I had a Lumina APV and an Olds Silhouette, both had the same problem..
The liftgate latch is mechanical....not glued on....and not reattachable
With the olds I was lucky enough to carry the liftgate latch with me
and connect it to the cylinder when I needed to open the liftgate. This
worked for about a year, but eventually the parts wore away so that the
latch needs to be replaced. I used to carry the handle in my car, and
push it back onto the cylinder whenever I needed to open the liftgate, and
then removed it and placed it back inside the car. Didn't matter that the
liftgate cylinder was set to the open position, because no one was going to
open it up without the latch handle.
Tip.... the latch has two positions, locked and unlocked. If you use the
key to move the latch to the unlocked position, this makes it a lot easier to
push the broken handle back on and turn it to open the latch as no key
is necessary. Takes a little fidgeting but works in an emergency. Remember
to pop the handle back off when you finish opening the door, otherwise it will
just fall off by itself and probably become lost.
with the Lumina, I replaced the latch...cost was $35.00 and about 2 hours
labor if you haven't done one before. I rekeyed the new cylinder myself, which
was a big mistake as there are a lot of small springs and a brass plate which
not very cooperative. The dealer would have charged $35. to rekey the
In retrospect, this would have saved a lot of time and trouble.
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