Has your car window stopped working? If your car window will no longer go up and down or makes a strange noise if you press the window button the problem in most cases is a bad window regulator.
Other possibilities include blown fuse or defective window switch. In this guide, we go over common problems that can prevent a car window from going up and down and how to fix it.
- The car window doesn't work.
- You hear grinding noise when you press the window up/down button.
- The window doesn't move up and down more than one inch. You try it again, and it works but only for a couple of inches.
- The power window goes down at normal speed. When you try to make the window go up, it moves very slow or stops. You may have to wait a minute to move it up and inch or so. You may have to repeat this process several times before it goes all the way up.
- Window fuse may repeatedly keep on blowing but not always.
A problem that we see quite frequently is that the car window will move in increments. The window may also go up halfway then it stops working. The window goes all the way to the top then it rolls back down. In some cases, the window switch doesn't work right away unless you wait a while and then it works. At a later time (such as after 5 minutes) the window works again. In a few cases, the window fuse may blow but not always.
The window regulator is what holds the window. It helps it move up and down while it slides in the window track.
The window regulator can bend. Either due to an accident or just normal wear. Once this happens, the window doesn't align properly with the tracks where it is supposed to slide. In return, the window experiences excessive resistance when you try to roll it up.
Usually, you will notice that the window moves up and down at a much slower speed than it used to. Because most vehicles have has Auto Close Safety feature the vehicle stops sending current to the window motor thinking that something got stuck in the window.
The most common problem that causes this issue is the window motor.
The reason that the window works then it stops working is that the brushes inside the window motor are almost gone. Eventually, the window will stop working altogether due to the window motor brushes completely wearing out or due to the window motor seizing.
If you recently replaced the car battery you may notice that the window doesn't move to the top automatically.
Or the window rolls up an inch and then stops. The window may roll all the way to the top then roll down a couple of inches.
Other possibilities but less likely problems include:
- Window Switch
- Blown fuse
- Damaged wires
How to replace a window regulator
Below you will find general instructions on how to fix a window that won't work. These are broad instructions on how to change a window regulator and motor. These steps will vary slightly depending on the vehicle. Watch the video in the next section for more help.
- Park the vehicle and set the parking brakes.
- Turn off the ignition then disconnect the battery.
- Open the door with the faulty window regulator or motor. Remove the screws from the door panel. There will be three bolts that hold the door panel.
- Use a prying tool to pop out the door panel at the edges. You will see several retaining clips all around the perimeter of the door panel.
- Unhook the door release cable from the door.
- Remove all four 10mm bolts that hold the window regulator to the door.
- Unplug the airbag and window motor.
- Loosen the two bolts that secure the glass.
- Carefully remove secure the glass in the up position.
- Remove the window regulator together with the window motor.