Mechanics

Window Motor and Regulator Replacement

Easy step by step guide on how to replace an automotive window motor and regulator, though the configuration may vary, the process is the same, this information pertains to most vehicles.

Difficultly Level - 4

Begin the vehicle on level ground, engine "OFF" with the parking brake set, using a basic set of tools while wearing gloves and protective eyewear. Warning; Some electric window regulators are equipped with a helper spring that can have tension, use caution when disassembling.

Step 1 - To access the window regulator and motor assembly the door panel must be removed. Learn more


Remove Door Panel

Step 2 - Gently remove the plastic door cover, this cover is used to keep moisture away from the door panel.


Remove Plastic Door Cover.

Step 3 - Locate the window mounting bolts, the window may need to be raised or lowered to access the bolts.


Access Window Mounting Bolts

Step 4 - While supporting the window, remove the window mounting bolts from the window regulator, once the bolts have been removed the window will become loose in the track.


Remove Window Mounting Bolts

Step 5 - While the glass is loose in its track, raise the window until it contacts the upper portion of the frame.


Raise Window

Step 6 - While holding the window in place, use masking tape to secure the window from dropping down and possibly breaking inside the door, this step keeps the glass out of the way while removing the regulator and motor.


Masking Tape Window

Step 7 - Locate and remove the window regulator, gently set the unit inside the door until the motor is removed. (Note: They are connected to each other.)


Removing Regulator Bolts

Step 8 - While the regulator is resting inside the door, locate and remove the window motor mounting bolts. (Note: In this application the bolts can be loosened to remove.)


Remove Motor Bolts

Step 9 - After both the motor and regulator bolts have been removed, locate the motor wiring harness connector, press the release tab to disconnect.


Press to Release Connector

Step 10 - Remove the regulator and motor assembly through the large access port.


Removing Motor and Regulator

Step 11 - Window regulator and electric motor removed.


Window Motor and Regulator Removed

Step 12 - Match the old unit to the new to ensure a proper installation. (Note: Check electrical connectors as well.)


New Window Motor and Regulator

Step 13 - Gently feed the new motor and regulator assembly back into position, this can be a little tricky so hang in there.


Install New Window Motor and Regulator

Step 14 - Once the motor and regulator has been re-positioned, re-install all mounting bolts leaving them loose until all have been installed.


Install Regulator and Motor Bolts

Step 15 - Using a ratchet or wrench tighten the motor and regulator mounting bolts.


Tighten Window Motor Bolts

Step 16 - Feed the electrical connector through and reconnect to the door wiring harness.


Reconnect Motor Electrical Connector

Step 17 - While holding the window in place, remove the masking tape and lower the window into the new regulator.


Un-Taping Window

Step 18 - Once the window is lowered into place, thread in and tighten the mounting bolts.


Install Window Mounting Bolts

Step 19 - Recheck all mounting bolts for tightness and re-install the plastic weather liner and door panel assembly.


Re-install Plastic Liner

Step 20 - Once the job in complete, turn the ignition switch to the "ON" position and test both up and down actions of the window motor.


Test Window Motor Operation

Helpful Information

An electric power window is controlled by three main parts; motor, regulator and a control switch and can fail in many ways, some of the more popular failures include non operation (stuck), window loose in its track sitting down while the motor turns. In some cases there are minor adjustments for the window rails to re-position the window if needed, check vertical operation for hard spots or clicking noises.

All power window system are protected by a fuse which should be checked if the window is non-operational. Learn more

Common Problems

  • Motor shorts out and stops working, or works very slowly.
  • The control switch short circuits, due to excessive amperage draw from a worn out motor.

AUTHOR


Written by
Co-Founder and CEO of 2CarPros.com
35 years in the automotive repair field, ASE Master Technician, Advanced Electrical and Mechanical Theory.


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Article first published (Updated 2015-05-13)