The hood on my Toyota Corolla would not latch. No matter how many times you slam it down, it just wouldn’t catch! Do you have this problem? If so, this post may help you. These are the steps I took to diagnose and repair this really annoying problem. Now, my hood latches easily with just a firm push!
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If you end up needing to replace the hood latch like I did, here is the part number:
The following steps will help you get an idea of what can go wrong with the hood latch mechanism on a Corolla. Especially if you drive in dusty environments like dirt roads, the latches and springs have a tendency to get gummed up so that the latch no longer holds. Here I describe some of those pain points!
Tools and Supplies:
- 10mm socket or wrench
- spray lubricant
- Replacement hood latch (Toyota Corolla) – Optional
- Toyota Corolla Release Cable (912-065) – Optional
Fixing a Stuck Hood Latch
The main issue with my hood latch is that it just wouldn’t stay down. It always hovered an inch or so above where it was supposed to be when in the down and locked position.
This is the hood latch that was the culprit.
I ended up buying this replacement latch since it was so inexpensive, but it may have been possible to overhaul my current latch as well.
Either way, you need to remove the old latch.
To do so, use a 10mm socket or wrench to remove the 3 bolts holding it in place.
Once you have the latch out, it is still connected by the release cable. Use a pliers to pull the release cable out of its notch, then thread the ball end out of its catch.
Here the release cable has been removed. By the way, my release cable was in really bad shape: rusty and about to fail! If yours is in this bad of shape, consider replacing it:
Here are the old and new latches side by side.
The problem with my existing latch ended up being that the cable release lever would not fully retract. The spring was not strong enough to overcome the rust and dust that was clogging its pivot point.
Here you can see the cable release lever – there is no tension on it, yet it remains in the ‘released’ position!
The solution would be to clean and lubricate this and the other pivot points on this entire latch. I opted to replace it instead, but cleaning and lubing may have bought me a few more years with it.
After cleaning/lubing, or if you acquire a new latch, install it in the same way you removed it.
It is easiest to thread in the cable pull before attaching the mounting bolts.
Then attach the three 10mm mounting bolts.
Enjoy having a hood that closes again!
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