Blogs Car Info Our Show Deals Mechanics Files Vehicle Donation

To repair or not to repair...The Sunroof

2005 Highlander sunroof won’t close all the way…Dealer has parts for a cable sub-assy and gear assy, slid. The technician says that “probably it will need a new housing” resulting in a total cost of $3400. This seems pricey for something that I can live without. Can we just have them seal it up and forget about fixing it? Thanks for your help!


Do some Googling. My 2005 Scion, a Toyota product, drives the sunroof via a body control module, and it can be reprogrammed very easily by simply closing it then letting go of the button and repressing it for about 15 to twenty seconds.

I developed a wind leak and was told by one dealer that I needed and entire new assmbly. They told me I was “using the roof too much”. I went to another dealer and they told me how to reprogram it so it seals tightly. But clean the tracks well before doing this. If the tracks have too much resistance toward the end of the cycle, the BCM can apparently program the roof to stop early when closing.

You’ll not find this information in your owner’s manual. Yours may be different, but clean the tracks well and try my protocol. You just might save yourself $3500.

1 Like

I’d remove the sunroof and throw it in the ditch alongside the highway before spending 3400 bucks to fix it.

I’m in agreement with mountainbike about making sure everything is clean with the tracks, etc. Even a light lube might help.

The sunroof in my SAAB was acting up a year or so ago and it was due to some crud on one end of the tracks. Cleaned it and no problem since.

The cable is “broken” and so I told the service advisor that I’d rather seal it shut than spend $3500.

LOL! I can think of a lot of ways I can spend $3000 and none include a sunroof! Maybe trip in January to a sunny location? Thanks for the help! They’re going to call me tomorrow…

yeah, find a cheaper fix, and spend the rest of the money on yourself. Tell yourself it’s payment for a job well done, and you deserve it for going through so much. :stuck_out_tongue:
I don’t think there’s any aftermarket sunroof that cost that much. Hell, most auto makers only charge a third of that for one($1000 is the average).
I do wonder though, how much of that $3400 is for labor costs

Thank you all for your help. The dealer offered another option when I said I didn’t want to put in a new housing–a used housing including labor for $1400. I still decided to seal the sunroof for $687. It looks fine, I can still look up at the clouds/stars (not in moving traffic, of course) but the window doesn’t open. Good Enough!