Worn gas lifts really lose their “oomph” in cold weather. Why risk injury from a falling hatch? You can fix the problem yourself in 20 minutes. You only need a small flat-blade screwdriver and a 1/4-in. drive metric socket set.
Buy a pair of gas lifts (always replace them as a pair) at an auto parts store. Have a buddy support the hatch, hood or trunk lid, or buy a lift support clamp (shown is the Lisle 44870; available through our affiliation with amazon.com). Don’t rely on a 2x4 to hold the hatch open—it’s not a safe alternative.
Remove the top portion of the gas lift first. Use a socket and a ratchet to remove the bolted-in-place variety; a screwdriver for the more common C-clamp style (Photo 2). Then perform the same procedure on the bottom connection.