Sienna 2022 Small Circular Crack on the rear liftgate


I have someone whose car (Sienna 2022) had a small circular crack on the rear liftgate (picture attached). I did research on how to handle this and found a lot of know-hows of how to fix cracked plastic cover. Seem like welding and painting is the way to go. But I am not so sure if I can use the same technique to this material (I guess this is aluminium) and this location which is extremely hard to work on the other side unless I take it off, which I want to avoid if possible because that’s not my car.

If anyone give my any advice, I’d really appreciate it !!



If it’s aluminum, then you TIG weld it.


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You can knock out that circle completely, cover the outside of the hole with duct tape and JB Weld an aluminum patch 1/2 larger than the hole to the inside.

When dry pull off the tape, rough sand and apply bondo. Sand smooth, very smooth, prime feathering the edges, sand, prime again until perfectly smooth to the touch.

Paint, again feathering, clear, feather more. Rubbing compound, polishing compound, swirl remover, done.

If you are very dilligent it will look ok. Best to clear the larger panel from character lines to panel edge.

An actual body shop would weld it or replace the panel and paint the entire panel.

If you think you can fix this quickly so no one will notice the repair, you are well and trully screwed. Not going to happen.

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That’s not a crack, it is a puncture. Maybe but I can’t believe it’s aluminum. Not sure if it’s plastic or aluminum, somebody else’s car, gotta ask how to do it? Sorry but just have a shop do it. It’s possible the paint less dent folks could even do it. Try to weld even if you can, the panel would warp. Even if you patch the hole, the refinishing is another matter. Don’t do this on someone else’s car.

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Additionally, the puncture is in the plastic olefin assembly that covers the bumper and surrounding areas. The liftgate is to the left of the damage.

Painting, yes

Take a look at this video for a how-to on repair of the plastic olefin bumber cover:

Looks like that tailgate/liftgate to me…

That is the left tail light area…

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The shop manual describes the liftgate as a resin material.

Thank you for your tip!
But, seems like it may not be aluminium according to someone else’s comment :frowning:

If it’s a resin material, then fiberglass would be used.


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On a 2022, I’d have a body shop fix it to get it done correctly. One of those ‘if you have to ask, it’s not for you’ kind of questions.


I appreciate your detailed instruction. But I have some confusion. You suggested “JB Weld an aluminum patch 1/2 larger than the hole to the inside. … apply bondo.”

Do you mean put the aluminum patch from the inside of the liftgate wall? and then fill bondo from the outside of the door toward the offset area? Otherwise, I do not understand how I can put the larger-than-the whole patch to the inside.

and now I understood that quick fix does not apply here :slight_smile:

Thank you!

Now that I can see a full pic of the rear of the Sienna, I agree that the damage is on the liftgate.

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Yes on the inside. You have to disassemble the inner panels to be able to place the patch on the inside. JB Weld is waterproof epoxy to hold the patch. The bondo on the outside is to fill the imperfections. The sanding again and again is because paint will not hide even minor imperfections.

I can DIY this and make it look OK but I have lots of tools and experience.

Yes, but I am wondering about the OP’s skills in this area of expertise.
With a 1 year old vehicle, I think that having a professional body shop do the work is the most sensible approach.

I recall a neighbor having body/paint work done on her car by an itinerant door-to-door guy, and right after the work was done it looked pretty bad if you stood closer than 20 feet from her car. Within a couple of years, it looked really bad from 50 feet away.


I guess I did my first body work when I was 13. 60 years later I’m better at it but more inclined to hire someone.

I think @Mustangman 's idea would work quite well. The final finished appearance is determined by how carefully the bondo is sanded smooth and level with the adjacent areas, and of course the quality of the paint job.

My dad used an even simpler technique for that sort of problem. He’d sand the area down to bare metal, then cut apart an aluminum beer can to extract a very thin sheet of aluminum. Then he’d 24-hour epoxy (similar to JB Weld) a piece onto the front surface, big enough to cover the area. Some invention is needed to figure out a method to clamp the piece in place until the epoxy cures. Then the same idea, bondo, & sanding, feathering. He’d apply a primer and the final color coat using rattle cans. The result looked pretty good, held up well, but wasn’t a strong repair b/c the metal used in the patch was so thin. This method would allow the repair to be made without needing to disassemble the lift gate to access the other side.

I think if I had that problem my first step would be to turn the missing area into a perfectly round circle using a hole saw, the idea is to make all the edges pristine, so they don’t crack later.

No dispute, if OP wants it done correctly, so it looks like new and hold ups well over time, pro body shop is the best choice. One advantage, they’ll know what color/type of paint to apply to the patch that will eventually fade into a color that actually matches the rest of the paint.

The type repair your father did would make it look like the car had a boil. It must go behind the panel or you need to hammer a recess into the panel. And that will not go well!