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Automotive Column 3 from Under The Hood Power Windows

Automotive Column 3 from Under The Hood Power Windows

Syndicated Newspaper Column

There is nothing worse than the feeling you get when you pull your car up to that drive through window and you can't put your window down. That look they give you as you open your door and try to reach around the side to grab your food. If your window has failed, here is a little information on power windows.


Daily Car Repair and Advice Tips Question 3 Power Window Failure

Dear Motor Medics,
 The car I'd like to talk to you about is a 2000 Oldsmobile intrigue with 80,000 miles and I am having repeat window failures. Over the past year I have replaced both rear window regulators. This is the second time for the passenger side rear which was replaced by my auto repair center 4 years ago. My front passenger side window has now stopped moving and I’m sure it is also the regulator. I’m at my wits end here! What might cause this problem and can I prevent it? 

Thank you, Terry in Muncie Indiana.

Dear Terry,
 We talk often about this kind of regulator and other cars using cable regulators with plastic parts. The regulator breaks at the weakest point and will stop moving. Some older vehicles had a clutch in the motor that would break to stop travel of the window. Both the clutch and the plastic regulator are meant to protect persons from injury if they become trapped in the window as it goes up. We find that windows become broken most often in the following situations. 1. When the vehicle is operated in freezing climates where glass becomes stuck and attempted operation damages the regulator. 2. When children in the vehicle operate the windows and hold the button in the up or down position too long or hang on the glass when it is part of the way down. The best way to prevent a broken regulator is to make sure they never become obstructed or forced in any way and use factory quality replacement parts.

Take care, the Motor Medics

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Advice given by the Motor Medics is for entertainment only. Each problem is different and requires different approaches and answers given here are opinions and just one possibility. In order to make an accurate diagnosis a qualified technician should make a hands-on diagnosis. Always follow all recommended safety procedures and consult with your own qualified technician before attempting repairs of any kind.


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