Blogs Car Info Our Show Deals Mechanics Files Vehicle Donation

Problem with grand marquis license plate screws

hello all. went to change plates on a merc and as i was turning the screw it just kept turning! it wouldn’t come out/off.
any ideas? i didn’t look in the trunk, yet, to see if it would be accessible. (would it be?) thanks in advance.

Probably the square plastic nuts that the screws thread into are turning. You can see if you can get to the nuts from the back-side of the trunk lid, but I think that area is boxed in.


Just keep pulling out on the license plate as you try and unscrew it.

Aw well, Mercirys are junk anyway. (Just kidding) If I didn’t need room for 7 I would have one myself.

If it was a front license plate, was there a bracket or did the screws go directly into the plastic bumper? If plastic bumper, just pull on the plate to get it off and use fatter screws to put it on.

If it screws into plastic nut inserts, it should have just fallen off. You should be able to break it out of there with a screwdriver and replace the nuts.

Well there should be a square plastic insert that the screw goes into. That would be stripped now, so just take a pliers or something and turn the screw while pulling on it and it should come out. Then you can replace that square plastic insert when you get the plate off. If its a screw and not a bolt so nothing to hang onto, put/ram a flat bladed screwdriver under the screw to push it out while turning it.

Depending on the year of your Merc, the tag screws probably go directly into the plastic of the bumper. The hole it screws into has just gotten over sized. Barkydog has the right idea.

thanks all. the merc is a 98. i guess it is a machine thread, i’ll know when i get it off. i wanted to have new ones on hand when i install the new plate.

Unless someone substituted 1/4"-20s or something for the original tag screws, they are not machine threads. Perhaps that’s why you can’t get them undone. Did YOU install the tag, or did it come with the car? (Different states do it different ways.) Might someone have put nuts on the backside to prevent tag theft? If so, it looks like it works.