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$10 DIY Power Lock Tailgate

Discussion in '3rd Gen. Tacomas (2016+)' started by MESO, Mar 26, 2016.

  1. Sep 14, 2020 at 5:30 PM

    BurntChickenNugget Well-Known Member

    Apr 26, 2020
    First Name:
    2017 Tacoma TRD
    I did this about 3 months ago and it's still going strong!!!!
    RobP62 likes this.
  2. Dec 9, 2020 at 3:49 PM

    Elvota Well-Known Member

    Mar 31, 2018
    2006 Tacoma TRD
    Older thread but only saw questions about doing this MOD on a 2nd Gen and most of the pics and instructions are for a 3rd Gen... so I thought I would post pics of how mine worked out.

    2006 Tacoma. Pop Lock handle. Tailgate beat to sh*t.

    I did this MOD for a couple reasons....

    One, it seems like a really cool idea. Two, the key would almost never turn in my Pop Lock. It seems this motor will have a lot more "oomph" and make the lock actually function.

    Actuator (Kit of two plus hardware for around $20 from Amazon). I did however drill out the tab end to a 1/4" to fit over the Pop Lock pin.:


    Tailgate with Pop Lock handle installed:


    Cut a piece of 1/2" MDF I had lying around. Thickness was perfect and allowed the actuator to be aligned with the pin tab on the Pop Lock. This MDF was attached with three bolts. Two at the primary cross member, one through a secondary tab. Actuator was then screwed to that.


    Close up of tab / actuator interface:


    I activated the mechanism about 20 times (unlock / lock) and pin didn't shift at all.

    Removed PS door sill and located the BLU/BLK and BLU/RED wires. Tapped into these and ran the wires to tailgate. Keep in mind that attaching to the PS wires in this way, you will need to double click the remote to unlock tailgate (single click to lock). Single remote click will only unlock DS door as usual. There is a grommet right under the PS seat mount. I made a small hole and exited wires there.


    One problem I always had was the Pop Lock handle would rattle when mechanism was locked with the key (when and if I could ever get that to work). It's possible my unit was broken or a spring had failed, but I added a small spring from the lock to the tailgate that keeps the handle under tension when locked (no rattle).


    Works well so far. Much better than the key ever did. My truck is a bit beat up so I don't really care about noise from activation, but I think rubber isolators at the mounting bolts would deaden that quite a bit... if this concerns you.

    Thanks to the OP for the inspiration. Very sweet and relatively simple MOD.
    RobP62 and Badderup like this.

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