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Guest Message by DevFuse

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1997 Legacy Outback wagon trunk release

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7 replies to this topic

#1 Park



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  • Wichita KS

Posted 15 September 2013 - 01:24 AM

I cleaned out my trunk, and the car, so I could put the seats up.  A little while ago, I went to open the hatch, and it wouldn't open.  When I lift on the latch, there does not seem to be any pressure when I lift on it.  That does't change whether it is locked/unlocked with the key or the button on my driver's door.


How do I open it, and how do I fix it?



#2 lmdew



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  • Colorado Springs

Posted 15 September 2013 - 06:25 AM

Well you say trunk and then hatch.  Sedan's have trunk lids, Wagon's have a Hatch.  


Sedan, you should be able to go through the rear seat and get into the trunk to pull the release.


Wagon, you need to pull the lower panel off the inside, about 8 little plastic buttons across the bottom and then pull it off.  Once in you can manually release the latch.


Before you do all of that, push down while someone does the electronic locks for you a few times.

#3 WoodsWagon


    Formerly 91Loyale

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  • NH

Posted 15 September 2013 - 10:02 AM

Push the handle back to the fully returned position, then unlock the door and pull the handle. If that works, then spray penetrating oil on the handles hinge and work it back and forth until it springs all the way back on its own.

#4 heartless


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Posted 15 September 2013 - 05:47 PM

it is rather common to have the rear hatch handle get gummed up and not want to return to the proper "closed" position on its own.


Push the handle back to the correct position, then make sure it is unlocked (cycle the locks a time or two)


You should then be able to open the rear hatch.


If the above procedure doesnt work, then you will have to remove the inside cover to get to the latch mechanism inside.

Edited by heartless, 15 September 2013 - 05:48 PM.

#5 lmdew



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Posted 15 November 2014 - 10:50 AM

Yep, Works!

Wife's 98 Outback would not release or unlock.  I could hear the lock cycling, but no joy.  Read this, had her push the handle in and cycle the Locks, Rear Hatch Opened like Normal.


#6 01 Outback

01 Outback

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Posted 15 November 2014 - 07:21 PM

Mine hangs up sometimes too. I spray the latch mechanism and the exterior handle and linkage with PB Blaster and it frees up.

#7 xdeadeye1


    Eat, Live, Breath Subaru

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  • Marietta, OH

Posted 15 November 2014 - 08:51 PM

I still don't know how to lock my doors,,


kind of afraid to get locked out.. too.

#8 lmdew



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Posted 16 November 2014 - 01:11 AM

When you close the drivers door you have to hold the outter handle up, or it will unlock the door.

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