Power windows are a tremendous convenience. Whereas these systems were available only on luxury cars as recently as 20 years ago, today almost every car made comes with that little switch to make the windows go up and down. Of course, it is one more thing that can go wrong on a car; fortunately, these systems are fairly robust and do not break easily.
When power windows do stop working, the switch can be a bit of a hassle to repair. Even experienced shade-tree mechanics are not usually used to fixing power window problems, mostly because they are so rare. However, forearmed with a little bit of knowledge, a power window switch is not too difficult to fix.
Troubleshooting the Problem
The first step to repairing a power
window switch is to make sure it is the switch that is at fault. While the switch is the most likely culprit, it is not the only component that can go bad in the power window circuit. A few simple tests can help one narrow the problem down quickly.
The initial steps in any troubleshooting process are to define the problem clearly and to determine under which circumstances the problem exists. Test the window in question, and the other windows as well, to see if they operate and under which circumstances they operate or do not operate. Listen for any noise that is made when the switches are operated and look to see if the window moves at all. Remember that the vehicle’s power must be on to operate a power window.