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    Thread: DIY - Replacing the front door window regulator clips and/or door lock module

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    1. 09-08-2003 08:50 PM #1
      I had some free time and all the necessary pics, so I put this DIY together. Hope it's useful to someone.
      The following DIY outlines the procedure for removing the window regulator carrier panel, replacing the window regulator clips and the door lock module on a MKIV Jetta (some steps may also apply to a MKIV Golf/GTI as well). The procedure was based on a 99.5 Jetta GLS VR6 with power windows - it may be slightly different on later models and on those with manual windows. Please do these procedures at your own risk and be ready to make small adjustments while doing them. Also, please be observant while removing parts so that they go back together correctly.
      The window regulator clips used in this DIY were purchased from IMPEX and were part of a Window Regulator Repair Kit. The kit comes with four clips (two for the left door and two for the right door) and one cable/take-up reel assembly (only needs to be used if the existing cables are damaged - this part is not a redesigned/upgraded piece). There are two versions of the kit, depending on which cable assembly you need. VW part# 1JM-898-461-A comes with the cable assembly for the left door and VW part# 1JM-898-462-A comes with the cable assembly for the right door. The kit should cost $40-50. Besides Impex, you can also buy a kit from the dealer, ECS Tuning or a number of other online parts dealers.
      It may be possible to receive a refund for the cost of buying the Window Regulator Repair Kit and doing the repair yourself. As long as you do the process correctly, it should save VW considerable time and money and in many cases, would be in their best interest to have owners do the repair themselves. I'm currently in the process of trying to receive a refund for the clips (purchased after extended warranty was announced). If I have any luck, I'll post the pertinent information for receiving a refund.
      The part#s for the lock modules are door specific and may also vary between model and year. Make sure you obtain the correct parts for your vehicle.
      The tools needed to replace the window regulator clips and/or door lock module are a flat-head screwdriver, a Phillips screwdriver, T20 and T30 Torx drivers, a 10mm socket (wrench or driver), an 8mm triple square tool, a rag, a sheet or blanket and a roll of duct tape. A drill and a set of bits (not sure exactly what size bit) can also be used during the procedure to disconnect the door lock module from the carrier panel. Doing so reduces the number of steps necessary to remove the carrier panel from the door (more detail on this is given below). If you are replacing the door lock module and do not use the drill to disconnect the door lock module from the carrier panel, you'll also need a small punch to push out the plastic rivets that secure the door lock module to the carrier panel. This is the recommended method since the rivets are not destroyed and can be reused when reinstalling the carrier panel on the door.
      Finally, the procedure should take between 1 and 3 hours, depending on experience. I have done the procedure (replacing the window regulator clips) four times and this most recent time it took me 2.5 hours, mostly because I spent a lot of time taking pics and notes about the procedure for this DIY. If I hadn't been taking pics and notes, it would have taken between 1 and 1.5 hours.
      (Note: The procedure below is for the front passenger's door specifically. The procedure for the driver's side door is nearly identical, except that the parts are a mirror image of those of the passenger's door. Specific differences between the passenger's and driver's door (very few) will be mentioned in the text.
      The procedure below assumes that the window clips have not completely failed and that the window still works (moves up and down with full range of motion). If your clips have failed and the window has fallen into the door, the procedure will be slightly different. I will try to address these differences in the text.
      Also, a few of the pictures were taken on a previous occasion (when the driver's door clips were replaced) so there may be slight differences in the colors of parts and of the backgrounds. Please ignore any continuity inconsistencies. If you follow the procedure as written using the pictures as a reference, you should not have any problems completing the procedure.)

      __________________________________________________ __________________
      1. Remove the inner door trim panel (shown below) using the directions in the following DIY - Removing front door parts.

      2. Once the panel is off, you should see something like this. FYI, I have aftermarket speakers, so your woofers will look different if you have stock speakers. Also, there is some Dynamat on my window regulator carrier panel (the black panel bolted to the inside of the door) surrounding the woofer. This is not present on a stock panel.

      3. Disconnect the harness connector from the top of the woofer. The approximate location of the connector on a stock woofer is shown below.

      4. Disconnect the harness connectors for the tweeter and side-view mirror, indicated by the red arrows in the picture below.

      5. Remove the harnesses from the harness carrier (indicated by the yellow arrow), as shown below.

      6. Using a screwdriver, unplug the two rubber grommets that cover the access holes for the window regulator clips. One of the grommets is shown below.

      7. If your window still works (i.e., the clips have not completely broken and the window still moves up and down), continue on with step 8 through 11 and then go directly to step 13 (skip step 12). If your window has fallen into the door, go directly to step 12.
      8. Depending on the current position of the window, raise/lower the window so that the window regulator clips at the bottom of the window can be seen through the access holes, as shown below. Since the door panel is off, you'll need to use the window controls on the 'other' door to do this.

      9. The next step is to temporarily support the window glass while the regulator clips are being changed. Place a rag over the top of the door. Apply a piece of duct tape to the outside of the window, up and over the top of the door and then to the inside of the window. I recommend doing this diagonally with two opposing pieces of tape, as shown below.

      ATTENTION: Please make sure to completely secure the window with the duct tape. The removal of the window regulator carrier panel requires that the entire weight of the window glass be supported by the tape. For this reason, I only recommend using duct tape. Other types of tape may not be able to support the weight of the window glass. Since the window may have to be supported by the tape for 1-2 hours or more, periodically check to make sure the tape is holding properly and is not peeling away from the glass. If this occurs, the window glass may fall into the door and shatter!
      10. Remove the 10mm bolt that secures each window regulator clip (two total) to the window glass, as shown below. If you are only replacing the door lock module (i.e., not replacing the clips), you do not need to remove the bolt, only loosen it.

      11. Lower the window regulator clips approximately 4-6" using the window controls on the 'other' door. The clips should disconnect from the bottom of the window - this will help in removing the carrier panel later on. Go directly to step 13 (skip step 12).
      12. If the regulator clips fail and the window falls into the door, it can be difficult to remove the carrier panel since the window often 'gets in the way'. If possible, try to remove the window from the door completely. This almost definitely requires the help of a second person. Attempt to pull the window up by its top edge. If you can raise the window nearly out of the door, it probably means that both clips have definitely failed. Try to raise the window so that the clips can be seen through the access holes described in step 8. If this is possible, remove the 10mm bolts, as described in step 10 and slide the clips off. Once the clips are off, remove the window from the door by pulling it up and out of the door. This is easiest if you rotate the rear edge out first and pivot the window around the lower front corner toward the front of the car. The window should come out of the door easily. If you're successful in doing this, put the window aside in a safe place. If you are not able to remove the window from the door (because it wasn't possible, not because you didn't try), it may mean that one of the regulator clips is still fully or partially intact. If this is the case, you may have to improvise a little during later steps to remove the carrier panel. I can't be more specific about this problem, since each different situation will have it's own solution.
      ATTENTION: Please be extremely careful when removing the window glass from the door. Make sure to have a strong grip on the glass at all times or it may fall and break.
      13. Disconnect the harness connector from the regulator motor by pulling down on the retaining slide, as shown below.

      14. As you pull down on the retaining slide, the harness connector will slide toward the front of the car and off of the regulator motor, as shown below.

      15. Check to see if the door lock module is riveted to the carrier panel, as shown in the picture below. Normally, the lock module is riveted to the panel, but if your regulator clips have been replaced already, the rivets may not be present. VW techs are notorious for not reinstalling the rivets when replacing the regulator clips. If your lock module is not riveted to the panel, perform step 16. If your lock module is riveted to the panel, you have two options. You can (1) drill out the rivets and continue on with step 16 or you can (2) leave the rivets intact and go directly to step 17. Option 2 is the preferred method since the rivets can be reused when reinstalling the carrier panel on the door - new rivets will not need to be purchased. If you plan on replacing the door lock module, you must perform all of the related steps (16 through 24 - do not skip any of these steps).

      16. Pop off the rubber grommets for the inner door handle release cable and the door lock pin (indicated by the yellow arrows in the picture below) and then push the grommets through their respective holes in the carrier panel. After doing this, go directly to step 25 - do not perform steps 17-24 unless you are replacing the door lock module. If you are replacing the door lock module, you MUST continue on with step 17.

      17. Remove the small plastic tab on the rear edge of the door with a screwdriver. The tab is indicated by the yellow arrow in the picture below.

      18. Behind the plastic tab is a retaining screw which is used to secure the blank in the door handle, indicated by the yellow arrow in the picture below. On the driver's side door, the screw secures the piece which surrounds the door lock key slot.

      19. Loosen (but do not completely remove) the retaining screw with a T20 Torx driver. The screw actually has a very small triple square head, but a T20 driver works perfectly. The retaining screw can be seen in the picture below.

      20. Loosen the retaining screw enough so that the handle blank slides out of the door. The passenger's and driver's side pieces can be seen in the pictures below. On my car, the screws needed to be turned approximately 13-15 turns for the pieces to slide out. Also, you may need to pull out on the door handle slightly to allow each piece to slide completely out.

      21. The outer handle is connected to the door lock module by a small cable (red arrow in picture below). The end of the cable is secured to the handle by a small plastic tab (yellow arrow in picture below) which fits into a threaded groove.

      22. Pop the tab on the end of the cable out of its retaining groove using a small screwdriver, as shown below. Before doing this, note the position of the tab in the groove so that it can be reinstalled in approximately the same position later.

      23. The picture below shows the tab detached from the retaining groove.

      24. Remove the two door lock module bolts on the rear edge of the door using the 8mm triple square tool. The bolts are indicated by the yellow arrows in the picture below. The 8mm triple square tool is also shown below.

      25. Pop off the rubber grommet and push in the wire loom retaining clip indicated by the yellow arrows in the picture below.

      26. The grommet and retaining clip should look like they do in the picture below when step 25 is completed.

      27. Put a sheet or blanket on the ground below the door and over the door sill (as shown below) to protect the sill and carrier panel when the panel is removed from the door.

      28. Remove the ten (10) 10mm bolts that secure the carrier panel to the door. The locations of the bolts are indicated by the yellow arrows in the picture below.

      29. Starting at the rear bottom corner of the panel, pull the bottom of the panel away from the door slightly, as shown below. You may have to move the panel up or down slightly to wiggle the bottom of the panel out of the door. This step may be very difficult to perform if the window glass is still sitting at the bottom of the door, especially if one of the regulator clips is still attached to the bottom of the window. If this is the case, then this is the point in the DIY that you might have to be creative in order to complete the removal of the carrier panel from the door.

      30. While holding the bottom of the panel away from the door (and also supporting its weight), reach behind the panel from below and push the six (6) wire loom retaining clips out of the panel. The locations of the clips are indicated by the yellow arrows in the picture below. If you yank on the clips from the front of the panel, you will almost surely damage them, making it difficult to reattach them when reinstalling the panel.

      31. A close-up of one of the wire loom retaining clips is shown below. The clips are held in place by small tabs on opposite sides of the clip, indicated by the yellow arrows. Push in on these tabs simultaneously and push the clip out of the panel.

      32. Once the tabs are out, lift up on the panel slightly, pull the bottom of the panel away from the door, and then lower the panel toward the ground and toward the front of the car. It is necessary to do this because the window tracks extend above the top of the carrier panel inside the door (blue arrows in picture below) and the door lock module extends to the right of the panel inside the door (red arrow in picture below). If you are removing the carrier panel with the door lock module still bolted to the edge of the door, you do not need to slide the carrier panel toward the front of the car when removing it since the lock module is not attached and will not impede its motion. You'll only need to lower the panel so that the window tracks clear. Also pay careful attention to the inner door handle cable and door lock pin when removing the panel as they are attached to the door lock module and must slide out of the panel.

      33. Once the panel is removed from the door, disconnect the harness connector for the door lock module by pressing down on the tab indicated by the yellow arrow in the picture below and then sliding the harness connector away from the lock module. (FYI, the lock module on the driver's side door is shown in the picture below in case someone notices some inconsistencies in the appearance of the harness/lock module relative to the carrier panel.)

      34. Pull the door lock module wire bunch (indicated by the yellow arrow in the picture below) and harness connector through the hole in the carrier panel. The panel should now be completely disconnected from the door.

      35. If you plan on replacing the window regulator clips, go directly to Part II (below).
      If you plan on replacing the door lock module, go directly to Part III (below Part II).

      Let me know if you have any questions.
      As always, do this procedure at your own risk. I am not responsible for any mistakes in the procedure or those that you make while performing it.

      Modified by VgRt6 at 10:24 PM 8-18-2009

    2. 05-12-2004 07:36 PM #2
      Pics are back online ... this time for good.

    3. Junior Member Rockdocta's Avatar
      Join Date
      Jun 10th, 2004
      2004 Volkswagen Jetta 2.0
      06-11-2004 04:27 PM #3
      Hi VgRt6,
      This is an amazing write up, good job. I just purchased a 2004 Jetta GLS (just the 2.0 ) It hasn't even been delivered to me by the dealership yet. I have read so many posts about the window regulator problems with VW's and I was wondering if you knew if the 2004 models are plagued with the same problem? I think I am mechanically inclined enough to do the job, however I'd rather not if I didn't have to. Thank you much, and if I do have to fix the windows, I'll be sure to let you know how it went.

    4. 06-13-2004 07:13 PM #4
      You shouldn't have to worry about your window regulator clips. VW fixed the problem long before your car was built.

    5. 07-10-2004 12:57 PM #5
      I just finished doing my drivers door clips. I had an appt at the dealership for today, but when I got their they said my appt was for next sat. I have allready waited for more then a week. Next Sat is water fest so I went and did it my self. Well worth the time and money. Thanks for the DIY VgRt6.

    6. 07-10-2004 04:48 PM #6

    7. Member
      Join Date
      Jan 15th, 2002
      Brooklyn, NY
      08-10-2004 01:56 PM #7
      hi VgRt6,
      Have some pics for you. My driver's window just broke last night and this morning 2 dealerships would not fix it for because they were "Backed Up." So $55.10 and 3 hours later here are some pics/changes. My work was done on the driver's window of a 2002 Jetta.
      Window taped up

      I did not see any square panel here, I'm not sure why.

      Pieces of the broken regulators. Only one broke but I managed to break the other one while lifting out the window. God only knows why VW made these things out of plastic.

      Here's the important thing. On your car you have a circular plastic dial where the cables move. On mine there is an extra top piece (lip?). I found it easier to simple put all 4 corners on this lip first then simply hand move the regulators up and down until the cables went into place.

      And I just used zip ties to fasten the cables back on. Also a pic of my alientech controlller.

      Parts for the passanger side. I'll replace these when that window goes down.

      Modified by samc at 2:00 PM 8-10-2004

    8. 04-05-2005 03:09 AM #8
      vey nice my man very nice...
      what model mb quart speakers are those and what kind of insulation did you use behind them.

    9. 04-05-2005 07:49 AM #9
      Quote, originally posted by jean malicar »
      vey nice my man very nice...
      what model mb quart speakers are those and what kind of insulation did you use behind them.

      They're MBQuart Q-Series. There's no insulation behind them. I originally had foam baffles behind them, but it made the speakers sound like crap. They sound much better using the entire door volume.
      The '04.5 cars probably have the newer clips, that makes them stick up a little higher than with the older clips.

      Modified by VgRt6 at 1:45 PM 10-27-2005

    10. 11-02-2005 08:25 PM #10
      Bro youre the best [IMG]http://*****************.com/smile/emthup.gif[/IMG] thanks alot.

    11. 05-07-2006 03:55 AM #11
      Thanks very much for this excellent how to guide. I brought the repair kit in the UK, which contained the clips and the pulley. I had to fit them to the panel, which proved very difficult. I got in a bit of a muddle and had to drill the rivets out of the panel to get it all out in the first place. Anyway without the picture of which way round everything goes I would have been well and truely buggered. I had a hard time pulling the wire over the little wheels, its a tight fit. So in the end I filed a bit of the blue plastic thing that sits in the hole to give me more clearance.
      I did the other side with the whole pre fitted panel last year and wish I had brought that part instead of the repair kit!

    12. 08-02-2006 03:02 AM #12
      Just replaced a pair of broken clips on my passenger front window. The glass had fallen inside the door on a very very wet day. Thanks to you this scary job was very manageable and easy to do. Thanks so much for taking the time to take all the informative pics and passing on your tips and hints. Saved me around £150. Thanks again.

    13. 08-02-2006 07:54 AM #13

    14. 08-02-2006 11:27 AM #14
      Anyone looking at this thread experienced a dealer who claimed that the "cable broke" and as such is not covered by the extended warrantee? This seems extremely unlikely unless a clip failure or the actually drop of the window strains the cable and causes it to fail.

    15. 08-02-2006 12:26 PM #15
      That's ridiculous. What usually happens is that the clips break, the window falls into the door and the owner tries to raise the window with the motor and messes up the cables in the process. If the dealer said this to me, then I would ask to see the existing clips. If they're intact, then it's plausible that the cable is what broke. There's no good reason for the clips to break once the cable breaks, so if the clips are broken, then they almost surely failed first.

    16. 08-05-2006 08:02 PM #16
      I used this tutorial to replace the clips and reel assembly on my Jetta's passenger side door today. Works perfectly now! As others have said, it's a lot easier/quicker than it looks at first. Thank you so much for this tutorial.
      I would make a suggestion, though, regarding the required parts for step 24. You mention a "triple square tool" there and in the intro. Perhaps I was a bit thick headed, but when I got to that part I figured I could simply use a Torx driver. I had never even heard of a "triple square tool". I learned the hard way, though, that a Torx just strips those bolts. Making matters worse, they don't even sell "triple squares" at my local auto supply store nor do they sell them at Lowes. So, I guess it's something you need to special order. Since I stripped mine, I ended up having to use an extractor to get them out and replaced them with new bolts (thankfully they are a standard size M8x1.25x16or20). Anyway, a warning or something might be good at that step or in the introduction to let people know they absolutely must get a triple square thingy...

    17. 08-06-2006 12:41 AM #17
      Thanks for the tip. FYI, triple square bits are available at PepBoys and Napa, as well as from better the better tool distributors like SnapOn.

    18. Banned
      Join Date
      May 6th, 2004
      08-06-2006 01:29 AM #18
      Kinda wish that either this was up or that i had seen it like three weeks ago, my window fell into the door before going camping one weekend. But its a good thing its under warrenty for me still

    19. 08-06-2006 09:16 AM #19
      It's been up for nearly three years.

    20. Banned
      Join Date
      May 6th, 2004
      08-07-2006 03:52 PM #20
      Quote, originally posted by VgRt6 »
      It's been up for nearly three years.

      whoops like i said I wish i would have seen it

    21. 08-13-2006 12:59 AM #21
      Incredible DIY. Saved me plenty of headaches

    22. 08-14-2006 02:20 PM #22
      Just had this repair completed on my '03 Jetta Wagon and am STEAMING! First, the window clips are (were) plastic in my 03.
      Second, they replaced it with repair kit part number 1JM-898-462-A which I'm guessing is the same repair kit used to repair cars covered under the 99-02 TSB.
      Third, now the window will NOT lower all the way. A good 1/2" of window sticks out of the door when the regulator stops lowering the window.
      Fourth, VW USA didn't cover the repair as they said it wasn't part of the TSB.
      Finally, our Premier extended warranty won't cover the repair either!

      Ok, now that the rant's over with, has anyone else had an issue with the window not completely lowering into the door after the repair? Our technician says that this is normal (for the post-repaired part), but I have my doubts.

    23. 08-14-2006 02:56 PM #23
      It is normal for the window to stick up slightly after the repair. The exact same thing happened to me when I did the repair for the DIY.

    24. 08-14-2006 03:03 PM #24
      Thanks for the response. Your DIY instructions are awesome and if(when) my drivers side window fails, I'll do it myself instead of taking a $300 fleecing from the Dealership.

    25. 08-14-2006 03:05 PM #25

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