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Kevin C.
Kevin C., Subaru Master Tech.
Category: Subaru
Satisfied Customers: 1741
Experience:  34 years of Subaru service experience, ASE Master Technician.
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2005 Outback: on rear tailgate wont unlock with door switch or remote

Resolved Question:

2005 Outback Sport
lock on rear tailgate won't unlock with door switch or remote
Submitted: 5 years ago.
Category: Subaru
Expert:  Kevin C. replied 5 years ago.

Kevin C :

Welcome to Just Answers, I'm Kevin and I'm here to help resolve your Automotive issue Please click the ACCEPT button when satisfied with your answer.

Kevin C :

Hello

Kevin C :

hi there

Customer:

hello

Kevin C :

Does the tailgate handleon the outside move?

Customer:

yes, it feels like it is locked

Customer:

moves easily

Kevin C :

ok, try this first..move the outside handle all the way forward to the body of the tailgate, then lock and unlock the doors with the button on the remote or inside the car, then try and open the tailgate again.

Customer:

Tried that. although over the last few day is was intermittent with working and not.

Customer:

And some times it won't lock when pressing the remote

Customer:

Can I replace the electric lock?

Kevin C :

ok, sounds like it may be a problem with the lock solenoid, you will need to get the gate open to remove the inner panel to test the lock

Customer:

Ok

Customer:

walk me through the testing

Kevin C :

Can you get the gate open by hitting the button on and off as you mentioned

Customer:

I will try, the car is outside

Kevin C :

I can do that

Kevin C :

ok, I may have to step away for a bit but we cn work on this after I get back

Customer:

OK

Kevin C :

You have a test light

Customer:

I have a ohm meter

Kevin C :

You will need a volt meter or 12volt testlight

Kevin C :

Once you remove the tailgate trim, by removing the visible screws and pull handle then the trim will need to carefully be pulled off(there are clips on the iside holding the trim to the tailgate) you will need to remove the latch/lock solenoid assy. to test the car circuit and solenoid.

Kevin C :

Here is a diagram of how to remove the latch assy.

Customer: Opened when I squeezed handle and press remote
Kevin C :

the handle moves freely??

Kevin C :

usually they rust up causing your issue

Customer: Handle moves freely
Kevin C :

when you pull the handle to open the tailgate and then let go of the handle, it returns down?

Customer: Yes
Customer: Now when I press the remote it will not lock
Kevin C :

with the tailgate open, use the remote ,locking and unlocking, do you hear a clicking of the T/gate solenoid working?

Customer: No
Kevin C :

ok, so it's either a bad lock solenoid or a wiring issue, not supplying 12v. to the solenoid

Customer: I will grab my voltage tester
Kevin C :

Only way to know is to get into the T/gate, remove the latch assy, which has the solenoid attached, then disconnect the 2 wire connector on the solenoid, probe those 2 wires with a volt meter, then operate the locks, if you see Battery voltage when you operate the lock and unlock buttons, then it's a bad solenoid, if there is not battery voltage (1v or more) then you have a wiring problem.

Expert:  Kevin C. replied 5 years ago.
Also check that the 2 wire connector is on firmly, a loose connector can also cause your issue. There is also a single wire connector on the latch, that's just for the "open tailgate" light in the dash.
Customer: replied 5 years ago.

How do I purchase just the actuator?

 

Expert:  Kevin C. replied 5 years ago.
Sorry I stepped out for a bit. A Subaru dealer is your best bet for this part.
Kevin C. and 2 other Subaru Specialists are ready to help you