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Removal of the liftgate without removing the glass


New Member
Apr 29, 2019
Hi, my first post. I bought a used Model S P85 in February and LOVE it. Then I did the unthinkable and jammed the liftgate between the garage door and the doorframe and "accordianed" the liftgate and broke the glass. The nausea is just wearing off now, two weeks later. Wait...no it isn't.

I have picked up a used liftgate in perfect condition with the glass intact and tinted and was wondering how I safely remove the old liftgate. Do I have to go in through the interior and back off the nuts? Has anyone successfully performed this operation? Any help would be appreciated greatly.

Thank you!...Gray


May 28, 2018
Tulsa, OK
I was just looking at the hinges the other day. It appears you have to gain access above the headliner. I'm not sure how the headliner is fastened. There are no nuts to remove on the top side of the hinges.


Active Member
Oct 22, 2013
McKinney, TX
I wonder if it would be worth it to pay a body shop for an hour's labor for them to install it for you? It may be worth a bit of $$ to make sure you don't mess up the headliner or somehow damage the new lift gate. As bad as you feel about damaging your P85, you will feel even worse if you damage it further trying to fix it.


Nose cone car - "Going to LR"
Nov 19, 2018
Los Angeles
Rockster +1. Also, body shop will be able to check and hopefully repair and damage to the lift gate hinge attachments on the body side.


Active Member
Oct 29, 2016
I’ll second or third that’s it’s worth looking for an Indy body shop. Adjusting the hinges and latch is not trivial. Weight can be an issue. Usually need 2 adults.

If you are intent on DIY, look around for places to download the service manual. That will at least cover headliner removal and latch adjustment. It’s available to download. Search...
  • Informative
Reactions: aerodyne


New Member
Apr 29, 2019
Thanks all, I am taking that advice. Found an experienced (Lexus) guy locally willing to come to my place and help me. Not a Tesla tech but he's had experience with hundreds of headliners on dozens of cars over 30+ years and is really keen to help. Thanks again for recommending the right path. I will try to share images when done. Now dusting off my painting skills...

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