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How do you fix a broken or slow power window? That’s a question we hear a lot!

IF YOU’RE ASKING THIS QUESTION, YOU PROBABLY HAVE THE POWER WINDOW BLUES

If you own a modern vehicle and you’ve ever needed a power window repair, you’ve probably already experienced the sticker shock of dealer and standard repair shop quotes! Wowza! Most shops quote between $300-1200 for a repair, depending on the vehicle and what’s wrong with the window system. What are they crazy? As I wondered who designed these things, it occurred to me that they were very bright engineers, indeed. These things give the term “wear and tear” new meaning.

My customers want to know why. Why do they fail? Why do they put plastic in power windows? Why do they use cheap plastic? Why isn’t there a recall? I have to giggle, but I’m just trying to lighten the mood. After all, they are about to shell out cash to have their window repaired, even if it is less than what they were quoted elsewhere

First of all, if the fault or design flaw, intended or not, doesn’t propel you into a river or off a bridge, cause the car to catch fire or operate improperly, it’s not getting recalled. Let’s be realistic here. These are covered by very few warranties for a reason. They are designed to break. The bottom-line is that they want them to fail. As consumers, we demanded better engines, better transmissions, better fuel economy, better safety features. We NEVER said anything about power windows, power door locks or window switches. Most modern power window regulators are cable action. There are usually 1 or 2 tracks that the glass carriers and glass attach to and then the cable is drawn by the power window motor across plastic pulley wheels and fairleads. Plastic. Okay, in a normal climate consumers have trouble with these things, but we live in Arizona. In Phoenix, we live on the face of the sun! We pray for rain for Pete’s sake! When it’s 110 degrees outside, you know it’s 180+ degrees inside those metal doors. If that plastic is rated for 86 degrees, what does that mean for us? The power window regulator “boomerang” effect!

Just to review, in most cases you have to pay a ridiculous amount money for the repair AND replacement parts stink! I know it’s not what you want to hear, but we found a solution. A repair so good that we can put a 1-year warranty on it. A repair so strong that it’s intention was to be a more permanent solution. Keep reading. If you live in Phoenix Arizona or you live in another state and have expensive parts that need replacing, you’re going to love this.

WindowReg1  BMW_Window_Regulator WindowReg2

We repair the OEM regulator so that it can’t break again and we do it for 40-70% of what other dealers and shops charge. The founder of our company engineered designed a stainless steel repair that strengthens and fortifies the regulator in the areas we know to be weak and most likely to break. We serviced 4,000 power windows a year over the last 2, so I can say with confidence that we know what’s up with these things. We’ve even gone so far as to engineer custom metal spring tensioners to replace the nasty plastic ones found in power window regulators today. If an engineer can design a window regulator so it can break, an engineer can design a repair that reverses that. Voila! Power Window Repair was born in 2009!

Power Window Repair grew by integrating with local dealers and wholesalers and then started reaching out the public shortly thereafter. While we still have wonderful relationships with the dealers here in town, we find ourselves enjoying the day to day connection with our personal customers even more. Shoot – by the time you’ve had 4 windows done, we know your kids names, your dogs names and have probably invited your to a customer appreciation BBQ! We send out a monthly savings email to VIP customers just to make sure that they catch a break when that window does the famous “pop and drop”.

BUYER BEWARE! Check references before you hire anyone to work on your car! We send people to Yelp all the time because we want them to have confidence in their decision to use our service and we know it’s important to do your research before spending your money. The only reason I bring this up is that we recently found that of our ex-employees has been trying to copy our repair and start his own business here in town. Not that we’re against free enterprise, but this guy helped Paul build Power Window Repair here in Phoenix and is now trying to compete with us in our own backyard. We knew he had gone to Portland, but all of a sudden his best friend was showing up as the owner of our newest competitor and worse yet, plagiarized our website, word for word!

GET THIS! We had a customer call for a quote and she chose the other company, even though we warned her about who she was dealing with. The next morning, we got a call that she needed help. She needed more than she knew. The panel was broken and everything was torn apart. He came out to do the repair and then left everything a mess when he couldn’t fix it. The repair took us 30 minutes and the panel repair took another 30 as the epoxy dried. That customer was thrilled that we were able to save the day, but what a waste of time for her to have to do it twice and because someone had already been in that door before us, we wanted it to come to the shop.

Don’t be fooled by imitations. Power Window Repair is Power Window Repair. If you haven’t been to PowerWindowRepair.com, you haven’t reached us. We back up our repairs and we’ll back you up if you find yourself in a mess too!

THANKS FOR READING OUR BLOG! Stay tuned! We’ll keep you updated on funny things we run into in the field and any other tips we may suggest for keeping those automobile power window systems running smoothly! ~ Jen

What is a Power Window Regulator?

There are 3 main designs of the power window regulator mechanism. Each one has it’s own action and each manufacturer has it’s preference.

When you hit that window switch to lower or raise your window, it doesn’t happen like magic as our kids would like to think. Behind the curtain, door electricity is flowing and parts are moving. Today I’ll address each window regulator design and attempt to give you some explanation as to what’s happening behind that curtain and why in some cases, you may want to save your knuckles and fingers and leave a power window repair to the experts.

SCISSOR ACTION WINDOW REGULATORS

Let me begin by saying that some of these are downright dangerous. I can’t count the number of close calls Paul had in the early years of Power Window Repair, before he learned his lesson and smartened up. Widely used in older vehicles, they have somewhat faded from newer models 1997 to date. Honda was using a mix of styles from front to rear and Hyundai used mainly cable window regulators in the early to mid-1990’s, but European and automobiles made in the US were using the scissor action regulator. By the time everyone was switching to cable, Hyundai was testing scissor…..they went back cable. As their vehicles became more reliable and they increased their guarantees of reliable vehicles, I guess they needed something to fix that wasn’t under warranty.

Made of almost all metal, the scissor regulator has a main arm that connects to the track or glass tray, the other has teeth that mesh with gear on the power window motor. As the motor is driven forward and backward and window is raised and lowered.

The most common failure in this type of power window regulator is general found to at the weakest point, which is the plastic wheel at the end which allows the regulator to glide effortless up and down when in working condition. Over time, plastic deteriorates and breakage occurs. Under normal circumstances the entire mechanism would need to be replaced, however Power Window Repair has designed an OEM repair where we remove the broken wheel and replace it with a much more durable wheel, one that is rated for a higher degree of temperature and heavier load. The savings to our customers is notable. We also see failure in the glass carriers. Clips make of metal and plastic alike will break and in many cases, a text book repair will call for the glass to be repaired. If you’re in the Phoenix Area, Power Window Repair can almost always fix that for $149-179.

It is worth noting that we know what’s coming down the pipe. We’ve done the research. Some of the newer models in 2014 and 2015 have taken to heavier, anti-theft glass which calls for a heavier-duty scissor action regulator in order to stabilize and support the weight of that added security. Despite having to expand doors to make room for the addition safety features and redesign speaker locations, it looks like they were listening to their customers needs for added safety for the property.

CABLE ACTION WINDOW REGULATORS

Cable action regulators come in a variety of designs, but all are based on pulley system mechanics. Some are designed with a single metal track, some with a double metal track. Newer cable mechanisms are found to be built into a plastic panel, which becomes even more difficult to deal with. Some even require the outer panel or skin to be removed in order to reach the window regulator, which mean taping off painted areas, time intensive dismantling of most of the door panel and finding a safe place to protect the skin while working on the vehicle.

The weight and the size of the glass almost always dictate what will be found in a door, but door speakers and other mechanisms also come into the play when determining all the parts that will be placed inside a door panel.

The most common failures are found in in the weakest areas, including the pulley wheels, fairleads, plastic spring tensioners and glass carrier areas.

DRIVE-SHAFT WINDOW REGULATORS

We can begin by saying that this mechanism is found in the 2002-2007 Jeep Liberty. We consider this vehicle to the be the #1 source of power window problems across the nation, BY DOUBLE. It was no surprise to us to find this very same mechanism in a 1980 Ferrari. When we opened that box from Washington, all we could do was laugh. No wonder! It wasn’t long after that when we opened a Frieght-liner door to find the very same regulator mechanism and then again in the Kenworth trucks. The trick with the Kenworth is that similarly to the Audi window regulators, the entire cassette, including the glass attached, must be removed before the window regulator mechanism can be worked on.

The mechanism itself is a one track systems with a plastic drive shaft that carries the fuzzy cable that is driven up and down by the power window motor. It’s not uncommon to hear that a fuzzy monster is sticking up out of a customers window when the window regulator fails. Jeep Liberty window regulators fail in so many places that we make it look like Frankenstein before we put it back in our customers door. Forget the metal parts that everyone’s selling out there online – what they don’t tell you is that as soon as you install that new part, the regulator will break in an area you can’t fix. It’s a racket, we tell you! They even break in such a way in the rear doors that we sometimes have to remove the panel from the inside with the door closed. That’s fun!

What ever it is that’s in that door of yours, we’ll have a fix that won’t break your budget. Just give us a ring for a diagnosis and we’ll start from there!