How to Fix a Passenger Side Car Window

by Eli Laurens

Automotive windows use a window regulator to raise or lower a section of glass into the door. This regulator or its components can fail, and the window will require repair. Fixing a passenger car window will take the average backyard mechanic about an hour.

Remove the door panel by unscrewing it and pulling it from its pop-rivets. Most panels will have screws or bolts underneath the arm rest and inside the door handle area. Once freed from these, the panel can be pulled off of the pop-rivets that hold it to the metal door. This will give access to the window regulator and glass.

Inspect the window's components and determine the problem. Regulators can lose bolts or become mis-aligned, causing the window to not operate. Electric motors can fail, requiring replacement. If the window will move, turn it until the problem happens, then note what is preventing complete movement. Sometimes debris can get stuck in the mechanical gears and arms and cause the window to malfunction.

Correct the mechanical issue with the window. In the worst-case scenario, the entire window regulator will need to be replaced by removing the bolts that hold the glass to it, then unbolting it from the metal door and sliding it out. If the window glass has come off of the top track on the regulator, it can be repositioned and secured with a bolt or clamp, depending on the model. Unbolt and replace the electric motor or manual crank. There are normally two primary bolts that hold the motor in place, and these can be removed with counterclockwise turning.

Use white lithium grease to lubricate all moving parts except the glass. This slippery grease will stick to vertical surfaces and will help in the operation of the window regulator.

Tip

  • check Add white lithium grease to all moving parts while the panel is off.

Warning

  • close Do not remove the electric motor without disconnecting power.

Items you will need

About the Author

Eli Laurens is a ninth-grade physics teacher as well as a computer programmer and writer. He studied electrical engineering and architecture at Southern Polytechnic University in Marietta, Ga., and now lives in Colorado.

Photo Credits

  • photo_camera autorepair.about.com