There are two different types of window regulators: manual window regulators and electric window regulators. Manual window regulators have handles you can crank to raise or lower the window. Manual window regulators cause spur gears and the worm gear to create a rotation, which causes the plates to move and thus either lowers or raises the windows. Electric window regulators are much easier and more convenient. Simply by pushing a button, your windows either go up or down electronically.

The history of power-assisted windows began as the Packard Automobile Company first introduced them way back in 1940 and soon thereafter, Lincoln and Cadillac followed suit. Power-assisted mechanisms originated because of the need and desire to move convertible tops up and down by some means other than manual labor. Limousine divider windows came first, and then the power-assisted driver door and rear windows eventually followed.

Luxury cars and certain brand models came fully loaded with accessories that also included power windows. Side-door windows are some of the most commonly used parts of a car, since people are always lowering or raising their windows, depending on whether they want air or are too cold. Because of this factor, the inside door window assemblies, like the window track guides and the window regulators, always run the risk of wearing down and breaking.

When you have a classic automobile like the Super Sport Impala project we have here, most times these vehicles came with a manual hand-crank window assembly. Besides restoring or customizing your classic ride into the dream car you wish for, we also want to include every luxury accessory possible that came with that year’s certain make and model. For this LOWRIDER Garage feature we take a manual hand-cranked window assembly that came with this featured fourth-generation Super Sport and convert it over to an electric power window system and assembly.

If your vehicle also did not come equipped with power windows, then you will need to find the exact car at a salvage yard with power windows that were factory installed and remove the entire system, electric motor, and switches too. You will have to decide if you will be replacing the side door panels to accommodate the new switch you just acquired, or, you will have a hole in your existing panel from the hand-crank handle you once had. We went out and made our lucky find at a wrecking yard already, and now we will show you the step-by-step adjustments and modifications you too will have to make so you can push a switch to power up your windows also.

1. General Motors front and rear window regulator assemblies with electric motors. When you hunt down a front and rear set of electric window regulators, this is all you will need to switch over to power from your original manual roll-up handle style. Your original manual front and rear track/guides inside your door will be used along with these regulators as shown here. You will first need to remove the manual door panel handle, and inside crank gear assembly inside the door as well.

2. When original power electric motors roll windows up and down throughout the years of an automobile’s life span, window assemblies like the pin rollers become worn out the most, and so do the motors. If you can replace the rollers and test the original motors before you install your power setup, you may have to rebuild or service them. You can also purchase aftermarket motors and other parts for the assembly from companies like Classic Industries.

3. Luis from House of Pain Customs presses down on the regulator rear arms to set in place the new electric window motor so that the gear teeth line up before bolting the motor to the bracket.

4-5. The electric motor is set in place and then bolted on.

6. Once the regulators are mounted into place on the rear quarter window front and rear guide tracks, the rear window is put back into place to be mounted with the special washer and bolts.

7. The electric motors are bolted in to place on your original doorframe skin as all GM models have the factory power mounting holes already in place whether the vehicle receives power or manual door regulators.

8. The regulators are also mounted into place as the rollers are first set into the track guides.

9. Powered up! The rear windows lock up into place after they are adjusted.

10. We’re on to the driver front door assembly now, as the install will be repeated just like the rear quarter windows.

11. Luis bolts down the motors and regulators, and with a few line-up adjustments the door window will become electric.

12. When you click or push your power window switch and don’t hear the motor spinning, it may be the motor’s gear, regulator, and or roller failure. But if you hear nothing at all and there are no fuses blown, then you have a switch problem. Though factory equipment is sometimes OK to continue in its use, there are aftermarket switch and wire harness assemblies out there as well. As you can witness for yourself, Electric-Life provides you with power window systems and accessories that will reliably replace your original equipment. Tack on electric windows as an upgrade for this Super Sport.

Axalta Paint Tip of the Month
By Axalta Coatings Systems

There are many technical paint tips that we have shared with all of you readers and painters throughout the year, and a few of them are really basic when it comes to standard procedures and practices that are involved in the spraying of paint, and the maintenance of your spray booth. This paint tip falls along those same lines, but is just as important as all of the other tips. For this “New Year tip” we ask that you start off by changing out with new filters and to please change them regularly as well. You have to make this a habit as well as the stacks in your spray booth being changed out every six months. Make this your New Year’s resolution for 2015 and this will help in having the proper airflow in your spray guns to help prevent solvent pop in your paintjob’s final finish. Continue this practice and you will have less problems throughout the year. Thanks, Happy New Years, and happy spraying from the folks at Axalta Coating Systems. For any other technical painting advice please contact Steven Chaparro at