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Discussion Starter #1
sorry if this is old news, but thought i'd pass it on just in case.

one of the rear passenger windows was stuck on my 1989 reliant. manual, not power windows. the window was seized in place, and wouldnt roll down. a friend told me the window crank mechanism, inside the door, was probably seized, just like on his old kcar.

this is apparently a common problem (at 2:00 minutes into the video)


by luck, i found out the cause/fix was much simpler.

in most cases, a car window moves in a felt track which is fixed in the door frame. but in the (1989) kcar, at the rear edge of the rear passenger window, the felt is fixed to the window, and the felt moves up and down with the window. the felt attached to the window has a metal backing which slides up and down the metal track in the door. the metal to metal contact rusts and seizes shut.

so if your rear passenger window is stuck, just spray wd40 into the rear edge of the rear window (both sides), have a friend clamp the window in their hands and gently move the window up and down, as you turn the window crank in both directions.

worked for me anyway. now i dont have to apologize to my rear passengers why one of the windows wont open! :)
 

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Good suggestion. Part of my regular maintenance is to spray some WD40 in the tracks for all four opening windows. They do tend to seize up over time. Lubricating them reduces the stress on the mechanism, manual or power, and helps keep from pulling the glass out of the bottom tray.
 

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Thanks to a tip from someone years ago, I use Meguiar's interior protectant (like Armor All) to lubricate stuck windows. It doesn't leave the gunky residue that WD-40 ultimately will, wipes easily off the glass, and works very well. I treat all the windows of all my cars once a year or so. The '84 LeBaron I recently bought arrived with a rear power window stuck down. I figured I'd have to replace the motor or regulator but it worked fine with a squirt of Meguiar's. Similarly, the power windows on an old Mercedes I bought a year ago were very slow but speeded right up once squirted.
 

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I've had a couple K's and a few M Bodies with stuck back windows. It was always this problem and I managed to get them all freed up.
 

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Are you sure the rubber is supposed to move with the glass ?? It sure seems that the rubber and it's metal backing should stay in place in the frame and the glass slide within it. I suspect that the rubber has bonded to the glass and has separated from itself leaving part of the weatherstrip in the door channel. I can't imagine that it was designed to have metal move against metal.
Of course if you have it working, then that's what counts. Just for grins I'll check the parts book and see if the glass comes with the weatherstrip attached. I suspect not and that the weatherstrip channel is intended not to move.
 

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Didn't read closely enough, mine were all stuck because the metal backer to the felt rusted and tightened up on the windows. Once I freed the glass, it moved in the felt guide like it was supposed to. I'd guess that the metal backer rotted off on yours and is now moving with the window instead of fixed in place.
 

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Discussion Starter #7
mydodgedip said:
Didn't read closely enough, mine were all stuck because the metal backer to the felt rusted and tightened up on the windows. Once I freed the glass, it moved in the felt guide like it was supposed to. I'd guess that the metal backer rotted off on yours and is now moving with the window instead of fixed in place.
thanks, makes sense

here's the FRONT edge of the rear door glass, with the black felt all around, like it's supposed to be



and here's the REAR edge of the rear door glass, with a raw metal track. looks like the felt is moving with the window, just like you said



it's possible to crank the glass up and down, but it's really tight, almost feels like the crank might snap off.

i guess the right approach would have been to push thin shim between the glass and the black felt, and spray wd40 into the crack, before forcing the window to move. hopefully the window would have broken free of the felt track, instead of the felt track breaking free from the door frame.

thanks again
 

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Discussion Starter #8
would anyone have any idea if the rear edge window track could be replaced with some universal product, something like this?

 

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If you can break the felt free from the glass you may be able to glue the felt channel back to the metal backer using weatherstrip adhesive. Roll the window down as far as you can then run some adhesive in the metal channel and press or slide the felt channel back in place. Once the weatherstrip adhesive sets up you should be able to raise and lower the window more easily.
 

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Discussion Starter #10
george w said:
If you can break the felt free from the glass you may be able to glue the felt channel back to the metal backer using weatherstrip adhesive. Roll the window down as far as you can then run some adhesive in the metal channel and press or slide the felt channel back in place. Once the weatherstrip adhesive sets up you should be able to raise and lower the window more easily.
thanks for the suggestion. i tried to break the felt free from the glass with a putty knife, only to find the window is constructed a whole lot different than expected.

as far as i can tell, my original explanation in my first post above was pretty close. there is no felt track. there's a black metal guide attached to the window (with a pin about 3 inches from the top of the window). when the window is cranked up and down, the black metal guide (which is fixed to the window) just drags up and down in the metal window channel.

seems pretty much metal dragging against metal. the inside of the window channel rusts, and things just seize up. all you can do is spray lots of penetrating oil into the window channel.

heres a pic



and heres a pic with 2 putty knifes stuck in the window track.



the yellow knife is inserted (about 1/2" deep) between the metal guide and the window. this knife slides up and down like a hot knife thru butter (because one side is glass), and will hit the pin near the top of the window.

the black knife is inserted (about 1/8" deep) between the metal guide and the window channel. its very rusty

in a perfect world, i'd disassemble the window and drop the window channel into a tub of evaporust to remove all the rust. but i doubt thats going to happen. i'll just sandpaper the window track (in place) to remove as much rust as possible and use lots of penetrating oil. the result is the window's easy to open, but still pretty notchy to close.
 

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Discussion Starter #11
it looks like the time to edit my last post has expired, so i'll just add a new one.

i just looked at the factory shop manual, and the rear window section makes a lot more sense now, it would have been easier to understand if figure 2 had been oriented vertically, rather than horizontally. not the sharpest pencil in the drawer :facepalm:

 

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Discussion Starter #13
in hindsight, the fix is fairly easy.

have a friend clamp the window with his hands and try to move the glass up and down as you turn the window crank. when the window is a bit open, just spray penetrating oil down the window channel (where the screw driver is).



put a piece of cardboard on the ground to catch all the oil that leaks out the drain holes at the bottom of the door. my windows operate like new.
 
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