Q: I know you get a high volume of emails and questions, but if you could just take one minute to tell me what you think about the problem with my 2002 Explorer, I will do the research on how to fix it. If you could just get me on the right track -- I know nothing about cars, and my dad will kill me if he knows I did one more thing to this car, or cost him another dime!

Here's the problem: I took the car camping and the rear window rolled down fine, but when I tried to roll it up, nothing happened. It makes a noise like it's trying to do something, but there's no movement. Does that mean the regulator needs to be replaced? (That's something I saw on YouTube.) Could the window be off track? Once I was able to manually pull the window up, it wouldn't stay. It kept falling down about midway. I had to wedge it in order for it to stay up. I know this seems trivial, but please help! Thanks!

A: If I were putting money on it, I would choose a failed window regulator being the cause of your problem. The regulator is the mechanism that's powered by the window motor and drives the glass up and down. But there are exceptions to the rule. The only way to be sure is to remove the door panel and inspect. If the electric part of the motor were bad, there would be no motor noise and the window would be stuck in one position. But the drive gear on the motor may have come apart, resulting in the current symptoms. Check to see if the regulator comes with the motor, or if that's separate. If the glass came out of its run channel, it would typically be stuck and out of place, but would not go up and down freely by hand. Another failure that could duplicate the symptoms is where the regulator attaches to the glass. The regulator bolts to a bracket that's glued to the glass. The bracket may have become unglued, which requires repair with the proper adhesive or glass replacement. It probably wasn't your fault, but it has to be taken apart first to be absolutely sure what broke.


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If you have a technical question regarding your pickup, SUV, or van, feel free to contact Alex, a master technician with the National Institute for Automotive Service Excellence. Send a letter to him in care of Truck Trend Garage, 831 S. Douglas Street, El Segundo, CA 90245, or e-mail us at trucktrend@sourceinterlink.com. Please include the VIN with your question. Due to the volume of questions received every month, we cannot guarantee that everyone's question will be personally answered or will appear in the magazine.

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