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E36 General discussion and technical help for (E36) 1992-1999 3 series cars. 318, 323, 325, 328.

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Old 06-09-2011, 01:23 PM   #1
Kyi

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my power windows/sunroof don't work, help?

Hello all. I am coming here because for almost a year now, my windows have not been functional and with this summer heat wave coming in, I feel like I'm going to die everytime I enter my car, as the hot air cannot escape fast enough and I'm trapped in the car with it with the windows up.

This is what happened: I was trying to close my sunroof one night and it seemed as if it got jammed or something, and started making a grinding sound as I pressed the close button. I kept pressing the button, and eventually it stopped making the noise and the sunroof would not work. It was stuck open. Then I realize after my sunroof failed, my regular power windows also would not work! I do not know anything about cars, but I have been told it could be a fuse/relay problem or something.

I would like to get this fixed ASAP, so I have hired a mechanic to come over and take a look at it. One thing I am worried about is getting ripped off however, or having someone work on my car who doesn't know what he's talking about. I just want to know what you think the problem is and how much the parts/labor should cost. As far as I know, this could be a very minor problem, but like I said, I don't know anything about cars. The sunroof has been forced shut somehow, and all I wish for is for my regular windows to work.

Thanks all for your help and patience.
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Old 06-12-2011, 06:12 PM   #2
BostonGreen318

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Power Sunroof and Window Fuse Locations. . .

First things first. Your intuition is right, check the relays. According to the Bentley service manual, fuse #1 controls the power sunroof, as well as fuse #13. To find the first fuse -- notice that there are two horizontal rows of ten fuses (there are also a vertical set of sixteen to the immediate left). Pay attention to the top row of ten and pull out the fuse furthest to the left -- that is the first fuse, the one associated to the power sunroof. According to the manual, you should have a 30 amp fuse in your hand. The second fuse related to the sunroof is a 5 amp and is located amongst the horizontal row of ten below. Count three over from the left and you should have the #13 fuse. Ascertain whether both fuses are still intact and replace accordingly. As far as the windows go, see fuse #19 and #24.
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Old 06-13-2011, 01:09 PM   #3
Kyi

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Thank you for replying Boston. I may need to check the fuses again, but I was also told BECAUSE my sunroof caused the jam and the circuit or whatever to break, I could do it again by attempting to use the sunroof. My sunroof at this point has been FORCED shut, as I had no clue how to close it, and the mechanic I had look at it told me he didn't know how to fix it, so just forced it shut for me in case I had to drive in the rain. At this point, I don't really see myself paying extra money to get the sunroof unjammed and fixed, so I just want my regular power windows to open.

In that case, if whatever caused ALL my windows to not function is related to whatever happened in the sunroof, how can I just restore function to my regular windows?
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Old 06-13-2011, 01:40 PM   #4
BostonGreen318

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The power sunroof consists of a set of somewhat delicate, plastic mechanisms on each side that slide along a track -- back and forth. If the sunroof was somehow misaligned then they are definitely easy to break. If there were grinding noises, as you've described, while closing the roof then most likely, you've broken something in the track. If you're not mechanically inclined, I don't recommend attempting to repair. You can access the sunroof motor by prying the cover off from the headliner that lies behind the roof lighting switches. This way, you can remove the motor for replacement (there are usually three mounting screws) or use a hex key (should be located in trunk toolkit) to manually open and close sunroof.

As far as the power window motors go, you haven't acknowledged whether or not you checked the fuses associated with the windows. Like I indicated before, try checking fuses #19 and #24. You could also try this little trick I've learned -- shut the door fairly hard while simultaneously holding the power window switch up or down. If that moves the window then chances are you will have to replace the power window motor. Good luck.
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Old 06-19-2011, 03:38 PM   #5
Sandlot

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Fuse # 41 or 42. I don't remember exactly but it looks unrelated but causes this particular problem.
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Old 05-01-2012, 04:52 PM   #6
spchensley

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I also just had this issue. I was at work when my wife informed me that the sunroof vibrated up top when she was rolling it back (which only rolls back half way for some reason) and then all the windows stopped working. The lights for the visor mirrors also stopped working as well. Any idea if all this is related to just the fuses? A little off topic, but my driver side window don't roll down. The motors make noise and it acts like it would go down but seems as if it might be off track or needs a new regulator....If it needs a new regulator where would be the best place to buy one because an auto shop around my town said its an 800 dollar part and would cost 1,000 to fix..... -.-
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