1999 Buick Century Windows Inop, Circuit Breaker Gets Hot and Sparks From Door Hinge

This 1999 Buick Century came in with the customer complaint of Sparking in the driver’s door hinge and now the power windows are inop. Checked the circuit breaker in the passenger side fuse box and it was smoking hot. I decided to disconnect the battery and wait for things to cool down.

Common sense would dictate that the short was most likely in the driver’s door as that was were the customer had seen sparks flying.

Using a small screw driver I slipped it under the front edge of the power window switch bezel plate and pushed to the rear edge of the door to release the retaining clip.

I then removed the two screws in the pull handle recess. A plastic cover first had to be lifted off.

One screw had to be removed from the interior handle recess and then the panel could be pulled off. this panel has several spring clips holding it in place.

After the trim plate with the power door lock was fully removed I then pulled and released the entire door panel. Several specialized tools are made for this but most of the time good strong fingers are all that are needed. A wide flat tool made for prying helps. Be sure to put tape or other protective material on the painted surfaces before doing any prying or you will damage the paint.

Well, the short was pretty easy to spot. The yellow power window wire had been rubbing on the metal door panel retaining bracket.

It had also cut into a major ground wire and when the two wires touched the bracket at the same time a very strong short was created. The owner was kind of lucky that the door panel did not catch on fire.

I cut out the damaged wires and spliced in new wire. Wrapped with tape and reassembled the door panel and switches

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