The average price for the window regulator replacement cost is between $343 and $437, depending on the make, model, and year of your vehicle. The labor costs for this procedure are estimated between $105 and $132, while the cost of the parts is typically between $238 and $305.
Let’s see how the window regulator works, the steps to replacing the window regulator on your own, and sample window regulator replacement costs on popular car models.
What is a window regulator?
The car window regulator, also known as the door window regulator, is the mechanical part that moves your window up and down when the power is supplied to an electric motor or a steering crank with a manual window that moves the window when the crank is turned.
The door window regulator raises and lowers the door window glass in both manual and electric window systems. The cars that have electric windows contain an electric motor in each door to operate each window individually.
When the driver or passengers adjust their window position in the window control panel, the window adjusts based on the direction the user chooses. This electric motor allows the door window regulator to move the physical apparatus.
How does the car window regulator work? – Window Regulator Replacement Cost
In general, there are two styles of window regulators that you will find in cars on the road today. One type of regulator is a scissor-type used on older vehicles that use metal arms that move in tandem when the gear is turned. This mechanism is made of metal, is heavy, and typically has a higher window regulator replacement cost.
The second type of mechanism is the lighter cable-type system that slides the window in either direction by a cable attached to a drive apparatus. This cable-type regulator is more common in modern cars on the road since it is easier to use and easy to fix. Both of these window styles can be used by a power motor or manually with a window crank.
Symptoms of a Faulty Window Regulator
To best understand why you have to pay for a window regulator replacement cost, you need to know the signs and symptoms of a malfunctioning regulator in your vehicle. If one of the windows in your car cannot close properly or open all the way, a failing window regulator could be at fault.
If a window is only moving intermittently and does not listen to directions, this can indicate a broken regulator that can lead to unsafe driving conditions. Other symptoms of a faulty regulator include loud noises, like clicking or chattering, when the window moves up or down. In some of the most severe cases, the window could drop inside the door, leading to a much higher car window regulator replacement cost.
When should I replace my car window regulator?
If the car window regulator has broken, you can tell the parts are faulty, or the window has come loose from the car window regulator. If this is the case, you need to get a quote for the window regulator replacement cost and get your car fixed by your mechanic or do it yourself.
If the window in your car is loose, it needs to be securely held in place not to fall out or move while driving. This means that the car window regulator needs to be prepared and fixed so that the window can be put back in its place and the window can be held securely.
Keep in mind that your car can be susceptible to vandalism and getting broken into since your car window will not be securely held. If the car window is not secure, you might not experience a safe driving experience. You can also get weather, rain, and other materials stuck inside your car if the seal with your window is not tight enough. Lastly, if the car window regulator is not working properly, it can increase the car window regulator replacement cost.
How to Replace Your Car Window Regulator – Window Regulator Replacement Cost
In order to figure out the total car window regulator replacement cost, it is key to know the steps to repair this part of your car, how much time it will take, and the parts. Let’s see the four main steps you need to do to replace a regulator assembly on automatic windows in your car.
Step 1 – Remove the switch panel
Pry out the switch panel
First, you need to pry out the switch panel and disconnect the connectors to sever the electrical connection.
Remove door trim panel
After this, remove the door trim panel. You can do this by first checking the fuse. If the fuse does not show any signs of wear and tear, the problem is generally either a bad switch or a motor damaged, or a broken regulator. A broken regulator can increase the overall car window regulator replacement cost since this part is crucial to the movement of the windows.
A mechanic’s shop will charge you at least a few hundred dollars for the car window regulator replacement cost. However, you can do the window regulator repair and power window repair on your own if you have the proper tools – and you can do it in just a couple of hours! Regulators can be found in many shops, available online, at your local auto body shops, and mechanic garages.
All you need is a set of sockets, screwdrivers, a drill, and an online service manual to provide you info about your specific car. This way, you can use the instructions pertaining to your specific vehicle and follow a rough guide to give you an idea of what steps to take.
Remove trim panel fasteners
Start the repair by removing all trim panel fasteners to access the switch and test the regulators and the faulty parts. Remove the trim panel and remove the vapor barrier, which can be easily done with a trim panel removal tool.
Step 2 – Test the motor connector
Disconnect power connector
After this step, get into the door panel and disconnect the power connector to the window motor, connecting your voltmeter’s leads to the connector’s terminals. A voltmeter can measure the electric potential difference between two points within an electrical circuit. Turn the key to the “on” position and turn the switch up and down.
Step 3 – Remove the window
Suppose you have determined that the mechanical switch is good and the part is working. In that case, you will see the voltage reading change, meaning the issue is the car window regulator, which can increase the price of the car window regulator replacement cost.
Analyze Voltage Reading
If your meter does not display any readings or how the voltage from the voltmeter, then the issue is the electrical system, showing a problem with the bad switch or broken power or ground wire. If you notice issues with the electrical connection in the power door system, this can increase the overall car window regulator replacement cost.
Step 4 – Replace the regulator
Finally, you can remove the glass by tilting it away and lifting it out. Then, remove the regulator bolts or the rivets to prepare the new car window regulator’s space. Bolt the car window regulator and reinstall the motor and window switch electrical connectors and window glass, testing the bolts and tightening everything.
This final step is the last in the process of replacing your car window regulator on your own. By saving money on the labor, you can reduce the overall car window regulator replacement cost for your vehicle.
Sample Window Regulator Replacement Costs
Although you already know how much your car price will run you for some of the local shops in your area or the automotive chains that can provide car window regulator repair, we also have some sample window regulator repair costs for the most popular cars on the market today.
One of the least expensive car window regulator repair options is the Ford Fusion, coming in at an average of $148-$201, with the labor running between $80-$100 and the parts costing you between $70-$101. The second cheapest option is the Ford F-Series, Ford Focus, and the Nissan Altima. These makes and models cost around $235 and $281, with the labor running between $96-$123, and the cost of the parts being $139-$166.
The middle of the road options for the car window regulator repair involves the Honda Civic, running between $260 and $460, with the labor costing $175-$222, and the parts running between $90-$240. The next middle of the road prices for sample window regulator repair costs is the Chevrolet Silverado, Toyota Camry, and Toyota Corolla, all costing between $270-$369.
The highest price for the same window regulator repair cost is the Honda Accord, with the labor being between $167 and $211, and the cost of the parts running between $169-$258.
The Bottom Line – Window Regulator Replacement Cost
Even though most drivers would not want to spend around $400 for the car window regulator replacement cost, it can help keep out unwanted weather elements and keep out harmful vandalism while your car is parked. Keeping your windows working smoothly helps you remain safe and protected on and off the road.