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Discussion Starter #1
I have a stubborn trunk hatch that WILL NOT OPEN. Has anyone else had this problem? When I squeeze the release button for the car, I hear a motor running BUT the hatch does nothing. I've tried wriggling it, opening and locking the door switch, tried the key, everything.........but it still does not open.

My Honda dealership tells me that they have NOT had this problem occur with the Honda Insights they've received. My car is a standard, 2000..

Thanks for any advice or help....
 

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How long have you had the car? I don't mean to be patronizing, but you do realize there is a little handle underneath the hatch that you have to kinda squeeze up in order to open the hatch, right? Even though the motor unlocks the hatch, you still have to unlatch the hatch using the handle located in the middle of the car, where the hatch meets the bumper.

I only say this because it took me a few minutes to figure that out on my own... If this isn't your problem, then don't mind me. Again, I'm not trying to be rude. :)
 

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Discussion Starter #3
OK

Yea...I know what your saying.

NO problem and I appreciate your response. I have 2 Insights so am aware of where it is...

Thanks, anyway.
 

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Sounds like your electronic latch is bad. Put the key (only one of the black keys, the grey vallet key won't work) in the lock on the bottom of the right side tail light and turn all the way to the right to manually release it. Then you should be able to lift the hatch up.
 

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I have a 2000 and have the exact same problem. Using the key as suggested didnt do anything except make the little motor sound you describe. Did you find any solution to the problem?
 

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Yeah... if you turn the key past that you utilize the manual release, that should release the hatch no matter what.
 

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I had a hatch that would not release, similar to the situation described. I was already taking the car in for some other service, so I asked them to look at it. They told me it was a wiring problem that was not covered by the warranty and that it would be $290. I wasn't feeling particularly broke at the time, so I just let them have their demon money and got my hatch working again.

The description of the problem on the invoice was "Connector at rear hatch corroded and has broken pins"
 

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That should be helpful to someone who has the official manuals. Good info!
 

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Hatch release and Hatch supports

I have 2000 Honda Insight M/T and have the same problem with the hatch. Electronic key fob won't open the hatch and need to open manually with the key.

Does anyone know how to fix it (DIY) instead of paying $290 to a dealer? That's hefty for something so small.

Also my hatch supports (little shock absorbers that hold up the hatch) are going bad. Doesn't hold up the hatch anymore. Does anybody know where you can buy a cheap set of these supports? I checked Pep Boys and they don't seem to carry these.
 

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I can't solve your problem completely but at least I know where you can get the part, I'm in the middle of trying to fix the exact same problem (which at least some 7 or 8 people on this site have posted):
The part can be ordered here:
Honda Automotive Parts
My problem now is that I've removed all covering parts to access the broken actuator but I can't see yet how I would hook up the new one both to the actual lock as well as the mechanism you use with the key to open mechanically (the motor part comes with a approx. 1ft metal rod which needs to connect to the key lock in the right rear light). Before I break that and rob myself of all options to open the trunk I'd rather understand how to take off the old and put in the new part - despite finding some 5 or 6 threads devoted to the subject here none of them truly describe this. I may have to take the half repair to my dealer and declare defeat unless someone has a real step by step kind of description.
 

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OK, I just did it and finished the job in about 2 hours, someone who knows how it works might find that laughable but I had to find out myself: you need a 10mm and a 12 mm wrench, the part mentioned above (actuator assembly) and some patience for 3-D puzzles. I found a hand mirror and a flash light quite useful as well to get oriented.

Open the hatch and remove the liner over the rear end of the trunk (above the license plate), starting from the left (the right part can stay). To do that you need to remove a plastic piece which holds the liner in place, it is attached with 4 clips. On the right side I had a clip which is held in place with a 12mm screw, that needed to be removed as well. After you remove most of the liner you should be able to identify the actuator which is attached with 4 10mm screws. Unscrew those and you should be able to maneuver the part a little but it is still attached in 2 places with metal rods. This is were the 3-D puzzle starts.
If you move the actuator out of it's place and expose the longer metal rod (comes from the key hole in the right light) you can easlily detach it by losening the small plastic clip securing the rod (obvious when you look at it). Now you can move the actuator further out of it's place and expose the second rod, detaching it in the same way and you have the old actuator out.
The new actuator goes in in the reverse sequence. The only problem I had was that it doesn't seem to move into place easily, the shorter rod did not allow it to move up until I realized that you can't push it in hard, it needs to move close to the front - difficult to do because the actuator seems to be too big, be patient. The rest should be easy.
Good luck!
 

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Thanks for the tip

Thanks for the tip. Did the remote trunk release work now? I think I will give it a go with your instructions. Do you have any pictures you can post to help out with the instrtuctions?
 

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I actually did take some pictures but didn't have the time right away to post them. I just tried to do that but the size restrictions rendered them basically useless, so I posted them on Picasa:
Picasa Web Albums - Rainer - Insight hatch...
Let me know if you have trouble seeing these pictures, there are 5 photos. I can send them to you if needed. Like I said, it worked well for me and the hatch works normally now, I hope this will last.
Good luck!
 

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One more thing of course, I totally forgot the electrical part (but that goes without saying): there's a connector which you need to take off and later connect the new one, this should be obvious when you look at it. If you have any trouble with the connection please let me know.
 

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Thanks for the pictures

The pictures were very helpful. Now I feel confident I can try this at home and not drop $300 to the local dealer :)
 

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Did the remote trunk release work now?

When you say remote release, you mean the black push button at the center of the trunk? Or is there some magical remote release other than that, which I don't know about?
 
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Yes, no magic - we're talking about the push button in the middle of the trunk lid. The button leads to the trunk lid release by activating a motor below the locking mechanism. There are numerous Insight owners who have described that button one day not working anymore but just leading to a grinding/humming noise without opening the lid. When that happens it's time to replace the part described in this thread.
 

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FYI
My silver insight had a similar problem. I could open the hatch with the key, but the electrical latch was totally dead. I traced it to the connector on the passenger side near the seat belt attachment point. The leaking seat belt issue due to the top door molding not being sealed wet the connector, and the brass pins had totally corroded.I replaced the connector and the hatch works normally.
 

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Mike, can you describe the connector you found? I have a trunk latch problem now after just fixing a leaking a-pillar. My trunk actuator makes no noise at all when i press the button, so maybe it is just a connection issue.
 
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