How To Replace a Window in a Pickup

After years of use, your pickup truck window will need replacing. You can choose to bring the pickup truck to your favorite mechanic or replace the window yourself. Generally, the window systems in pickup trucks make use of a standardized window regulator for raising and lowering the glass. The standardized window regulator can be a manual cranking unit. Or it can also be electrically powered. If you pride yourself of being a good home mechanic, you can replace the window of your pickup truck in less than two hours.

Pickup truck window systems are not all the same. The instructions below are basic. Make sure you have the pickup truck’s manual beside you should you need to refer to it. For these instructions, you will need a mechanic’ socket set and screwdrivers.

  • Take out the door panel. Before you can reach the window assembly, you need to remove the panel that covers the door together with the armrest and the door handle. Check how many screws are under the armrest. Remove these screws with the appropriate size screwdriver. Next, remove the screws that attach the door handle to the panel. Take note of how many screws you removed. Once all screws are removed, pull off the door panel gently. There are plastic pop rivets that hold the panel in place. You need to pull the panel free of these rivets.
  • Study the glass window assembly. The window regulator raises and lowers the glass. This mechanical assembly can be repaired or replaced when necessary. Rails hold the glass window in place. Whenever the glass window moves, the rails keep the glass window centered. Depending on the model of your pickup truck, another thing you may see are holes in the glass, usually at the bottom, that are used to connect it to the window regulator. But this is not typical.
  • Detach the glass from the regulator. Look for the clips holding the glass window to the rails. The clips or rail clamps are either made of metal or plastic. Use a screwdriver to remove these. Once the rail clamps are removed, the glass window can be taken out.
  • Change the glass window with a new one. Get the new glass window and carefully slide it into the same place where you took out the old glass window from. Reuse the metal or plastic rail clamps. Double check if the rail clamps are attached properly. The glass window should be properly aligned with the window regulator before attaching the rail clamps.
  • Test the new glass window. The glass window should move up and down properly in a smooth manner. Otherwise, check the alignment of the glass window as well as the position of the rail clamps. When re-attaching the door panel, door handle and armrest, make sure you use the same number of screws.


  • Replacement windows can be ordered from auto stores, online sellers or directly from some manufacturers. Make sure you know the brand, make and model of your pickup truck before ordering.
  • Never force the glass window or pinch it with tools when freeing it from the window system. You might damage the glass, the window assembly or both.
Replacing the window of your pickup truck can be done in your own garage. However, you need to make sure that you have the right tools, the right size replacement and decent mechanical skills. Keep the pickup truck manual handy for reference.


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