Skip the auto shop - Our mechanics make house calls

Symptoms of a Bad or Failing Hatch Lock Cylinder

hatch lock cylinder

Hatch lock cylinders are a component that is found on vehicles equipped with rear hatches, such as hatchbacks, station wagons, and minivans. They serve the same purpose as regular door lock cylinders, as a mechanism to lock and unlock doors, however instead of in the door, they are in the hatch. The cylinder is attached to linkage rods that will mechanically lock and unlock the hatch when the key is inserted and turned.

While the hatch locks are not usually used as much as the driver door locks, they can still wear out and have problems. When they do they can interfere with opening and closing the hatch. Usually a bad or failing hatch lock cylinder will produce a few symptoms that can alert the driver of a potential issue.

1. Lock cylinder will not turn

One of the most common symptoms of a bad hatch lock cylinder is a cylinder that will not turn when the key is inserted. If the hatch lock cylinder has any internal issues it may jam and remain stuck in the same position when the key is inserted. Forcibly turning the key may cause it to break off in the cylinder, which will require a new cylinder and key.

2. Wheel cylinder spins

Another symptom of an issue with the hatch lock cylinder is a cylinder that just spins when the key is inserted and turned. If the cylinder just spins when they key is turned then that is a sign that the cylinder’s teeth or linkage are not engaging properly. Usually a cylinder that spins will not be able to lock or unlock the hatch.

3. Cylinder will not accept key

Another, less common, symptom of an issue with the hatch lock cylinder is problems accepting the key. If a key, or some other object, breaks off or becomes lodged in the key slot it may interfere with inserting the key. A lock where the key cannot be inserted will not be able to lock or unlock the hatch.

Sometimes hatches with bad lock cylinders can still be locked and unlocked with the power locks from the interior of the vehicle, other times however they may render the trunk stuck closed. If you suspect that your vehicle is having an issue with the hatch lock cylinders have the vehicle inspected by a professional technician, such as one from YourMechanic, to determine if the hatch lock cylinder should be replaced.

The statements expressed above are only for informational purposes and should be independently verified. Please see our terms of service for more details
Still not sure about your car's issue?
Diagnose your car
What kind of issue are you experiencing?
Brakes are squeaking
Car is not starting
Car is overheating
Car is shaking (vibrating)
Fluids are leaking
Heating and A/C
Smoke or steam is coming out of the car
Warning light is on
Icon-warranty_badge-02

Skip the repair shop, our top-rated mechanics come to you.

At your home or office

Choose from 600+ repair, maintenance & diagnostic services. Our top-rated mechanics bring all parts & tools to your location.

Fair & transparent pricing

See labor & parts costs upfront, so you can book with confidence.

12-month, 12,000-mile warranty

Our services are backed by a 12-month, 12,000-mile warranty for your peace of mind.

Get A Quote

Need Help With Your Car?

Our certified mobile mechanics make house calls in over 2,000 U.S. cities. Fast, free online quotes for your car repair.

GET A QUOTE

More related articles

Symptoms of a Bad or Failing Flexible Clutch Hose
Common signs include difficulty shifting, low clutch fluid, and feeling no resistance at the clutch pedal.
Rules of the Road For Iowa Drivers
Driving on the roads requires knowledge of the rules, many of which are based on common sense and courtesy. However, even though you know the rules in...
Veteran and Military Driver Laws and Benefits in Idaho
The state of Idaho offers a number of benefits and perks for those Americans who have either served in an Armed Forces branch in the...


Related questions

Q: Remove and replace driver's door lock actuator. I just removed door panel.

Hello, thank you for writing in. The door lock actuator will need to be unbolted/unscrewed from its position. It can then be unhooked from the lock's linkage, and unplugged. Once it has been removed, we will have to reverse the...

Q: How do I use the key button to lock the vehicle?

Your vehicle can be locked with the buttons on your key fob. To do so, simply press the Lock button on the key when within range of the vehicle. The chime will sound and the hazard lights will flash to...

Q: Key stuck in ignition will not turn.

Hello. Thanks for writing in. The key will not come out because the ignition cylinder is not in the off position. This is standard. The first thing to check is that the shift lever is in the park position. Make...