Power Window Repair: How to Repair a Broken Window Motor
If your power window won't move when you press the up and down buttons, you're in for a power window repair project. Most people run to their mechanic for this type of fix, but you'll save a lot of money on labor by completing the job yourself. If budget is a big issue, you can save even more money by finding a cheaper workable motor from a local parts recycling place or online, rather than paying for a new motor from a mechanic (depending on the type of car you drive, there may be a waiting time if it has to be ordered in).
Before getting started, if your car has an airbag that you will be working close to, you will need to disconnect the car battery as a precaution.
Step 1 - Remove the Door Panel
Use a pick or a screwdriver to remove the door panel. Do this by removing screws by the door handle or at the bottom left of the door. Look carefully—the inside door handle screws are sometimes hidden.
Pry open clips at the bottom of the door panel with a putty knife or plastic clip tool that won’t damage the paint on your car door. Once all the screws/rivets have been removed from the outside panel, lift the door off. You may have to jimmy it around a little before it comes off.
Step 2 - Remove Plastic Insulator
Gently pull the plastic insulator back; this will expose wires and mechanisms that constitute the inner workings of the door.
The door will be attached with wires and door lock mechanisms—remove these by pinching clips.
Step 3 - Remove the Window Glass
Loosen clamps on window bolts found at the top inside of the door by removing bolts. Pry window out.
Step 4 - Remove Regulator and Motor
Use a drill or screwdriver to remove screws and brace the holding regulator and motor in place. Remove the regulator. If getting the regulator out the hole in the door is difficult, ensure the arm attached to the window track is in the up position.
Step 5 - Replace Motor
Separate the motor from the arm that moves the window up and down by drilling out the small rivets that hold the arm to the motor. Place the regulator assembly on a working surface. Some electric window regulators are equipped with a helper spring with tension that can be helpful, but use caution so as not to damage the tension balance.
Step 6 - Reinstalling
Insert regulator and motor back in the door and secure with the screws, divots, or bolts that held it in originally. Reinsert and secure window glass and then put the door panel back in place. If the holes are not aligning up properly, adjust the arm that raises and lowers window. Plug in the motor and lower window until they do line up while holding the motor in place. You can reinstall protective plastic if you want, but this is not necessary. You can now reconnect car battery.
Step 7 - Test
Turn the ignition on and test your work. If the window motor is working, the window should go up and down automatically when you press them up and down buttons,
If it works, job well done! If not, take the car to a mechanic.