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DIY: Power Window Master Switch

This is a description of how I removed the driver side door panel and disassembled the master window switch (“PWMS” thanks to dc_98_cam) of a 1995 Camry (Gen 3? Gen 3.5?). My front driver side window would go down but not up. I decided to go in and see if I could repair the problem. It turned out to be a problem with the master switch.

For my 1995 model I needed to remove the door panel to access the PWMS. The panel comes off very easily. There are five screws, two plastic plugs (?) and four concealed panel retainers. Even though mine is a Gen 3, I found Delay FTB's Door Panel Removal Tutorial for a Gen 4 to be very helpful. I have provided some pictures showing my Gen 3 differences. Some of the fasteners are different and the PWMS is fastened on the inside of the door. As far as I can tell, it doesn’t lift out of the door handle from the cabin like Delay FTB’s did.

Once I removed the PWMS from the door I pulled it apart (read: contacts and springs falling to the floor), cleaned up the contacts and put it back together. It still didn’t work. I ended up fixing it by filing off part of the finger switch so that it could travel more and now it works great.

Here is a photo of the door panel with the locations of the fasteners marked. My only problem was with the door handle trim ring. I tried to pry the corner over the thumb latch up first and the trim splintered (it seemed about as strong as a potato chip). See Delay FTB's Door Panel Removal Tutorial. After looking at it afterwards it appears that the top pin out of the thumb latch is longer than the bottom pin. Next time I will try to pry the bottom down to slide it off and then try to lift the top over its retention pin. Once both pins are released you lift the handle and the trim ring slides back, off of a hidden clip inside the door. My 1995 model did not have any additional fasteners for the trim ring.

Here is the outside of the door panel with the fastener locations indicated:
Here is the inside of the same panel showing the “hidden” fasteners:


With the panel off you can reach behind and remove the electric plug from the PWMS. The electric plug has a tab that you depress to release a hook and then just pulls out of the switch body.

This is the PWMS mounted in the panel:
This shows the retention clip removed:

The PWMS has four main pieces: the face trim, the finger switches, the body and a protective cover on the bottom. You remove the face trim with a screw at each end and four (or six?) plastic snap tabs. One of the two screws on the back is part of the retaining mechanism that holds the switch in the door. The plastic tabs on mine were hidden behind some foam tape (probably used to help keep rattling down).

This is a side view of the PWMS and face plate:


The clear protective cover on the bottom is held on with tabs & snaps. Gently pry these apart and slide it away.



The finger switches and the body are held together with four screws (I don’t remember any tabs but look just the same). Remove the screws and gently unsnap the tabs. The tricky part here is to keep the switch positioned with the finger switches on top.



Inside, there are two springs and eight tiny “butterfly” contacts that are loose. When I pulled it apart, upside down, little metal pieces went everywhere. Fortunately the springs stayed put.



Most of the contacts and the butterfly pieces were charred and sooty so I cleaned those off with emery paper, a pencil eraser and a screwdriver blade.



After reassembling the PWMS I hooked it back up and still had the same problem. Just out of curiosity, I removed the face trim and finger switches of the PWMS and plugged it back into the door. I manually moved the driver window switch mechanism (with the finger switches removed) and it worked both ways. I decided that the contacts had worn down to a point (plus I had just cleaned them by sanding them even more) that the finger switch no longer slid the electrical contacts far enough to make a connection. After inspecting the mechanism I noticed that there were two molded tabs on the back of the finger switch itself (the one marked “Auto”).



I was able to file these down a little with a fingernail file. I put it back together and it has been working fine for several days now. I hope that this helps somebody.

Kep
 
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Nice write up ....
Is it possible to get a picture of the activity LEDs? These are the little lights that are on when one of the windows is activated. Also, if not too difficult, a wire or board side view of these LED connections. ... This would be where you would make a modification to lock-up the rear two windows. ... Between 2nd and 3rd LED ... Not sure if it is actually a wire or maybe a board trace.

Pictures are great .... Just trying to figure out where the LEDs are located .... also where their connections are on the wire side

I'm sure you have already put everything back together ... very informative anyway.
 

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I looked back on my photos and no, I didn't think to get those shots. If I get back in I will try to do so. I could kick myself for not taking a picture of the underside of the finger switch board.

Curiously, there are only two springs that make an electrical conection with the finger switch board. However, if you look closely, there are three additional spring holder pegs. I wonder what would happen if you used a different combination of the two springs or if you used additional springs?

Kep
 

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Curiously, there are only two springs that make an electrical conection with the finger switch board. However, if you look closely, there are three additional spring holder pegs. I wonder what would happen if you used a different combination of the two springs or if you used additional springs?
Kep
.... Additional peg might be used for a different model or year. .... might not even be connected to anything.

.... What's important for xtremeskier97's project are the copper traces going to the Child Lock switch. One of those traces ... not sure which, goes to the three passenger window LEDs ... in series, one after the other. If you follow that particular trace past one additional LED, you can cut a gap, and attach the required SPST switch. The LEDs themselves aren't important, they just serve as a marker to tell you where to cut the trace.

So ... thanks again for the closeups.
 

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Oooo...I will have to look more into this so I can figure out where to cut so that the front passenger window is not affected by the lock.

thanks for thinking about my question dc_98_cam! I appreciate it.
 

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Oooo...I will have to look more into this so I can figure out where to cut so that the front passenger window is not affected by the lock.

thanks for thinking about my question dc_98_cam! I appreciate it.
... Couldn't quite see enough from Kep's photo ... the one with the Child Lock note.

If you bring up the Gen 3 Wiring Diagram ... from the online repair manual, and look at the master switch on p. 156, you will see the schematic notation for the Child Switch .... with the Lock and Normal position. ... Just a little bar line with circles. If you proceed a little further to the right, following that same trace .... kind of continues onto the next page, you will go past the Passenger front, Right Hand window switch. All you need to do at this point, is use a razor knife, or maybe a Dremel tool, and make a shallow cut, breaking the continuity in the copper. Then take a little sand paper and clean off a little solder pad on each end of the trace, next to where it was cut. Then you decide on whether you want a toggle switch ... easy to install, or a rocker switch, or a push button, and connect the wires to some convenient location ... probably something plastic or solid for easier mounting. This would be something called a single pole single throw switch. It's just open or closed ... the simplest kind of switch, with only two connection tabs. Solder on a suitable length of wire to each tab of the switch, and also connect one wire to each of the solder pads that you prepared on the switch board ... doesn't even matter which wire is connected to which pad unless there is some sort of illumination involved. ... Also, don't get the Momentary style of switch. You want the push and forget type.

This should be very easy to do. The only caution is to be sure of the location that you cut in the Lock trace .... Even if you make a mistake, you can repair it with a little solder and some flux, and try again.
 

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I was also thinking of some sort of 'bridge' that jumps OVER the front passenger switch so that it doesnt get cut. Granted, I havent looked at the whole switch up close and personal yet, so I dont know if this will be possible.

All I would want to do is follow the Child Lock trace and when it gets to the front passenger window, jump over it with a 'bridge wire' and let it continue to the next window. Then I could just make a small cut like you were describing with a dremel so that it doesnt actually cut out the front passenger window when the lock is engaged.

What do you think?
 

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I was also thinking of some sort of 'bridge' that jumps OVER the front passenger switch so that it doesnt get cut. Granted, I havent looked at the whole switch up close and personal yet, so I dont know if this will be possible.

All I would want to do is follow the Child Lock trace and when it gets to the front passenger window, jump over it with a 'bridge wire' and let it continue to the next window. Then I could just make a small cut like you were describing with a dremel so that it doesnt actually cut out the front passenger window when the lock is engaged.

What do you think?
No ... you are not cutting out the passenger window switch from operation. It will work just fine if you place the trace cut at a point after the Front RH Window Switch connects. .... In effect, you are just shifting the location of the Child/Lock switch to a point that is beyond the Front RH Window connection. ... No need to bridge anything... you are not really making any major changes by making the cut in the trace.

I guess what's not perfectly clear is where to locate the trace cut...
Looking at the board itself, it's easy to get confused.
.... Maybe can think of something else later.
 

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.... Maybe can think of something else later.
Without having a chance to examine the board first-hand, I don't think I can adequately explain the modification procedure to anybody else.
The best possible scenario would be if you found a spare Master Switch board at a salvage yard, and shipped it to me in Dallas. I could select an appropriate switch, and wiring, and install it. When I shipped this modified board back to you, you would have to remove your door panel, remove your original Master Switch, and also find a location to install the new Lock/Normal switch. I would include 18 or 24 inches of wire on the board/switch assembly to give you some leeway in selecting the mounting location.

It may not be easy to come across the required switch at a salvage yard, and you would have to consider the costs. I don't think I would have to take more than half an hour to perform the modification.
.... Something to think about.
... Maybe a shop or mechanic near you could perform the mods.
 

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I was able to file these down a little with a fingernail file. I put it back together and it has been working fine for several days now. I hope that this helps somebody.

Kep
A Very old thread , Forums Search function really works :)

My 96 4runner back passenger right side switch on master wouldn't work on roll up so I did search coming across your experience & fix.
I shaved the 2 bottom tabs down using utility knife and roll up now works again.


Thanks


Phil-
 

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I had an issue with my left passenger window button not going down but it'd happily go up. Actually, it wasn't even happy to go up.

I just went to the junkyard and swapped it for a used one. I'm not that technical LOL
 

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OMGosh...ive been workin on my window for a day n half....all else is working but the drivers door wont go up...so this just might do it for me ...i hope anyway cus its about to rain....i better get a trash bag up before it rains...im gonna try this!!!!


thanks
daph
 

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Good write up! This was interesting to read because for about 4 months now, my doors on my Gen 4 won't power lock from the master lock buttons both left and right. Also, turning the key in the doors doesn't power unlock the doors anymore. Instead of hearing the click of the door unlocking, it just manually opens the lock, as if the battery was disconnected. I can power UNLOCK all four doors from the inside only, but not power LOCK from the inside.

Tomorrow I'm going to look over the circuit board and switches like you did and hopefully find the culprit.
 
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