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Upkeep on Oldsmobile

My 2002 Olds Bravada has tailgate that is rusting out. I am wondering if this is common problem? A few other vehicles like mine, do not have the rust that mine does. What is simplest and/or cheapest way to fix this?

The only way to do it for real is to take it to a good local body shop and ask for their assessment of it. Rust is a fairly impossible thing once it gets going, especially if it is “rusting out.” But to me this means rust that’s bad enough to actually have holes in the metal.

If you want to avoid a body shop and if the rust is only on the rear door rather than on the body, you could check out salvage yards for a used one.

thank you. yes it is only on the lower portion edges of the tailgate, so far. I just dont want it to get any worse. I have been to one body shop; its going to be $450.00 to
fix it. Other than this problem, (and my air conditioning doesn’t work, but that’s another story), this has been a great vehicle.

If $450 is too steep I’d check around at salvage yards. The important thing though is that you’d need to same color code on the paint. Even then they probably won’t match up perfectly, but probably good enough. If you get a new one in a different color you’ll probably end up in about the same spot (or worse off) after its been painted to match.

Other than that, you could save some $$ by just finding someone who would sandblast it for you. Then you do a little research on body repair & use your own elbow grease. If its rusted through, some sandblasting, fiberglass tape & bondo, might get you close to something that could hold out for a while longer.

In the end, rust is like cancer. There’s no easy way to handle it.

Facing the tailgate, the rust is actually peeled up, a layer of it. The other side, has not gotten that bad, although it has sort of “bled,” and ran down onto the bumper part, which i think is plastic or fiberglass. Good point on the paint color matching. My color is considered “sandstone” or pewter. Thank you for your help.

There should be weep holes, or drain holes, in the bottom edge (bottom, when closed) of the tailgate. If those have gotten clogged for some reason, the rain/wash water that hit’s the rear window will seep into the gate, sit in the bottom and cause rust. Keeping them clear can be done with something as simple as a pipe cleaner.

Depending on any additional “rustproofing” that’s been done since the manufacture of the parts, it can actually block the weep holes. Just be careful with whatever repair approach you choose to help avoid this problem in the future.

Good luck!

My local mechanic said if i get it fixed, it may last only a year or so, and it may rust thru again. Most likely I will get the rust fixed. I never heard of those weep holes, I will have to see if i can see them, or ask mechanic about them when I go for oil change. Before this vehicle, I had a 2001 gmc jimmy. It had a lot of problems; this car now has been better for me.

Thank you for your help tonight, room. This was my first visit here.