Re: 96 Jimmy w/stuck hatch
Okay, since nobody else repsonded to my question, I will (just in case anybody else runs into this problem). After about an hour of messing around with the latch and interior tailgate trim I managed to pop the hatch open by activating the latch with a small pry-bar from above while my wife held the trim back (the trim piece won't come all the way off because you have to lower the tailgate and unscrew the two screws that fix it to each side of the tailgate - a design flaw in my opinion). Once the hatch opened, I could lower the tailgate and take it apart to see what the problem was. I removed the top cover plate. Attached to the cover plate is actuator that is supposed to "actuate" the hatch release mechanism. This actuator is about 2 1/2" X 2 1/2" with an electrical connection on one side, and the retracting arm that actually moves the hatch release lever on the other. Unfortunately, the arm is joined to the lever with a plastic fitting. Plastic fittings don't work well in the Wisconsin winter. Of course the fitting head had snapped off so the actuator was no longer attached to the lever. I called my local dealer. I can buy a new actuator for $51.00. I am sure that I could replace the plastic fitting with a "salvaged" one for next to nothing, but it was just too hard to open that hatch. I'd rather not have to deal with all of this again for another 4-5 years.