GM has recalled 323,232 newer heavy-duty trucks equipped with a power tailgate that can short-circuit and cause the tailgate to open when parked, the NHTSA disclosed Tuesday.
Water can get into the tailgate and contact the electronic tailgate release switch, which might be unsealed. Moisture can cause it to short-circuit and not latch properly. But GM explained it only happens when the truck is in park because a body control module prevents the tailgate from unlatching when in gear. GM suspects that the 136 reported incidents of an unwanted tailgate opening happened when the truck was in Park, the owner didn’t notice, then drove away, spilling bed contents into the road behind them.
The NHTSA identified this as a road hazard, increasing the risk of a crash. Until the recall is completed, GM recommends owners manually close the tailgate before driving.
Owners will receive notification by mail as early as March 18, and will be advised to bring their truck in for service at a GM dealer. A replacement touchpad switch with better water resistance will be installed. It won’t cost owners anything but their time, and reimbursement will be provided.
For more info, contact Chevrolet customer service at 1-800-222-1020 or GMC customer service at 1-800-462-8782, or visit GM’s recall hub here.