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Rear Liftgate Latch replacement (2017)

Discussion in 'Model S' started by hitparader, Jul 10, 2018.

  1. hitparader

    hitparader Member

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    Quick Summary: My MS rear latch has failed. Part is on order > 3 weeks through Tesla ranger service; however recently checked on the status and was told there is no ETA on the part being sent for the repair. With the latch not functioning, the car will not lock so I don't feel comfortable using it where I'd have to park it in a public lot. My impatience on waiting for this any further has led me to purchase the trunk latch and actuator from a wrecked Tesla in hopes to remedy the problem. (I know I have a right to a free part through warranty, but don't want to be miserable. The used latch was $149).

    Is anyone here familiar with this repair? I've tried finding as much info for removing the trim pieces as I can and I feel comfortable on removing the upper horizontal and vertical trim, but for the lower piece I've read there are some torque screws that need to be removed as well. Where are these screws located?

    Also, do you think if I called the SC and told them I had a latch, they would install it?
     
  2. cellphonechris

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    If they perform the work with the latch you bought, I'd still ask them to send you the replacement part you are owed when it arrives. You should be able to sell it to recoup some of your loss.
     
  3. MikeBur

    MikeBur ManualPilot

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    @hitparader try this thread here: Rear trunk won't open
    I wouldn5 recommend doing this for a warranty car. There are a few ideas and experiences on here, eg helping Tesla understand this isn’t a convenience, how to lock the car (you lock via touchscreen with drivers door open, then close it, etc). @sorka has fitted this previously.

    Hope this helps, Mike
     
  4. hitparader

    hitparader Member

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    @MikeBur Thanks for the information on how to lock the car!!! That at least will save me of the worry so I can use it to commute. This Uber bill is getting out of hand!!
     
    • Like x 1
  5. MikeBur

    MikeBur ManualPilot

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    Ugh. Sorry to hear. Still bad in that some features don’t work, eg Autopilot, remote HVAC, etc. I was convinced AEB didn’t work and reported it, so am hopeful it does now. If it still doesn’t work then, imo, this is actually a safety issue and parts should be expedited, or the car should be in service and you should be in a loaner.
     
  6. Oldschool496

    Oldschool496 Member

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    If you can get your hatch open at all or from the inside, but sounds like your hatch is stuck open however little. Mine was stuck closed, also from the inside cable.

    Yes I am familiar with latch replacement. Mine though you could not open the hatch at all. Four techs torquing on the hatch could not budge it open. I was cringing as the aluminum is just a bit better then a Coors can.

    Now my SC is really good. I noticed the problem 6:30am on a workday Friday. Took car to work, drove car to SC at 8:30 am, they tried to open it as above. Immediately gave me a loaner as I was planning out of town that afternoon. They had the car for a week. Four parts: Actuator, Hatch lower trim piece large, Sill trim where hatch closes and new cable for inside release. They undoubtedly saw-zalled the actuator clean off ruining both aforementioned trim pieces. The trim pieces are what took the time to get. Vacuumed, washed and delivered back to me in 7 days.

    The burden of having these cars work under warranty is fully shouldered by Tesla. You should never attempt this service yourself. You should not have to do this at all. Unless your car is out of warranty, then thats another issue. Your dealing with an electrical part of this car, however insignificant, if a ranger came to fix it, there is a process of disconnecting/reconnecting the 12v Batt and the high voltage batt in some order.
     
  7. MikeBur

    MikeBur ManualPilot

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    Mine was thankfully done even quicker and no trim breakage (list of my materials in other thread I quoted).

    Never heard of one sticking open. It’s always closed by every example, though the car believes the tailgate is open, warns as such, and modifies its behavior accordingly.

    And, yep, I’d never attempt to do this when car is under warranty - too much to potentially break.
     
  8. sorka

    sorka Active Member

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    Did you find the pdf document from tesla in the thread? It's a little confusing but it is accurate.

    Also it's uncertain which part is actually failing. Is the latch getting stuck which cause the cinch module to get stuck half way through it's cycle? Or is it the cinch motor in the cinch module failing.

    The latch itself is $64 and the cinch module is about the same. The cable is like another $30 or so.

    Tesla has been replacing all three parts. Does your used price include all three parts or just the latch?
     
  9. sorka

    sorka Active Member

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    FYI, every day your car is not drivable due to this is one more day on the 30 lemon clock. As soon as you have 30 days, you've got a slam dunk on a lemon buy back. If you mention this to Tesla, I suspect they will find your parts pronto. Even if they act quickly from this point, every day you've already been unable to drive your car counts towards the lemon clock.
     
  10. sorka

    sorka Active Member

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    How is it possible to get the lower trim panel off with the hatch closed???????

    I removed my liftgate trim panels while I could. They will remain off until I get the replacment parts. My latch is SOOO close to failing. It sounds so sad and takes twice as long to cinch as it used to.
     
  11. hitparader

    hitparader Member

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    I haven't seen the pdf you are referring to from Tesla unfortunately.

    It is stuck open at this time and will not close. I've tried with a pen to get it to shut to ensure it's not because of an issue with not making enough contact with the loop.

    The latch just springs back open when I attempt The release cable under the tab doesn't seem to have any travel available and seems like a fully extended bicycle cable.

    Salvaged part I ordered includes the latch, actuator and cable.
     
  12. sorka

    sorka Active Member

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    The cinch motor is probably stuck mid cycle.

    This would be a good opportunity to diagnose which module it is that is failing.

    Here's a link for the doc that includes liftgate panel trim removal:

    Lighted Rear Applique copy 2
     
  13. sorka

    sorka Active Member

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    The cinch motor came in...finally. No latch but I figured I wanted to replace the parts one by one to figure out which was the faulty part.

    The cinch motor was $64. It was a cinch to replace taking about 2 minutes (assuming the trim panel is already removed).

    The result......

    It completely cured my issue. The cinching upon closing is back to normal with no sign of stress or slowing down so I'm calling this fixed and I put the trim panels back tonight.
     
  14. MIT_S60

    MIT_S60 Member

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    I wish I had paid more attention to this over my first year of ownership. I'm beyond the 30 days (and 4 times for same issue), but I'm outside the mileage requirements now for lemon law in California. At least I've been lucky enough to get service loaners every time (although no AutoPilot or carpool stickers is painful).
     
  15. sorka

    sorka Active Member

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    Did you pass 4 repair attempts or 30 days before 50K miles or 4 years? It doesn't matter if you're beyond 50K now as long as you qualified before the 50K miles or 4 years.
     
  16. MIT_S60

    MIT_S60 Member

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    #16 MIT_S60, Aug 26, 2018
    Last edited: Aug 26, 2018
    Yes. I'm at about 25k miles and 21 months of ownership, but my 4 repair attempt issue began at 21k miles. I thought in California lemon law only qualifies if it's under 18 months and 18k miles.
     
  17. sorka

    sorka Active Member

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    A somewhat widely believed misconception resulting in folks who have good cases never pursuing them.
     
  18. MIT_S60

    MIT_S60 Member

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    Interesting, I think I'll start exploring it and possibly finding an attorney to provide me advice. Thanks for the idea!
     

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