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gomi_otaku, VW Technician
Category: VW
Satisfied Customers: 3462
Experience:  VW FastTrack '00-'01, VW Academy Chicago and Seattle '00-present, VW Certified
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2004 latch pull mechanism not attached to

Customer Question

2004 latch pull mechanism not attached to car any longer and I cant get the hood to unlatch.
JA: Do you hear a thunk when you pull the lever?
Customer: lever inside car is working and the hood has partially opened but I can get the safety latch to disengage because the pull mechanism in the grill is no longer attached to the car
JA: Are you fixing your Passat yourself? What have you tried so far?
Customer: car is parked in the driveway because battery is dead and I need to be able to run the car befor I can take it anywhere for service. I've watched videos where you need to get your hand in there to try and undo the latch yourselfe but my hand is too big. I have a long screwdriver but that doesnt seem to help me yet
JA: Anything else you want the mechanic to know before I connect you?
Customer: only that I'm looking for a foolproof way to open the hood latch in a very tight space. can remove the grill because the hood doesnt open. I'm at my wit's end
Submitted: 1 year ago.
Category: VW
Expert:  gomi_otaku replied 1 year ago.

OK- that pull lever attaches to a simple lever in the latch- you will need a 90 degree pick or a bent wire, and a flashlight. Lift the hood as far a you can, and look straight in where the secondary release lever was, you should be able to see the lever. Hook it with the pick or wire, and then let the hood relax just enough to release tension on it, pull the lever, and lift the hood. The safety lever is snapped over a pin that goes through this lever, and sometimes the pin falls out.

Customer: replied 1 year ago.
when I try to push the hood down now it wont budge at all. I cant close the hood or release any of the tension in the hood to give it a little slack.
Expert:  gomi_otaku replied 1 year ago.

If you look in between the radiator support and the hood, can you see the striker loop from the hood that comes down and engages with the latch? You should be able to see that it is above the latch "fingers" but still has one curved hook over it. That is the part that is moved by the safety lever. (funny, I just had a jetta doing the same thing in the shop this morning)

you may need to use a screwdriver or something similar to pry that hook toward the right to get it to release the striker. Due to the curvature of the hook, the hood moves a little bit up and down as the curve of the hook travels behind the striker. The latch I just worked on was very rusty and didn't move easily, but at least the safey lever was still attached.

Customer: replied 1 year ago.
I'm not sure I'm going to be able to get this thing open. I cut the radiator grill in half (will purchase a replacement at junk yard later) to get a better view and angle. I can reach in more comfortably now and feel the latch but it is frozen stuck against the striker. I think that something is broken or very rusted out in the assembly and I cant seem to get it to move. I saw on a youtube video where you can push on the safety latch mechanism that clicks and engages the lever that allows the lever to now move to the right and release the striker but I cant even get the safety latch to click and operate like it works on the attached video. I think that I'm going to give up on trying to open this thing.
Expert:  gomi_otaku replied 1 year ago.

I think you could probably cut the hook off the latch if you have a hacksaw or reciprocating saw. Then replace it with a less corroded junkyard part.