How to Fix a Sunroof that Won’t Close All the Way: A Comprehensive Guide

Naomi O'Colman

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How to Fix a Sunroof that Won't Close All the Way

How to Fix a Sunroof that Won't Close All the Way

If you’ve ever had a sunroof that won’t close all the way, then you know how frustrating it can be. Not only is it an eyesore to have your car with a cracked or broken sunroof, but if water leaks in and damages your interior, this could end up costing thousands of dollars for repairs. Luckily for you, we will teach you how to fix a sunroof that won’t close all the way!

This blog post teaches readers more about what causes their sunroof not to close and walks them through step-by-step instructions on how they can fix it themselves without having to pay someone else for help.

What is a Sunroof

A sunroof is a movable panel that can open up and allows sunlight to enter the car. This was very popular in cars during the 1980s. And now with advances in technology, they’re seen in almost every car model.

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Sunroofs come in different shapes, scales, and styles. They can be motorized or manually operated.

Common Types of Sunroof

As sunroof was invented in the 19th century, there are many versions of it. Below are the most current and common types of sunroof.

Tilt Sunroof

Tilt sunroofs (pop-up sunroofs) are one of the most popular types. This type is manually operated and they can open as much or little as you want them to! They’re great for people who live in dry climates because they allow hot air out while still allowing cool fresh air inside.

Built-in Sunroof

A sunroof panel features the popular style of a sliding-away roof, that can have space for open cars. It’s suitable for big cars only.

Spoiler Sunroof

A spoiler sunroof features a retractable roof. When it’s open, the car has an aerodynamic shape and when closed, the car is sleeker.

Panoramic Sunroof

This type of sunroof has become more common for recent cars. Panoramic moon roofs have a majority of the roof covered by glass panels, with one panel that can be opened.

Why Your Sunroof Doesn’t Close Properly

The following are reasons that might be causing your sunroof to not close properly.

Mechanical Problems

The sunroof can be inoperable due to some mechanical issues such as the following:

-A faulty motor or a loose cable that is preventing the sunroof from closing properly.

-Broken parts such as gears, hinges or rails can also stop your roof from moving. This will require expert help to fix this type of problem.

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Electrical Problems

If the sunroof is not closing, it could be an electrical issue. You might need to get a certified mechanic or auto electrician to diagnose this problem for you.

Misalignment of Panels

Misaligned paneling can cause your roof to jam too.

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

We’ve compiled some of our most helpful information about how to fix a sunroof. With this guide, you’ll be able to get your car back up and running in no time at all!

Quick Check

The first thing you need to do is check for any damage or debris in the tracks; using compressed air can help remove stubborn items.

You should also make sure that there’s nothing obstructing the light sensor on either side of your roof panel- If you find something blocking it, use a vacuum cleaner with an attachment on one end so as not to scratch anything out if possible. Make sure everything is clean before proceeding.

Next, you need to make sure the panels are aligned. If they’re not in line with each other, your roof won’t be able to close properly and will jam up as a result.

Make sure that all of the screws on one panel have been tightened before moving onto the next; if there’s any damage or missing pieces, replace them either now or during a routine maintenance session.

Check for dirt and debris around the edges of the track while tightening these screws- This can also cause problems later down the road.

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Step by Step Instructions

If none of these steps work after multiple tries, then roll your sleeves up with a screwdriver and a multimeter, we need to do some work here to see how to fix a sunroof that won’t close all the way.

Step 1: Access the Lift Arms

In order to access the lift arms, you need to remove the sunroof’s glass. Pinch the ends of the guides and slide them forward to get them unstuck if they have become stuck in place.

The easiest way of doing this is to unscrew them, but they can also be popped off with enough force and finesse.

Step 2: Lifting Sunroof Cable

The cable may be in the path of the guides and lift arms, but it is not necessary to remove the cable so long as there is enough slack on either side of the lift arms.

Replace the J plate if needed and check if the lift arms work again.

Step 3: Check the Power Supply & Motor

If the lift arms are not moving, then check to see if there is a loose connection in your sunroof’s power cable.

You can use the screwdriver to test if the motor is working. By inserting the screwdriver at the nylon brushing, then try to close and open the sunroof manually. If this can be done, then the motor is dead and needs to be replaced.

Step 4: Check the Wire

Using the multimeter to see if there is a short in the wiring. You will need to replace wires if the testing shows high resistance.

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Step 5: Clean any Debris in the Tracks

Make sure you clean up any dirt or debris you find in the tracks.


Issues with sunroofs are often pretty straightforward. However, there are a few quick fixes for the most common problems. Make sure to follow our guide above to help your sunroof close properly. Remember maintenance is the key to not let this issue happen.