scratched windows on the outside
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Cadillac DeVille 1985 to 2005 including:
1985-1992 Fleetwood, 1993 Sixty Special, All FWD Forum Discussion, scratched windows on the outside in Past Cadillac Vehicle Discussion; How is it that all of the roll down windows on my car have scratches on the outside of them? ...
  1. #1
    PowerJunkie is offline Cadillac Owners Member
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    scratched windows on the outside

    How is it that all of the roll down windows on my car have scratches on the outside of them? Not just superficial either, kinda deep. I doubt it can be fixed, I dunno. They run parallel with the direction they roll up and down. What's the deal?

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  3. #2
    MoistCabbage's Avatar
    MoistCabbage is offline Cadillac Owners 10000+ Posts
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    Did the car ever "live" near sand or a construction site? Abrasive debris in the "sweep" at the bottom of the window can cause scratches.

  4. #3
    Submariner409's Avatar
    Submariner409 is offline If it won't run, chrome it
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    Re: scratched windows on the outside

    Take a look at the glass polishing kits in www.customchemicalpkg.com . Labor intensive, 110V variable speed drill and water spray bottle, and the scratches will NOT be entirely removed; the polishes reduce the refraction of light in the scratch, rounding off the crystalline edges and making the scratch much less noticeable.

    Sounds like an ocean beachfront car .............

  5. #4
    PowerJunkie is offline Cadillac Owners Member
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    Re: scratched windows on the outside

    I just bought the car, me and the wife joke about it being one of those Louisiana flood cars that we've been watching on the news lately. It seems that there were .. I don't know .. hundreds of thousands, plus or minus, of cars that were buggered up and flooded and now back on the road to unsuspecting buyers. I checked it out before I bought it, then checked it out again a couple of times since. Every time I give it a new look I find more and more that didn't expect to find.
    <---- all of that, in response to "Sounds like an ocean beachfront car ...........". I'm from CA, but recently moved to AZ (Phoenix) and bought it here in Phoenix. The deal was almost too good to be true. It's really been an awesome car so far except for the flat tire and scratched windows. Haven't found any sand (knock on wood, yet, dammit) and I hope I don't ever.

    All that aside.. I'm thinking ... I don't know what to think. It looked pristine when we bought it... but now every day it's showing more and more signs of either problems, or just it's age, I dunno. I'm not one to over react (ha) (much), (ha).

    Anyway, yeah, weird. Nobody else experience this as a manufacturer defect or should I put my detective hat on and start looking at things that I might not want to find the answer to?

    GAH! AYE KAVOL!

  6. #5
    bigtone's Avatar
    bigtone is offline Cadillac Owners Fanatic
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    Re: scratched windows on the outside

    My 98 Deville I used to own had scratched windows. There is a piece of plastic inside the door, that seems to warp from heat and rub against the windows and scratch them as they go up and down. I tried numerous products to try to remove the scratches. I ended up replacing both front windows which were the worst.

  7. #6
    PowerJunkie is offline Cadillac Owners Member
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    Re: scratched windows on the outside

    Interesting. So this is to the point where I need to take off the door panels to inspect the plastic would be scrapers or whatever, or even have to pay money to have it inspected?

  8. #7
    Submariner409's Avatar
    Submariner409 is offline If it won't run, chrome it
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    Re: scratched windows on the outside

    It has nothing to do with "manufacturer defects". It's sand and grit in the window rubber/felt seal strips - nothing more, nothing less. EVERY car has the problem to some major or minor extent. Just one more maintenance trick that you learn to take care of when you detail the car - roll down all 4 windows to clean the seal strips. My '65 Chevelle SS had NASTY side windows after 3 years on Isle of Palms - just east of Charleston, SC ...... hence the "beach car" observation.

    Sand and grit ????? Horrors !!!!! (Take a real close look at the headlight lenses, front bumper and front hood edge of a 75,000 mile car ..............) Sandblasted

  9. #8
    PowerJunkie is offline Cadillac Owners Member
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    Re: scratched windows on the outside

    I dig you. It's what makes the most sense. Ya! However, my brain is not processing this as 100% true. Not 100% "YET". Could be yes. Ok, here's why I have reservations to that as of now...

    The car is a 1999. It's got 118k. The paint is all black and is near immaculate. The headlight lenses are not battered at all, they look 14 years old yes, but not battered by dirt or sand at all. This car has been garaged or stored under cover all it's life I think (so far as I can tell). I agree that there could have been isolated incidences that could have driven sand under the window scrape rails but as of yet I'm just not finding it.

    Having said all that, it seems that I got my answer that this is not a manufacturer defect that over time scratches windows... and makes me understand that this is MY isolated problem. That in of itself helps me understand and deal with it. Thanks for the input gents.

  10. #9
    brougham is offline Cadillac Owners Master
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    Re: scratched windows on the outside

    The seals also dry out a bit with age and the inside edge wears out which can cause scratches, there is also usually other window guides inside the door that are covered in soft material that can get dirty or wear out. Other then trying to clean the parts there's not much you can do except replace them.

  11. #10
    bigtone's Avatar
    bigtone is offline Cadillac Owners Fanatic
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    Re: scratched windows on the outside

    Quote Originally Posted by PowerJunkie View Post
    I dig you. It's what makes the most sense. Ya! However, my brain is not processing this as 100% true. Not 100% "YET". Could be yes. Ok, here's why I have reservations to that as of now...

    The car is a 1999. It's got 118k. The paint is all black and is near immaculate. The headlight lenses are not battered at all, they look 14 years old yes, but not battered by dirt or sand at all. This car has been garaged or stored under cover all it's life I think (so far as I can tell). I agree that there could have been isolated incidences that could have driven sand under the window scrape rails but as of yet I'm just not finding it.

    Having said all that, it seems that I got my answer that this is not a manufacturer defect that over time scratches windows... and makes me understand that this is MY isolated problem. That in of itself helps me understand and deal with it. Thanks for the input gents.
    Interestingly, my 98 was black also. Choose to not believe me if you like, I had the doors opened up when I replaced the glass. The plastic 'guide' (actually, I could not figure out what it was really there for) was warped and rubbing the window. It was a few inches below the window sweep. I managed to move it away from the glass, and my new windows were not scratched at all 2 years later. Not sure I would call it a defect, but it was obvious that the heat made it warp. Perhaps the black color contributed to it.

  12. #11
    PowerJunkie is offline Cadillac Owners Member
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    Re: scratched windows on the outside

    Quote Originally Posted by bigtone View Post
    Interestingly, my 98 was black also. Choose to not believe me if you like, I had the doors opened up when I replaced the glass. The plastic 'guide' (actually, I could not figure out what it was really there for) was warped and rubbing the window. It was a few inches below the window sweep. I managed to move it away from the glass, and my new windows were not scratched at all 2 years later. Not sure I would call it a defect, but it was obvious that the heat made it warp. Perhaps the black color contributed to it.
    I choose to believe you

    How much did new windows cost (ballpark is fine, please), and how difficult was it to get to those plastic pieces to move them away?

    THX

  13. #12
    bigtone's Avatar
    bigtone is offline Cadillac Owners Fanatic
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    Re: scratched windows on the outside

    Used, actually from ebay for less then $100 shipped for 2. Would have been cheaper at the local u pull it, but I didn't have the time. The plastic was on the brittle side, I don't remember having too much trouble just breaking most of the pieces off.

  14. #13
    PowerJunkie is offline Cadillac Owners Member
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    Re: scratched windows on the outside

    Ok, door panels .. ??

    If it's too much to ask for instructions just please blow me off (LOL).

  15. #14
    sunsetcoast is offline Cadillac Owners Member
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    Re: scratched windows on the outside

    Quote Originally Posted by PowerJunkie View Post
    I checked it out before I bought it, then checked it out again a couple of times since. Every time I give it a new look I find more and more that didn't expect to find.
    [...]
    It looked pristine when we bought it... but now every day it's showing more and more signs of either problems, or just it's age, I dunno.
    Unless you are a pro, and do this every day, several times a day, you can process only so much information at once. or example, a layman might not be able to tell whether a middle-aged person wore braces. An orthodontist, on the other hand, without making an examination, can tell not only that work was done, but also how it was done just from "small talk" at a cocktail party.

    I once picked up a creampuff.
    Other than a single short (but deep) scratch and a door ding that was fixed with touch-up paint, the body looked perfect. Then I waxed it and found some minor imperfections. I thought, "Well, I bought it in December and the angle of the sun was low, plus both times I went to look at it were overcast days." Still, how could I have missed them? Later, as I detailed it, I came across 3 dozen(!) scratches... No, you couldn't see them from 10 ft, but I hadn't seen so many when I waxed. As things get better overall because "big" problems are addressed, minor things become more obvious.

    Just as a magician uses misdirection to draw attention from what is actually happening, we may focus on other things when we see cars. Worried about worn headlights, you gave little attention to the windows, other than checking that they worked properly. Those glass scratches, for example, might have been interpreted as a streaky cleaning job. Or maybe you were distracted by the shiny chrome wheels....

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