What Are The Reasons Why My Sunroof Won’t Close?

A sunroof is an excellent addition to one’s car to get some air and sunlight inside. There are different versions of the sunroof depending on the model of your car and its manufacturers. Most of them open and close automatically with the use of just a button. However, have you ever faced the issue, sunroof won’t close? That is a very undesirable situation to be in making you unable to take your car on rainy days or close it when the sun or wind gets too severe. This article discusses some causes of such an issue and its possible fixes so read on!

What Can Be Termed As The Functions Of A Sunroof?

The functions of a sunroof are not that hard to understand. Having a sunroof in your car will help you get some extra hair and sunlight if you need them. It is also at times seen as a decoration for a car, making it look better. Sunroofs in some situations are also termed moonroofs. 

The first sunroof that was ever spotted in a car was back in 1937. It was a retractable metal panel found on the roof of a classic Nash. But it took 30 more years after that to properly introduce sunroofs in cars. Even in today’s era, sunroofs are not found in common cheap cars of the middle class. Most sunroofs that are seen in today’s cars fall under these three prominent categories

  • Internal sunroof: Internal sunroofs are fitted between the headliner and the metal skin of the roof and retract into a pocket, that is specifically made for it. These are the ones that exist most commonly in cars. 

  • External sunroof: External sunroofs are present on top of the roof. They are mostly made of glass and some are textiles. They retract into tracks built above the roofs.

  • Fixed sunroof: These are fixed glass structures built specifically for light to come in.

What Are The Reasons Why My Sunroof Won’t Close?

There can be a few common reasons that cause you the issue, sunroof won’t close. Here are the common reasons why this happens to your car.

1. Mechanical Problems

Breaking of the glass panel or a panel getting lose are probably the most common reasons that cause the issue, the sunroof won’t close. One can replace or fix such a problem using some basic tools. All you may have to do is replace a few nuts and bolts and the issue might be solved. If your car has special roofs that go by the name Urethane-adhesive sunroofs, then you must get the help of the mechanic to fix the problem. 

2. Twisting, Popping Or Sticking Sunroofs

This reason that can cause the issue of the sunroof won’t close is a bit tricky one to solve. Sometimes the solution may be simple as the issue could be caused by a lack of lubrication. All you have to do to solve the lack of lubrication is to grease the sunroofs tracks using heavy silicon grease and freeing it from sticking themselves. This will thus in turn prevent the wear. The lack of lubrication for a while however can turn into bigger problems in the future if ignored. 

Another reason that can cause sticking and binding problems are worn out or broken cables. These flexible cables might end up meshing with the gear on the motor and this may not be something that you can fix easily. These kinds of issues need professional help and so get your trusted mechanic to fix your sunroof. 

3. Electric Problems

In most cars, all you have to do is press a button to open and close the sunroof. But what happens when there are some internal electrical issues within this system. Yes, the sunroof either won’t open or close. A blown fuse can cause the issue sunroof won’t close, meaning it is inoperable. Such issues can also be caused due to lack of lubrication or maintenance, your car and its parts need. There can also be other issues within the electrical connections of the vehicle right dead motor, switch or a broken wire. It is recommended to take your vehicle to a mechanic if there are electrical problems unless you are sure of what you are dealing with. 

What To Do When My Sunroof Refuses To Close?

There are a few things you can try on your own when your sunroof refuses to close or when it is inoperable. 

1. Remove The Glass From The Sunroof To Access The Lift Arms

The lift arms may need to be pushed forward when your sunroof glass is stuck in a single position without budging. You can make use of a screwdriver to push the guides forward so that the lift arms can close completely. Proceed to replace the glass once the lift arms start moving properly.

2. Lift The Sunroof Cable

You can try and lift the sunroof cable as it may have slid into the track of the sunroof, its guides and lift arm. You will have to remove the J plate on the sunroof to access and resit the sunroof cable. Now proceed to replace the J plate and test that the lift arms move fully. Ensure that the sunroof motor is running well. 

If in case there is no power to the motor, the sunroof will refuse to close. You can test the motor by inserting a screwdriver into the centre of the motor at the nylon brushing. Try turning and pushing on the screwdriver to work the motor manually. If you notice that you can open and close the sunroof manually, then you have to know that the motor is broken and must be replaced. 

3. Check If The Wiring Has A Short

Use a multimeter to check the sunroof switch and wires using a multimeter. If you notice no resistance, then the wiring is doing well. If you notice that there is high resistance, then there is a short and the wires must be replaced. 

4. Clean The Sunroof Well

Dirt and debris can get on your sunroof and its tracks causing it to be stuck on its tracks. You should regularly clean your sunroof tracks so that dust won’t build up causing the sunroof to get stuck. If too much debris builds up, this can eventually damage the sunroof cables, which are very difficult to fix.


Sunroof refusing to close is not a very desirable situation to be in. That can cause too much difficulty to you and can hinder your diving experience. This article had tried analysing the different causes of this issue and some simple fixes you can try on your own. If they didn’t work, you have to get it checked by a mechanic as soon as possible. Hope this article helped you!

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