How to Install a New Trunk Latch Cable
The trunk latch cable is a convenience feature that lets you open the trunk with a press of a button or a pull of a mechanical lever from inside your vehicle. If the trunk of your car no longer opens upon pressing the release button or pulling the mechanical lever, or if it won't close properly, then you need to replace the trunk latch cable.
Difficulty level: Moderate
What you'll need:
- Gloves for protection
- Mount bracket
- Cutoff wheel or fine-toothed hacksaw for stainless steel cable housing
- Heavy duty 8-inch diagonal cutting pliers or hacksaw for black universal cable housing
- ¼”-20 x 5/8” hex head bolts with flat washers
- Hex wrench
- New trunk latch cable
Step 1: Depending on your car's made and model, you must remove some items to reach the assembly. This includes the rear seat cushion, the rear seat side bolster, rear seat-back, front door sill trim, kick panel, center pillar lower trim, trunk side trim panel, trunk lid trim, and trunk latch.
Step 2: Pull the carpet back as far as you need to.
Step 3: Take out the cable end stop and cable adjuster from the end of the wire. If the cable has a black universal housing, take out the ferrule, but if its housing is made of stainless steel, do not remove the ferrule.
Step 4: Pull the outside arm back as far as it will go. Take the wire out of the housing, and then pull it out of the outside arm.
Note: Do not take out the outside arm pivot bolt or the outside arm from the release handle assembly.
Step 5: Route the cable housing where you want it to go and make sure that it reaches the latch. If the cable housing is made of stainless steel, slide the ferrule up the housing towards the firewall or towards the release handle assembly, above where you will need to cut the cable housing. Make sure that the inner wire has been removed from the cable housing. Wrap tape around the area to be cut and use a cutoff wheel or fine-toothed hacksaw. For cables with black universal housing, you will need to cut the housing using heavy duty 8-inch diagonal cutting pliers or a hacksaw.
Step 6: Mount the release handle assembly at the spot you decided on earlier using two hex head bolts with flat washers.
Step 7: Route the cable housing to the latch. Install the cable adjuster into the cable support mount bracket at the latch. Position the ferrule at the end of the cable housing, and insert the cable housing and ferrule into the cable adjuster.
Step 8: At the release handle assembly, pull the outside arm out as far as it will go. Thread the wire fully through the outside arm then into the cable housing, and move the release outside arm back to its normal position.
Step 9: Thread the wire through the release lever on the latch. Install the cable end stop onto the wire, and slide it up against the release lever. Pull the wire and tighten the set screw on the cable stop using a hex wrench.
Step 10: Now that the trunk latch cable is installed, check if it works and adjust the component as necessary.