If you spot rust forming on the handle it's a good idea to replace it asap as otherwise the rust will spread to the tailgate itself and start to rust through the metal. At least replacing the handle means that the damage can be contained.
The tailgate handle prior to replacement:
|VW Golf rusting tailgate handle|
The new ones tend to come in primer so they do need to be sprayed to match your car. I've not done any spraying for many years but with a rattle can was quite impressed with the results I got on the handle. Once painted it needed a coat or two of lacquer to give the shine and with that it was ready to fit to the car.
There are videos and tutorials online about removing the tailgate handle but it can be tricky if the lock barrel has corroded into the handle aperture. Fortunately a sharp knock with a 12mm socket and hammer removed the barrel once the retaining clip had been released.
|VW Golf MK4 tailgate handle replacement painting|
Once fitted I was very pleased with the finish and thought it was a good colour match with the rest of the car