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cartech, ASE Certified Technician
Category: Car
Satisfied Customers: 3332
Experience:  25 year as shop owner and ase master tech also certified body tech
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Power window..Switches work intermittently

Customer Question

Troubleshooting a power window issue.
Voltage comes and goes. Switches work intermittently. Sometimes the right front side will work on the right side but not from the drivers side. Then I use the drivers side and then the passenger side quits working.
Need some direction (baffled and need ideas)
I bought new switches for both sides and the problem still exists. I was leaning towards either switches that are not playing good with the system or a bent wire somewhere just cutting off the juice. Its almost like a 3 way switch not making the return by jumping from side to side.
Submitted: 5 years ago.
Category: Car
Expert:  cartech replied 5 years ago.
i see its a 2004 for but what model is it
Customer: replied 5 years ago.
For some reason it (refreshed the page) and cut me off right in the middel of typing in the information
2004 Chevrolet Venture Van
Customer: replied 5 years ago.
Could this be a symptom of a bad circuit breaker in the fuse box?

Like this morning my window on the drivers side rolled down. Several minutes later I couldnt get it to move up or down. I opened the door and it started working again. I am not sure the opening the door part was the savior as it quit working shortly after that and I opened the door and got nothing (power up or down). I completely unhooked the passenger side module yesterday and it is still unconnected from the switch. The sporadic ability to use/not use makes me feel this is a circuit breaker/fuse isssue or a frayed wire somehwere. I am assuming the ability to use/not use is comming from the circuit breaker resetting itself
Expert:  cartech replied 5 years ago.
what we normally see when this occurs is the area where the wires run from the drivers door threw the door pillar break from the opening and closing of the door
Customer: replied 5 years ago.
I am assuming this may be the case as I deliver newspapers for a living so the drivers side door is opened a gazillion times a year. The sporadicness and sometimes the switch works when I open the door makes me think the wire straightens out just enough to let the juice flow to the switch. Otherwise the line shorts out and flips the breaker causing both sides not to work until it resets. I will try to investigate the wires today if I can and let you know what I find.
Expert:  cartech replied 5 years ago.
ok if your satisfied with my assistance please click accept you will still be able to get further assistance from me at no extra cost as you need on this problem
cartech, ASE Certified Technician
Category: Car
Satisfied Customers: 3332
Experience: 25 year as shop owner and ase master tech also certified body tech
cartech and 9 other Car Specialists are ready to help you
Customer: replied 5 years ago.
No sign of cracked or frayed wires on drivers side.
I gave up and took it in for a diagnostic
They came back:


Two motors and a masterswitch at the same time?
Does this sound feasible to you?

Ouch their repair estimate
Expert:  cartech replied 5 years ago.
you put new switches in so how can it be bad and for the motors i see them work intermittently but the price sounds outrageous
Customer: replied 5 years ago.
I put the old switch back in before the diagnostic work so I could get a base to work from. Thats why the switch tested bad. I spoke to the actual mechanic that did the diagnostics. He put a new master switch in and still couldnt get the windows to work except for a brief period he was able to get the passenger side window up. He tested power with a light tester to determine what the electrical issues were and came up with the recommended solution.<br /><br />I tested the lead off of the bad switch to the driver side motor and there was power to the motor from the switch but the motor didnt operate so I definitely think the motor on the driver side is toast but the switch seems to be letting power through.<br />The passenger side I think may still be questionable. I should still be able to raise and lower it from the passenger side even if the master switch is dead. So maybe the motor is dead on that side as well because i cant get it to do anything from either side. I am not going to pay $800. This is the new door style that they updated where the motor just pops out when you gently raise 3 plastic tabs so there isnt a lot of work to do (old ones you had to remove the whole inner panel module). The hardest part will be getting a new motor back in with the gears aligned in the right position. The motors run about $40-50 a piece and switches run $50-60 from Autozone. My plan is to put a new motor in on the driver side and test the switch and window until till it works (minimum gets the window in an up position). Once that is good. I will replace the master switch and see how the passenger side reacts. If no action then I will replace the motor on the passenger side and see what happens. My passenger window is up already so my only concern is getting my driver side window up. If nothing works after that I will just disconnect the wiring to the switches and run with non-operable windows.<br />The parts maximum would be $150-200. I have a hard time believing there is a $600 labor charge on that<br /><br />Anything helping you want to add would be great<br />Thanks for your help
Customer: replied 5 years ago.
Put new motor in drivers side and it worked up and down with old switch but I still couldnt operate the passenger side from the driver side. I then replaced the master switch and I could then contol both windows but the passenger side window was a lot more sluggish then the driver side. It was working until I shut the door and then I couldnt do the passenger side anymore. I replaced the passenger side motor and evrything ran smoothly with door open and shut.
So I think both motors and master switch were probably bad. The passenger side was probably just struggling enough to move it then would die after too much pressure on the motor.

Any way was about 30 min worth of work and $150 in parts - Lot better then the $850 the dealership quoted

Thanks for your help - maybe you can use this info in the future
Have a happy Easter

Expert:  cartech replied 5 years ago.
glade to here it worked out for you and thanks for the follow up

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