Window went down, made a noise, and wouldn't go back up.


Old 08-10-04, 02:59 PM
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Exclamation Window went down, made a noise, and wouldn't go back up.

Hi Everybody,

I am by no means an auto expert, and not even a hobbyist. I'm an everyday guy who is looking to make sure my girlfriend is not going to be robbed by an auto-mechanic.

I have heard that Pontiacs have problems with their window motors and regulators. However, to fix those costs hundreds of dollars. In my girlfriends car(1997 Pontiac Grand Prix w/power windows), the driver side window is the problem. Apparently, she rolled the window down and heard a sound equivalent to a pebble falling in the inside of the door. The window stuck in the down position and her dad put it back up into place by removing the interior panel. Now, she needs to take it to a mechanic.

I am just trying to figure out if the sheer fact that the window rolls down by using the switch eliminates the possibility of the motor/regulator being the problem (since it rolls down, doesnt that mean the motor works??) Her father thinks something may be blocking the motor, or the window isnt correctly in frame. I dont trust the dealership since repairing the motor would bring them a lot of money, as opposed to something blocking the motor, I want to know so that they cant try to get me to pay for something that isnt broken. Also, if the motor is broken, does that mean you need a new regulator as well, and vice versa. We just had the switch panel replaced in feb, so i dont think that's it. Plus, when it first happened, the window was moving slightly when i pressed the switch up, and it sounded like something had fallen into the window. So maybe something (screw, rock) fell into the motor.

So, the fact that my window moved a little when i press the button and the fact that i just had the switch replaced, leads me to believe that its not the switch. best case scenario....something came apart in the door panel and is obstructing window movement upward. worst could be the regulator.

Does the regulator work the same as the motor, meaning, if it works one way, its not broken either?

Any assistance on this is appreciated.
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Old 08-10-04, 03:34 PM
Join Date: Oct 2002
Location: Hamilton County, Ohio
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Sounds like you were either burned by a dealer or are a bit paranoid. I have have had good luck. They aren't always the cheapest but usually get it right the first time.
I believe that the window motor is riveted to the regulator. It can be replaced by drilling out the rivets and riveting a new motor in place. If the door panel is off, try taking a peak at the regulator with a flashlight and mirror. You may see a chipped tooth on the regualtor. How did dad get the window back up?
Old 08-11-04, 07:24 AM
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Her father asked her to push the switch up and he manually pulled the window into the upright position. He initially thought it seemed to be off it's track, but he refused to open up the inside of the door as there were too many wires and speakers for his comfort. What kind of range are we looking at to have this repaired?
Old 08-11-04, 08:39 AM
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it's not the motor...

...but it is a mechanical problem probably associated with the regulator. some are repairable and some are replacement only. since the trim pad is already off...someone can probably look at it pretty quickly and see where the problem lies. ask for an estimate (preferably wait while they look at it and have the tech show you what the problem is) and be willing to pay a reasonable fee for someone to check the situation out. if you are comfortable with the diagnosis and cost, be sure to have them save your old parts.
Old 08-12-04, 08:32 AM
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Thanks for all of your help. 2 follow up questions:
1.) Why save the old parts?
2.) What's a fair price for something like this?

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