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Discussion Starter #1
The rear liftgate of my '09 Outlook opened as I drove out of my garage. When it struck the garage door opener hardware, the silver-colored plastic trim with the Saturn emblem (between the license plate and the rear window wiper arm) cracked. I believe the name of this part is an "applique". The part is apparently mounted on studs that extend through the liftgate sheet metal and is held on with retainer nuts screwed onto the studs.

How do I get access to the backside of the studs to screw on the retainer nuts? It looks like there's an big access panel on the interior of the liftgate, but I can't find any slots into which a thin blade could be inserted to pop off the cover. Am I on the right track here, or is the applique mounted and removed from the exterior?

Thanks!
 

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You have to take off the interior panel to access it. There are clips that hold the panel against the tailgate and maybe some removable type clips you have to remove first to access the studs.
Tim C.
 

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Discussion Starter #3
Tim, thanks for confirming that the mounting studs are accessed by removing the panel on the interior side of the liftgate. Can you provide more details on how to remove this panel? Do you slip a screwdriver or some other tool with a thin blade into a slot or gap? Does it have to be in a particular spot? Or do you just press on the panel hard enough until it pops out? Are the clips that hold the panel on removable and reusable?

Thanks again!
 

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Sorry for the delay with the reply,
I looked at my panel and I see two removable clips next to the tailgate latch. You will see the inner and outer part of the clip. You carefully pry the inner part of the clip out from the outer part until it stops or pops out. Then you can remove the outer part of the clip. It appears the rest of the panel is held on by plastic clips attached to the underside of the panel. You will have to use a wide blade screwdriver or prybar and carefully pop those clips out of the tailgate. Some of those clips may be reusable and some may not. The warmer the temperature the better the chance to clips will remain intact. You may want to purchase some clips from the dealer before you attemp this so you can reassemble with all good clips.
Hope this helps,
Tim C.
 

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Discussion Starter #5
Thanks Tim... I'll look for those clips as soon as I get home!
 
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