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Gary, ASE Certified Technician
Category: Subaru
Satisfied Customers: 999
Experience:  Senior Technician
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We have a 2010 Subaru Outback- only bought it 6 months ago.

Customer Question

We have a 2010 Subaru Outback- only bought it 6 months ago. The locking mechanism on the wagon door has been getting more difficult to engage onto the bolt at the wagon door opening. We have tried putting oil onto the catch but it still doesn't want to engage properly. Hence when you drive along exhaust fumes enter the car, which is awful. Don't know whether grease or some other lubricant would be better before seeing the local Subaru dealer. Never had this problem before and this is our 5th Subaru. Any suggestions?
Submitted: 1 year ago.
Category: Subaru
Expert:  Gary replied 1 year ago.

Hi Gillian,

Have you found the tailgate getting difficult to close and now you need to slam it?

And it only closes on the first catch now?


Customer: replied 1 year ago.
even doing that the catch is not properly engaging- it seems as though it has shut properly, but fumes are getting in. The problem has been getting worse over the last few weeks. When you play with the catch with a screwdriver it seems to hit a bit too much on the right side rather than at the apex of the the lowest part of the catch and then it close half way rather than going the full way up the catch. I suppose a new one is needed b ut will grease or something else make it engage properly then striking the bolt?
Expert:  Gary replied 1 year ago.

Hi Gillian,

It may need a tailgate striker bolt adjustment.

Some "dry lube", looks a bit like a lipstick would help.

I use it on all doorlocks etc.


Expert:  Gary replied 1 year ago.

Hi Gillian,

Your local mechanic or panel beater should be able to check and adjust your tailgate.

I hope my advice has been of assistance to you.

Kind regards