How to Install Hydraulic Hatch Cylinders

by Eric W. Thompson

The hydraulic hatch cylinder on your vehicle is similar to a stabilizer strut and supports the rear door whenever you open it. Because it can receive a lot of wear and tear with frequent use, the hydraulics in the strut can become drained over time. Some vehicles use only one hydraulic cylinder for the hatch, while other vehicles use two. If the rear hatch on your vehicle is beginning to stick, or if it won't stay open, you will need to replace the hydraulic cylinder.

Open the rear hatch and have a friend hold it open while you pinch the plastic cover tabs together at the end of each hydraulic cylinder with your fingers. Unwrap the plastic cover from around the cylinder by hand.

Unbolt the cylinder's mounting bolts, which are located at the top and bottom of the cylinder, using a ratchet and socket.

Install the new cylinder and bolt it in using a ratchet and socket.

Replace the plastic cover, then test the hatch by slowly raising and lifting it.

Items you will need


About the Author

Eric W. Thompson began his writing career in 1996 and is now a member of the All-USA Academic Team, having been featured in "USA Today" as one of the top 20 community college students in the country. He is currently taking a break from earning an undergraduate degree in contemplative psychology at Naropa University.

Photo Credits

  • photo_camera small_car image by Marc Dubus from