My car has a single rear door, which is hinged at the top, hatchback style. It used to rise gracefully, and stay up until I pulled it down. Then it started to sag a bit. Then it sagged a lot, until it was just heavy to open and had to be held up all the time.
Now, I have cured it, but after searching the forums, I could not find the cause, so decided to create this, to help those who follow to fix their fault. It might seem comical to the clever, but until you know what is what; it is a mystery, and nobody tells you.
I had assumed that there was a big spring in the roof, and those black things which look like bicycle pumps are just dampers to stop it dropping too fast, WRONG!
There is no spring. Those black things are TAILGATE STRUTS, and they are filled with gas at high pressure. When you open the tailgate, the compressed gas pushes the tailgate up and holds it open. When you close the tailgate, you squeeze the gas again. The black rods are the springs, but not made of coiled metal.
So, I just fitted a pair of new tailgate struts to my 2002 Kangoo 1.4 - easiest job I've ever done. So pleased with the results.
I got my new struts off
, lots of suppliers, and paid £18.75 in total for the pair. They arrived next day, and fitted perfectly.
To get old ones off, I wedged tailgate open with a long plank, then prised off the old ones by tapping a flat-head screwdriver between the strut and the spring clip at each end. Clips come out easy, strut just unhooks from ball joint.
To fit new ones, just line up each end, gently tap with hammer, and it pops on. I had to push tailgate to max height to hook on the other end, but it was no trouble. A simple job easily within the capabilities of even the most timid owner.
Only one of my old struts had failed, but working out which one, when they are on the car, is impossible, and anyway, if one has failed the other will probably follow in a few weeks. For the price, swap both.