How to Replace a Rear Hatch Latch in a 2005 Ford Focus

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The ZX3 and ZX5 are the hatchback trim levels of the 2005 Ford Focus; the ZXW is the station wagon. This small but roomy compact has responsive steering and smooth handling, making it fun to drive; and with 22 mpg in the city and 32 mpg highway in the ZX3, it retains respectable fuel economy.

Things You'll Need

  • Phillips screwdriver
  • Ratchet
  • Socket set
  • Inch-pound torque wrench
  • Locate the pull handle cover retainer screws and remove them, using a Phillips screwdriver. Remove the two pull handle covers, and the pull handle from the rear hatch trim panel. Remove the rear trim panel retainer screws and remove the trim panel from the hatch.

  • Unplug the liftgate hatch electrical connector, and remove the wire from its loom on the latch body.

  • If you have a Focus wagon, remove the liftgate latch cable from its looms in the rear hatch. Grasp the cable sleeve near the ferrule at the latch-end of the cable and pull it slightly up and away from the latch, then slide the cable end off the latch shoulder. Disengage the cable ferrule from the latch mechanism.

  • Remove the two latch retainer bolts. Remove the latch from the liftgate.

  • Position the new latch in the liftgate. Install the retainer screws and torque them to 62 inch-pounds, using an inch-pound torque wrench and socket.

  • For the wagon, engage the latch cable ferrule with the latch mechanism and slide the cable onto the latch shoulder. Hang the cable in its looms. Plug the electrical connector into its terminal on the latch and hang the cable in its loom.

  • Position the hatch trim panel, then install and tighten the trim panel retainer screws securely. Install the pull handle and pull handle covers, then install the retainer screws and tighten them securely.

Tips & Warnings

  • If replacing the cylinder lock on the three- or five-door Focus, the old key cylinder must be removed and a new one installed. This requires some light machine work, so consult a professional locksmith.
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