96 Ex Power Window Bushing Fix with Pics! | Ford Explorer Forums - Serious Explorations

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96 Ex Power Window Bushing Fix with Pics!


February 21, 2008
Reaction score
City, State
Roanoke, VA
Year, Model & Trim Level
2000 pontiac bonneville
As I have posted before..I dont even own an explorer, But I married in to one!:rolleyes:

So I have one to work on now. This forum is one of my new best friends.
Well, my sister in law went to Italy for a freakin week and her Explorer came to my driveway to visit, so I figured I would poke around.

Here is the window fix: I apologize in advance for not noting the nut and bolt sizes, but I figure if you are going to take on this project, you have a set of tools and are dangerous enough to think you can use them....

This would be the time to disconnect the battery if you were a "Safety Sam" kinda guy..I however, enjoy the feeling of 12V in my body..so I didnt.

Approach the door..ask it to dance

Remove these two screws. And then use a flat blade screwdriver to Jimmy off the inner door handle trim cover

GENTLY start to pull the door off or use the special plastic insert remover tool.

Unhook this trim light. it twists and then comes out IIRC

This is the back of the lock/unlock and window up/down button switch. The whole thing just pushes in towards the door.You dont even have to unhook it

Start a pile on your well manicured lawn

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Slowly peel off this plastic. Try not to rip it, it needs to be there or Ford engineers would not have put it in there, right?

Removing this green Ground screw will allow the wiring harness to dangle and give you some more room to move and work

Remove the 3 speaker retaining screws

Detach speaker clip w/ screwdriver

You need to drill a 1/2 inch hole RIGHT HERE

It will end up looking like this

Pull the three motor bolts out and take it somewhere to work on it. My wife loves me, so I get the kitchen table :) Remove the TORX bolt (T20 i think)

Pop off the top w/ a screwdriver

Using a set of needle nose, push back on both sides of the retaining clip at the same time and shoot it across the kitchen. CUSS, ALOT. Find the clip and take a picture of it

Remove metal and plastic gears..Notice a significant LACK of bushings..and a funny smell...

BUY some of these

If you are comfy with the guts of an electric motor, and are feeling Ballsy..do what I did and take the armature out and look at all the little bits of old bushing that would never have been cleaned if you didnt take it apart. But, if you get it back together and then the motor wont work..dont blame me..I warned ya!


Clean the little bits of bushing out of everything with a jewlers screwdriver if you have one..

Then assembly is reverse of removal..I greased everything up pretty good with grease. You may have to put the motor where it goes and start the screws, then run the motor in short bursts while pushing toward yourself with your arm inside the door cavity until the motor teeth pop into the regulator teeth. Then just button her back up.

Difficulty rating: 6 beers

Very good work. Now... what, no blood? That's good work to finish with no busted knuckles.

Oh there was blood..just no knuckles..LOL

Well still, you have all of your fingers, the window regulators are very dangerous if loosened. You only worked on the motors, which is the safest job.

Truly they are big ugly Spring loaded finger removing machines!

Thanks for the great instructions and pictures. The only addition I would add is to drill the hole a little larger than 1/2" since the bolt was not perfectly centered with the dimple. By the way, no blood, no sweat, no missing fingers thanks to your warnings.

Glad that I could be of help. It seems silly for everyone to go at it blind after one of us has done it already.

very good work

Life Saver. Nice Work!

LunchBox, all i can say it thanks for the great pictures and directions. I bought the 96 Explorer I have now for my 16 year old daughter. When I got it the Windows did not work. I just pumped $700 into it for brakes, tires, checkup. I also painted all the Trim that was faded. You know all that Black trim that always fades on the Explorers?

Well I could not afford to have them do the Windows also so i followed your directions. I even found the same exact gear plugs from Bennet Auto Supply. They have them behind the counter. I printed out the picture you took and they found them immediately. These help parts are at most Auto Parts stores. They cost me $7 for two pairs. I also bought some grease to re apply. I saw someone mentioned they had to shave the bushings to get them to fit. These bushngs are rubber and do move. I slided them in and used the back of a flat head screwdriver to snug them in.

You will even like this. When I took the motor out I showed my wife where you wrote that the work had to be done on the kitchen table. Thats where i did it! Also thanks to your posting I was careful when taking the clip off so it would not fly through the kitchen! I did scre one thing up though. When I took the panel off I busted the vanity bulb on the bottom and it shorted and blew the fuse that controls the interior lights and also happens to control the Power Windows.The windows were not working after I tested them and they did work. I replaced the fuse in the interior panel and good to go.This was relatively easy and dare I say a fun project for me. It was gratifying knowing that I could fix both windows for less than $10!

Thank you Lunchbox.:thumbsup:

great write up. My power window was making a clicking noise whever the window button was pressed, sure enough all 3 of those window regulator gear plugs were chopped into tiny lil bits.

Great thread with great pictures and info. Thanks :thumbsup: This needs a Sticky

great job! thanks a million!

Without this post - I would have never found that third screw. I was about 5 minutes from drilling out the rivets - when I decided to check here! I had the motor out in 10 minutes - clip off - I had to "bend" the cover up because the fourth screw was a rivet. The plastic beads cost me 8 dollars at Autozone - the plastic mounting pins were garbage so I'll get some universal pins tomorrow and secure the door completely. I can't believe that the three plastic beads were all that I needed. I'll bet more than one customer has paid for a new regulator + shop time for an $8.00 fix. My '91 is ready to be passed to my next sixteen year old. My fourteen year old is already hinting that she wants it next...:)

THANK YOU THANK YOU THANK YOU. i thought that my window motor was shot on the passenger side because it wouldnt make any sound at all when i hit the button. i could never find the last bolt till i read this. my gear plugs are shaped like beans. you just saved me tons of money and tons of time. i would imagine most people that have problems with their motors could simply fix them this way.


You can remanufacture like this and hope it works for awhile. I called Central Florida Mobile Power Window Repair and got a new power window regulator and motor installed for less than $160 while I was at work out in the parking lot. They gave me a warranty on the parts and labor. Their number is 407-415-5401

well considering i only had the problem with the motor its definitely worth the $15 to do both sides. both motors work like new now. i wouldn't mess with the regulator because i know of the dangers but i would imagine that most window related problems are from the motor considering that the regulators are pretty solid and the motor has weak plugs as well as a plastic gear inside. thanks lunchboxx for this amazing write up


Guys, thanks SOO much for posting this! This saved me lots of "MONEY" buy DIYing it the Ford dealer wanted $95 an hr plus $120 for the motor which I got at autozone for $33.99 at the link below. 10 mins later and I few swear words because I keep dropping the screws inside the door but no bloody knuckles.




Electric Window Motor Bushings

How do you get the window up (out of the way) when it fails in the down position? I've heard that removing the motor with the window down can be dangerous as the regulator has a spring?


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I'm bringing this post back because someone referred me to it for my passenger side window that was not operating. I utilized the original post and it worked great but I took it to the poster's next level and removed the armature for cleaning. He was right - there was to much chunk in there to make me comfortable for leaving it there.

Anyway, got a perplexing problem because I'm not electrically inclined. After wrestling with the brushes and springs for a while I finally got it done and the window operates beautifully except that up is down now and down is up?? From the switch on the armrest when I press the up button the window goes down and when I press the down button the window goes up. Obviously I missing something in putting back together an electric motor. It sure seems straight forward - remove armature from housing, clean, spring load your brushes and return armature. Any ideas?