Have you noticed that your car’s power windows are rolling up slower than usual? If so, it can be irritating to hold the switch down for what may seem like an eternity while the windows roll up, and this problem may only worsen over time. But what causes power windows to slow down?
Power windows roll up slowly due to malfunctions such as physical blockage or a lack of lubrication in the window motor or other parts. A low car battery, damaged or worn-out window motor, problems with the window switch, and damaged wiring may also cause the windows to roll up slower.
If your power windows seem to have lost their power, there are several ways you can get them back up to speed. This article will explore the most probable causes of slow or malfunctioning power windows. I’ll also discuss solutions to this problem and give tips on maintaining your car’s windows.
If your car’s power windows start to roll up slower than usual, the problem could be with the external window mechanism, the window’s motor, or the switch. A low car battery could also cause this problem since the window motor won’t have enough power to operate effectively.
Let’s look at some of these causes in detail:
Your Power Window May Go Off Track
A gasket is responsible for keeping new windows in place with a gasket that allows the windows to move smoothly. However, this gasket may get worn off over time, resulting in a physical blockage that may slow down your power windows. The window frame may also become loose, causing the window to go slightly off track.
If your car’s windows are off track due to a damaged or worn-out gasket, it will usually result in a screeching sound every time the window rolls up. The glass grinding against the metal or plastic casing creates this annoying sound and will cause your windows to roll up slower than usual. If you use a window in this condition — the glass may become permanently damaged.
The problem may be a loose window frame if you have an older window. If the window goes out of position even slightly, it may roll up and down much slower. If the window frame is severely damaged, the window may get stuck while it’s rolling up.
In either case, these physical blockages require immediate attention, and you may need to replace certain parts of the window frame to get your power window back on track.
Power windows require proper lubrication to function — like all motor-operated systems. Most car windows operate in a closed system and don’t need frequent lubrication. However, some parts will wear out over time, and the window may slow down due to a lack of lubrication.
Lubrication problems can occur in the moving parts or window frame and the window’s motor. Modern cars have power windows that use efficient electric motors that don’t require lubrication. However, you will still need to lubricate other parts of these power windows — or they will start to slow down due to friction.
If your power windows begin to slow down due to a lack of lubrication, they will wear away very slowly, and you may not notice it until parts of the window or motor are damaged.
A damaged or worn-out window motor may also cause the car’s window to roll slowly. Power windows have electric motors built to last over 20 years. However, parts of these motors may wear away with regular use, and the lifting mechanism will work much slower than usual.
How soon the window’s motor starts experiencing problems depends on:
- Whether or not you lubricate the parts.
- The frequency of use.
- The climate where you live.
If you live in an area with extreme temperatures, parts of the window’s motor will wear away much faster, and you’ll have to replace the window motor more often.
If your power windows start rolling up slower than usual or you start hearing strange sounds when rolling up the window, the window’s motor may have reached the end of its lifetime.
With modern cars being more connected through sensors and a single electrical system, problems with the wiring in one part of the car may affect the whole system. If the wiring in your power windows is damaged, the electric current flowing through it will be inconsistent, causing the windows to roll up much slower.
This problem may be due to damage to the wiring due to short-circuiting or water seeping through the window’s motor casing.
Sometimes, problems with the power window may be due to a malfunctioning switch. Like other components, the case around the control switch may wear away over time, causing the button to get stuck while the window rolls up.
You may also damage controls if you spill water or drinks over them, and the wiring that connects the switch to the windows may also malfunction. If there’s a problem with the window’s control, the window is more likely to get stuck entirely as opposed to becoming slower, but it’s worth checking the switch anyways.
The problem may have nothing to do with your car’s windows or the control switch — the problem may be due to a low car battery. A low-charged car battery will affect many components of the vehicle, and the headlights may also be dimmer.
If you let the car sit for many days, you may need to recharge the battery before you can drive it. If the battery remains low despite regular driving, you’ll have to check or replace it.
How to Fix Slow Power Windows
Slow power windows aren’t necessarily a significant problem, but they can be irritating and signify a more critical issue. To fix the problem, you’ll first have to know what’s causing it. If you have an older car, a lack of lubrication or wear and tear on certain parts may cause the issue. Otherwise, there may be an electrical or mechanical fault.
Here are some solutions to fix slow power windows:
Lubricate the Motor and Seals
Lack of proper lubrication will cause the windows’ seals to wear away, causing them to become slower. Applying lubrication isn’t something you should only do once the windows start malfunctioning. Lubrication can prevent damage to the window motor, and it will operate more smoothly.
Here are some of the best window lubricants on Amazon:
- MicroLubrol Rubber Seal Lubricant Oil: This pure PFPE oil is ideal for lubricating squeaking power windows. You can use it on the rubber seals, glass edges, and silicone seals of your car windows, and it will prevent wear and tear.
- Aiend Car Window Lubricant: This heavy-duty car window lubricant protects against rust and corrosion. It will help your windows roll up smoothly and reduce friction that may damage your car’s windows in the long run.
- Car Glass Anti-Fog Rainproof Agent: This car window and glass solution is designed to protect your windows from fog and rainwater and will help prevent damage caused by rust.
Fix Battery and Electrical Issues
If a low battery or wiring issue is causing your power windows to roll up slowly, you’ll have to call a vehicle electrician to check it. The electrician will check for voltage issues in the wiring or battery.
If the car’s battery is low, you’ll have to recharge it and replace it if it has reached the end of its lifetime. Most car batteries will last between 3-5 years and more if you take care of them. If there’s a problem with the window switch or other components, you’ll have to replace them.
Fix Any Physical Blockages in Your Power Window
If physical blockages are causing your power windows to malfunction, you’ll have to take the window apart to find out what’s causing the problem. You may have to replace the window’s gasket or the silicone sealant that keeps it in place.
If the window is misplaced, simply taking it apart, lubricating it, and putting it back together will resolve the issue.
Replace the Power Window Motor
If the window’s motor malfunctions or is damaged, you’ll have to replace it. The motor may be too old to operate effectively, or certain parts may wear down beyond repair. Getting a spare window motor for your car’s power windows is usually straightforward and won’t cost as much as other repairs.
If your power windows start rolling up slowly, it’s often a symptom of wear and tear. However, it may also be due to electrical problems, so check your windows with a qualified electrician before replacing the window motor.
Lubricate the window regularly and avoid leaving your car in the sun or rain for too long, and you shouldn’t experience many problems with your power windows.