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Me and my girlfriend just recently purchased her a 1999 Subaru Legacy Brighton wagon and did all the first car maintainence on it. We figured out how to lock and unlock all the doors etc. but we have had a big issue with the hatch lock. Whenever we attempt to enter the key into the key slot, it only goes in about half way. From there I can lock and unlock the car with a bit of difficulty. The other day I attempted to lock it when the key broke in half... I was wondering if Either A. I was suppose to receive a trunk key, B. There is some sort of trick to unlocking and locking it, or C. The lock is faulty.

 

Thanks so much -Craig

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Sounds like you should have lubed the cylinders in the key slot mechanism. There is key slot lube that comes in an aerosol can with a tiny wand to squirt into the key opening. Has the broken part of the key stayed inside the key way, and blocking a new key from entering the key slot?

 

Subarus are made with one key that fits everything. There is no trunk or hatch key that is separate.

 

With my 99 Leggie, I had trouble with the latch unit on the hatch. It was rusty, and would jam up. I finally installed a new latch unit to fix that problem. Is this perhaps your problem as well?

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No I was able to remove the key. I will attempt to get some key slot lubricant. From the outside I don't see any rust but if the problem continues I'll get in there and take a look. Thank you.

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No I was able to remove the key. I will attempt to get some key slot lubricant. From the outside I don't see any rust but if the problem continues I'll get in there and take a look. Thank you.

Sounds like it is key slot only problem you really have. Key slot lube should fix the problem.

 

If at some time you have rusty latch unit on your tailgate, the latch "grip" will bind and stick upon pulling on it with your fingers, and then won't spring retract as it should. If sticking, spray with PB blaster, and lube well with spray grease. That will work for a while, until rust reforms, and then it is time to buy a replacement latch unit.

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Its not always just the latch unit that is sticking.  There is a pivot point on the linkage that also rusts up. I replaced our sticking latch, thinking my problems were solved...  Not so, It stuck on the first try !!! Further investigation found the rusty pivot point. $10 at the wrecking yard and the "new " latch works like it should

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Remove the interior liner of the hatch and take out the key cylinder (not difficult at all!)--soak it in penetrating oil and give it a good scrubbing.  It's amazing how much dirt and crud gets in there--I don't know how the tumblers moved at all!  After rinsing, drying and re-lubing I put it back in . . . it worked like a brand new lock.  Good luck.

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