Replace a Window Controller in a Subaru Outback





Introduction: Replace a Window Controller in a Subaru Outback

About: I like to tinker with just about anything, sometimes it works out in the end. Have fun looking at the projects, try tearing something open and let me know how it goes. cheers, -Joe

My drivers side window would not go up, thats no good. So I had to replace the window controller.

Step 1: Parts

So you'll need a PP-TD20 window controller unit.

Phillips head screw driver
Panel Remover

Step 2: Remove Screws

There are only two screws in the door panels.
They are both below little plastic covers. One on the door release , and one below the handle.

Step 3: Satellite

Remove the tweeter covers, they just pop off.

Step 4: Pry Off the Door Panels.

Pop the panel pry tool in the door and pop the panel off. You can use a screw driver, but then you might break the little tabs off.

Step 5: Try Out the Switch

So my window would not go up... but it woul go down. So There is a green plug on the door, open it up and test out the behaviour. Since I got 0 volts with the meter when I pushed the switch up, but -12 when I pushed it down I figured it was the relay in the switch. Of course I had to order the prart, but in the mean time I used some alligator clips to reverse the switch and make the window go back up.

Step 6: Unplug

Unplug the switches.

Step 7: Remove He Plastic Cover

remove the plasic face plate covering the switch.

Step 8: Remove the Switch.

unscrew the switch.

Step 9: Test It

plug in your switch, make sure it works. if it does reverse the steps you are done.



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    8 Discussions

    Had to make account to thank you, I had watched youtube video prior on how to remove the panel but it stopped there, your step 5 was a lifesaver. A friend left the country and his Subaru was left to me for safekeeping. It's inside 300 unit apartment complex with questionable characters. I start it up occasionally to charge the battery and few days ago, I rolled down the window completely but couldnt get it to go up so the car has been sitting with open window and bunch of stuff inside. Thanks to your information, reversed the green thingy with 2 paper clips and voila..major headache is off the shoulders. Appreciate your kindness of sharing.


    I was having the same problem getting 1999 Subaru Legacy Outback driver's power window switch to raise the window up. $180 for a new late model Subaru power window replacement switch was ridiculous.

    I was able to refurbish switches good as new WITHOUT NEEDING TO REMOVE DOOR PANEL.

    Parts: 4 x Q-Tips, 2 x wood shish kabob skewers, rubbing alcohol, 2 fine screw drivers (Flathead preferred but not necessary) and a little patience & ingenuity...


    1) used small screwdriver or plastic knife etc to pop off the trim piece surrounding the driver's door window switches.

    2) used small screw driver to gently pry black switch covers off of the switch rockers below.

    (I found it easiest to place small flat head under the middle/side of the black switch cover).

    3) use small screw drivers and slide it between the middle of the rocker switch pivot bump and the white plastic with the hole that receives the switch bump. (*Note: you need to detach the switch from the white plastic receiver...not the black plastic cover over the pivot point).


    5) gently lift out two metal connection pieces under rocker switch. 5) use q-tips / kabab sticks / screw drivers and rubbing alcohol to clean scrape off all dirty black build-up.

    6) re-install in reverse order... good as new.

    How to fix window switch.jpg

    I found the part last summer but didn't have the guts and thought I'd break the clips. I used wire strippers like RKS suggested and they worked fantastic. Thanks again Joe, I wouldn't have tried it on my own without this instructable. Yea now I can open my drivers windows without pliers!

    Joe, just in time, I found your very clear instructions. I was "on the verge" of dis-assembling the entier door (looking for the wrong problem). Instead, I switched the polarity as you suggested and the window ran right back up. It's a really nice day here, and now I will get to enjoy some of it. Thanks, Pete... Doylestown Pa.

    How awesome, now I just need to find the replacement part!

    Thats awesome I am glad it helped. -Joe

    My window would go up and down but not all the way and the movement was sloppy. This instructable showed my how to get at the window workings. I found a couple bolts had come off. Replaced them and tightened a few others. Works perfectly now! Took 15 minutes and probably saved me $100. I used a pair of wire strippers as a panel removing tool. They are like very thin pliers, slide easily between the panel and the door frame and provide lots of surface area for prying without causing damage.


    11 years ago

    I like this sort of instructable. Too many products these days seem to be specially designed to defy being modified, fixed, or even opened by "amateurs"; it's good just to see how to get into them. A "panel remover" is the magic tool, eh?