the position in the below picture(on both sides), then the tailgate will close, but you need to push on the latch with pressure to get it there...


Is any one familiar with how the system works?? Without resetting the mechanism on each side, the tailgate will never close...
Is there something on the handle the is supposed to pull those latches back in so the tailgate can close??

Of course, here is the other problem if the problem is in the handle...
Any suggestions on how to deal with this!? LoL
TIA - Chris
 

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Pull the bezel off from around the handle. They're pretty fragile usually, pull up and out on the top or bottom. It comes loose, then you pull the handle out slightly and it'll come out.

Inside you'll see a scissor pivot that transfers the handles motion to the latch. Clean/lube this. I had the same problem as you long ago, hit it with WD-40 once and haven't had an issue since.
 

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Discussion Starter #3
Thanks for the quick reply Caulk04...

So no need to unbolt it from inside the tailgate?? Just bezel just pops off like that!?
Guess its the same thing putting the bezel back on, just align it up & give it a tap back on?

Thanks again - ill work on it later today if it warms up some!
 
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