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Rear hatch panel and handle removal

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Old 06-10-2011, 03:06 PM   #1
BC Canada
1997 EB 5.0L 2006 Ltd 4.6
Join Date: May 2009
Posts: 15

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Rear hatch panel and handle removal

I don't know if this is valuable but on our 2006 Ford Explorer Limited we had a hint of rust on the crimping/weld at the bottom of the hatch door and at the bottom of the plastic black hatch handle so....

I removed the interior panel:

Window must be open. 2 screws/bolts on the right lower pull handle. Then just start pulling/prying the panel off. It has metal v clips in slots. Only note is be gentle and the side pillar area beside the glass should not be pulled straight off the back but towards the glass a bit. Those clips are not perpendicular to the door but need to be pulled sideways.

Exterior chrome handle:

The exterior chrome is removed with the 4 bolts visible(rust covered in my case, to be replaced with stainless. Then the Ford emblem is still attached to the door and keeping the handle attached. I had the interior panel off so cut a slot in the plastic moisture guard(it was not sealed in several places anyway!!! ) and put my hand in and pressed on the side of the plastic clip and chrome exterior handle came out. I believe you could just pry up and the plastic plug/clip might release without breaking.

Now to sand and touch up the paint where a little rust is showing. Using wool/oil?? to spray inside the door and cover it with oil/wax to maybe prevent further rust inside the door. Seal up the plastic moisture barrier which let rain? in when back window was open or if window leaks a bit(don't know which) .

I'm not a handy guy so maybe this is a piece of cake to others but not to me. Maybe it'll help someone.

Last edited by dennism3; 06-10-2011 at 11:23 PM.
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