Window winder jam

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While out and about in the Mini I decided to roll the drivers window down to let the cool air in and some of the hot air emanating from the engine compartment out. When I got to my destination I discovered that the window would no longer wind back up. I could wind it down but only up again so far before it came to a stop with a 'chunk'.

Luckily the car park I was parking in had CCTV so I parked the Mini in line of sight of the cameras and was quick about my business.

Back home I removed the drivers door handles, door card and waterproof membrane. I peeled back several pieces of gaffer tape covering inspection holes, and with the use of a torch I wound the window slowly up and down until I could identify the problem. It wasn't obvious at first so I removed the rubber seals on the inside and outside of the glass and shone the torch down the glass as I wound it up and down. Then I spotted the problem.

Mini window winder mechanism jam

The glass in the door sits in a metal trough separated from the metal by a strip of rubber. As water had gotten past the window seals over the years it had rusted the metal trough, which had bent outwards until it was catching something, it was therefore being bent slightly more each time it was wound upwards.

To repair the problem I used a small screwdriver to remove all the flakes of rust from the trough, cleaned up the metal, and using pliers I bent it back into position very carefully so as not to break the glass. Once complete I wound the window up and down a few times to ensure a smooth operation with no catching at any point. After that it was just a matter of applying new gaffer tape over the inspection holes, reattaching the waterproof membrane, door card and handles.

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