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My window won't go up

…and it’s going to rain.
A couple of days ago, I rolled up my window (crank), and as it was almost at the top, heard the sound of plastic breaking. You know, like when you step on a plastic toy. I didn’t worry about it too much, because the weather was still sunny, although driving in the humidity with it down is quite annoying. So now it’s going to rain, big time. I took the door panel off, thinking that it would be obvious what needed to be done.
Silly me. I see the pulley at the top, and I can move the window up, but not to a completely closed position. And it is not at all obvious what I need to do to get the window to stay up, much less be crankable again. Because I am a relatively cheap person, I really didn’t want to pay to have this fixed, considering that I just spent $800 on the timing belt and radiator and a battery and AC.
It’s a 1996 Toyota Corolla, manual 5-speed, with 265800 miles on it.
Thoughts?? Suggestions?? Thanks!

The window regulator plastic gear teeth probably broke off and that was the breaking noise you heard. Until the window regulator can be replaced, get the window up as far as possible and seal the gap with duct tape. That’ll at least prevent the interior from getting wet.


Since you are competent enough to remove the door panel, you should be able to replace the regulator yourself. It’s just a matter of unbolting and rebolting.

You ought to be able to find a used regulator for your car on eBay. It ought not be expensive at all.

Leave the inner door panel off. Pull or push the window all the way up. Duct tape it there to hold it in place.

If you think you can fix it yourself you might want to look at the passenger window to see how everything works. Maybe that will help you diagnose what’s broken. Otherwise find somebody that can fix it. The $800 isn’t relevant to this problem.

If the door panel is off, you could peel back the plastic liner, push the window up all the way, and wedge it with a plastic tube or a piece of wood. I did that temporarily while I waited for delivery of a new regulator. Then replace the plastic sheet where it was.

One more thing: be careful when you wedge the board or tube in place. You don’t want to break the window.

I’d see if I could find a used regulator in the local junk yard. As mentioned before it’s just a matter of taking a few bolts/nuts loose and putting the new one in.