CarTalk.com Best of Deals Car Reviews Repair Shops Cars A-Z Radio Show

Replacement part price difference

the hatch lifters–by any other name and there seem to be a few–on my 2002 elantra gt have died. checking with nearby retail joint–price reads $109/each plus 1-2 days delivery from warehouse. seemed to take even the parts guys by surprise. after bizarre search effort, found “universal” replacements for $27.99/each & free shipping. is there something special about the hyundai version that a $28 replacement part won’t work? admittedly, the hatch is heavy as all get out, but an $80 price difference??? am looking for a sawed off 2x4 for the moment…thanx, alliie

The universal gas struts are generally weaker than the OEM ones. I installed a universal set on my Jeep Cherokee. They worked great in the sunlight but tended to let the hatch drop when the air was cooler.

I Have Purchased Strong Arm Lift Supports From Advance Auto Parts And Have Had Very Good Results.

See if they make them for your machine. Then search for online discount codes and apply them to your Advance Auto order and save some serious $$$.

CSA

Buy a small Vice-Lock (4-5 inch size) pliers. Place it in the rear of your vehicle. Open hatch, clamp vice-grips on gas-spring rod to hold hatch open.

Storm doors have a little metal clip that slides down the door-closer rod to hold the door open. Fabricate a similar clip for your gas-spring rod to support the hatch…

@Caddyman I’ve been using a dowel on the hood of the car that just sits all the time. Thats a good idea. I think a bundle of 2 or 3 washers would work if you can get them on the shaft. They have a flat side and a round side though so think you want the flat side up. Not my idea-In school I worked in a hand truck plant and thats what was used for the floor locks.

Sometimes they fit but don’t allow the full range of movement of the hatch. Meaning it might not raise up as high. If they are not strong enough the hatch might lift hard, and might not stay put in the upright position. Still you don’t know if they will work ok until you try.

Price will vary by supplier and location. I found hood supports for my Supra for $22 apiece last year online when the local joonts were charging $80 apiece and had to special order them. They sold Sachs, but the online were Strong Arm. Looking at your car, Rockauto.com has Sachs listed at $63.89, and Strong Arm for $32.

I haven’t had any problem with the Strong arm brand. They fit fine, and lift the hood without an issue.

A local entrepreneur builds and repairs conveyor systems and uses the hatch lifts from the local parts stores rather than buying them from industrial parts sources. The owner says he has inspected the products and they have the same factory markings and cost 60% less even when he pays the sales tax. There is a catalog available that categorizes the lifts by attachment, compression and compressed/extended length.

Just don’t use a metal mop or broom stick; hit it once and it folds up.

Rockauto lists these for about $30 each for the Elantra. Look to be factory replacements.

liftsupportdepot.com is also a good place for hard to find gas lift struts. Their prices were reasonable when I had to use them.