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Power Window issue

Old 10-16-2014, 05:25 AM
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Default Power Window issue

Hey guys, I am having an issue with my power windows, they will not roll up or down. I was hoping I could get some help from you gents.

Car: 01 impala

It started driving down the road, I had the windows down, I went to roll them up and nothing happened. Tried it again a few minutes later and they went up. Then just to test, I tried to roll down the driver window. Nothing. Waited a few more minutes and tried again, and it rolled down and stopped after a couple of inches. It would not roll up until a few minutes later, then they stopped working completely.

The windows DO NOT have a fuse, they run off 2 relays. The Retained Power Accessory Relay and the Retained Power Accessory Breaker.


So things I have tried.
- Replaced relays with known good relays from other relays of the same model, in the car.
- Checked for split wires in the door jam.
- Checked the ground near the driver seat.
- Tested for power at the switch, and at the left instrument panel.
- Tried a different master switch (though a junkyard part)

Here's the thing with the power to the switch. Using a volt meter, I found that when you first turn the car on, there is power to the switch, and power at the wire in the instrument panel. As soon as I hit the power window button, all power is cut off. It does not come back until I turn the car off and back on.

Now, If I try this same test, then disconnect the switch with the car still on, the power comes back. Reconnect the switch, still power. Hit the button. Power gone.

I ran a new power wire from the switch (with the old one still in place) to the cig lighter fuse (with no fuse in the block), and the windows work. But the car won't start. Disconnect the new wire, and the car starts.

I'm so lost on this.

Anyone have any ideas? Should I just break down and buy a new master switch?

Last edited by buugiewuugie; 10-16-2014 at 05:29 AM.
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Old 10-16-2014, 05:56 AM
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Default Re: Power Window issue

So is the breaker tripping? It sounds like a thermal breaker that is resetting when it cools or latching in the off state until power is cycled. This seems like strange behavior for a switch to trip a breaker, so I'm not convinced that the switch is the problem.
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Old 10-16-2014, 06:15 AM
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Default Re: Power Window issue

How can I tell if it's tripping the breaker? The breaker is just a relay on the back side of the fuse panel. I pulled a relay from the backup lights, which is the same model and tried that, but still no luck.
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Old 10-16-2014, 08:26 AM
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Default Re: Power Window issue

A breaker is not a relay if it is a breaker, unless it is a relay with a breaker built in (I don't know if that exists). It interrupts power if it is actually a breaker, just like the breaker box in your house. Its probably a type of self resetting breaker though.
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Old 10-16-2014, 09:58 AM
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Default Re: Power Window issue

I was definately looking at the wrong thing then. I think I know what you're talking about. It's a silver plug/fuse on the back side of the instrument panel. Should I try replacing it? It's like $5. Or is that not a bad that goes bad?
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Old 10-17-2014, 07:58 AM
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Default Re: Power Window issue

Have you pulled the door panel off and actually looked at the whole assembly? May have worked itself off track or something silly.
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Old 10-17-2014, 08:02 AM
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Default Re: Power Window issue

Yes. running a separate power wire to the switch allows me to operate the windows. But I do not want to "fix" it this way. I want it fixed correctly.

I don't know if the breaker is a replaceable part or not. I can't find it anywhere.
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Old 01-07-2015, 07:05 PM
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Default Re: Power Window issue

And you can hear the window motor trying to function?
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Old 01-10-2015, 12:33 PM
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Default Re: Power Window issue

Are you using factory schematics? Or ru familiar enough with this car that you know what your looking for already?
I can get you wiring diagrams but it'll be Monday when I'm back at work. I'm sure you can find one via oogle.
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Old 01-20-2015, 11:43 AM
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Default Re: Power Window issue

Is the separate power wire you're using fused? It sounds like you have a window motor that's shorting when it gets hot and opens the breaker; then the motor cools off and the breaker resets. If you're running a separate wire that's straight to power then the breaker won't open and the motor will keep working but past the amperage of the breaker. Do you have strictly a volt meter or is it a multimeter? If it's a DMM you can check the amps that the motor is pulling by putting it in line of the power wire and operating the system. Or if your meter will check ohms, check the resistance of the motor cold, then use it until it doesn't work, and then check the resistance of it. Then you can tell if it's shorted like that too. Here's a schematic for your car. The "B" with the triangle around it goes to ground.



One more thing to check, if right after you use it, is the motor really hot? That's normally a giveaway of a bad motor.
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