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Pelican Technical Article:

944 Sunroof Operation

Clark Fletcher

Time:

3-4 hours

Tab:

$48

Talent:

****

Tools:

Phillips screwdriver, 21mm socket, torque wrench, metric socket set and metric wrench set, flathead screwdriver, plastic prying tool, bright fingernail polish, tape measure or ruler,

Applicable Models:

Porsche 944 (1983-89)
Porsche 944 S2 (1989-91)
Porsche 944 Turbo (1986-89)
Porsche 944S (1987-88)

Parts Required:

Plastic sunroof gear (944-564-430-01) (qty. 4 - order two sets), good quality heavy grease or Porsche special grease (TL-VW 745 Universal Cold Grease)

Performance Gain:

Your 944 sunroof will open and close electrically

Complementary Modification:

Replace the sunroof motor

Note:  Someone passed this on to me, without knowing its exact origin.  I've decided to publish this on the site because it's quite useful to 944 owners.  If you are the author, please contact wayne@pelicanparts.com and I will remove it if you wish, or add the appropriate credit.

944 Sunroof Operation

The sunroofs on 944s are raised and lowered by two lifting arms at the rear edge of the roof. On cars made after February 1986, the lifting arms are operated by plastic gears (one for each lifting arm mechanism). The plastic gears have a small set of teeth which operate the lifting arms. They also have a large set of teeth which are driven by a flexible cable. The cable is driven by the sunroof motor. For cars produced before February 1986, there is a transfer box between the two lifting arm mechanisms. The transfer box has a single gear which moves the lifting arms via two short lengths of drive cable. The guide tubes for the short sections of the flexible drive cable are routed such that the drive cables move the lifting arms directly. The sunroof drive motor assembly is located in the rear hatch area behind the vertical section of carpet on the driver's side of the car. On most cars the motor assembly will have a plastic cover over it which is held in place by six Phillips head screws.

     All sunroofs installed since February 1986 have three limit switches at the motor assembly. Prior to that they had two. On the newer style sunroofs, two of the micro-switches are ganged together and are visible from the front of the assembly. These being out of adjustment are one of the more common problems associated with sunroofs. These style limit switches are fairly reliable. If there is a problem with them, it is more likely they are out of adjustment rather than actually failing. The other limit switch is on the back side of the motor assembly and can't be checked without removing the assembly. On the older style assemblies the two limit switches are located at the end of a rail attached to the back of the motor assembly.

     The two limit switches ganged together will cause a number of problems if they fail or are not properly adjusted. They function together to stop the sunroof in the locked position. The limit switches are numbered with Roman Numerals. The top limit switch is number II and the bottom limit switch is number I. Limit switch III, which is on the back of the assembly near the bottom, stops the sunroof in the fully raised position. The older models do not have the third limit switch. They use a micro-switch between the sunroof visors to tell the system when the roof is in the fully raised position. When the new style sunroofs with the plastic gears were installed, the third limit switch was added to stop the sunroof in the fully raised position. A slip clutch on the cable drive motor stops the roof in the fully retracted position. However, the new style sunroof used a different style slip clutch than the old mechanisms. The micro-switch between the sun visors also performs another function on both models which will be discussed later.

     If the sunroof fails electrically, the sunroof can be raised and lowered manually at the motor. There is a cone shaped dust cover over the adjusting nuts for the slip clutch. By using a socket and ratchet, the nut for the slip clutch can be turned to raise and lower the sunroof. On the earlier models the adjusting screw for the slip clutch must be removed to manually raise and lower the roof.

     On the newer models, the end of the drive cable is attached to a white plastic cam that operates the three limit switches. Limit switches I and II stop the sunroof in the locked (closed) position. If the roof is in the fully raised position (ignition switch in Position 2), as it is lowered (using the down pushbutton), the cam rotates toward the I and II limit switches. The cam is notched such that limit switch I is made first. This stops the roof in the locked (closed) position. From here, with the ignition switch in Position 2, the roof can only be raised. However, if you take the ignition switch to Position 1 the lifting arms can be retracted to remove the sunroof. This is done by depressing the up arrow on the console switch. Yes, I did say the up arrow. The lifting arms move in opposite directions with the ignition switch in Position 1 than in Position 2. As soon as the arms start to retract to the disengaged or released position, limit switch II is made. Limit switch I and II are now both closed. This is what allows the arms to be moved from the retracted to the locked position with the ignition switch in Position 1. If both limit switches are not functioning properly (both closed), the sunroof can not be raised from the retracted position with the ignition switch in Position 1. However, you may be able to take the ignition switch to Position 2 and engage the sunroof using the up arrow on the console button. With the arms retracted and the ignition switch in Position 1, depressing the down arrow will cause the lifting arms to move toward the locked (closed) position. As the lifting arms are moved by the drive cable, the cam on the motor assembly rotates. When limit switch II is released by the cam, the lifting arms stop in the locked position. With the ignition switch in Position 2, depressing the up arrow on the console button will raise the roof until the cam on the motor assembly engages limit switch III to stop the roof in the fully raised position.

     On the old style sunroofs the operation is essentially the same. On difference is that the ignition switch does not have the same number of positions. On these cars the "OFF" position is Position 1 and the "ON" is Position2. Also, there is no cam to operate the limit switches. They are operated by the drive cable as it extends into the track behind the motor.

     The most common problem caused by the limit switches is limit switches I and/or II being out of adjustment. The limit switches can be moved forward and backward to adjust where the lifting arms stop in the locked position. Over a period of time the tabs that the limits switches are mounted to can bend so that the limit switches do not make good enough contact with the cam. As a result, one or both of the limit switches may not be closed when they are supposed to be. This can prevent the arms from stopping in the locked position. It can also prevent the arms from moving to the locked position with the ignition switch in Position 1.

     Another very common problem is related to the plastic gears at the lifting arms. Sometimes these gears get stripped when the lifting arms are moved to the retracted position. I don't think anyone fully understands why the gears strip. I've heard fatigue due to age, uneven loading on the gears when the arms are fully retracted, and the torque on the slip clutch being too high. I personally believe any of these can cause the gears to strip. However, I think the major contributor is the torque on the slip clutch. When I install a new set of gears, I take extra time to ensure that the lifting arms are properly aligned, particularly in relation to each other. I also set the slip clutch torque slightly less than the factory limit. The factory setting is 6 Nm +/- 0.5. I usually set the torque around 5 Nm. This does not affect the ability of the mechanism to raise and lower the roof and provides some additional margin to protect the plastic gears in the lifting arm mechanisms.

     There is one other micro-switch that is important to the operation of the sunroof. It is located underneath the triangle shaped cover between the visors. It tells the system if the sunroof is installed or removed. If the roof is installed, but the lifting arms are retracted for removal, the system will raise the lifting arms to the locked position when the car starts moving. Next to the plastic sunroof gears stripping, this is the single most common failure I've seen on 944 sunroofs. When the sunroof fails to move at all in either direction (i.e. the motor will not actuate), failure of this micro-switch is the most likely candidate. A blown sunroof motor fuse or a failed console switch can cause the same indications. There is a small plastic cover which is hinge mounted to the micro-switch mounting plate. The cover must be pried off very gently (the hinges are plastic also) to expose the Phillips head screws underneath. Once the Phillips head screws are removed the mounting plate can be dropped down and the micro-switch exposed. This switch is normally soldered in place. I've seen a number of owners remove this limit switch and jumper the wires

Installing Sunroof Gears

Part Numbers

Part

Part Number

Plastic Sunroof Gear (Feb. 1986 - 1991) 944-564-430-01

Procedure

  1. The first step in replacing the plastic gears in the late model 944 sunroof is to determine whether one or both of the gears are stripped. If only one of the gears is stripped, it simplifies the replacement process. The gear which has not been stripped can be use as a reference for setting the other lifting arm. First remove the sunroof from the car. If necessary operate the sunroof manually to retract the lifting arms for removal. If you haven't located the motor assembly yet, it is behind the vertical section of carpet in the rear hatch area (behind the hatch compartment light). The carpet is held in place by plastic push plugs. You should be able to slide your fingers behind the carpet and gently pull out to get the plugs out. Your sunroof motor assembly may or may not have a black plastic cover over it. The cover has six Phillips head screws that hold it in place, including one that goes through a rubber grommet and the carpet at the bottom left hand corner of the cover. There is a black plastic cone shaped dust cover on the drive assembly at the base of the motor. Behind the cover, there are three nuts. The outer two nuts are for adjusting the torque for the motor's slip clutch. The large one in back (21mm) can be turned to move the cable/cam. It is also used to check the torque of the sunroof motor's slip clutch and also how you raise and lower the sunroof if the motor fails. If the nut is rotated in the clockwise direction, it will retract the lifting arms so that the sunroof can be removed. Rotate just enough to get the sunroof out. If one of the gears is still good and the torque on the slip clutch is too high, retracting the lifting arm against the back of the roof may strip the remaining gear.
  2. The next step is to disassemble the headliner to get to the lifting arms. There is a cover on the back part of the headliner which is held in place by Phillips head screws. The screws should have plastic covers over them which will have to be pried off to get to the screws. It's easiest to do this with the back seat down and the rear hatch raised while lying on your back in the luggage compartment. Pull back the weather-stripping along the top edge of the hatch. This will expose the back edge of the headliner which is wrapped around the edge of the body. Gently pull the headliner loose from the body all the way across the edge of the hatch. This will expose the lifting arm mechanisms. If you have the new style lifting assembly, there will be the two lifting arm boxes with a single drive cable guide tube along the bottom of both mechanisms. If there is a box between the two mechanisms with several different guide tubes, you have the old style mechanism. This procedure does not cover the old style mechanism. Carefully remove the lifting arm covers (one at a time) and inspect the gears. Try to keep the gear and the lifting arm from falling out when you remove the cover. If the gear is still good you will be able to use it as a reference for setting the other lifting arm. If one of the gears is good replace the cover. Remove the lifting arm and plastic gear for the ones that are bad. There is a metal washer on the back of the plastic gear which you will need to retain for reinstallation. The grease in the mechanism may cause it to stick in the mechanism housing instead of coming out with the gear.
  3. Next, set the sunroof motor assembly so that micro-switch I is made and micro-switch II is not. Here's how you do it. Once the cover is removed you can see the sunroof motor and two of the three limit switches. On the back side of the motor assembly is a white plastic cam that is attached to the end of the cable that operates the lifting arms. As the motor drives the cable, the cam rotates and hits the different micro-switches to stop the lifting arms. The sunroof motor is mounted on its side and has a round drive assembly at one end. With the ignition switch in position 2 and the sunroof installed, depress the up arrow on the console switch until the motor stops. Then depress the down arrow on the console switch until the motor stop. At the motor assembly, there are two micro-switches above the motor. There is a small opening behind the micro-switches that you can see through. If the cam is set properly, you should be able to see the white plastic cam hitting the arm on the bottom micro-switch (should be labeled I). The cam should not have hit the arm on the other micro-switch (labeled II yet). If you are unsure if it is properly set, you can adjust it manually and listen for the micro-switch to click. If you turn the nut counterclockwise the cam will rotate toward the left away from the micro-switch arms. This is just like raising the sunroof. Turn it counter clockwise enough so that you're sure the cam is not hitting the micro-switch. Then turn it back clockwise until it hits the bottom micro-switch arm. You should hear it click. While you're at it, you may want to rotate the cam far enough clockwise to hear micro-switch II click. This isn't a guarantee that both micro-switches are working electrically, but it does verify that they are working mechanically. Once you've done this, set the cam back to where that just micro-switch I (bottom) is made. This is the correct position for the sunroof in the locked position. The reason for verifying that both micro-switch switches click is that the micro-switch mounting assembly sometimes bends so that the cam will not make the micro-switches. If this happen you will have to remove the micro-switches and bend the mounting arm slightly so that the cam will make the micro-switches.
  4. The next thing to do is to mark the lifting arms for installation. If you look at the tracks on the sunroof that the lifting arms slide in to, you'll see a sharp bend almost like a knee. The middle of the curve of the knee is where the round peg on the lifting arm sits when the roof is in the locked position. With the roof installed and closed, lay one of the lifting arms in the track in the lifting element where in normally sits. The lifting element is the box that the lifting arm and the plastic gear sit in. Don't install the gear yet. Slide the element up into the track in the roof until the round peg is in the middle of the knee in the track. Put a mark on the lifting arm where it is lined up with the edge of the lifting element. Bright finger nail polish works well. Remove the lifting arm and mark the other lifting arm in the same spot. You can measure using a ruler, count the teeth on the lifting arm, or hold them side by side to figure out where to mark the other gear.
  5. Before installing the gears, we need to check the torque on the slip clutch. Using a 21mm socket and a torque wrench turn the nut large nut at the motor that manually raises and lowers the roof. The slip clutch is what actually allows you to raise and lower the roof without turning the motor. As soon as the 21mm nut starts to turn, that is the torque you are looking to check. It should be 6 +/- 0.5 Nm. This is a very low torque. You may have to borrow a torque wrench of this range if you don't have one. I usually set mine a little lower than the factory spec (around 5 Nm). I think it helps protect the gears.
  6. Now we're ready to install the gears. Remove the sunroof from the car. There should have been a thin metal washer on the back of the old gears. If it is not there it is probably still in the lifting element body. Make sure you put this washer on the back of the new gear before installing. Lubricate the gear with grease before installing. Porsche calls for a special grease (TL-VW 745 Universal Cold Grease). It should be available at the Porsche or Volkswagen dealer. I've never bought the special grease. I just use a good quality, fairly heavy grease. You don't need to apply an excessive amount. Install the gear in the lifting element housing. Insert the lifting arm so the mark on the lifting arm lines up with the edge of the housing (as we had previously measured). Screw the cover in place. Repeat for the other side.
  7. With the ignition key in position 1, carefully bump the up arrow on the console switch and watch the lifting arms. They should retract toward the lifting element housing as if you were going to remove the sunroof from the car. Be VERY careful here. Make sure that as you bump the lifting arms toward the retracted position, the round pegs on the lifting arms reach the element housing at the same time. When the pegs hit the housing, it acts as a mechanical stop. Due to uneven loading, the gears will strip if the arms do not hit the mechanical stop at the same time.
  8. Once you're sure everything is aligned and working correctly, install the sunroof and you're ready to go. I try to made sure the lifting arms are set perfectly and that the torque for the slip clutch is a little low. My gears have been in for about a year and have not stripped yet. And I remove my roof a lot in the summer time. When I first started working on sunroofs, I stripped several sets of gears while trying to get the arms set correctly. However, this was also before I knew how to check the torque on the slip clutch. That's why I told you to order two sets of gears. It's just a little insurance. I always like to keep a spare set of gears handy anyway.
  9. If you find that the roof doesn't lock down tight enough (i.e. the pegs on the arms aren't hitting the right part of the knee in the track) you can adjust this by moving the two micro-switches forward or backward. If you move them forward, the arm will stop more toward the released position. If you move them backward, they will stop more toward the raised position.
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Comments and Suggestions:
DucRider Comments: I have a 88 944. My sunroof and electric rear hatch switch do not work and the fuse for the circuit blows immediately when replaced so I guess I have a short somewhere. I am not sure what to do/where to start next. Is this a common failure and is there a "standard" fix for this or does it require wire tracing to find the short? Thanks for any info you have.
November 17, 2016
  Followup from the Pelican Staff: Best bet is to unplug the connectors, then use a test light to check for a grounded circuit. Once found, run a new wire from end to end to repair the short. Don't worry about finding the shorted piece of wire. - Nick at Pelican Parts  
rotordoctor Comments: My 1985.5 944's sunroof all of a sudden stop opening fully; it only opens less than half?
August 28, 2016
  Followup from the Pelican Staff: Sounds like the track or guide is jammed. Could be debris or a broken part. You will have to remove the panel to inspect the tracks. Give The Pelican Parts parts specialists a call at 1-888-280-7799. They can figure out what part or repair kit you need.
- Nick at Pelican Parts
 
Jay Comments: I have a 06 altima. the sunroof works. It rolls back and opens. however once opened I can't get it Back down unless I loosen the screw on both sides. what do i need to fix this. there is a broken part somewhere. Please help!
December 10, 2015
  Followup from the Pelican Staff: I would assume something is broken. I have no experience with Nissans. However, if you remove the glass panel, you can inspect the track and guides. - Nick at Pelican Parts  
Chris Comments: I have a 1986 944, the sun roof arms open and close easily. However, one of the arms looks to be extended higher than the other arm and does not me remove the sun roof. Any ideas?
November 16, 2015
  Followup from the Pelican Staff: Maybe one of the cables or guides is faulty. You will have to disassemble it to inspect them. - Nick at Pelican Parts  
JASC24 Comments: i have a 1985 944 and one of the sunroof lifting arms broke off. when i opened it up expecting to see a little white gear and instead see what looks like a hydrolic line attached to the arm. and i have had no luck in finding information on it.
September 28, 2015
  Followup from the Pelican Staff: Can you share a photo of the broken part? - Nick at Pelican Parts  
mike Comments: Tricky one, 1986 944 sunroof always releases back arms on accessory. recatches roof only after starting car and driving a short distance. At this time I can pop open rear of sunroofvent. However, unless I first open the roof with accessory setting, drive that short distance until the roof recatches, I can't pop open the sunroofvent. Button pressing produces no sound when there is no sunroof reaction. When the sunroof does openvent it sounds strong and never seems to open to the same height. Any thoughts?
August 26, 2015
  Followup from the Pelican Staff: I would start by checking the switch is working when the sunroof stalls. You could have resistance in the switch contacts. - Nick at Pelican Parts  
tropicdawg Comments: I am about to embark on replacing gears and have read the comments section. My gears are stripped. My calbe retreated all the way out.
to return the cable to all the way in I simply took the neighboring wires off the inside light and switched them with the motor's wires. since it's DC its a matter of reversing them to get the motor to go the right direction .
So I am suposing that when the cam on end of cable reach the end of it;s travel the motor stops or relay reverses.
and this would be the highest setting for the roof?
Obvious the relays would have to be adjusted to stop the travel the other way. My roof does not normally open all the way without putting pressure on the switch under theV at front of hatch.

so before I install the new gears I will check out the travel of the cable at the motor and raising levers. make sure the relays are set up and working right and decrease the torque of the slip clutch so I won't strip out the new gears.. Thank for your help.
May 28, 2015
  Followup from the Pelican Staff: I believe the roof position is monitored via microswitches. Once the end stop is reached, the motor is switched off. There should be switches at the end of the rail.- Nick at Pelican Parts  
ttiscio Comments: SO I am looking for s bit of help. I have a 1987 944 and the sunroof operation has been intermittent for a while. Works sometimes and not others. Currently I can Manually raise the roof and then use the dash switch to lower it. I have checked the switch out with a multimeter and it is good. I am not sure where to start. This roof has the small arm in the front that contacts the micro switch, I have the adjustment almost all the way down on the arm so the Switch is depressed.
December 14, 2014
  Followup from the Pelican Staff: Start by checking if the switch is sending good voltage to the motor. It may be faulty, even if you tested it good. Test it again, but this time add a load to the circuit and see if the voltage holds steady. - Nick at Pelican Parts  
mike Comments: Two small edits, in the second sentence of the fifth paragraph of the narrative, It mentions that micro switch I and II are responsible for notifying the system that the roof is locked. Only switch one performs this function, switch two tells the system to stop when the arms are retracted and the roof is free to be removed, not locked.
The other note is for the last two sentences of the fix. They both mention that moving the microswitches forward will stop the arms in different positions. The first sentence is correct, the second sentence should replace "forward" with "backward".
August 24, 2014
  Followup from the Pelican Staff: Thanks for the additional info. We appreciate it. I will have the article updated.
- Nick at Pelican Parts
 
Classic944 Comments: Hello! I've been reading the article and I found it very interesting. I have a problem with my sunroof that I cannot fix. It closes but it doesn't open. If I remove the relays and force the movement by connecting some cables it opens and closes perfect. But with the switch it doesn't work. The switch is ok because I test it and it works, the motor and the microswitches of the motor are ok also...do you know which could be the problem? thank you!
May 4, 2014
  Followup from the Pelican Staff: Does the motor receive the signal to change direction? I would monitor voltage to the motor, if it does not receive the correct voltage, work backward toward the switch to find the fault.- Nick at Pelican Parts  
JC Comments: I have heard of people just removing the motor and making the sunroof a manual locking - I assume they are replacing the two rear locks with manual ones instead of the arm/motor. Has anyone else seen this or do they sell a kit for it? I'm sick of dealing with my constantly breaking sunroof gears!
March 24, 2014
  Followup from the Pelican Staff: I have not. I opened a post in our forums. A Pelican community member may be able to answer your question.
- Nick at Pelican Parts
 
Hector Comments: Its the drivers side front end not the rear of my 1991 944T sunroof which starts to lift up at speed resulting in a howling noise. It seems to open and close okay. Any ideas how to fix this?
January 2, 2014
  Followup from the Pelican Staff: The lifting arm could be broken. - Nick at Pelican Parts  
J.R. Comments: Oh bye the way my car is a late 1988 turbo JIM
October 14, 2012
  Followup from the Pelican Staff: Thanks, got it. - Nick at Pelican Parts  
J.R. Comments: my sunroof does nothing is ther an article that takes you step by step thru the process of evaluating abd diagnosing what could be wrong. Nothig works clicks or makes noise.THANKS
October 14, 2012
  Followup from the Pelican Staff: You could have a bad switch. I would that is is getting power, then jump it out and see if the sunroof opens. - Nick at Pelican Parts  
Mark Comments: The plastic button for the sunroof operation switch on my 84 broke so it looks likes ill have to replace the entire switch. However i cant find any early model 2 position switches for sale. Will a late model 3 position switch be compatible with my 84?
August 11, 2012
  Followup from the Pelican Staff: I don't think it will work. Give our parts specialists a call at 1-888-280-7799. They can help you find the right part.
- Nick at Pelican Parts
 
cam Comments: i have a 87 porsche 944. i was wondering do you see the thing that push on the two smaller gears?
April 24, 2012
  Followup from the Pelican Staff: I don't understand your question. - Nick at Pelican Parts  
Charles Comments: I have a 1986 951 I can only take the sunroof off completely. What is needed to just raise it? Or maybe this was an extra feature?
April 5, 2012
  Followup from the Pelican Staff: Here's some info from the forums:

You nee to push the switch to fully recline the lifting arms. The arms will retract into the roof line. Now pull down on the two latches above the driver and passenger seats. Push up on the roof and as you have the rear tilted up, pull backwards. The front part of the roof slides out of a wind defelector which needs to be pushed up when driving at anything about 30-35 mph.

The key must also be in the 'accesory' position in the ignition. If you need a little better description of what i said, check out Clarks-Garage. They have a very good write up on it.



http://forums.pelicanparts.com/porsche-924-944-968-technical-forum/210418-how-open-targa-sunroof.html - Nick at Pelican Parts
 
muffin Comments: please advise I have an 86 944 porsch and my sunroof flew off on expressway and I ordered one I found on EBAY but to my dismay is the incorrect roof its nothing like the one I had but it is from the same style and model number please advise....confused
March 26, 2012
  Followup from the Pelican Staff: Sounds like you bought the wrong part. Give our parts specialists a call at 1-888-280-7799. They can help you find the right part.
- Nick at Pelican Parts
 
Gt15734 Comments: I need help I have a Porsche 944 1986 turbo my sunroof won't work at all, fuses are good relays are good I believe all that happens when I hit the button is the relays in the back clicking but nothing happens. The motor works I hooked that up to a battery, this this is frustrating me and I need help thank you.
February 1, 2012
  Followup from the Pelican Staff: Have you checked the signal to the motor? It is possible the relays are clicking but not latching enough to turn the motor. Check for voltage to the motor first. - Nick at Pelican Parts  
ak-914 Comments: I have a 1985.8 944 the sunroof lifts fine, but seems to be out of alignement when closing, part of the driver side roof sits down on top of the car . Also I cant take out the roof the left driver side hinge wont release. plz. help i live in fl.
January 5, 2012
  Followup from the Pelican Staff: The gears could be stripped. You may have to do some tear down so you can inspect parts. - Nick at Pelican Parts  
katporsche Comments: quarterflash Comments: My 1989 turbo sunroof rear nearside corner pops open at high speed. It has therefore disengaged from the holding arm. Should I suspect the gears or some other part?
September 15, 2009
Followup from the Pelican Staff: Sorry, but you'll just have to tear it open to see what's actually broken in there - it may be one of a number of things. - Wayne at Pelican Parts

Mine also does the same! my gear stripped a few weeks ago by me disengaging the arm and trying to re-engage it but something was not right. Anyway, I have now replaced the gear on that side but I have noticed that the gear box, which should be fixed onto the roof quite solidly - clips onto the front of the box and bolts onto the roof at the back of the box - the plastic has broken at the front of the box, so the gear box does not sit correctly to the roof, therefore - I suppose with the outside pressure, the arm is not directly in line with the sunroof, and therefore pops out at high speed. I will need to replace the gear box. phew, takes some explaining but hopefully that will be understandable.
September 28, 2011
  Followup from the Pelican Staff: Thanks for the input on this one. We appreciate the help.
- Nick at Pelican Parts
 
HCHairs Comments: I drive a 1985.5 Porsche 944 When i drive forward my sunroof comes up and that screw that keeps spinning help me if you can at first it just wouldn't come back down now its doing that.
August 1, 2011
  Followup from the Pelican Staff: Is it opening on its own? There could be a broken cable or stripped gears. - Nick at Pelican Parts  
knappsimon Comments: Hi,
My sunroof will work just fine for a period, but will close all by itself and then wont open again...after a couple of days its works fine again... Any ideas!!???
June 30, 2011
  Followup from the Pelican Staff: Sounds like a short. I would check if the one time relay is failing. It could be sticking and holding the circuit hostage when it does. - Nick at Pelican Parts  
Loki Comments: On my 944, the cable seems to be getting stuck somewhere in the guide. I took apart the gearboxes on the roof of the car, and they look good. When I try to open the roof, the cable doesn't move forward, it simply pushes itself away from the metal plate where all the sunroof stuff is mounted. I can pull it closed fine, just pushing the cable seems to not work.

Any ideas of where I can look for the problem? I'd rather not pull apart the whole headliner to get at the cable guide.
May 12, 2011
  Followup from the Pelican Staff: Does the sunroof move smooth? I wonder if the roof is jammed causing the cable to come out. - Nick at Pelican Parts  
Jim Comments: Where do I find the sunroof motor relay Part # 944 615 103 00, is it supposed to be in the main relay slots or is it separate. I can jumper and make the motor work but do not have any power to the motor so I suspect a relay problem. the two relays at the motor are fine. Thanks,
April 13, 2011
  Followup from the Pelican Staff: I looked up that part number for you and it's associated with the radio and is labeled as "switch unit for radio lifting roof". Frankly, I'm not sure what that means - looks like it got lost in the translation from German. It might have something to do with the radio antenna. I think the relays that you have found near your motor are correct for the motor - I would check them, and I would also check the switch itself. - Wayne at Pelican Parts  
dpoul34 Comments: I followed the tutorial and everything seems to work fine. However when raising the roof, the cable buckles and pulls away from the roof, preventing the driver's side arm from moving. If you hold the cable tight against the roof, it moves up with no problem. There are no issues with lowering the roof. Any thoughts?
March 6, 2011
  Followup from the Pelican Staff: Sounds like there might be a window cable guide that is loose or missing. Sorry, I'm not super familiar with these mechanisms. - Wayne at Pelican Parts  
Bob Comments: Hi I have a 1983 944. My sunroof operates normally but does not shut properly at the rear and bulges out slightly. What can I do. Thanks
March 6, 2011
  Followup from the Pelican Staff: The cables or gears could be damaged. If a cable or gear is bad, the top may be out of alignment and bind or open crooked. - Nick at Pelican Parts  
ray Comments: roof will go up,but will not go down
October 20, 2010
  Followup from the Pelican Staff: If the motor is not making any noise, then I would check the switch first. - Wayne at Pelican Parts  
Gumby Comments: Bobby / Pelican: I have an old style clutch bolt in my ashtray, as I open and close manually due to tweaked cables. I can take pictures and forward if you have yet to find the part.
October 14, 2010
  Followup from the Pelican Staff: Thanks for the additional info. We appreciate it.
- Nick at Pelican Parts
 
Bobby Comments: I have an old style sunroof mechanism, but the previous owner had to remove the screw to manually retract it due to a crimped cable. The cables are all fixed and the motor turns as it should, but the clutch bolt is lost. How can I get a new one? ...or is it some basic size I may have in my hardware bin? What can you tell me?
September 12, 2010
  Followup from the Pelican Staff: I'll forward this to Glenn in sales to see if he can track this down for you. - Wayne at Pelican Parts  
Bob Comments: I have an 89 944 S2 and the sunroof was working intermittently for about the past 9 months that I have had the car and for about the last week it does not work at all. I have checked the fuse, and it is fine. I looked at and pulled the sunroof relay which appears to be the original. I might replace the relay, and center consol switch in order to eliminate the easiest and quickest to replace. I am looking for a clear set of steps to follow in order to trouble shot the sunroof system. When it was working it would open and close with no problems.
August 29, 2010
  Followup from the Pelican Staff: Here's an article I wrote on troubleshooting electrical problems. It's for the BMW crowd, but it's very applicable in your case here. Here's the link: http://www.pelicanparts.com/bmw/techarticles/101-Projects-82-Electrical-Problems/101-Projects-82-Electrical-Problems.htm - Wayne at Pelican Parts  
Wayne at Pelican Parts Comments: Here's a diagram that might be useful to everyone.
August 9, 2010
  Followup from the Pelican Staff: Thanks Wayne. - Nick at Pelican Parts  
RO Comments: Sorry, I eliminated enough to let the file submit and eliminated the car model.
It is a '84 928S referred to in the post from RO.
August 9, 2010
  Followup from the Pelican Staff: Thanks, got it. - Nick at Pelican Parts  
RO Comments: I have not been able to get information making me comfortable enough to start into this job.
My sunroof is was apparantly stuck previous owner and it was manually cranked closed.
Now it is stuck in the closed position and although it drops in back it doesn't retract. Removing the transmission doesn't change it being stuck.
I can't get it back at all. let alone far enough to "pop the interior panel loose".
One posting on another site refers to getting it back to 3/4 open to remove the three screws that retain the interior panel. So does the panel "pop off" or does it need to be "unscrewed". Thanks for any assistance.
August 9, 2010
  Followup from the Pelican Staff: With the cables and the transmission disconnected you should be able to push it open manually. It's difficult to diagnose and fix these problems in person, let alone over the Internet. - Wayne at Pelican Parts  
TonyC Comments: Thanks Wayne, but if you happen to run/comment the problem with anybody, let me know so that I can get this issue resolved. If the cable/cam is missing/broken I would purchase a new one. If it is still there and can be re installed back in through the tubing, I would like to know where to start looking for the cable. Should it be somewhere by the sunroof motor?
August 7, 2010
  Followup from the Pelican Staff: I posted a diagram that might be useful to you. - Wayne at Pelican Parts  
TonyC Comments: Wayne, thanks for the reply, on the 1987 944 with the lost/missing/broke cable/cam, please indicate where I can look for it to inspect it/find it or replace it.
August 6, 2010
  Followup from the Pelican Staff: It's been years since I've looked at a 944 sunroof, I'm sorry, I don't have much input beyond that right now. - Wayne at Pelican Parts  
TonyC Comments: I have a 1987 944, with the new type sunroof. We have just purchased the 2 plastic gears and replaced the old ones which were completely worn out. Once installed and the power switch activated without the lifting arms, we can hear the sunroof motor turning but the gears do not turn. We disassembled one of the gear boxes behind the drivers seat and found that there is no cable/cam running through the tube to turn the gears!
What could have happened to it? Can a new one be installed?
863-605-3936
August 5, 2010
  Followup from the Pelican Staff: I've seen this on 911s before - either the cable slipped out or it broke. New ones are available, last time I checked, and the replacement is not too difficult, but not terribly easy either. - Wayne at Pelican Parts  
Burrly Comments: I have a 1985.5 944 and my sunroof moves to the fully open position as well as to the fully locked position. The lifting arms will not retract to allow me to remove the sunroof. I have tried switiching the ignition in all the different positions, but it will not retract. What might be the problem??
May 26, 2010
  Followup from the Pelican Staff: Something sounds like it may be broken within the mechanism. I would try to carefully lift it with my hand while having the motor open the roof? - Wayne at Pelican Parts  
Ron S. Comments: I have an 86 944 produced 5/85 with the newer generation roof. i have replaced the gears, checked the switch on the dash, adjusted and replaced the microswitches, checked the wires leading to it, and i still cannot find the problem. my sunroof only runs down..... not up. however if i reverse the polarity on the motor, it will run up. what am i missing here?
January 29, 2010
  Followup from the Pelican Staff: This could be a problem with the relay. i tried to find the wiring to offer some pin numbers but didn't have any luck. - Nick at Pelican Parts  
Das Kid Comments: My 1987 944 sunroom is not closing properly. It opens and closes fine, but when i go to close it when I leave my car it wont stop or catch it goes all the way open like as if I was going to open it all the way to remove the roof panel.
December 8, 2009
  Followup from the Pelican Staff: Sunroofs are tough because you can't see what's going on in there. You need to just dive into it and check. Unzip the headliner and use the hand crank to move the roof open and closed and see if you can spot the problem from there? - Wayne at Pelican Parts  
quarterflash Comments: My 1989 turbo sunroof rear nearside corner pops open at high speed. It has therefore disengaged from the holding arm. Should I suspect the gears or some other part?
September 15, 2009
  Followup from the Pelican Staff: Sorry, but you'll just have to tear it open to see what's actually broken in there - it may be one of a number of things. - Wayne at Pelican Parts  
fasterunner@yahoo.com Comments: My roof on my 86 turbo goes up and down but I cannot get the roof to disengage to remove panel .If it goes up and down is it the micro under the triangle bracket in the front? I tried taking the triangle piece down and manually operating switch I hear it clicking but no arms releasing roof ? bob I also know the ign has to in the 1st position. Is there a another seperate use .Also can I remove my roof without having this operate ??
September 13, 2009
  Followup from the Pelican Staff: Sounds like you need to do more investigating. I would take a closer look by removing the motor and trying to manually activate each side of the roof. - Wayne at Pelican Parts  
Lloyd Comments: My 1986 944 has sunroof that will neither open nor close from dashboard switch. However it can be made to open and close properly by manually actuating the relays near sunroof motor. I've swapped out the relays with others and result is the same. Does this rule out limit switch problems?

I suspected the dash switch, and swapped with another known to be good, but no difference. I doubt a wiring problem because this car is unmolested, except by me.
August 28, 2009
  Followup from the Pelican Staff: Check the power to the motor, and then work back from there. There is an article on this site on electrical problem troubleshooting - this is a perfect example of the steps outlined in that article. - Wayne at Pelican Parts  

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