how to fix a sunroof that won't close all the way

How to Fix a Sunroof That Won’t Close All The Way


Cars with mid-to-high end features come with sunroofs which helps in giving extra light and ventilation, letting the air flow inside the car. Sunroofs are opened usually during summer time, in cases wherein the weather is good. However, it’s inevitable that sunroofs get damaged out of a number of reasons. If you ever encounter this problem, this article will explain on how to fix a sunroof that won’t close all the way.

It’s easier to have this fixed by an automotive mechanic in shops or even in dealerships, but it wouldn’t hurt to try learning how to fix it. Thinking this might be hard to do, the decision will always be yours. By just following the instructions, this will help you save cost and furthermore pave your way to becoming familiar with the basics of car maintenance. Here’s a how to article to fix your sunroof that won’t close all the way.

About Sunroofs

Sunroofs come in different shapes. Some are manually-operated, and some are automatic (equipped with a motor). High-end cars include sunroof motor and this involves electronics and wiring. It starts with a switch to turn on the sunroof motor, the wires connected to the sunroof where the current flows, and some also includes a standalone sunroof module, but some does not have this because it’s basically integrated in the major electronic module (or technically we call this BCM – Body Controller Module). A fuse is also used to protect the wire from burning. Either way, there is still a potential damage to it.

If your car’s sunroof is manually-operated, then it’s easier for you to fix it if ever it will not close all the way. How to manually close a sunroof is a different topic and you should already know how to do it before discovering that your sunroof is damaged. Moreover, knowing how to fix a sunroof that won’t open is just related to this as well because we will be dealing with the factors why the sunroof is not functioning well.

Check What Might’ve Gone Wrong And Learn How to Fix It

Check the sunroof parts like the glass and the cable if no damage is seen. 

Cracked sunroof glass may pose a safety threat and should be replaced immediately. For the cable, lift it up to check if it’s still following the guide/tracks. If not, then place it back to the guide in order for the sunroof glass to open or close.

Check if there is proper lubrication along the tracks. 

This is very important in moving the sunroof whether opening or closing it. You may use a heavy silicon grease just right enough for it to be lubricated. Try moving it back and forth to double check. Heavy silicon grease is available in automotive shops or even in supermarket’s automotive section; you may also specify for what you will be using it for. This will give an idea to the one in-charge of the store and easily help you with your needs.

Check the sunroof tracks for presence of dirt and dust. 

This may cause the sunroof to stuck, allowing it not to open or close all the way. Monitor this every now and then. As dirt and dust build up on the sunroof tracks, this will sooner or later damage the sunroof cables. You would not want that to happen because fixing it is harder than cleaning it on a regular basis. This is already a cliché, but then again, prevention is always better than cure. Learn how to clean sunroof tracks to avoid problems in the long run.

Check everything about electrical matters. 

Automatic sunroofs, as what I’ve mentioned earlier has more parts included because of its design. This should be thoroughly checked. Start with checking the fuse inside the power distribution box. A blown fuse may cause the sunroof not to operate, and to fix this, replace the blown fuse with a new one. Make sure the fuse type and the fuse rating is the same as that of the blown fuse. You can determine which fuse is for the sunroof by looking at the electrical schematics, and the fuse codes written on the cover (inside) of the power distribution box.

Another thing to check is the status of the sunroof motor.

Is it functional or not? There are certain reasons why the motor is not functional. One thing to do in order for you to know is by locating the nylon brushing at the center of the motor and insert a screwdriver there. Check if the motor works manually by turning and pushing the screwdriver. If the sunroof can be opened or closed manually, then that’s a sign that it’s damaged and a replacement is needed. As to the switch and the wires, simply use a multi-meter to check the resistance of the wires. High-resistance means the wires should be replaced because of a short; if no resistance is measured, then there’s nothing wrong with the wires.


Tedious as it may seem, but doing this by yourself will give you a lot of advantages. Aside from saving a lot of money for having it fixed by an expert, this will also rescue you in times of abrupt problems with your sunroof. If used during summer time, this may give discomfort especially if there’s just too much heat coming inside your car, or if used during close to cold weather time, this may freeze you up inside your car. Educating yourself on how to fix a sunroof that won’t close all the way is the best thing to do.

So you got it. It’s just easy, right? With the use of complete tools, and carefully following the instructions above, this would help you solve your sunroof problem. Do this by checking first what may be the cause of it and attack the main issue. This is a challenge for you, but then check with yourself if you want to do this or not. If not, then an automotive mechanic is always readily available to completely resolve this issue with your sunroof.

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