Pop and Lock Tailgate Lock Installation - 2012 Toyota Tacoma

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How to Install a Pop and Lock Tailgate Lock on a 2012 Toyota Tacoma


Today on our 2012 Toyota Tacoma, well install the Pop & Lock Custom Tailgate Lock, part number PAL8521. First well start by opening up the rear tailgate and remove the removable fasteners securing the rear tailgate cover. Then well remove the rear tailgate cover and set aside all for reinstallation later. As you can see, this will expose the backside of the rear tailgate handle and wiring for the backup camera. Now well go ahead and remove the driver side rod from the handle assembly. Well simply remove the red tab and remove the rod.

Now well go ahead and push it out of the way as we remove the 10mm bolts securing the handle assembly to the tailgate here on the driver side. Now we can take the Pop & Lock Actuator Assembly and mount and set it in to position here on the driver side and re-secure it with the 10mm bolt. Quick tech tip, this 10mm bolt has been known to back out over time so you can add a lock washer to try and prevent this. Well be using the split lock washer style. Next well go ahead and reinstall the driver side latch rod.

Now well take the short-wired lead provided with our install kit and feed the wire through the drain holes at the bottom side of the tailgate. However for this application, the drain holes are not large enough to feed the wire and connect you through, so well be adding our own grummet to feed the wires through. First well go ahead and drill a pilot hole and then drill out the larger sized hole and install the grummet. Now with our grummet installed, we can go ahead and feed the wires through and up to the actuator. Next well feed the black connector on the short wire end between the bed and the tailgate down underneath the vehicle.

This will be the connector that will attach the long wire that will get fed up to the cabin of the vehicle. And in case you ever wanted to remove the tailgate, simply remove these two connectors so that the tailgate can simply be removed. Well go ahead and make connection with the blue to blue wire and the brown to green wire, attaching the bolt-style connector. Next well take the long wire and harness provided with our install kit and underneath the vehicle, and plug into the lead that we just fed down between the bed and the tailgate. We can plug into it and start routing it along the frame rail, keep in mind when routing your wires, you stay away from excessive heat such as exhaust or moving components such as the steering or suspension.

Quick tech tip, you can make it easier to route your wire using a fish wire which can be a stiff piece of wire or in this case well be using a piece of air tubing. Well simply use some black electrical tape to tape our wire to the tubing and pull it to the frame as needed. Well be routing the wire all the way from the rear of the vehicle up to the engine compartment. Then well go in to the manufacturers boot or grummet into the cabin of the vehicle. Well go ahead and take our utility knife and cut a hole into the grummet. With our hole made, well now go ahead and take the wire and push it through the grummet, into the cabin of the vehicle. Next well go ahead and get inside the cabin of the vehicle and pull some of the wire through. Now that weve got our wire routed into the cabin, well need to go ahead and disassemble both the threshold for the driver and the drivers passenger door. Then well remove the kick panel at the drivers door and the lower half of the B pillar cover. Well set all of our pieces aside for reinstallation later. Our remaining pane will be the B pillar panel which again well have fasteners underneath the panel to pop free and then slide it out of the way. This will expose the manufacturers wiring running underneath the threshold and the B pillar. Were looking to access the wiring that runs up the B pillar and signals the lock for the driver side rear passenger door. Now that weve located the wiring, well go ahead and use our utility knife, cut back the black electrical tape and protective cover. Next well need to locate the wires that operate the lock mechanism for the door. For this application, well be utilizing the blue wire with the pink tracer and the blue wire with the black tracer. Using the blue wiretaps provided with the install kit, well go ahead and take the wiretap, put it over the blue wire with the pink tracer, and then creep it down. Well repeat the same process with the blue wire with the black tracer. We can then connect the pre-attached pate thermos to the wiring harness to our wiretaps. Now this time it doesnt matter which wire we plug in to which tap as if the operating is wrong or opposite of the vehicle, well simply change it at the Pop & Lock. Now with all our connections made, we can go ahead and secure our wiring, and reinstall the interior trim panels. Any open connection points outside the vehicle other than the weather pack connector well use some black electrical tape to wrap them up such as the bullet connectors at the Pop & Lock assembly. Quick tech tip, before you reinstall everything, recommend to go ahead and operate the Pop & Lock system to make sure it functions properly. As you can see, Pop & Lock is operating opposite of the key fob that were using, so well go ahead and switch the two connectors. Now we can operate the key fob and it functions with the Pop & Lock assembly. Now well go ahead and use our black zip ties provided with our install kit to secure our wiring starting from the inside and working our way back to the tailgate. With everything secured, we can now go ahead and bundle up the excess wire inside the tailgate, secure it with a couple of black zip ties and reinstall the tailgate panel. And that will complete the install of our Pop & Lock Custom Tailgate Lock, part number PAL8521 on our 2012 Toyota Tacoma.


Questions and Comments about this Video

Info for this part was:

Installed by:
Jeff D
Installed by:
David F
Video by:
Joshua S
Test Fit:
Nicholas E
Video Edited:
Patrick B
Video Edited:
Chris R

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