If your car window is stuck and no longer moves up and down, there is a high chance the window regulator is broken. 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.
- 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. 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 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.
- 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.
- Window fuse may repeatedly keep on blowing but not always.
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.
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.
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.
How to replace a window regulator
- this window problem you will need to replace the window motor.It is possible to replace just the brushes inside the window motor but this is not typically done since it is time-consuming and a new window motor can be purchased for around $50 online.
- The most common problem with the windows nowadays is a failed window regulator. If the window regulator is bent for one reason or another it can cause the symptoms that we described earlier. Another common problem with window regulators is that the wire that is moved by the window motor breaks and causes the window to stop working.
Note that your car has a temperature sensitive fuse. Meaning that when too much current is being drawn by the window motor due to excessive window regulator resistance, the fuse may temporarily break and reset once it is cold. This is done by integrating a resettable fuse. There are other methods to monitor the current draw by the window motor as well.
- This is the easiest case and may not require that you spend any money. What you need to do is look up instructions on how to synchronize the window. These instructions can be found in your owner's manual or online. In most cases, all you need to do is to keep on pressing the window switch button repeatedly until the window gets to the top. Then continue to hold the window switch down for about 10 seconds. Repeat the procedure by moving the window all the way down. Once the window hits the bottom continue holding down the window switch button for another 10 seconds. Your vehicle will record these high and low (open and close) points.